Video management systems

Software platforms

Different software platforms can be used to manage video. They include using the built-in web interface, which exists in many network video products, or using a separate video management software program that is either a Windows-based or a web-based interface.

Built-in functionality

Axis network cameras and video encoders can be accessed over a network simply by typing the product’s IP address in the Address/Location field of a web browser on a computer. Once a connection is made with the network video product, the product’s ‘start page’, along with links to the product’s configuration pages, is automatically displayed in the web browser.

The built-in web interface of Axis network video products provides simple recording functions; that is, manual recording of video streams (H.264, MPEG-4, Motion JPEG) to a server by clicking an icon, or event-triggered recording of individual JPEG images to one or several locations. Event-triggered recording of video streams is possible with network video products that support local storage. In such cases, the video streams are recorded onto the products’ SD/SDHC card. For greater recording flexibility in terms of modes (e.g., continuous or scheduled recordings) and functionalities, a separate video management software program is required. Configuring and managing a network video product through its built-in web interface works when only a small number of cameras are involved in a system.

Web-based software

A web-based video management software program must be installed first on a PC server that serves as both a web and recording server. It then allows users on any type of networked computer anywhere in the world, to access the video management server and thereby, the network video products it manages, simply by using a web browser.

Scalability of video management software

The scalability of most video management software, in terms of the number of cameras and frames per second that can be supported, is in most cases limited by the hardware capacity rather than the software. Storing video files puts new strains on the storage hardware because it may be required to operate on a continual basis, as opposed to only during normal business hours. In addition, video by nature generates large amounts of data, which put high demands on the storage solution. More on Bandwidth and storage considerations.

Open vs. vendor-specific software

Video management software programs are available from vendors of network video products. They often support only the network video devices of the vendor. Software programs that support multiple brands of network video products also exist, often from independent companies. A variety of software solutions are available from more than 550 Axis’ Application Development Partners. More on Axis video management software.

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System features