A simple method to make Zoneminder alarm events remotely viewable using Dropbox syncing (Ubuntu 14.04/Mint 17)

First of all a Dropbox Sync folder has to be created on your computer where the zoneminder  surveillance system has been installed .The method is discribed in this link HERE

After installing Dropbox on your computer using the above method ,a sync folder called “dropbox ” is created on the home directory of your computer.

Now we are going to get a link of zoneminder events and copy to dropbox folder so that you can view events live on the Dropbox cloud.

The alarm events of zoneminder are stored in the folder at  /var/cache/zoneminder/events

If you right click the mouse on events folder and try to  create  a link ,you can see it is not allowed .

If you use synaptics packge manager to find  where the zoneminder files in your computer , you can see  another events file in /usr/share/zoneminder.

(It is a  folder linked to /var/cache/zoneminder/events)

Copy the events file at /usr/share/zoneminder to the dropbox folder at the home dirctory.

(just copy and paste)

Since this events folder is link to /var/cache/zoneminder/events ,all the zoneminder events are updated lively.

Start the dropbox and zoneminder

Now you can see all the events are uploaded lively to the Dropbox cloud so that you can view the alarm images and videos remoteley .

(Note:-Using teamviewer software also you can control zoneminder and view events)


How to solve the Problem of video generation of events from filters in Zoneminder 1.26.5 on Ubuntu 14.04/Mint 17


The Zoneminder 1.26.5 software has been designed to use ffmpeg for video generation purpose.But latest Ubuntu 14.04 and Mint use avconv instead of ffmpeg. Since the Zoneminder software is not so user friendly ,I  had  to find a correct way of using avconv by trail and error method.


Let us examine how to fill the data in  Zoneminder Console /Options/Images

In the previous versions of Zoneminder /Ubuntu combination , for the “Path to (optional) ffmpeg mpeg encoder (?)” we had to give the full path /usr/bin/ffmpeg.

But for the Zoneminder 1.26.5 the full path is not required .

We can see avconv is available in /usr/bin/

Therefore in the Value cage enter avconv



Now we will have to find whether the method adopted is facilitating to make  videos out of the images . This can be tested by uploading the results to a ftp server.

Here I have selected free account of filegenie file server


Now go to Zoneminder Console /Options/Upload

Fill the value cages as follows

Should ZoneMinder support uploading events from filters (?) -tick the value box

What protocol to use to upload events (?) -ftp

The remote server to upload events to (?)- ftp.filegenie.com

Remote server username (?) your user name in filegenie

Remote server password (?) your password in filegenie

The remote directory to upload to (?) zm

(Note :- In filegenie I have initially creared a folder zm)


Making a filter to activate conditions for making videos and uploading .

Using the filter button zoneminder console make a filter with following conditions

max Score > or =  20 (you will have to chose the value according to the value you used in the monitor)

Then tick the boxes in Create video for all matches and Upload the matches

Then save the filter and execute.

Now if you press the log button in the zoneminder console ,you can see uploading video files to the file server.





How to install HomeGenie Open Source Home Automation Server on Ubuntu 14.04 /Mint 17 64 bit


HomeGenie is a free Open Source Home Automation software that can be installed on Linux operating systems

Installation method 1

The software can be downloaded from HomeGenie official website

The deb file can be downloaded from  this link provided by the software developers and installed easily using the built in software manager of Ubuntu or Mint .If you use this method the HomeGenie will be installed in the /usr/local/bin/homegenie   folder. Then the software is running as root.

Installation method 2

I like to recommend this method ,as it does not run as root .

Download tgz version of software from this link provided by the software developers in to the home directory of your computer .

Extract the file to the home directory using the built in Archive Manager of Ubuntu /Mint .

Then you will get a folder called “homegenie”

Open the homegenie folder and find the script file called “startup.sh”

Place the mouse cursor right click the mouse and allow to execute as a program and to open with Auto run prompt.

Making a start up icon at the desktop

Copy startup.sh file to the desktop

Open startup.sh as a text file .  Then  edit and save as follows

line 13

sudo $MONO /home/your linux user name/homegenie/HomeGenie.exe

line 16

sudo $MONO /home/your linux user name/homegenie/HomeGenie.exe >/dev/null 2>&1

Note :Please replace with your user name

Then place the mouse on the start up icon >right click the mouse and ensure whether the file is being permitted to execute as a program and open with Auto run prompt.

Now you can double click the start up icon to start the program

After entering your  Linux password ,Open the firefox browser and go to


If port 80 is not be permitted



Then you will get the HomeGenie Panel .Now you can change the HTTP service port to 81 using

Configure>Maintenance and Updates>Change port

Then restart the server and check for updates

It is easy to configure the program to suit  your system.

A demonstration Video on HomeGenie




How to use JPIV in Linux Mint 17/Ubuntu 14.04


JPIV is a software package for Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV). The program is open source, platform independent.

