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Installation of UniFi Video on Ubuntu

This is how I installed unifi-video on an Ubuntu 20.04 server, to use with my Home Assistant installation.

Even though Unifi-Video is deprecated; - you are still able to install it. It will not receive any security updates or further development, so it might be not that wise to expose this instance fully on the world wide web, but hide it behind a VPN if you are connecting externally.

The latest version I’ve found of unifi-video was 3.10.11 3.10.13.

Table of contents
  1. Getting started
  2. Prerequisites
  3. Install unifi-video
    1. Upgrade unfi-video
  4. Recording disk
  5. Fault finding
    1. Logs
    2. Update
  6. Authors
  7. Acknowledgments

Getting started

It was a real pain in the butt to find the latest version of the unifi-video software, as it has been removed from the download site /

Ubiquiti has stopped developing UniFi-Video products, and people are forced to use UniFi-Protect instead which works only on dedicated hardware from Ubiquiti. A shame, really - as the comments do show

However, I’ve found some downloads which should be appropriate for our manual installation:

Let’s try to install unifi-video.Ubuntu18.04_amd64.v3.10.11.deb on this Ubuntu 20.04 installation of ours.


As always, I am using Proxmox. No further explanation here - for convenience, remember to install qemu-guest-agent (sudo apt install qemu-guest-agent).

Disable IPv6, as we do not want unifi-video to bind to this address:

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo nano /etc/default/grub

Change to:

GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT="maybe-ubiquity ipv6.disable=1"

Then run:

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo update-grub

Install dependencies:

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo apt-get install mongodb mongodb-server openjdk-8-jre-headless jsvc

As we do not want to later on update our openjdk installation to a newer version than 8, do:

nvr@nvr:/tmp$ sudo apt-mark hold openjdk-11-*

And, as I found out writing this, the installed Java version is too new for this old unifi-video installation. We will have to downgrade Java. Thanks to this post,, it is fairly easy.

Download jre1.8.0_271 from this direct link:

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo su
root@nvr:/tmp# mkdir /usr/local/java
root@nvr:/tmp# cd /usr/local/java
root@nvr:/usr/local/java# wget
root@nvr:/usr/local/java# tar zxvf AutoDL\?BundleId\=243727_61ae65e088624f5aaa0b1d2d801acb16 

You should now have a file called jre1.8.0_271 in your /usr/local/java directory. We can remove the downloaded file with command rm AutoDL\?BundleId\=243727_61ae65e088624f5aaa0b1d2d801acb16.

Let us continue:

root@nvr:/usr/local/java# update-alternatives --install "/usr/bin/java" "java" "/usr/local/java/jre1.8.0_271/bin/java" 1
root@nvr:/usr/local/java#  update-alternatives --config java
There are 2 choices for the alternative java (providing /usr/bin/java).

  Selection    Path                                            Priority   Status
* 0            /usr/lib/jvm/java-8-openjdk-amd64/jre/bin/java   1081      auto mode
  1            /usr/lib/jvm/java-8-openjdk-amd64/jre/bin/java   1081      manual mode
  2            /usr/local/java/jre1.8.0_271/bin/java            1         manual mode

Press <enter> to keep the current choice[*], or type selection number: 2
update-alternatives: using /usr/local/java/jre1.8.0_271/bin/java to provide /usr/bin/java (java) in manual mode

Update the environment:

root@nvr:/usr/local/java# echo "JAVA_HOME=/usr/local/java/jre1.8.0_271" | tee -a /etc/default/unifi

Issue a reboot now / or shutdown now to enable Qemu Guest Agent in the Proxmox virtual host before starting it again.

Install unifi-video

nvr@nvr:~$  cd /tmp
nvr@nvr:/tmp$ wget
nvr@nvr:/tmp$ sudo dpkg -i unifi-video.Ubuntu18.04_amd64.v3.10.11.deb

Check status

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo systemctl status unifi-video

If it hasn’t started, try to start it:

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo systemctl start unifi-video

Now you can access your unifi-video installation at port :7080 in your webbrowser (http). After the initial configuration, all subsequent traffic should be used using https and port :7443, with the self-signed certificate from UniFi-Video.

I had to use Google Chrome on this part, as Safari on my Mac did not work (everywhere I clicked, I was prompted to upload a file - I could not even give the installation a name). This software is old..

Upgrade unfi-video

I did not check this post thouroughly, as on the very bottom it had listed a newer version of unifi-video (Download Links).

So let us upgrade our current installation:

nvr@nvr:~$ cd /tmp
nvr@nvr:/tmp$ wget
nvr@nvr:/tmp$ sudo service unifi-video stop
nvr@nvr:/tmp$ sudo su
root@nvr:/tmp# /usr/lib/unifi-video/bin/ubnt.updater /tmp/unifi-video.Ubuntu18.04_amd64.v3.10.13.deb 
root@nvr:/tmp# service unifi-video start

Recording disk

Datacenter > 102 (nvr) > Hardware > Add > Hard Disk

I’ve chosen to add a 200GB disk.

Reboot the VM.

Use sudo cfdisk /dev/sdb to create a partition and set the type to Linux File System. Initially, set label to GPT.

Then use sudo mkfs.ext4 /dev/sdb1 to reformat to ext4.

To check which file system you have, use sudo file -sL /dev/sdb1. It should state ext4 somewhere.

To find out which UUID the disk has, use blkid - we’ll use this output in a bit.

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo blkid
/dev/sdb1: UUID="85254ce0-4151-4232-9cd0-f7cf7f3c107e" TYPE="ext4" PARTUUID="03532 (...)

I want to mount this disk to /mnt, you can do wherever. First, let us create a mount point.

nvr@nvr:~$ cd /mnt
sudo unifi-video-recordings

Make the mount permanent by adding a entry in /etc/fstab;

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo vim /etc/fstab
# UniFi-Video recordings
/dev/disk/by-uuid/85245ce0-4151-4232-9cd0-f7cf7f3c107e /mnt/unifi-video-recordings ext4 defaults 0 1

Let’s mount it by using mount -a. If no errors, success - you can also verify by issuing df -hT to see where the disk is mounted.

Create a folder in this mount point and give the user which executes unifi-video permissions on this folder.

I like to name the folder the same as the site name, e.g. “paris”.

nvr@nvr:~$ sudo su
cd /mnt/unifi-video-recordings
mkdir paris

Using more /etc/passwd | grep unifi I take a wild guess and assume that the user unifi-video is the appropriate user to give permissions to this folder to:

chown -R unifi-video:unifi-video paris

(This was also confirmed by checking out the permissions on Ubiquitis default folder, ls -alh /usr/lib/unifi-video/data/videos)

Anyways, let’s make sure noone can snoop around in this folder:

chmod -R 750 paris

Allright. Go to UniFi video in your web browser. Down on the left, click SETTINGS.

  • Recording path: /mnt/unifi-video-recordings/paris

Click Save.

Verify that it is working by setting a camera to always record. I am recording only motion, alter to suite your needs.

Fault finding


Check the logs;

nvr@nvr:~$ more /var/log/unifi-video/


sudo apt update ; sudo apt upgrade -y


Mr. Johnson