User Guide for iSentry Enterprise
|Intro||Get Started||Security Zones and Cameras||Video Devices|
|Motion Detection||Motion Detection Settings||Recording|
Instantly turn your web camera enabled computer into an Internet-connected motion-sensing security system.
iSentry is a webcam security system for the Mac. Just launch iSentry, point your camera to the region you want to monitor, and prepare to receive a video or photo if any motion activity is detected. With a wide selection of settings, iSentry allows you to schedule the activation time, enable sound alerts and receive email notifications about the events occurring within the region specified.
Please email us at email@example.com if you have any questions or suggestions.
Immediately after launching the application, you will see the application window which will display a Security Zone with no cameras. To learn more about Security Zones and Cameras, read the “Security Zones and Cameras” section.
Press the Add Camera button. You will see the Add New Camera dialog. Enter a new camera name in the Name field and select the target source device for the camera from the Video Input popup list.
After you add the camera, it’s recommended that you adjust the motion detection sensitivity. Select the Settings button in the upper right corner of the camera area to make any adjustments.
In the Security Zones and Cameras section, click Default Zone. This drop-down menu will display all associated camera devices. Drag the Activation Threshold slider to adjust the sensitivity of the motion detection algorithm. To learn more about this and other parameters that control motion detection, read the “Parameters Detection” section.
After you’ve experimented with sensitivity detection adjustments, you can configure the type of recording that you would like iSentry to perform. Select the Settings button in the top right. You will see the Video Devices button. By clicking it, you can select the resolution of photos/video, the type of recording (video or photo) and set other parameters. To learn more about video devices, read the “Video Devices” section.
The next step is to set up the upload folder where all recorded video/photos will be saved. Select the Settings button in the top right. Navigate to the Recording tab. Press the Browse… button to select the target folder for storing files. To learn more about these and other parameters for recordings, read the “Recording” section.
After you’re done with configuring the settings, you can start the motion detection process on iSentry. In order to do that, press the Start button in the main window. You will see a countdown timer on the screen. After some time (the default is five seconds) the motion detection will start. When iSentry detects some movement on the field, it starts playing an alarm, recording video/photo and sending email messages. All these actions are configurable. To learn more about these actions read the “Mail” and “Alarm” sections.
To stop motion detection press the Stop button. You can see the results in the Status window (Main Menu > Window > Status) and in the upload folder you’ve set up earlier.
These are the basics of how to use iSentry. There are many other settings and features available for use. Please read the documentation to learn how to use them.
iSentry will not run while the computer is asleep. Make sure your computer is not set to go to sleep automatically in System Preferences > Energy Saver. However, iSentry will run if your display goes to sleep. We would also like to warn users that the “Power Nap” feature does not allow the execution of third-party apps (including iSentry) while your Mac is asleep.
Compatibility: OS X 10.7 or later
Security Zones and Cameras
The Security Zone is a logical concept to group several Security cameras so that they can be manipulated as a whole. For example, you can create one Security Zone for cameras inside your house and other zones for cameras outside (e.g. for work and/or home).
The security camera is connected to one video device. You could have several cameras connected to the same device. You can also adjust the detection settings separately for every camera. This is especially useful when using the Detection Area Mask. The Detection Area Mask allows you to detect motion in different parts of a field from one Video Device.
In the image below, you can see how Security Zones and Cameras are represented in the main window UI. Also, the image shows available buttons and controls.
Every Security Zone has its own tab. You can switch between zones by pressing the tab buttons. In order to add a new Security Zone, press the “+” button in the tab bar at the top of the main window. You will see the Add New Zone dialog option, where you can choose a name for the zone.
In order to remove a zone, press the “x” button on the zone’s tab.
To change the name of a zone, open the Security Zones and Cameras window by selecting the green settings icon on the right side of the screen and select the zone name you would like to change from the outline on the left.
To add a new Security Camera to a new zone you have created (e.g. new zone tab), click the Add Camera button. You will see the Add New Camera dialog, where you can choose a name for the camera (the Name text field) and the video device that will be used as the camera input (the Video Input popup list).
Here is a description of the controls available in the camera preview area:
(A) The Delete Camera button deletes the camera.
