Extracting a Full Day’s Video from UniFi NVR

There are plenty of people looking to extract full-length video from their UniFi Protect instances, either for archival purposes, or (as in my case) to create full and multi-day timelapse videos. The iOS app and the web app both allow limited download of video, but the interface to define your clips is clumsy at best, crashy at worst, and in my experience extracting an entire day seems to fail more often than it succeeds. Given these limitations, I went looking for a more robust way to dump video from the devices – read on for my findings.

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Conditional DNS on UniFi’s UDM-Pro

A quick How To for getting conditional DNS forwarding working on the UDM-PRO hardware. Before this upgrade I ran a CloudKey Gen 2 controller and a USG-PRO-4 for routing – this allowed me to deploy custom configuration via the config.gateway.json to insert extra options to the running config.

The options I needed were to force the DNS server on the gateway to check against my Active Directory DNS for those entries that arrive with the correct suffix – ad.durdle.com. This allows the lookup of clients from the UniFi’s DHCP lease table as well as AD DNS entries.

The UDM-PRO is a completely different beast from the old controller and gateway, running an entirely different OS. It doesn’t support config via json. So what’s a geek to do?

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Windows 10, why you no sleep?

A (minor) annoyance of my recent new build Windows 10 machine has been its inability to properly sleep. I’d hit Sleep, it’d go through the motions of spinning down fans and sleeping… and then immediately spring back into life.

I’ve actually put up with this for months, but yesterday spent some time working out what was happening, so for Future Howard’s benefit, here’s how to see what is keeping your machine awake.

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Clearing Ubiquiti UniFi USG DNS entries

Another post to save Future Howard the trouble of trying to remember how to fix a problem: when the DNS server in the USG-PRO has cached an old or invalid IP for a host. To verify:

  • SSH to the USG-PRO itself (not the Cloud Key/Controller).
  • To see the list of IPs it has stored, with the incorrect entry:
    cat /etc/hosts
  • To edit (elevated) and remove the offending line
    sudo vi /etc/hosts
  • And to ensure the DNS service forgets the incorrect value:
    clear dns forwarding cache

You’re welcome, Future Howard.