Blue Iris Alternatives

Neil Sidhu

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Hello; Just trying to get some feedback from others on what other alternatives are out there from BI? I looked into xProtect and I see its free for 8 cams or less, I currently have 9. Would have been nice if they gave the 8 free and I just had to buy the 1 license; but no.. Looking for a system that has apps for iOS and Android. Been with BI for 3 years now and looking for a change.
 

fenderman

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Hello; Just trying to get some feedback from others on what other alternatives are out there from BI? I looked into xProtect and I see its free for 8 cams or less, I currently have 9. Would have been nice if they gave the 8 free and I just had to buy the 1 license; but no.. Looking for a system that has apps for iOS and Android. Been with BI for 3 years now and looking for a change.
 

msquared

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Hi Niel, I may be able to help.

Are you using Blue Iris v4 or v5? Why are looking for a change?

What features are you looking for in NVR software that you aren't getting now?

I'd like more information on what your needs are rather than launching into a huge dissertation on why I don't like the secondary software I use anymore, all the ones I've tried, and which ones I liked and didn't.

Your specific needs may narrow down a huge list to just a few, and how much effort you want to put into management, your skill level, and the usability of the software. Please remember that if we continue a dialog that this is subjective. I use what I use because it meets my needs.
 

Neil Sidhu

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Hi Niel, I may be able to help.

Are you using Blue Iris v4 or v5? Why are looking for a change?

What features are you looking for in NVR software that you aren't getting now?

I'd like more information on what your needs are rather than launching into a huge dissertation on why I don't like the secondary software I use anymore, all the ones I've tried, and which ones I liked and didn't.

Your specific needs may narrow down a huge list to just a few, and how much effort you want to put into management, your skill level, and the usability of the software. Please remember that if we continue a dialog that this is subjective. I use what I use because it meets my needs.
hi, thanks for the message! I am currently on BI5; i find it crashes every few days where the watchdog sends an alert and when i log into BI, i see the color lines..

I would then kill the services/app and it would work again for a few days. Issues is once i was out for a week and it crashed on me and i did not have a quick way to reboot it.

So now im out looking to see what's there. Been playing around with MS but the free version does not cut it with it not having push alerts.

Someone sent me a link for Shinobi Pro; looking into that now as well.

Im running an i7 8700 for 16GB ram, 9 cams CPU is setting at 15 to 20%, ram at 3.5 to 4gb in use
 

wittaj

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What BI version are you running? Have you updated recently as some recent upgrades have been problematic for some people. Do you have a memory leak with the graphics driver that builds up and causes the crash and restart?

The intent of the services is to restart on a crash - you have a strong enough system that the downtime would be minimal when it does restart.
 

msquared

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Agreed. BIv5 is actively being developed, some updates may be stable, others not. What you are experiencing may be a symptom and not the cause. You may be better served by diagnosing your current issue rather than finding a replacement. You may find yourself in the same situation with a different program. You have a huge resource to diagnosing issues right on this forum. You also learn something in the process if it happens again. Sometimes it's very simple things. You can try updating, or downgrading. There are other posts that go over updates and other users report stable or not. Also, if you're using the iGPU, it seems there is a consensus on which drivers are the most stable. I have no issue discussing what I've tried if I have more information on what you're looking for in NVR software. I am not going to be able to provide a checklist comparison between two programs, only my observations. What would you like to do?
 

Neil Sidhu

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Agreed. BIv5 is actively being developed, some updates may be stable, others not. What you are experiencing may be a symptom and not the cause. You may be better served by diagnosing your current issue rather than finding a replacement. You may find yourself in the same situation with a different program. You have a huge resource to diagnosing issues right on this forum. You also learn something in the process if it happens again. Sometimes it's very simple things. You can try updating, or downgrading. There are other posts that go over updates and other users report stable or not. Also, if you're using the iGPU, it seems there is a consensus on which drivers are the most stable. I have no issue discussing what I've tried if I have more information on what you're looking for in NVR software. I am not going to be able to provide a checklist comparison between two programs, only my observations. What would you like to do?
Thank you for your time.. Can you provide the apps you tried piror and why you left them? Just some food for thought..
 