(B) The Camera Settings button will open the Security Zones and Cameras window with the current camera selected.
(C) The Edit Detection Area Mask button starts the detection mask editor.
(D) The Toggle Fullscreen button resizes the camera area to occupy the whole window.
(E) The Motion Detection indicator shows the current level of movement in the camera field. If this level is greater than the Sensitivity Threshold, then the square on the left will turn red.
To change the camera settings, open the Security Zones and Cameras window and select a camera from the outline on the left. Here, you can change the name of the camera (the Name text field), select the video device (the Video Input popup list), adjust the motion detection sensitivity and see the current motion levels (the Motion Activity meter and the Activation Threshold slider).
There are two kind of cameras (or video devices) that are compatible with iSentry:
- Webcams, USB cameras and built in cameras (iSight or FaceTime on Macs).
- IP Cameras and cameras that are accessible via the network.
Webcams, USB cameras and built-in cameras are automatically managed by iSentry. IP cameras should be manually added and removed. There are also some features that are not available to IP cameras like changing the resolution and recording audio.
All video devices are configured in the Video Devices window. You can open this window from the main menu (Settings > Video Devices), status bar (Settings > Video Devices), iSentry Preferences window (Video Devices) and other places.
Webcams, USB cameras and built in cameras
Settings for the USB and built-in cameras look like this:
You can change the name of the camera (the Name text field). Other parameters are described in the “Recording” section.
Settings for the IP cameras look like this:
Also, you can change the name of the camera (the Name text field) and other parameters are described in “Recording” section.
To add a new IP Camera, click the Add IP Camera button. You will see the Add New IP Camera dialog, where you can specify all the necessary information about the camera.
Enter the name of the camera in the Name text field. This name will be displayed in the Video Input popup list in the Security Camera settings.
The URL field (which is the address of the IP camera) is a mandatory one. Currently, iSentry Pro supports RTSP and MJPEG video transmitted over HTTP protocol. Therefore, in most cases the URL should have one of the following formats:
For RTSP stream:
rtsp://username:password@IP:port/cam/realmonitor?channel=1&subtype=1 or 0 or 2
For MJPEG stream:
http://username:password@IP:port/axis-cgi/mjpg/video.cgi?subtype=1 or 0 or 2
The Username/Password fields are mandatory, in case the IP camera requires authentication.
You can later change the URL, name and other IP camera information by clicking the “Edit URL and Credentials” button.
To delete an IP Camera, select the camera from the left outline and press the Delete IP Camera button.
How to Start Detection
You can start/stop the motion detection manually or by using the Scheduling feature. There are several ways to start the motion detection manually:
- Press the Start button in main app screen
- Press the Controls > Start menu item from the main menu
- Press the Start menu item from status bar menu
- Press the Command + R on your keyboard
To stop motion detection manually:
- Press the Stop button in the main app screen
- Press the Controls > Stop menu item from the main menu
- Press the Stop menu item from the status bar menu
- Press the Command + P on your keyboard
Hide From Dock
You can remove the iSentry icon from the Dock. Select the iSentry icon in the status bar and select Hide From Dock. To revert this action, select Show In Dock.
Start Delay option
The Start Delay option creates a delay between the pressing of the Start button and the arming of the alarm. This is useful for allowing you to leave the field of surveillance before the application starts (e.g. turning off the lights) without triggering the motion detection.
Choose Window > Status in the main menu item or the Status bar menu item to open the Status window. Here, you can monitor the significant events that occurr while the application is running.
Motion Detection Settings
Motion Detection Activation Threshold
“Sensitivity” is one of the most important settings. It allows you to adjust the sensitivity of the motion detection algorithm. The detection threshold value must be large enough so that the program does not react to minor noises or slight changes in the monitored area but must be small enough not to miss any actual movements. To do this, you need to set up the detection for every camera in the Security Zones and Cameras window.
The Motion Activity meter shows you the amount of movement detected in a scene. You need to note the value of “normal” background movement in the scene and move the threshold slider to be slightly to the right of this value. Any movement amount which goes past the slider will trigger the alarm.
