Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Re: (Again) Motion detected videos are recording locally, but not available in Library

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jsbeddow
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Once again. another firmware or app screw up from Arlo: this time, I noticed that my four cameras have not been sending any recordings up to the cloud (they are available locally on the USB drive, but not in the Library) for at least the last 6 days.  The cameras also show motion and sound activity when viewing the app in real time, but again, no notifications or videos in the Library, only on the attached USB drive.

 

Obviously I have tried rebooting the base station, logging out of the app and back in, etc...but no change.  Curiously, my VMB4000r3 base station shows a firmware revision that is not noted in the firmware release notes (but I'm not sure how well Arlo is keeping up on posting the release notes lately): mine is 1.14.1.2_2916fdeefd

 

Obviously, this is identical behavior to the long thread (10 pages plus!) from mid-October on the same subject: I was spared at that time, but it has come back around to hit me in November.  It was marked as solved, so I didn't want to add to that thread, as it seems to be a (new) separate issue.

 

Any suggestions?

Model: VMB4000 | Arlo Pro/Pro2 Base Station
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jsbeddow
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Just to confirm, I can now say that the underlying issue here was a new bug/feature in the base station firmware regarding DNS resolution (possibly being hard-coded, IDK, as I am not going to do a full packet sniffing analysis) :  The real question here is why the Arlo firmware programmers decided to step in and interfere with DNS resolution that has not been an issue in the past.  It is as if they seem to keep finding new ways to cripple a working system...anyway, here is the fix, assuming you are a moderately advanced user familiar with alternative router firmware and configuration.

 

If you are using the enhanced Merlin firmware for your Asus router, and using secure DNS, aka DoT (DNS over TLS)

 

Step 1: On the LAN, DHCP Tab, Manually Assigned IP around the DHCP list, add the Arlo base station(s) as DHCP static lease devices (this ties the IP address and MAC address together each time DHCP renewal takes place).

 

Step 2: On the LAN, DNSFilter Tab, Set DNS based filtering to "On", Global Filter mode to "Router", add a Custom (user-defined) DNS1 of (your choice of DNS providers here: I found that Google DNS 8.8.8.8 worked well, Cloudflare DNS 1.1.1.1 also worked for me but seemed to slightly delay the notification time, YMMV). Next, in the Client List box below, add your Arlo base station (it should show up in the drop down list of available MAC addresses/device host names), set it's mode to Custom 1, Add button, then Apply button.

 

Step 3: Reboot or Power cycle your Arlo base station and test if working now. It should if all steps were followed. 😊

 

Cheers, I hope this has helped some other users searching for a solution: one that won't be found by spending an entire day of web chat with Arlo support (which is what I essentially did yesterday - what a waste of time that turned out to be).  It eventually culminated in them agreeing to do an RMA on my base station, which I almost agreed to: luckily the forum user AudiTuner pointed me in the right direction today. Thanks.

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StephenB
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If you use activity zones, then one workaround to try is to remove the activity zones and recreate them.

AudiTuner
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Same issue here.  No recordings have shown up in the online cloud Arlo Library since October 30th.   Base station records clips to inserted USB thumb drive.  Have tried without USB thumb drive inserted into Base Station but still no recordings show up in the Arlo Library.  Have manually recorded clips using Live View from each individual camera and those do show up in the Arlo Library.

 

I have also:

  • Removed and recreated activity zones.
  • Tried without using any activity zones.
  • Removed all cameras from Smart Notification enrollment
  • Kept cameras enrolled in Smart Notifications but disabled all but general motion.
  • Removed cameras (one by one), then removed base station.  After base station booted I then reset the base station using a paper clip on the factory reset button.
  • Replaced and re-charged batteries in all cameras.

 

All cameras detect motion (motion test – orange light).  I can also see through my Android phone app that each camera is detecting motion and recording to the inserted USB thumb drive (motion detection and USB icons light up orange on motion).  I can also see that the IR lights turn on at night with motion detection

 

Again, no video clips are showing up in the Arlo Library (since October 30th).  It seems like the problem is obviously on the Arlo server/software side.

StephenB
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@AudiTuner wrote:

Again, no video clips are showing up in the Arlo Library (since October 30th).  It seems like the problem is obviously on the Arlo server/software side.


At this point I suggest contacting support: https://www.arlo.com/en-us/support/contact.aspx

AudiTuner
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For what it's worth, the phone tech support is absolutely terrible - there is an obvious language barrier, they will not acknowledge the problem and they waste your time with extremely basic troubleshooting steps.

jsbeddow
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Thank you AudiTuner for your detailed replies.  Yeah, I tried the support chat twice this morning, but got nowhere with that: they always want to have me create new "Test Modes"  in the app, to see if that helps (it doesn't).  They also even claim that they cannot see my newly created "Test Mode" from their side, and one chat tech even asked me to essentially prove it by sending screenshots (which was never successful either before that chat session got cut off unexpectedly).

