Swann DVR


New Member
Four houses ( mine included ) have been hammered over the past 3 months by a group of burglars. All 4 have a back fence on a 'main' two lane road, however there is no one to watch our backs so to speak. Only those driving by. The rest of the neighborhood has neighbors to the rear, etc.

I'm trying to patch up my local alarm system ( does anyone have a forum they recommend for DIY alarm work? ) however also thought to finally get around to putting up video surveillance. I've had a couple of old AXIS low end cameras laying around, intending to build a system but never found the time. Now, suddenly, I find I'm motivated to do so. <_<

After taking a look on line I picked up a Swann 4 port DVR card and a couple of their wired cameras: one internal and one external. However I can't get the server to stay up long enough to try the system out.

I'm pretty sure the PC is ok: it's been my main system for the past 2-3 years and I just flushed it and installed W2K Pro again. I have to assume the problem is the Swann card. I've tried to get support from Swann however they offer none on line ( other than a simplistic FAQ ) nor are they much help when you call them. Yes: I probably bought low end and get what I paid for. Still... Does anyone know of a DIY forum which has a lot of Swann postings?


What Axis "low end" cameras do you have? They are pretty good stuff in the network world. I'm not familiar with their low-end line.

There have been some comments on here about Swann products but I'm not familiar with Swann at all. Have you tried getting everything up and running with nothing else hooked up (no cameras) or are you trying to run everything at once? I would guess it's either a hardware conflict or a software issue related to the Swann card (like you said).
The older one is buried in the parts pile. The 'newer' one is a 2100. Both good for their time and the cost, however when the 205/206 line came out that was the ticket. We're still using four of those in our offices for conference calls and to be able to quickly verify if anyone is running amok in our main office in the middle of the night when the alarm company calls ( we get in through a Metaframe server then use Firefox to view the web cams for motion ).

The problem occurs with no camera's attached: haven't gotten that far. I haven't had time to pull the Swann card and check the event logs, tho that rarely gives much that's useful for troubleshooting.

It's just that Swann is getting a lot of shelf space here in the Bay Area. I had thought they might be doing so nationwide, so 'after' buying and running into problems thought to check on line for help.

Has anyone tried/seen the new Creative WiFi security cams? I read a review in CPU magazine this past month and they sounded pretty good, especially for the price ( $100-200 ) .

Are you talking about something like this? All I could find was web cams and they were pretty close to this $200 price (for the WiFi units). I have never run across Swann anything in my area but I may not be looking in the same places. I hope someone with some experience chimes in and is able to help.
I ran two of the Swann cards for an 8-port solution in one PC. They did fine, the only reason I ever upgraded was to get 640x480.

I don't know what your problem is, but don't give up on the "Get what you pay for" point. That DVR should work fine for you.

The only think that I can tell from your post is that I use XP and have no idea how those cards are supposed to work on W2K.

If you think it really may be a hardware problem, I would recommend finding some place local, like a MicroCenter that sell the cards, get a new one and see if it helps, if it doesn't return the new card.... If it does help, return the old one.

Did you try to boot without the card installed just as a test?

If that still fails, remove the drivers and try again. Of course in the world of drivers you can never be 100% you got it all. As this is a "clean" system recently rebuilt maybe it won't be too hard to rebuild it again, without the card installed. Once you have a stable patched up and ready to go W2k system, install the card and drivers and see where that leaves you.

Just thoughts....