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Access Control Deployment Best Practices
Access Control Deployment Best Practices

Learn how to ensure a successful installation for your access controllers

Updated over a week ago

This article gives a best practice approach on how to deploy and install access controllers with the intention to mitigate costs and complexities related to post-install troubleshooting.

Set up Verkada Command

Required. A Command organization is required to manage and troubleshoot Verkada devices. Verkada Support requires an Admin to generate a support token to troubleshoot Verkada devices. Learn more about Roles and Permissions for Command.

Before you begin

  1. Ensure that your customer has a Verkada Command organization.

  2. The installer should be an Org Admin and Access Site Admin on all relevant sites. This allows the installer to confirm all devices are working and provide a support token for troubleshooting. Learn more about Roles and Permissions for Access Control.

  3. Add the Verkada devices to the organization before the installation begins.

Note: Keep the serial number of the device available and ensure you see that serial number in Verkada Command before contacting Verkada Support.

Stage the hardware

Stage the devices to ensure the installation is successful. This best practices helps avoid costs, difficulties, and time delays from a faulty device in the field. A confirmed working device streamlines troubleshooting with the final install. All install troubleshooting would then center on the physical and network environment.

Design a staging lab

Included in your tool bench

  • A lock

  • A badge reader (Wiegand or Verkada)

  • Badge (must be a compatible format with your reader)

  • Store-bought Ethernet cable

  • AC41 cassette

  • A few short wires

  • Managed switch (allows for packet captures to be collected)

  • Multimeter

  • Laptop

Set up your test environment

For the AC41 cassette:

  1. Wire in the lock.

  2. Wire in the reader.

  3. Connect the 2 DPI ports together with a wire.

  4. Connect the 2 REX ports together with a wire.

  5. Connect the managed switch to the site’s network

Staging process

  1. If you have Verkada, wire them to the AC41 cassettes and attach the cassettes to the AC41

  2. Plug the AC41s in and connect them with the Ethernet cable to the network switch

  3. Let it sit for 30 minutes to give it adequate time to update. The AC41’s status LED in the top left corner will flash orange while updating. Once finished the LED will be solid blue

  4. If the status LED never goes solid blue:

  5. Test each door port

    1. Use the test door button to select door 1.

      • Trigger Lock should be illuminated.

      • Emulate DPI and Emulate REX should be off.

    2. Power off the AC41, do not hot plug.

    3. Attach the prewired cassette to door 1 while the AC41 is powered off.

    4. Set the power to 12V or 24V to power the lock.

    5. Power on the AC41 by plugging in the power.

    6. Check status lights:

      • Emulate DPI and Emulate REX should now illuminate for the door port with the cassette.

      • Badge reader should have power (illuminate).

      • Press Trigger Lock and the lock should release, confirming the lock relay works.

    7. Once the badge reader is ready, scan a card. The card will be denied, as it isn’t added to a user.

    8. Repeat the above tests for all 4 door ports.

    9. Contact Verkada Support if you don't get the expected results.

  6. Cable exits. Some installs require plastic bushings to be inserted for the cable exits; here are the dimensions:

    • Access Control Cable Exit: 1 1/2 in (38 mm)

    • Power Cable Exit: 1 1/4 in (32 mm)

Finalize the deployment

The most important aspect of a deployment is delivering a working solution to the customer that they can maintain and get help on when you leave. This means demonstrating to them that they have access to all of the devices they purchased and that the devices are fully functional. Complete the below checks to prove the installation was successful before you leave the site.

Physical checks

  1. Verify all access controller status lights are solid blue.

  2. Verify you are using shielded wiring for all of the access controller’s connections; locks, readers, REX, DPI.

  3. Verify the shielded wiring is drained to earth ground.

  4. Verify each lock unlocks when a badge is scanned.

  5. Verify each door’s DPI state is correct when the door is opened and closed.

  6. Verify that the REX is properly configured to unlock a door.

  7. Verify that each type of badge the end user will use works on the readers.

  8. Verify that doors are labeled on the access controller.

Software checks

  1. Make sure there is at least 1 Access Site Admin and 1 installer.

  2. Ask the Access Site Admin to log in and verify they can see all of their devices.

  3. Confirm that the Access Site Admin can see the support token generation page so they can leverage Verkada Support, if needed.

