UniFi Video - How to Reset a UniFi Video Installation for Linux/Hardware NVR


This article will outline how to reset a UniFi Video Installation under the Linux operating system (also applies to our hardware NVR) and how to restore recordings. The article for resetting a Windows installation, can be found here.

Please note that this will clear out all settings and managed cameras but the recordings will remain.  It will be necessary to re-manage the cameras, setup motion zones/sensitivities, reconnect the install to the cloud, etc.  This method should only be used after a database repair has been attempted and been advised by a Ubiquiti employee. 

Table of Contents

Steps - How to Reset Installation

Steps - How to Restore Recordings

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Steps to Reset a UFV Installation

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  1. SSH into the UniFi Video server or hardware NVR. (Need guidance on SSH? Click here.)
  2. Edit /usr/lib/unifi-video/data/system.properties
    • You can use vi, nano, or pico to do this.  However, on our hardware NVR, vi is the only text editor.  You can quickly install nano by executing
      apt-get update; apt-get upgrade; apt-get install nano; apt-get clean
  3. Locate the line that reads:
    and change it to:
  4. Restart UniFi Video
    service unifi-video restart
  5. It will take a moment to wipe out the database and restart the web service.
  6. Access your install as usual (https://[UniFi-Video IP address:7443).
  7. The initial setup wizard will appear. Follow the steps to complete it.
  8. As always, the first thing you should do after completing the wizard is go to Settings > NVR Settings > Configure tab and check your storage path as well as the "Space to Keep Free" setting.

Steps to Restore Recordings

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The following steps will guide a user to attempt to restore their recordings. Please note that the analysis tool may actually remove the recordings, therefore it is recommend making a backup prior to performing these steps.

  1. Edit the system.properties file (/usr/lib/unifi-video/data/system.properties) and add the following to the bottom:
  2. Restart the UniFi Video service via service unifi-video restart
  3. Log in to the web interface
  4. Go to Settings > NVR Settings > Configure tab > Expand Tools section > Click the Analyze button. Your recordings will only restore if the storage path is correct.  
  5. Restoring recordings can take some time (anywhere from 30 minutes to 5+ hours depending on how many you have).  You can continue to use the system as normal as well as continue to manage your cameras and setup your configuration, but make sure you stay logged in while the analysis is complete.  A simple way to do this would be open a Live Feed from a camera or a Live View and the system won’t log you out.

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