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Control
The Control menu contains tools that allow anyone with the proper permissions to control and monitor the system in real-time. This is where you go to process your visitors, investigate issues with their cards, lock or unlock doors as needed, or just monitor activity in the building.

Alarms

Alarm Control
Alarm Control provides the user with an interface to view and control Alarms. The Alarm Control menu interface also allows operators to acknowledge and comment on any kind of alarm.  You can manage alarms originating from Portals, IPS groups, Monitoring Points, or even logical alarms from BluB0X Analytics.

Alarm Control is broken up in to the three tabs, Alarms, Intrusion, and History.  The Alarms tab is focused on live alarms and acknowledging the alarms in real time. Intrusion is focused on arming and disarming IPS groups or the alarm points.  The History tab enables an operator to review all alarms and understand patterns.

Controlling the Alarms

Alarms Tab

The Alarm Tab gives you a heads-up real-time display of the alarms in BluSKY. This is a critical component of real-time monitoring. The Alarms page opens to the filter criteria dialog, allowing users to select the exact fields needed, such as system. Once the filter has been submitted it is remembered.  If there is only one System or Facility, these fields may be filled in automatically. Please note that you can select multiple Systems and Facilities. These screen is to help you find the information you are looking for quickly and to customize the data displayed. 

Once criteria is selected, click  (Submit Button) to populate the Alarm Control list. If you need change your criteria, you can reenter the filter criteria by clicking the filter icon in the top left side of the screen.

Once the list loads you will be able to see recent Alarms. Your can review the Alarm event by selecting the row and clicking the  (Action button). If you do not wish to review or comment on the Alarm event, you may use the  (Clear button) instead. You can multi-select rows, or use the  button to select/deselect all, to clear multiple alarm events at the same time. After you have cleared the Alarm it will be viewable in the Alarm History Tab.

When a user selects the  (Action button) they will see an Alarm Details Pop-up.  From this pop-up the user can read instructions (future feature), add a new comment, and decide if they want to clear the alarm or just leave a comment.  If the user selects the Ok Button button they will change the alarms status to "Acknowledged", but it will not be cleared.  Use this selection if you are in the process of investigating, but you still want the alarm to show up in the Alarms screen.  If the user selects the  button, then the alarm is cleared, removed from the Alarm screen, and can only be viewed in the Alarm History screen.

Definitions

Field Description
This indicates the number of rows selected out of the total number of rows found. Click to toggle between selecting or deselecting all of the displayed rows. This can be particularly useful when many alarms have accumulated. 
Event Date The time and date of the alarm. The time is displayed based on the time zone of your default system. 
Meta View This indicates the source and current status of the alarm point. The indicates that the alarm was caused by a Portal DPS. The / will indicate the state of the point, open or closed.
Source The name of the point generating the alarm.
Type A text description of the kind of point being alarmed, Ex. portal or monitoring point.
Description A short description of the cause of the alarm.
Status Current state of the alarm it is either Acknowledged or Unacknowledged.

 

 


Intrusion Tab

This screen is used to manage the IPS Zones or individual alarm points. Since BluSKY is cloud based, you can manage multiple buildings from a single screen. 

 

Key Highlights: 

  • Complete Control - From this one screen, you are able to select one or more systems, one or more zones, or one or more individual points and make holistic changes.
  • “Meta View” - This shows you the status of each alarm point, means open, or not active,  means closed, or active.
  • "At-a-glance Information" -  See the exact state of the system at-a-glance. You can see if the IPS zone is armed, disarmed, or in an alarmed state.  If you are more interested in the Intrusion points, you can see if the point is enabled/disabled and if it is energized/de-energized.
  • By scanning the zones button you know immediately the status of each zone just by looking at the status icon, which is the same icon used to set that status. Very clear.
  • By scanning the alarm point you know its status as well, is the point enabled, disabled, bypassed, energized or de-energized.

