How to manage areas in the ATRIUM software

Understanding areas in the ATRIUM software

Introduction

Programming areas determines the different access rooms that will be controlled by the ATRIUM system. Once defined, an area can be assigned to an access level, which can in turn be assigned to one or more users/card holders. 

Areas are an important concept in the ATRIUM system. Instead of giving access to doors, ATRIUM gives access to areas. Thus, if a user has access to an area, they can enter the area using any door that gives direct access to that area. This avoids having to configure the access for each door individually for this user.

The ATRIUM Access Control System differs from all the other access control system on the market today. Other systems determine access levels based on a door-to-door basis, while ATRIUM determines access levels based on areas delimited by doors. This new method greatly simplifies the programming of the system.

Since an area (room) can consist of many doors, with ATRIUM, you only need to tell the system that a group of users has access to this room (area) or not, rather than each individual door. In some installations, some rooms can have 10 or more access points (doors). With ATRIUM, as soon as you tell the system that a group of users (access levels) have access to this room, all the doors leading to this room are added automatically. This is also a great innovation when adding a new door between two rooms (areas). Since you have already defined the access levels based on areas (rooms), when you add a new door between two existing areas, you do not need to modify any of the access levels. The programming is already done; no need to add this door to the access level. Adding a door thus becomes very simple and very efficient.



The ATRIUM system then decides to grant access (or not) to a door only if the destination room (area) is accessible to this user (defined in their access level), within the defined access schedule (also defined in the access level). This principle is similar to crossing borders between countries. The country decides if you are allowed to enter its borders or not; the same applies to the ATRIUM access control system which decides if you are allowed to enter in the room (area) or not based on access levels, access schedules, and other conditions.

From the Dashboard tab, click on the Areas tab. From this page, areas may be added, edited, and deleted.


By default, one Area per door is defined.

Adding an Area

From the Hardware tab, click on the System Overview icon. Under the master controller menu list, select Areas then click on the Add button.


General Information 

  1. Display Name: Identifies the area throughout the ATRIUM software. We recommend using a name that is representative of the area.

Anti-Passback

You can use anti-passback to closely monitor the movements of users and prevent any tailgating. Tailgating occurs when a user does not use a card at the reader and enters through the door opened by another user who has already used their card. To use this feature, each door of the selected area must have readers on each side. When a user presents their card to an Entry Reader, the system labels the user as in. The next time the user presents their card, it must be presented to an Exit Reader, in which case user will be labeled as out. Two subsequent Entries or two subsequent Exits will cause the system to generate the appropriate Access Denied - Anti-Passback violation event.
  1. Enabled: When selected, indicates that the anti-passback is active.
  2. Schedule: Select the period of time at which anti-passback will be operational.
  3. Anti-passback delay (minutes): Anti-passback delay prevents user from entering the same area twice during a set time duration. This is useful where there is an exit button or turnstile and no Exit Reader. It would prevent a user being able to enter an area and hand their card immediately to a friend or colleague to also gain entry.
  4. Type: There are two anti-passback modes: soft and hard. The soft mode will generate an event and access will be granted, while hard mode will generate an event but the access will be denied.
  5. Reset Time: The reset time is the time at which the anti-passback of the selected area will be reset and each user that are within the sector will be given to unknown.
  6. Lockdown: When selected, indicates lockdown will be enabled for the area.

Integration Tab

These settings are for the intrusion integration feature and allows each card readers or keypads associated within the area, to arm and/or disarm an intrusion alarm panel.
These settings will apply only if the “Intrusion (Alarm) Integration” feature has been enabled. Refer to this article to learn how to activate this feature.
  1. Enabled: Check to activate this area to arm and disarm the intrusion alarm panel.
  2. Arm Status Input: Select the input that will be used to monitored the Arm Status.
  3. Alarm Status Input: Select the input that will be used to monitored the Alarm Status.
  4. System Control Output: Select the relay output that will be used to arm or disarm the intrusion alarm panel.
  5. Output Type: Select the relay output type. Typically, momentary output is used for key switch arming input (Refer to the intrusion alarm panel manual for output options).
  6. Pulse Time: Enter the relay output pulse delay (in seconds) that you need for the key switch arming input. Typically, 1 second.

Events Tab

The Events tab lists in real-time the selected area events. Refer to this article for more information on Events.

Notes Tab

Use the Notes text field to record any additional notes that may be required. We recommend that you keep a log of what settings were changed and when they were changed.

Save Button

Use the Save button to save changes.

Cancel Button

Use the Cancel button to ignore changes.

Modifying an Area

Select an area from the list and click on the Properties button. See the Adding an Area section for more information.

Deleting an Area

To delete an existing area, select the area from the list and click on the Delete button. A dialogue box will appear requesting confirmation.


Next, learn how to define and manage access levels in the ATRIUM software. 


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