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Frequently asked quastions

Q: Is there a way to read out the voltage of the power supply (of the battery) remotely?

A: Yes, on some camera systems. All DFNEXT systems have regular technological auxiliary data logs in /data0/log/hardware_log/. That includes mostly temperatures, but also the DC power voltage - which is battery voltage in case of solar-powered sites. Some of them, however, have a hardware bug on the PCB from the manufacturer, where it reads 0.0V rather than the correct DC power voltage.

Q: How can we detect weak 2G/3G signal strength and low band with? (PING time?) Web GUI

A: That is possible from both Command-line and Web GUI - Please see the updated wiki page https://wiki.dfn.net.au/index.php/Mobile_signal_strength_check

Q: Should we apply for prioritising the specific GSM numbers in communication with the tower? (Some operators say it is possible – but not for free...) – has somebody experience?

A: Not sure. The other thing that could help - in case of a camera site far away from the town, where is the telco tower - would be to use a higher gain antenna on the camera end. That would make the tower to "hear the camera system louder".

Q: What is the typical amount of data transfer per month?

A: approximately 1 GB or less, providing

a) people do not download a lot of files (one raw image is ~ 50 MB)

b) there are not too many false positives caused for example by light pollution or a nearby airport

A post-paid plan is big help to optimise the operational efforts, a lot more efficient than pre-paid. DFN use M2M group plan intended for machine-to-machine communication / Internet of things. Data bandwidth is shared by a number of SIMs in the pool. We can even check the connection status via a special web app provided by the operator, using the SIM IMEI (serial number).

Q: For which cameras would a «mask» help?

A: Those with obstacles in the field of view