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How to take a picture with the webcam when PREDATOR detects an intrusion

PREDATOR can run custom commands when its state changes.
For example, you can configure PREDATOR to run a program that takes some snapshots with the webcam when the Password Dialog or the Access Denied screen is displayed.

The following procedure details how to take snapshots whenever PREDATOR displays the Password Dialog.

1. Open the Advanced options tab in the Preferences window

You must configure some settings in the "Snapshots" frame:

Store in folder

Use the button next to this field to browse your filesystem and select the folder where PREDATOR will store the picture files it takes with your webcam. "My Pictures" is a good choice.

Retention

Picture files older than this number of days will be automatically deleted.

Camera

The default value for this field is "1" because most computers have a single webcam. If you have several webcams, enter the number of the one that PREDATOR should use.

Count

Number of snapshots which will be taken on each triggering event (an alarm event, or a photo monitoring timed interval). Enter a value in the range 1 - 99.

Delay

Enter a number of seconds here. The software will wait this number of seconds before taking each snapshot. Many cameras require a delay to adjust their exposure and be ready to take a picture. 2 seconds is a safe value, adjust it for your own hardware. If you set a too short delay, no picture will be taken.

2. Open the Alarm options tab in the Preferences window

You will configure some settings in the "Commands" frame:

Event

Select the "Password" event in the drop-down list

Action

Select the "Default" action in the drop-down list

Custom action

Select the "Snapshot" action in the drop-down list

Close the Preferences window with the "OK" button in order to commit your changes.

3. Test your snapshot configuration

Reopen the Alarm options tab in the Preferences window.

Select the "Password" event in the drop-down list

Click the "Run command" button and check the contents of your "My Pictures" folder: you should find a new picture file there.
If you get an error message, make sure you have updated the "Store in folder" field above and reopened the Preferences window before testing with the "Run command" button.

Next time PREDATOR will display the Password Dialog, it will take a picture and store it into the "My Picture" folder.

See also: How to send the picture by email and How to upload the picture to a remote ftp server.