What is PIV?

PIV is an optical technique for measuring the displacement of particle pattern. PIV ist mostly used for flow velocity measurements. In contrast to many other techniques, that measure the velocity of a single point, PIV provides information about the two dimensional velocity distribution, or more precise, about the distribution of two Cartesian velocity components parallel to a measurement plane. There are specialized set-ups that measure three Cartesian components in a plane (e.g. Stereo-PIV) or even three components in space (e.g. Tomographic PIV, Holographic PIV). Because it is an optical technique, the fluid flow is usually not disturbed by a measurement probe.

The movement of a gas or a liquid is visualized by adding small tracer particles to the flow. With a digital camera, the position of the particles is captured at least twice, with a little time lag between the images. A computer program like JPIV is used for tracking the movement of the particles based on cross-correlation, and to visualize the result.

JPIV can be effectively used to analyse velocity distribution in Hydraulic model studies.

How to install on Mint

Download JPIV > HERE

Icedtea -7-plugin has to be needed to run JPIV.

Please install Icetea if it has not be installed  already.

Move jpiv.jar file to home directory

right click properties>permissions> tick the box for allowing execute file as a program and

Tick the box to open with Open JDK Java 7 Runtime

Go to desktop

Create a desk top Launcher by right clicking the mouse .

Now you can start JPIV by double clicking the launcher at the desktop


How to install CropWat 8.0 on Linux Mint 17/Ubuntu 14.04

CropWat Menu


CROPWAT is a decision support tool developed by the Land and Water Development Division of FAO.

CROPWAT 8.0 for Windows is a computer program for the calculation of crop water requirements and irrigation requirements based on soil, climate and crop data. In addition, the program allows the development of irrigation schedules for different management conditions and the calculation of scheme water supply for varying crop patterns. CROPWAT 8.0 can also be used to evaluate farmers’ irrigation practices and to estimate crop performance under both rainfed and irrigated conditions.

Although CROPWAT software is written for Windows ,It can be installed on Linux platforms using Wine 1.7.20

The procedure is as follows

Install Wine 1.7.20

Adding the WineHQ PPA Repository:

Open the terminal

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-wine/ppa

Then update APT package information by running ‘sudo apt-get update‘. You can now install Wine by typing ‘sudo apt-get install wine1.7‘.


Installing Winetricks

Open the Software Manager

find winetricks and install it .


Install mfc40

start winetricks

Then >Select a default wineprefix>Install a Windows DLL component>mfc40

Then press OK


Install CROPWAT 8.0

Download CROPWAT from HERE

Open “Uninstall Wine Software” and install the downloaded software

Video Tutorial

How to install Hydraulic and hydrological software of Hydrologic Engineering Center (USACE) on Linux Mint 17/Ubuntu 14.04


The Hydraulic and hydrological simulation software developed by The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Hydrologic Engineering Center are freely available to  the public . These software are prepared to  suit the Microsoft operating systems .Since these simulation software are very useful in advance hydraulic &  hydrologic engineering and water resources planning;It has to be found a method to install the same on linux platforms .

I have found a simple way to install HEC software on Linux Mint, using Wine 1.7.

 Install Wine 1.7.20

Adding the WineHQ PPA Repository:

Open the terminal

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-wine/ppa

Then update APT package information by running ‘sudo apt-get update‘. You can now install Wine by typing ‘sudo apt-get install wine1.7‘.


Installing Winetricks

Open the Software Manager

find winetricks and install it .


Install mfc40

start winetricks

Then >Select a default wineprefix>Install a Windows DLL component>mfc40

Then press OK


Install HEC software

Download following software




Open “Uninstall Wine Software” and install above software

Install Foxit Reader or suitable pdf reader in Wine in order to read help manual

Now you have a complete set of river basin module for Water Resources Planning

How to install BlueGriffon on Linux Mint


It is observed that there is no proper Web editor  in the Mint Package manager.Therefore we will have to select a Web editor that can be installed on Linux. The BlueGriffon is a popular Web Editor that is based  on the rendering engine of Firefox.

First the latest BlueGriffon tar.gz file has to be downloaded from http://bluegriffon.org/

Extract the bluegriffon-1.7.2.Ubuntu13.04.x86_64.tar.bz2 file to the home directory of your computer.

Then the extracted folder is “bluegriffon”

Go to the “bluegriffon” folder

and find the file called bluegriffon ;
right click the mouse;properties>Open With>add> and chose Firefox Web Browser and close


Creating a start up icon for  bluegriffon

Open “Main  Menu” software in the Application menu ;Under Internet Add new item

Then,In the Create Launcher menu ,browse and select the bluegriffon file in the bluegriffon folder in the home directory.

Now the start up icon is added to the Application menu.


Web links such as “web site” ,”User’s Community” etc may not work in the help menu of blugriffon until the “open with application” is specified.

To activate sub menus of Help menu locate firefox at usr/bin/firefox.