Arlo|Smart Home Security|Wireless HD Security Cameras

Missing recordings - Subscription required?

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kalasoft
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I've had the Arlo cameras/smart hub for over 4 years and never, I repeat... NEVER has there been a charge to record/hold recordings within my account/cloud. Now, I see no saved recordings and just now see there is a monthly fee just to save/hold video clips for viewing.  When did this take effect and why? I've used this less then effective camera system for over 4 years because, 1) I purchased it knowing there was no monthly subscription and 2) because it was a Netgear product. I continued using the Arlo system well past purchasing another security camera system because there was no subscription required. With this abrasive subscription now seemly required, my Arlo system is headed to the landfill unless there is another option that allows my Arlo system to record/save video clips without a subscription account. Please advise and thank you.

Ed H.

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kalasoft
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Thanks everyone for your input and assistance regarding my specific issue.  After this post got a little traction and my post(s) on social media, magically my Arlo system started working (recording motion clips and showing them within the app) once again. It's sad on several fronts that I had to resort to social media and associated contacts to get my Arlo working again. Thank you all once again for your assistance.

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StephenB
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No idea how you were able to run that long w/o a subscription.  All newer cameras (starting with the Ultra in late 2018) require a subscription for cloud storage.  The Ultra originally came with a 1 year trial, which you were likely opted into.  

 

There is another option, which is direct access to local storage.  https://kb.arlo.com/000062337/What-is-Direct-Storage-Access-and-how-do-I-use-it

 

It has several limitations:

  • recordings only available in the app (not the web browser)
  • recordings only available to the primary account (not friend accounts)
  • no manual recordings or snapshots
  • no thumbnails
  • remote access requires either a VPN or port forwarding - which some find difficult to set up.
kalasoft
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With this... where and/or how do I gain access to the 'Arlo Wire-Free Pro' No Plan with the rolling 7 day storage?

StephenB
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@kalasoft wrote:

With this... where and/or how do I gain access to the 'Arlo Wire-Free Pro' No Plan with the rolling 7 day storage?


You need to purchase the old cameras

  • the original Arlo Wire-Free HD (720p, 4 CR123 batteries) - introduced 2014.
  • the Arlo Pro (720p) - introduced 2016.
  • the Arlo Pro 2 (1080p) - introduced 2017

Though these cameras are still supported, I think Arlo stopped manufacturing them quite a while ago.  So you'd likely need to purchase used cameras.

 

Note the 7-day storage only applies to these older cameras (not the ultras).  There is also a limit of 5 eligible cameras per account.

kalasoft
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Why... if my current Arlo cameras and Hub still function why would I need to purchase replacements? The only thing that as changed is the greedy subscription I being forced into buying. It's totally against my comprehension that working electronics has to be put into the over-crowded landfill just because Arlo feels the need to **bleep** older customers. Now, I'll ask once again, how do I continue to use my Arlo cameras and Hub without buying a subscription? When I purchased the Blink system the had a non-subscription service that allows me to use their system. Mind you... I had to beg several times to get to this service and it seems I'm in the same bad situation with Arlo. Thanking one and all for whatever assistance that can be provided regarding my issue. I'd like to continue to use my working Arlo cameras and Hub 'without' having to purchase an expensive subscription.

StephenB
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@kalasoft wrote:

Why... if my current Arlo cameras and Hub still function why would I need to purchase replacements? 


I don't work for Arlo, and all I am doing here is answering your questions.

 

All the newer cameras (starting with the Ultra in 2018) require a subscription to get cloud storage.  That was on the packaging (though not always easy to find).  Many purchasers have missed that, and many have been caught by surprise when the trial ended.

 

The only free alternative with your existing kit (Ultras + VMB5000 smarthub) is to switch to direct access to local storage.   I posted the info on that above.

kalasoft
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Setting up a 'Community Forum' is yet another way for Arlo not to be a customer service based company! I've been dealing with their customer abuse from the very beginning of my purchase. I'm already on my second Hub (VMB3000) and third set of cameras (night vision failure, non-recording issues and water being able to get into the battery compartment). After looking over my Hub (VMB3000) I see two (2) USB 2.0 ports. May I assume these ports can be used for a USB thumb drive to capture and store videos? 

StephenB
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@kalasoft wrote:

After looking over my Hub (VMB3000) I see two (2) USB 2.0 ports. May I assume these ports can be used for a USB thumb drive to capture and store videos? 


Not a base I have, but I'm pretty sure the answer is yes. EDIT- @jguerdat says no. But you can't see those recordings from the app - you need to eject the drive and view them on a PC.  Only the VMB4540 and VMB5000 smarthubs support viewing from the app.

 

Your first post had Ultra and VMB5000, and my first answer was assuming that was what you had.  If you have a VMB3000, you must have at least some of the older cameras in service (and those should still should have the free 7-day cloud recording).  Can you let us know what you actually have (including the total count of cameras)?

kalasoft
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My base unit is in fact the VMB3000 and I have two working cameras (720p, 4 CR123 batteries). Up until the other day I was able to see and view the recorded clips from either the app or the desktop. Now, the only thing I can do with this setup is turn each camera on/off manually from the app. I do not see any option within the app or the desktop to setup any type of motion recording without purchasing a subscription. I am more then happy with just the free 7 day cloud service. Do you know how this can be achieved? Thank you!

StephenB
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@kalasoft wrote:

My base unit is in fact the VMB3000 and I have two working cameras (720p, 4 CR123 batteries). 


Ok, that is very different.  These cameras were sold with 7-day cloud storage, and you should still be getting that with no subscription.

 

I don't think you can reach Arlo support - hopefully a mod ( @JamesC ? ) can assist.

jguerdat
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@kalasoft wrote:

After looking over my Hub (VMB3000) I see two (2) USB 2.0 ports. May I assume these ports can be used for a USB thumb drive to capture and store videos? 


Just a clarification (I do have a VMB3000), the 2 USB ports cannot be used to record locally. I suppose during design the thought was they could be made useful but no firmware ever enabled them. You need a minimum of a VMB4000 for local recordings with the caveat that only the 4540 and 5000 hubs support direct viewing using the app.

kalasoft
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StephenB

"These cameras were sold with 7-day cloud storage, and you should still be getting that with no subscription."

 

Within this past week no motion activity is being recorded and ALL past video clips have been removed. As such, this unit is not recording anything and there is no way to contact Arlo to discuss this issue. I've had this system up and running since 2018 and now... NOTHING!

dcfox1
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Master

@kalasoft Have you tried rebooting the base to start with as you have not listed any troubleshooting steps you tried? 

kalasoft
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dcfox1,

I have rebooted the hub twice. With each reboot I removed the batteries from the two working cameras and still not motion recording and as such, no video clips being saved. In addition to rebooting the Arlo Hub, I also rebooting my network and ISP connection where the Arlo Hub is connected to. As I mentioned, everything was working just fine late last week and now... nothing!

StephenB
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Guru

@kalasoft wrote:

As I mentioned, everything was working just fine late last week and now... nothing!


I tagged one of the mods earlier in the thread, hopefully they will assist.

kalasoft
Star
Star

Thanks everyone for your input and assistance regarding my specific issue.  After this post got a little traction and my post(s) on social media, magically my Arlo system started working (recording motion clips and showing them within the app) once again. It's sad on several fronts that I had to resort to social media and associated contacts to get my Arlo working again. Thank you all once again for your assistance.