Definitions

Field Description
Armed Away - This option will arm both interior and perimeter points in the IPS zone
Armed Instant - This will arm the perimeter points immediately with no delay for the selected IPS zone
Armed Stay - Arm the perimeter points only, with time to exit, for the IPS zone selected.
Disabled - This disables the selected IPS zone.
Enable Point - This action enables monitoring for the selected IPS Points.
Disable Point - This action disables monitoring for the IPS Point.
Bypass Point - This action will cause the IPS to ignore the point and allow the system to arm despite the bypassed points being in an alarm state. 
Alarmed
Not Enabled (De-Energized)
Enabled (Energized)

 


History Tab

The History Tab provides historical data on past alarms. This can be a convenient tool for a quick audit of recent alarms. If you need to look back further than the last 3 days, then use the Alarms Report. 

Alarm History

From this screen you will also be able to add a comment or review the alarm. Simply select from the list and click the  (Action Button). Then you will be able to review information about the event, clear the Alarm or add another comment.  Note you selecting OK just acknowledges the alarm, selecting Clear will remove the alarm from the Active Alarm screen and leave it in the history.

Definitions

Field Description
This indicates the number of rows selected out of the total number of rows found. Click to select or deselect all of the displayed rows. This can be particularly useful when a great deal of alarms have accumulated. 
Resolved Date When the alarm was acknowledged.
Resolved By The person in BluSKY that acknowledged the alarm.
Meta View This indicates the source and current status of the alarm point. The indicates that the alarm was caused by a Portal DPS. The / will indicate the state of the point, open or closed.
Last Comment The comment associated with the alarm.
Source The name of the component that caused the alarm.The name of the point generating the alarm.
Type A text description of the kind of point being alarmed, Ex. portal or monitoring point.
Event Date The time and date of the alarm. The time is displayed based off the time zone of you default system. 

 


Control Points

Control Points Control
The Control Point Control screen enables users to monitor, activate, or deactivate Control Points from one or more systems from one visually intuitive location .

Controlling and Monitoring Control Points

If you are using the Control Points Control screen for the first time you may need to select the Systems and Facilities you want to control. If you don't see this option, don't worry, BluSKY was able to select your default System. These settings can be changed at any time by clicking the filter icon in the top left-hand side of the screen. This can be a useful way to filter the results for larger systems or when controlling more than one System at a time.

Control Point Control Filter

Once you have selected all of the criteria needed, click the  button to load the selected Control Points. 

Key Features

  • Complete Control - You are able to select/deselect one one or more systems and/or individual points and control them all from the one screen. This capability can span multiple systems and provide a single point of control for an entire networks of systems. 
  • Multi-System/Multi-Facility - BluSKY's unique architecture is not limited by distance. You can control multiple buildings and systems all at once. 
  • "At-a-glance Information" -  Visual cues provide information on the system at-a-glance. 

Control

Once the Control Points load you will be able to control them easily. Simply click on each one you want to control, or click on the System to select them all. Then use the buttons at the bottom of the screen to Activate, Deactivate or Pulse the selected Control Points. 

Control Point Control

Definitions

Item Description
Active - This indicates that the Control Point is currently activated.
Inactive - This indicates that the Control Point is not currently active.
Activate - Turns the Control Point on. What activate means for this control point is determined by how the output was setup and the settings in Setup->Control Points.
Deactivate - Turns the Control Point off. What deactivate means for this control point is determined by how the output was setup and the settings in Setup->Control Points.
Pulse - This pulses the Control Point. Determining what a pulse does and for how long is determined by how the output was setup and the settings in Setup->Control Points.
Expand - This exposes all the control points under each system.
Collapse - This hides all the control points so only the system's icon is exposed. 

 

Elevators

Elevator Control
This article will discuss how to use the real time elevator control interface. It is important to note that for safety reasons and manufacturer specifications, BluSKY access control system controls the access rights to an elevator and not to the elevator itself. BluSKY is only enabling or disabling the ability to access the elevator on a specific floor or floors depending on your access rights.

Controlling the Elevators

Getting Started 

When using the Elevator Control screen for the first time you may be prompted to select the Systems and Facilities you want to control. Don't worry if you don't see this prompt, it is always available by clicking the filter icon in the top right-hand side of the screen. The "View" field enables the user to chose between displaying floor stops by Floors or Elevator Cars.

Once you select the  button, the screen will display all floor stops, allowing you to select and control each of the Elevators or Floor Stops. 

 

Monitoring Elevators

The Elevator Control screen provides a powerful tool for viewing the real-time state of the elevator system at-a-glance. The rich visual language can help you quickly diagnose issues. 

