Case in point: VMS to the rescue

Video surveillance management system protects farming and remote irrigation facilities


RD Offutt uses NetDVMS on three Dell PowerEdge 2850 rack-mount network servers running on two separate wireless networks that are bridged via a Cisco routing solution. Each server has 4GB of RAM and 500GB of hard disk space, and they archive to an NAS (network-attached storage) with 5TB of storage capacity. The flexibility of the solution enabled RD Offutt to deploy DVR servers in areas that are heavily populated with surveillance cameras to help reduce the amount of streaming video traveling over wireless backbone links. The system also enables the farm to manage bandwidth by providing the ability to centrally manage the cameras, frame rates and quality of video from one central management portal.

Management Benefits

In addition to security, the system functions to oversee production through remote viewing of RD Offutt's operation. "It gives them extra eyes at the equipment sites, and they can know what to turn on or off based on what happens," Barnett says.

Uses beyond security include business management and job tracking, and managers have already seen improvements in efficiency, for example, in a shop where repairs and welding are done. The cameras also allow monitoring of remote diesel and gasoline pumps used to refuel the farm's equipment. There have been occasions when video captured images of people loitering at a fuel pump station, leading to arrests and possibly avoiding vandalism. Given that the site is roughly 30 miles square, some cameras are located as far away as 15 miles.