msquared

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Currently using BIv4 and Geniusvision. I am testing to replace Geniusvision due to lack of active development, specifically H.265 support. I (mostly) follow best practices and have a dedicated PC for NVR. I run Win10Pro to use the group policies to dictate how the OS runs so my system runs predictable and stable. My need to investigate a current alternative is because I updated the firmware on my cameras and now the H.264 bitrate is uncontrollable/unpredictable. H.265 runs flawless.
My reasons for not liking the following programs run from usability issues to a hot mess of a user interface, some I tested for a time, others were immediately uninstalled because they just sucked, some is where the documentation was unclear on what they provided or that they only worked with a certain brand of camera, some because of the license pricing: Viewcommander, Oodlecam, Anycam, iSpy, Xeoma, NetCamStudio, NetcamViewer, Camviewer, RK VMS, CamNebula, Geovision VMS, Uniview EZStation, Polyvision, Freedom VMS, DSS Express, SmartPSS, Tinycam Monitor, ATVision.
The link fenderman provided above has even more programs I didn't find in my initial searches I started on last year, and may contain something better than what I've already tried.
Contenders I tested that moved closer to meeting my needs: Visec, Milesight, BIv5, Valerus, Milestone, iVideon, March Networks.
I very much liked DW Spectrum (NX Witness). It is an excellent piece of software and did everything I wanted it to do. It's expensive, and I was easily ready to drop the cash for 10-12 licenses, but it was taken out of the test pool because I have sent 2 emails to support with pre-sales questions (sent both pre and post COVID) and never received a response. There is no way I'm going to drop that kind of money when I can't even get a response to an email, because if that's the level of service before a sale, what about when I have a problem and I really need help. I think their licensing terms are quite restrictive for the money also. The strongest contender for a replacement I've tried is Luxriot, with a few caveats I think I can live with. I'm still testing for stability and have not committed yet. This is in addition to Blue Iris. There are some things I like that Blue Iris does well, and some things I would like it to do that I just use a second program for. Blue Iris is used for streaming and scrubbing thru MD video, secondary program records 24/7 main streams. That's what works for me.
Your price point is going to be a strong driver in what you want to look at, ranging from free (but less features and support) to $70 and up PER CAMERA for a license, but with more expectation of more features and the support to match that price point.
That's why Blue Iris is so popular, it is the sweet spot, which is why since you already have this, it may be more beneficial to find out what the issue really is, unless you really want to try something new. I don't know what your budget is for a replacement.
 

msquared

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Another indicator your setup may need attention is when you posted your CPU and memory usage. I don't know what your cameras are, but you have an i7 8700 CPU with 16GB of memory, and your CPU is 15-20% and memory is using 4GB. Is this a dedicated computer for NVR? I'm only noting this because my NVR PC is an i5-9600K, 16GB of memory, running TWO programs 24/7, 11 cameras substream in BI, 10 cameras mainstream in Geniusvision, 4 of these cameras in Geniusvision are 8MP, and my total PC resources are CPU is 15-18% and memory at 4.9GB. It seems your numbers should be lower with those specs, but I could be wrong. They're still respectable numbers within tolerance.
 

IAmATeaf

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Whenever the BI service crashed on my PC it was always auto restarted so although there would be a blip I was never left with a stalled system.

Having said the above the BI service hasn’t crashed/restarted in the last few months for me whereas prior to that I’d get a log entry to state that the service has unexpectedly stopped.

When it crashes have a look in Windows Event Viewer to see if an appcrash event is logged.

I’ll be honest, I don’t know what stopped or minimised the crashes on my system but I would be inclined to make sure your PC is fully up-to date in terms of Windows updates and make sure that the most recent version of the Visual Redistributables are installed.
 