Elevator Statuses

Item Description
  The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop is currently secured and on schedule. 
  The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop is currently unsecured and on schedule..
Toggles between  and  The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop is currently in a release cycle.  This is usually due to a timed release.
The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop schedule has been interrupted by a manual override.
  The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop is currently secured due to a manual override.
  The Floor or Elevator Car's Floor Stop is unsecured due to a manual override.
   The Destination Dispatch Elevator is on schedule.
   The Destination Dispatch Elevator has manually been put on Card Only Access.
  The Destination Dispatch Elevator is on Scheduled and Card Only Access

 


Controlling Elevators

You are also able to control the Elevators and Floor Stops from this screen directly. Simply select the System, Elevator Bank, Car, Floor or Floor Stop you wish to control and use the buttons located at the bottom of the screen. 

Definitions

Item Description
Unlock - This will allow unrestricted access to the selected Floor Stops.
Lock - This will disallow ALL access to the Floor Stop. This will prevent people from accessing even if they have valid credentials
Release - This will cause a timed unlocked period, allowing a person to use the Floor Stop temporarily without a credential.
Schedule - This return the Floor Stops to their normal operating schedule.
Timer - A custom timed release of the Floor Stop.
Credential - This will allow the operator to simulate a person's credential without needing a physical copy.
Mode - This will set the Floor Stop to a specific access mode. See List below.
Expand - Makes all of the individual Floor Stops visible
Collapse - Show only the top most level of the Elevator Control hierarchy. 

 


Events

Events Control
The Events Control interface is a hub for managing what is happening in a system. This interface provides deep insight into the operation of the System.

Using the Event Screen

Real Time Events

The Real Time Event screen is your heads up system status display. Whether you are running command and control or just want to be kept up to date about everything, the Even screen is the place to be. 

Getting Started

The Event screen like many other screens has a highly customizable filter section. This is a great feature when you are only concerned with only certain aspects of the system. For example, during normal operation, I may want to only filter on alarms and overnight I may want to monitor all Portal activity. It's up to you and that is why it is powerful.

Once you have inputted all of the necessary criteria click the  button to populate the list. If you need to change the criteria, just click the filter icon on the top left side to expose it again. 

Definitions

Field Description
This indicates the number of rows selected out of the total number of rows found. Click to toggle between selecting or deselecting all of the displayed rows. This can be particularly useful when many alarms have accumulated. 
Event Date The time and date of the alarm. The time is displayed based on the time zone of your default system. 
Meta View This is a visual description of the type of the event for easy analysis. 
Person The person, associated with the event. In the case of a card swipe, the card holder. 
Event A text description of the event category and event type. 
By The person responsible for the action in BluSKY. Typically only used for Operator activity because in the case of a card swipe there needs to be a cardholder name and the person who is simulating the swipe. 

Event History

The Event History displays recent events for your BluSKY system and can be an important tool for diagnosing issues or ensuring that proper procedures are being followed. For example, if a system is frequently finding Portals unlocked that should be secure the first thing, I would do is head over to the Event History page and run a report for recent operator activity. From there I can remind the person to return the Portal to schedule when they are finished. This is just one example of the many ways this screen can provide a useful tool for incident response. 

Reviewing Events

In the cases where the   appears you will also be able to get a video feed of the event. Just click the   and you will see a recording from the time of the event and options to review the video further with the "Prev Minute" and "Next Minute" options. 

Definitions

Field Description
This indicates the number of rows selected out of the total number of rows found. Click to toggle between selecting or deselecting all of the displayed rows. This can be particularly useful when many alarms have accumulated. 
Event Date The time and date of the alarm. The time is displayed based on the time zone of your default system. 
Meta View This is a visual description of the type of the event for easy analysis. This is also where you can find any video associated with the event (  ). 
Person The person, associated with the event. In the case of a card swipe, the card holder. 
Event A text description of the event category and event type. 
By The person responsible for the action in BluSKY. Typically only used for Operator activity because in the case of a card swipe there needs to be a cardholder name and the person who is simulating the swipe. 

 

Monitoring Points

Monitoring Point Control
The Monitoring Point monitoring screen is a great tool for getting real-time statuses on the operation of IPS Points and Monitoring Points.