 

You have had more patience that I have had with completely restarting from scratch on the base station , re-adding cameras, etc.  - I have to wonder if this isn't due to the time offset that I am seeing on the locally recorded (USB drive) videos, as mine are still showing as an hour ahead (as if we are still on DST).

 

As you have seen as well, the only videos that get uploaded to the cloud Library are manually recorded Live View videos.

 

Amazing how I had about 1.5 years of trouble free service from these Arlo cameras, yet have had two major screw up periods of time in the last 2.5 months (first one was in early September when they also sent out what was ultimately confirmed to be a botched firmware version to the base stations).  Software updates should be sent to improve issues and resolve bugs, not create new ones that didn't exist before.

Model: VMB4000 | Arlo Pro/Pro2 Base Station
jsbeddow
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Aspirant

Actually, I just finished my third chat session of the day with Arlo: it was a marathon of over 2.5 hours, with an end result of even worse conditions than I started with.  At the start of the day, I had 4 working cameras feeding to a local USB drive, but no access to online viewing in the cloud Library.  Now, after multiple hard resets, and re-adding the base station to my account, now I am no longer able to get any of my cameras re-added to the account.  They all appear to sync correctly (slow blue blink, followed by fast blue blink sequence), but none will appear in the account at all, so I have zero working cameras at this point.  Arlo will consider possibly replacing my base station, as a courtesy, as I am past the original warranty period (keeping in mind that I own two compete systems,  this one that is two years old, and another that is only about 6 months old).  TBD....but I still suspect this is caused by faulty firmware, not a hardware defect.

AudiTuner
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jsbeddow, I've had the same issue with my base station and syncing my cameras for a few months at the minimum:

 


@jsbeddow wrote:

Now, after multiple hard resets, and re-adding the base station to my account, now I am no longer able to get any of my cameras re-added to the account.  They all appear to sync correctly (slow blue blink, followed by fast blue blink sequence), but none will appear in the account at all, so I have zero working cameras at this point.

The cameras likely did sync, you just need to get them to show up.  What usually works for me is powering off the base station using the power button, waiting about fifteen seconds and then powering it back on.  Let it sit for about a minute or two after it finishes booting up.  It can take a few times but eventually you will see some of your cameras; keep repeating until they all show up.  It's tedious but it works for me.

 

Hope this helps.

jsbeddow
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Aspirant

Yup...you are right again, and I started to notice that three of my four cameras were magically  "back" at about the same time that you replied (which was about an hour after my last chat session ended).  I will keep trying to get the fourth camera back as well, but I am still stuck with nothing showing up in the Library for now.  They have now offered me the RMA on this base station, but I'm not sure if it will do any good to take it, as I'm not completely sure if there is truly a hardware fault, or this is just symptomatic of firmware (and/or database/server) issues on their end.  Unless this VMB4000r3 base station is more problematic than others, and I luck out with a newer revision on the RMA return.

 

Thanks.

jsbeddow
Aspirant
Aspirant

Just to confirm, I can now say that the underlying issue here was a new bug/feature in the base station firmware regarding DNS resolution (possibly being hard-coded, IDK, as I am not going to do a full packet sniffing analysis) :  The real question here is why the Arlo firmware programmers decided to step in and interfere with DNS resolution that has not been an issue in the past.  It is as if they seem to keep finding new ways to cripple a working system...anyway, here is the fix, assuming you are a moderately advanced user familiar with alternative router firmware and configuration.

 

If you are using the enhanced Merlin firmware for your Asus router, and using secure DNS, aka DoT (DNS over TLS)

 

Step 1: On the LAN, DHCP Tab, Manually Assigned IP around the DHCP list, add the Arlo base station(s) as DHCP static lease devices (this ties the IP address and MAC address together each time DHCP renewal takes place).

 

Step 2: On the LAN, DNSFilter Tab, Set DNS based filtering to "On", Global Filter mode to "Router", add a Custom (user-defined) DNS1 of (your choice of DNS providers here: I found that Google DNS 8.8.8.8 worked well, Cloudflare DNS 1.1.1.1 also worked for me but seemed to slightly delay the notification time, YMMV). Next, in the Client List box below, add your Arlo base station (it should show up in the drop down list of available MAC addresses/device host names), set it's mode to Custom 1, Add button, then Apply button.

 

Step 3: Reboot or Power cycle your Arlo base station and test if working now. It should if all steps were followed. 😊

 

Cheers, I hope this has helped some other users searching for a solution: one that won't be found by spending an entire day of web chat with Arlo support (which is what I essentially did yesterday - what a waste of time that turned out to be).  It eventually culminated in them agreeing to do an RMA on my base station, which I almost agreed to: luckily the forum user AudiTuner pointed me in the right direction today. Thanks.

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  • 3 In Conversation