  4. The Access Site Admin should be added to all sites with access controllers.

  5. Configure access levels and add doors to the controller.

  6. Configure a user and verify the user can badge in.

  7. Answer any questions the customer may have and ensure they understand how to add access users, and configure access groups/levels. This provides preparation to self-manage the system.

  8. Ask the customer to remove you (the installer) from the Command org. This is standard practice when the installation is complete.

Troubleshoot deployed hardware

There may be unforeseen issues when installing devices. Always have a multimeter on hand to troubleshoot physical components and connections. Many common issues yield an LED code that can help explain the root issue.

Below are the LED status and their associated cause and remediation steps. You can find the LED for the AC41 at the top left.

Try to follow these troubleshooting steps before contacting Verkada Support.

Note: When an access controller cannot reach the Verkada backend, its LED flashes blue. There are many points in the network where the issue may be located: cabling, DHCP, DNS, NTP, and HTTPS access to the Verkada Cloud—all need verification.

LED Status


Troubleshoot Steps

Flashing Blue

Network issue.

  1. Connect the controller with a known-good short patch cable to a known-good switch port.

  2. If the AC41 continues flashing blue, follow the steps below.

Solid orange

If the AC41 is solid orange for more than 5 minutes, it's not receiving enough power, or the boot process has failed.

  1. Plug in the AC41 to a different power outlet.

  2. Swap the AC41’s power cable with another AC41’s power cable.

  3. Leave the AC41 plugged in and attached to the network.

Solid blue and the device shows offline in Command

The access controller is not added to Command.

Confirm that the serial beneath the power supply of the AC41 matches the serial number in Command.

  • If they don’t match, add the correct serial number and wait for the controller to check-in.

  • If the serials match, take a picture of the serial number on the AC41 and contact Verkada Support.

Flashing orange

If the AC41’s LED is stuck flashing orange for 30 minutes or more, then it's unable to finish a firmware upgrade.

  1. Directly connect the AC41 to the network switch with a short patch cable and wait 30 minutes to see if it clears.

  2. If after direct connection to the switch it does not upgrade, contact Verkada Support.


If LED is not illuminated, it's not receiving power.

  1. Connect the AC41’s power cord to a different outlet.

  2. Swap out the power cable with another AC41’s cable.

  3. If the LED does not illuminate when connected to a different outlet, contact Verkada Support.

Network diagnostic tests

  1. Work with the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server Admin to get the following details for the AC41:

    • IP address, subnet mask, default gateway, DNS servers

    • The access controller can be identified on the DHCP server by its MAC address, located on the sticker below the power supply on the AC41.

  2. Disconnect the access controller from the network. This avoids an IP conflict when you configure your laptop to the same IP address.

  3. Assign your laptop the same IP settings as the controller.

  4. Connect your laptop to the same cable used previously by the controller.

  5. Verify that you can access these URLs in your browser:

  6. Verify NTP reachability for Verkada’s NTP servers:

    • For Mac users, open a terminal window and enter:

      • sudo sntp -sS

      • sudo sntp -sS

    • For Windows users, open a command prompt and enter:

      • w32tm /stripchart / /samples:3 /dataonly

      • w32tm /stripchart /computer: /samples:3 /dataonly

  7. If any of the above requests fail, work with the network administrator to allow the following:

    • TCP port 443 to







    • Bidirectional UDP port 123 for and .

If all the above tests succeed, yet the access controller’s LED continues to flash blue, contact Verkada Support. Support will request to enable support access and a packet capture from the access controller’s switch port.

Related resources

Need more help? Contact Verkada Support

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