Controlling and Monitoring Control Points

If you are using the Control Points Control screen for the first time you may need to select the Systems and Facilities you want to control. If you don't see this option, don't worry, BluSKY was able to select your default System. These settings can be changed at any time by clicking the filter icon in the top left-hand side of the screen. This can be a useful way to filter the results for larger systems or when controlling more than one System at a time.

Once you have selected all of the criteria needed, click the  button to load the available Control Points. 

Key Features

  • Multi-System/Multi-Facility - BluSKY's unique architecture is not limited by distance. You can control multiple buildings and systems all at once. 
  •  "At-a-glance Information" -  Visual cues provide information on the system at-a-glance. 
  • This shows you the status of the alarm, means open, or not active,  means closed, or active.

Monitoring

Unlike some of the similar screens, there are no ways to control the Monitoring Points. They, by definition, are suppose to be passive but they can provide a lot of insight into the operation of the Facility. 

Definitions

Item Description
Active - This indicates that the Monitoring Point is currently activated.
Inactive - This indicates that the Monitoring Point is not currently active.
The following symbols will only appear for Monitoring Points that are associated with the Intrusion Prevention System ( IPS ).
The IPS Group associated with the Monitoring Point is armed instantly.
The IPS Group associated with the Monitoring Point is disabled.
The IPS Group associated with the Monitoring Point is Armed Stay.
The IPS Group associated with the Monitoring Point is Armed Away.

More on IPS States

 

Portals

Portals Control
This tool is intended for system administrators or security professionals who will need to control portal access in an ad-hoc nature. Portal Control will enable people with the proper permission the ability to temporarily lock or unlock a portal, simulate a card swipe and control the schedule of the Portal.

Controlling Portals

Getting Started

When you navigate to the Portal Control screen for the first time you may be asked to select your System. If this does not happen, don't worry, it simply means that we were able to determine your default system automatically. 

As you can see from the screen shot selecting multiple Systems or Facilities is a breeze. You can add as many Systems and Facilities as you have available. Once you have all of the necessary fields entered click the  button to populate the control screen. 

Portal Statuses

Name Description
The status of the portal is unknown. This is the initial status of all portals when the portal controller is first started. Once BluSKY has probed a portal the status will be updated.
The Portal is open for entry.
The Portal is open for exit.
The Portal is currently closed.
The Portal currently has an alarm status.
  The Portal is currently locked. Request exit switch works.
  The Portal is currently unlocked.
 Card The Portal can only be accessed by using a card.
 Card and Pin The Portal can only be used by a card and a PIN. User has to have both to access the portal.
 Card or Pin The Portal can be accessed by a card or a PIN.
 PIN The Portal can be accessed only be a PIN code.

Controlling the Portals

It should be no surprise that the hallmark of any access control system is the ability to control the flow of people through a system. This can be done with credentials and access rights but there are certainly times where having direct control is key. This is where the Portal Control screen comes into play. This control screen provides options for controlling one or more systems or facilities, allowing you to control your system on the east coast at the same time as controlling another system across the country. BluSKY delivers a flexible interface that provides the user the ability to control each individual Portal or entire Facilities with a few clicks. 

To control the Portal click on one or more of the Facilities or Portals and use the buttons on the bottom screen. Just please be aware than manual actions and modes will remain persistent until modified or the system is reset/resync'd. 

Definitions

Item Description
Unlock - This will allow unrestricted access to the selected Portals.
Lock - This will disallow ALL access to the Portals. This will prevent people from accessing even if they have valid credentials.
Release - This will cause a timed unlocked period, allowing a person to use the Portals temporarily without a credential.
Schedule - This return the Portal to their normal operating schedule.
Timer - A customizable release timer for the Portal.
Credential - This will allow the operator to simulate a person's credential without needing a physical copy. A useful tool for access right debugging. 
Mode - This will set the Portal to a specific access mode. See List below. This setting will remain until overridden or the Controller is set. 
Expand - Makes all of the individual Portals visible.
Collapse - Show only the top most level of the Portal Control hierarchy. 

 


How-To Simulate a Credential

A great way to debug access issues is by simulating a credential at the Reader via the control interface. This provides a useful and convenient tool for determining if access issues are being caused by the hardware or the configuration in BluSKY. For example, if I were to simulate Alice's card at the Reader and see the Portal cycle, I would want to check Alice's physical card and the hardware. If I simulate Bob's card and nothing happens or I see a denied entry, I should start my debugging process in the configuration of Bob's Person record to ensure they have the proper credential and access rights. 

