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Recording of working time for 150$

Recording of working time

This article contains the information how to implement a system of recording of working time with minimal costs. This solution will not be convenient for everyone, but this approach completely solves the problems of attendance control in some cases.

Consequently, we need a reader of Proximity cards or PR-01 USB key chains in order to solve this problem and … that’s all. No more additional equipment is required! The reader will cooperate with Big Brother, ACS.  It will help to manage users (issue cards), keep records of beginning and end of work registrations and draw up reports on working time. The price of $ 150 in this case includes the value of the reader and the license for the program.

The process of installing and configuring the system is simple. All the following actions must be performed on the PC, which will be connected to the reader:

– install the driver  to the PR-01 USB reader

– download the licences for Big Brother, ACS software

– add the reader to the program
– add users to the program
– check the operability of the system

– draw up reports on working time

– install the Big Brother, ACS program

– make a request

Installation of drivers

Connect the reader to the PC. The reader should be connected to the USB connector, which is located on the PC motherboard. Download and istall drivers. The “Device Manager” of Windows in the “Ports (COM and LPT)” section should display a “Silicon Labs CP210x USB to UART Bridge” device once the installation is complete. Check that the device does appear and remember the number of COM port. You will need it when installing the Big Brother, ACS software.

Installation of program

Download the latest version of the program hereUnzip the downloaded archive and run the BB_Setup.exe installer. Select “Device server” at the first step of the “Select an installation type” installation. Next, specify the directory for the installation of the program (it is not recommended to install the program on the C drive). Then during the “Communication with devices” step select “USB”. In the “Port” field specify the port number where the reader was registered in the system (see “Installing Drivers” section). Complete the installation process and run the “User’s workplace” of Big Brother, ACS.

License request

In “User’s workplace” of Big Brother, ACS program go to “Settings – License” section. In the lower right corner, click the “License request” button and in the confirmation window, click the “OK” button. The program then will display a window with your license number. You shall write it down (the number will also be copied to the clipboard). Now you should send the generated license number and some additional information to the Big Brother, ACS technical support. This can be done in 4 ways:

– link in the program above the “Complain! Ask a question!” control panel;

– section in the “Setup – Online help” program;

– on the website with the help of contact form;

– send an e-mail from your inbox.

Choose the method which is convenient for you and specify the following information in the message body:

– license number, which is generated by the program;

– data of the person who requests a license (contact phone, name);

– the owner organization which purchases the license;

– option for which a license is issued, – PR-01 USB.

The response to a license request is usually performed within the period of 5 to 10 minutes. You will receive a license file with instructions for installing it in response. You can perform the following steps (while waiting for a response with a license).

Important! Repeated clicking of the “Request a license” button with the following generation of a new number will result in the current license losing its validity. You will need to contact the technical support service again by previously sending the current license file.

Addition of a reader to the program


In “User’s workplace” of Big Brother, ACS program go to “Settings – License” section. Historically, the program automatically creates “Access control module iBC-01” device when installed.  We will not need it, so select it in the list of devices and click “Delete”. After deleting the device, click the “Add” button. In the displayed window in the “Type” field it is necessary to choose “PR-01 USB Desktop reader”. You can also change the name of the device. The remaining fields should be left unchanged. Click “ОК” and the device will appear in the list. No more customization is needed.

You should go to the “Setup – Device server” section to “Devices” tab page in order to check the correct connection of the reader and the correct settings of the program (the license should already be installed.  You should create a list of users, and perform the verification later in case if it is not installed yet). You should see your reader in the table and the column “Status” should display “Connected”. The average time of the request should be about 10 msec.

Addition of users

In “User’s workplace” of Big Brother, ACS program go to “Access control department – Users” section. If you already have a list of users in Excel format, you can easily import it into the program using the “Import” button. If there is no such a list, use the “Add” button.

This is the minimum necessary set of parameters required for each user, for whom the working time is calculated:

– User name

– Access to the reader must be added (round-the-clock or scheduled)

– A Proximity card or keychain number must be assigned.

The description of the “Access control department” sections and the methods of work with it take a lot of place, therefore we will not discuss it here. You should refer to the program instructions that are located in the folder Doc (D:\BigBrother\Doc\Client.pdf) in order to receive more detailed information.

System availability check

In “User’s workplace” of Big Brother, ACS program go to “Monitoring – Event Log” section. Place any card against the reader. The “Unknown key” event will be displayed in case if this card has not yet been assigned to any user. And the event with the indication of the user who owns the card will appear if the card was assigned to the user.

Reports on working time

You will have a wish to analyze the results and draw up reports after a certain period of operation. You can read the article “Basic types of reports on recording of working hours” to learn how to do this.

It is possible to mention the following useful features of the program, which are important when working with one reader:

-the program can automatically set the absent registration according to the work schedule or to the limit of the day in case if users forget to check in

– one can see all the cases when users forgot to check in when they arrive or leave

– first event for a day can always be considered as coming to work

– registering of work during the night time

– calculation of dinner breaks


The disadvantage of this solution is that the computer must be turned on during all working hours. The registration will not happen if it is turned off. This may not be a problem in many cases, since at least the computer of the organizational department (secretary, reception desk, etc.) works full time.



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