In addition, look at the motion activity indicator at the bottom right corner of the camera preview area in the main screen. When the motion activity is less than the threshold square on the right, then the square will turn green.
When some motion happens which is greater than the threshold, then this square will turn red.
“Flicker Suppression” prevents spurious activations caused by sudden contrast changes due to the camera’s automatic adjustments of exposition parameters. You can enable Flicker Suppression in Video Device settings.
Detection Area Mask
The “Detection Area Mask” allows you to disable the motion detection in certain areas of the scene. To use this, you can paint over the areas that you are not interested in. The shaded areas will not be used by a motion detection algorithm.
There is a Detection Mask icon in the camera preview area on the main screen. When you press this icon or select Edit Detection Area Mask from the context menu, the mask editor will start.
You can simply draw with your mouse or trackpad to create the mask. To erase some portions of the mask, you should draw by holding down the Option key. You can adjust the size of the brush used to draw/erase the mask using the Brush Size option.
You can manually save the mask to some file on your disk using the Save Mask button. Similarly, you can load the mask from the file using the Load Mask button.
When you’ve finished editing the mask, select the Done Editing button.
Recording settings are only applicable to Video Devices. So, if you have two Security Cameras connected to the same device, and they detect movement simultaneously, then recording happens only once.
You can select what type of recording will occur when movement is detected. Selecting Photo Recording will record what is happening with a sequence of photos while selecting Video Recording will record a video.
If Video Recording is selected, you can enable sound recording for USB and built-in cameras. Select Record Sound to toggle sound recording on or off. The application does not allow you to select audio input devices directly. However, you can go to System Preferences > Sound > Input tab and change the audio device there. Note, that audio recording is not available for IP cameras.
If Photo Recording is selected, then the saved photos will be named something like “ImageN.jpeg” where N indicates the number of the photo in the sequence. Each photo will be labelled with the date that it was taken in the bottom right hand corner.
The Frequency setting allows you to select how rapidly photos will be taken. To capture the details of the scene being recorded it is recommended to set the Frequency to a minimum of 5 photo/1 sec. Setting a lower frequency is only advisable if you have limited disk space.
“Pre-Motion Recording” allows you to record the moments leading to the detection of movement. It is a set of photos recorded 5 seconds immediately preceding the motion detection.
The Resolution setting allows you to adjust the resolution of the photos or videos being taken.
Note that increasing the resolution of the video or photo also increases the volume of data processed by the application. Setting the video or photo resolution too high may overload your computer and cause it to lag. This in turn may affect the quality of the photo or video or even lead to a partial loss of data. Therefore, it is recommended to choose a resolution based on your computer specifications. For example, if you have a 2.8 GHz Core 2 Duo processor and 2GB RAM, we do not recommend using more than 640×480 resolution. If your equipment is better than this setup but inferior in performance to a 2 GHz Intel Core i7 and 8GB RAM system, use resolutions up to 1280×720. If your equipment is more advanced, you can use the highest resolution.
There is another more versatile method for determining the optimal resolution. This method consists of selecting a video or photo resolution at which the CPU load won’t exceed 30%. You can determine the CPU usage with the application “Activity Monitor.app”, which is located in “/ Applications / Utilities “.
You can specify the upload folder where all recorded photos/videos will be saved
You can select any folder on your hard drive using the “Browse…” button. Files will appear in the selected folder immediately as they are recorded. The Documents folder of the current user is used by default. It is advisable to select a folder for the saved files that is synchronized with a cloud storage service such as iCloud Drive, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc. This way, your files will be saved locally on your computer as well as remotely with the cloud storage service.
If Organise Photos by Date is selected then all photos recorded for one motion detection event will be saved in a separate folder. The name of the folder will be the detection date.
When Organise Files by Device is selected, then all videos and photos produced from the same Video Device will be saved in a separate folder. The name of the folder will be the device name.
Here you can control the electronic notifications sent by iSentry upon the detection of movement by the application. The Use Mail Notification checkbox can be used to activate or deactivate the notification function. Enter your email address into To: text field. Click the SMTP Settings button to edit SMTP settings for your email account.