  1. Navigate to Portal Control, or Elevator Control in BluSKY.
  2. Fill in search criteria if necessary.
    • If you use the Control interface often you can likely skip this step. 
  3. Click the Portal or Floor Stop you wish to simulate the credential against. 
  4. Click the  button to open the credential selection dialog. 
  5. Start typing in the name of the Person you want to use for the simulated credential.
  6. Click the Person's name once it appears. 

  1. Click the  button and observe the status of the Floor Stop or Portal change. 

Visitor Administration

Visitor Admission
Visitor Administration is the primary means for Security or an office administrator to process a visitor into a building or a facility. With this interface the user can take a picture, assign an access card, check a visitor in at the beginning of the day and out at the end of the day. This is also where a user can see who is expected, who is in, and who has left the building.

Add a Card to a Visitor

We will discuss how to add a Card to a Visitor. Adding a Card can be done before hand or during the time of Check In. This Card will be used to operate the Readers in the Facility. Remember that the Card will only work on Readers and during the times defined in the Visitor Access Level.

  1. Log in and navigate to Visitors. Main Menu-> Control-> Visitors
  2. In the lower left hand side click the  icon.

Visitor Card Assignment

  1. Select the Card type in the lower half of the page. 
    • Note: In some cases there is a default card type and this field will be filled in. If your Facility is using only one card type and you want to specify a default card type, please contact support at support@blub0x.com.
  2. Enter the Card information. This process will be different depending on which Card Type you select. 
    • If you are entering a CSN card type, you will enter the Serial Number using an unencrypted reader.
    • For all other Cards enter the External Card Number.
  3. Depending on the Status you will have three different options:

Pre-Registered, Assigned to Last, FirstName.

Reassign Visitor Card

  • This will take the Cards from another Person and assign it to the Visitor
  • If you are sure the Card is no longer in use, click the Reassign Card Button.
  • This can save a lot of time if a previous visitor's card was not reclaimed at Check Out.

Pre-Registered, Available 

Pre-Registered Visitor Card

  • If the Card is found BluSKY will attempt to complete the entry process.
  • If the Facility is using multiple Facility Codes you may be required to fill this field in. 

Card Not Found - Adding New

Create New Visitor Card

  • Enter the Internal Number 
  • Enter the Facility Code
  1. Enter a PIN if necessary.
    • Note: This will enable a Person to use a Reader with a keypad.
    • Note: Some Facilities impose a minimum PIN length.
  2. Use the User Flag section to add additional parameters to the credential.
    • EX: Using the ADA Timing Parameter, once configured, gives additional time to enter a Portal.
  3. Check to make sure the Start Datetime is valid, adjust if needed.
    • Note: This is especially important if the Visitor is arriving early.
  4. Ensure the End Datetime corresponds with the end of the visit. 
  5. Confirm changes with the saveBtn.png button.

Check In a Visitor

  1. Log in and navigate to Visitor control. Main Menu-> Control-> Visitor

Check In a Visitor

  1. Use the Search Criteria at the top of the screen to find the Visitor.
    • Note: You may also create a new Visitor Request if the guest is unexpected.
  2. Check in the Visitor using the  button.

Check Out a Visitor

  1. Log in and navigate to Visitor control. Main Menu-> Control-> Visitor

Visitor Check Out

  1. Use the Search Criteria at the top of the screen to find the Visitor.
  2. Finally, Check Out the visitor using the  button.
    • ​Note: You may also Check Out a Visitor from the Edit screen of Visitor Administration.

Reclaim a Card

The Reclaim Card feature for Visitor Management allows a Card to be reassigned after it has been returned. This prevents the need for many additional cards.

See How

  1. Log in and navigate to Visitor control. Main Menu-> Control-> Visitor
  2. Use the list below or the search feature to locate the Visitor that was issued the card.
    • Note: You may reclaim more than one card at a time. If doing so please ensure you are not accidently reclaiming a Card currently being used.

  1. Click the Visitor/s on the list and then use the  icon to reclaim the Card or Badge.
    • Note: You will only be able to reclaim a Card if the Visitor has been Checked Out.
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