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TDSi GARDiS

by Benchmark

With remote control and management of systems becoming an expectation of many users in today’s technological landscape, the emphasis is firmly on the delivery of stable, intuitive interfaces that enable simpler configuration, monitoring and control. Access control company TDSi claims to deliver all of this with its GARDiS software package.

Access control differs from many other security technologies, in that user interaction with the system is more common during periods when events or incidents are not being managed. Because of the collection and management of real-time data which delivers information about personnel status – who is on- or off-site, the location of people and assets, manned or unmanned departments, etc. – the data can be used for a host of applications alongside the security of doors and buildings. Indeed, the flexibility of the data collected and managed by access control can be of great value in terms of site management.

In order to realise the benefits of this data, access control systems need to facilitate easy set-up and configuration processes for integrators, as well as enabling on-going maintenance of authorised persons and departments. For the end user, the generation of reports and ability to track activity across a site ensures that the full flexibility of the access control system can be realised at any time.

GARDiS access control management software is claimed to improve accessibility to connected systems. Suitable for use by integrators as well as end users and IT managers, it boasts ease of installation across a number of Windows versions, with a graphical user-friendly interface developed specifically to accommodate the needs of a wide variety of users.

Following research and customer feedback, TDSi states it answered demands for a simple and straightforward platform requiring minimal training. In recognition of this, the software’s installation wizard reduces complexity during the set-up.

GARDiS is a web-based application which runs as a service. This ensures that is always operational. The software is the first launch of a full range, and will be followed by a selection of hardware products designed to fully integrate with Cloud-hosted security solutions.

Aiming to deliver a different approach to the way security systems are installed and operated, it provides a core Security-as-a-Service (SaaS) model, which delivers opportunities with regard to recurring revenue.

Intuitive interface

The user interface has been designed to ensure switching between the various functions is a simple process with minimal load times. Supported by a help system that stores and presents short video demos, it reduces the time spent contacting customer support.

The Dashboard is the default opening screen, and provides a view of live and archived events. Basic icon-based controls simplify actions and settings.

The People menu is where authorised users are added or have their details and permissions edited. The information includes departmental designations, vehicle registration, periods of employment (allowing contractors to have start and end dates applied), along with information about the issued credential and the level of access permissions.

Access tags and tokens are managed via the Credentials screen, which allows all registered cards, tags and tokens to be managed. Adding and deleting credentials is straightforward, simplifying management. All can have a status applied, including: Assigned, Expired, Damaged, Lost or Suspended.

The next two screens, Organisations and Sites, allow details to be configured about the customer business, its various departments, and defined areas within the protected sites themselves. The main difference between the two is the split between global and local settings.

Field devices are managed via the Equipment screen. This uses a wizard to simplify the addition of ACUs, and adds these to the system, allowing door control information and communications options to be established.

Door options include setting open times (and extended open times if needed), enabling free access and/or egress, and control of the strike.

The next screen, Access Levels, allows permission groups to be established. Other criteria, such as doors and schedules, can then be applied to each group. The next screen manages Schedules, and offers a wide range of flexibility.

The Event Management screen allows a range of system events to be selected, either as live system events or as notifiable alarms. This, combined with the Alarms options, enables systems to be configured to deliver a wide range of notifications, making them suitable for a variety of applications.

Finally, the Reports menu allows customisable reports to be generated, enabling users to quickly create audit trails or data for muster lists, along with a host of other reports