Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Re: VMB3000

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Jeff1967
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Hi,

 

A friend gave me two arlo cameras with a VMB3000 base station.  I reset the base station, plugged it into my network.  Checked the DHCP table and determined it's IP address and pinged it. Everything seems great except three things:

 

1) One of the camera's won't do anything, no lights, no buzzing, nothing

2) The base station won't detect on Windows or the android app

3) The camera that does light up and buzz and stuff won't sync with the base station (At least, I assume that if it synced, something would have happened. The camera blinks several times with an orange light, but I never get blue blinks.

 

The base station has Power Lit solid green and Internet lit solid green. When I hit sync on the base station, the camera light blinks.  The little home icon is off and the USB icon is off.

 

Are these just so much junk?  Is there a utility that can diagnose, patch firmware, etc?  What can I do to make this work.  I've rebooted the router serveral times. I've reset the router multiple times, I've tried to sync the camera multiple times.

 

Thanks,

Jeff

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
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jguerdat
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Don't jump to conclusions. First, the previous owner must remove all devices from his account in Settings, My Devices. If you can't claim the base because he's still got it configured on his account, there's nothing you can do to get it to work on yours.

StephenB
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Also try swapping batteries between the camera that lights up and the camera that doesn't.

Jeff1967
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Hi StephenB,

 

Yes, I did that and the one that was lighting up and such still lit up even with the batteries from the other camera and the one that wasn't lighting up still didn't light up even with the other batteries.  I'm thinking the one camera is toast.  It was in a box for at least 3 years. Luckily the batteries were pulled before it was stored.  Too bad these don't have any diagnostic port on them to plug into and find out the status. 

Thanks,

Jeff

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
Jeff1967
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jguerdat,

 

My friend said he hasn't used them in over three years and doesn't have a clue what they'd be registered under. We tried a couple accounts and passwords that he may have used back then, but no luck.  He didn't even have the box, manual, etc.  I just have the base station and the two cameras.  Is there a way to reset the status since I'm the new owner?

Thanks,

Jeff

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
StephenB
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@Jeff1967 wrote:

My friend said he hasn't used them in over three years and doesn't have a clue what they'd be registered under. He didn't even have the box, manual, etc.  I just have the base station and the two cameras.  Is there a way to reset the status since I'm the new owner?

Thanks,

Jeff


 

 

Of course Arlo has no way to verify that you didn't steal the cameras, so I think they will balk at helping you.

 

The account uses an email address for the logon - which might help him remember what credential he used.  Once he knows the email address, he should be able to reset the password. He could potentially contact support with the serial numbers ( https://www.arlo.com/en-us/support/contact.aspx ).  

Jeff1967
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@stephen 

I'll have to disagree with you there. There are plenty of ways for Arlo to know if someone stole something that has a serial number, would have been reported as stolen, etc.  For a company to assume that something is stolen unless it can be proved otherwise would be a rather tenuous way to deal with their customers.  I'm guessing the friend who gave them to me doesn't have a receipt and since he doesn't know his login or the login has been removed for inactivity, do they assume he stole them unless he can prove otherwise?  Is the ownership the account he has no control over?  etc.  I will call them or send an e-mail to find out.  If they can't provide a reasonable method to recover a device for an old owner or a new owner, I'd have second thoughts about dealing with them anyway.  I'll post what I find out. It will be a good test of their customer service mechanisms. 


Thanks,

Jeff

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
Jeff1967
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Good News and Bad News,

Good: I pestered my friend until we got a working credential set and were able to remove the base station and cameras from the account.

Bad: Even with this, the base station isn't being recognized despite heroic efforts to make it work.  Despite the fact that it:

  1. Acquires an IP address from the router
  2. broadcasts a NTGR_VMB_xxx SSID
  3. Has both power and Internet lights lit
  4. Can be pinged
  5. Can associate the base station to the cameras

Arlo support informs me that the base station is obviously bad and nothing else can be done.  Personally, I think it sat in the box too long and the firmware drift got too far apart helped no doubt by that big SNAFU with easily hackable Arlo base stations in 2016. I'm guessing they threw out a couple intermediate updates and then slammed a final update out when they figured it out.   I asked if I could send it in for repair and apparently Arlo is a carbon heavy company and would rather you throw all your old stuff out and buy new stuff from them.  Arlo assures me that is not firmware drift, but it's weird to have such a specific failure to have everything work but it's ability to have the application pick it up.  If I had access to the legacy app, I'm wondering if it would detect. They aren't the first company and won't be the last to release updates or make changes that break the users devices and then claim innocence.  Sad thing for Arlo is that this was my first real interaction with them.  I had my video doorbell narrowed down to Arlo, RCA, or Nest.  I don't like the monthly fees with Nest and Arlo has proven to me that they don't stand behind their products past the 1 year warranty and don't even have a repair or exchange option?!?!, so I guess I'll be getting the RCA doorbell.  Now I'll have to look at RCA's security cameras and see what they have available.  I also liked the look of the upcoming Arlo floodlight, but I just can't stomach dealing with a company that doesn't stand behind their products.

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station
StephenB
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@Jeff1967 wrote:

Good: I pestered my friend until we got a working credential set and were able to remove the base station and cameras from the account.


Did you try then resetting the base?  https://kb.arlo.com/1057976/How-can-I-reset-my-Arlo-SmartHub-or-base-station-to-the-default-values

Jeff1967
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Hi StephenB,

Yes, I've reset the base station at least 20 times and have three or four bent up paper clips for when I don't immediately see the last one.  Every time I try something new and it doesn't work, I reset the base station to see if that would help.  While on the phone with Arlo support, we reset the base station 3 times.  Sadly, if resetting the base station doesn't work, Arlo support doesn't seem to know any other troubleshooting methodologies and doesn't have an option to provide any real assistance if you are outside of warranty. I'm not sure if the technical support group at arlo just doesn't have people trained in troubleshooting their products, or if the product is just so poorly designed that it can't be troubleshot.  If I was under warranty, they would have shipped me a replacement, I guess???


Thanks for the thought,

Jeff

Model: VMB3000 | Arlo Base Station