It is also possible to label the iSentry notifications in the field labeled Subject and to input a custom message in the Message field.
Tick the Attach a Snapshot checkbox to attach an image in which the motion was first detected. Note that this feature is only available in the Enterprise version.
The dialog for entering information about SMTP settings for your email account looks like this:
Once you have configured your email settings, you can test them by clicking the Send Test Message button. iSentry will attempt to send a test email and will report any problems it encounters.
Email settings if you are using Gmail
- Username: Your Gmail address
- Password: Your Gmail password
- Server Address: smtp.gmail.com
- Server Port: 587
- Use TLS (Secure Mail): Yes
A problem you may run into is that Google’s security settings do not allow third party apps to send messages via SMTP through their servers unless you explicitly allow this. You have two options here:
- Use App password
- Enable ‘Less secure apps’ option
Use App password
- Go to your Google Account.
- Verify that 2-Step Verification is set up for your account.
- On the left navigation panel, choose Security.
- On the “Signing in to Google” panel, choose App Passwords.
- At the bottom, choose Select app and choose the app you’re using.
- Choose Select device and choose the device you’re using.
- Choose Generate.
- Follow the instructions to enter the App Password. The App Password is the 16-character code in the yellow bar on your device.
- Choose Done.
- Enter App Password in iSentry Pro email settings
You can find more info here.
Enable ‘Less secure apps’
- Log into your Gmail account.
- Navigate to the Less secure apps page page.
- Toggle to turn this feature ‘ON’.
- Wait for some time for Google to update this setting.
- Try sending test message again.
You can find more info here.
Email settings if you are using iCloud
- Username: Your full iCloud email address including your name and @icloud.com. An example is firstname.lastname@example.org
- Password: An app-specific iCloud Mail password.
- Server Address: smtp.mail.me.com
- Server Port: 587
- Use TLS (Secure Mail): Yes
How to generate an app-specific password
- Sign in to your Apple ID account page.
- Verify that Two-Factor Verification is on.
- In the Security section, click Generate Password below App-Specific Passwords.
- Follow the steps on your screen.
- After you generate your app-specific password, enter or paste it into the Password field of the iSentry Pro email settings.
You can find more info here.
Email settings if you are using Comcast/xfinity
- Username: Comcast username
- Password: Comcast password
- Server Address: smtp.comcast.net
- Server Port: 587
- Use TLS (Secure Mail): Yes
You can find more info here.
You can control the alarm sound played by iSentry upon the detection of movement by the application. This function can be useful to alarm a possible intruder and to alert you of an intrusion.
Open the iSentry Preferences window and navigate to the Alarm tab.
Select the Play Alarm Sound checkbox to turn the alarm sound function on or off. The Alarm Delay popup list allows you to specify a delay between the movement detection and the initial alarm sound. The Alarm Volume slider regulates the intensity of the volume of the alarm. Finally, you have the option of choosing from the list of different alarm melodies provided.
You can also select the custom alarm sound. Select the Use custom alarm sound option and select the sound file by clicking the Select File button. You can check how selected file sounds by clicking Play/Stop.
You can set up iSentry to automatically start the motion detection during certain periods of time. This feature is called “Schedule”. Open the iSentry Preferences window and click on the Schedule tab.
There are two types of schedules you can set: “Basic” allows you to set up repeating daily detection start and finish hours. For more control, you can use “Advanced Schedule” in which you can set up different times for different days of the week.
When this option is selected you will need to activate iSentry manually using the Start/Stop buttons. No scheduled motion detection will be automatically performed.
The motion detection will automatically start at the set time entered in the “Start Time” field and will finish at the time entered in the “Stop Time” field. This could be used to automatically activate iSentry while you are away, such as at your office during after hours. Please note that the application must be running for the scheduled motion detection process to take place.
“Advanced Schedule” allows you to configure a more granular motion detection schedule. For example, the screenshot below sets the following schedule: motion will be detected on Mondays from 12am to midnight, Thursdays from 1am to midnight and Saturdays from 10am to 8pm.
Unfortunately, we cannot provide phone support for iSentry Pro. Please email all your questions and support requests to email@example.com
If you have any questions, please check our FAQ page first.