Neil Sidhu

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Currently using BIv4 and Geniusvision. I am testing to replace Geniusvision due to lack of active development, specifically H.265 support. I (mostly) follow best practices and have a dedicated PC for NVR. I run Win10Pro to use the group policies to dictate how the OS runs so my system runs predictable and stable. My need to investigate a current alternative is because I updated the firmware on my cameras and now the H.264 bitrate is uncontrollable/unpredictable. H.265 runs flawless.
My reasons for not liking the following programs run from usability issues to a hot mess of a user interface, some I tested for a time, others were immediately uninstalled because they just sucked, some is where the documentation was unclear on what they provided or that they only worked with a certain brand of camera, some because of the license pricing: Viewcommander, Oodlecam, Anycam, iSpy, Xeoma, NetCamStudio, NetcamViewer, Camviewer, RK VMS, CamNebula, Geovision VMS, Uniview EZStation, Polyvision, Freedom VMS, DSS Express, SmartPSS, Tinycam Monitor, ATVision.
The link fenderman provided above has even more programs I didn't find in my initial searches I started on last year, and may contain something better than what I've already tried.
Contenders I tested that moved closer to meeting my needs: Visec, Milesight, BIv5, Valerus, Milestone, iVideon, March Networks.
I very much liked DW Spectrum (NX Witness). It is an excellent piece of software and did everything I wanted it to do. It's expensive, and I was easily ready to drop the cash for 10-12 licenses, but it was taken out of the test pool because I have sent 2 emails to support with pre-sales questions (sent both pre and post COVID) and never received a response. There is no way I'm going to drop that kind of money when I can't even get a response to an email, because if that's the level of service before a sale, what about when I have a problem and I really need help. I think their licensing terms are quite restrictive for the money also. The strongest contender for a replacement I've tried is Luxriot, with a few caveats I think I can live with. I'm still testing for stability and have not committed yet. This is in addition to Blue Iris. There are some things I like that Blue Iris does well, and some things I would like it to do that I just use a second program for. Blue Iris is used for streaming and scrubbing thru MD video, secondary program records 24/7 main streams. That's what works for me.
Your price point is going to be a strong driver in what you want to look at, ranging from free (but less features and support) to $70 and up PER CAMERA for a license, but with more expectation of more features and the support to match that price point.
That's why Blue Iris is so popular, it is the sweet spot, which is why since you already have this, it may be more beneficial to find out what the issue really is, unless you really want to try something new. I don't know what your budget is for a replacement.
Thank you for taking the time to provide your insight and feedback.. Very much appreciated!!
 

samplenhold

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I have a similar setup as you but have more cams and have not had any crashes. I am on BI V 5.3.8.17, which is the latest stable version. I have mine set to take only critical or stable versions.

You might consider that you have some problem with your hardware before you go and buy something else. It would be a shame to spend a lot of bucks only to find out you have the same issue with the new software.

I have 23 cams with 12 of them using sub streams. They are a mix of 2MP and 4MP cams, most running at high bitrates, 20 at 15 FPS and 3 are at 30 FPS. CPU is at 16% with RAM at 4.04G, 18200 kB/s and 605 MP/s continuous recording, direct to disk.

My system:

CPU: Intel i7-8700 Coffee Lake 3.2 GHz
MB: ASUS Prime H370M-Plus/CSM Micro ATX
Memory: 32 GB – 2x G.Skill 16GB DDR4 3000
Graphics Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti gaming 4GB memory
Power Supply: EVGA SuperNOVA 550W G3 80+ Gold
Cooling: Corsair H100i Pro 240mm
NIC1: On mother board
NIC2: Intel EXPI9301CTBLK PCI Express Gigabit Adapter

Case: Corsair Carbide Air 240 White 12.6H x 10.2W x 15.6D

‘C’ Drive: Intel M.2 760p 2280 256GB PCI-E 3.0 x4 3D2 TLC
‘D’ Drive: WD Blue 500GB SSD NAND SATA III 6 Gb/s
‘E’ Drive: WD Purple WD101PURZ 10TB 7200RPM
‘F’ Drive: WD Purple WD101PURZ 10TB 7200RPM
‘G’ Drive: WD Purple WD101PURZ 10TB 7200RPM

OS: Microsoft WIN 10 Pro 64 bit
 

looney2ns

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hi, thanks for the message! I am currently on BI5; i find it crashes every few days where the watchdog sends an alert and when i log into BI, i see the color lines..

I would then kill the services/app and it would work again for a few days. Issues is once i was out for a week and it crashed on me and i did not have a quick way to reboot it.

So now im out looking to see what's there. Been playing around with MS but the free version does not cut it with it not having push alerts.

Someone sent me a link for Shinobi Pro; looking into that now as well.

Im running an i7 8700 for 16GB ram, 9 cams CPU is setting at 15 to 20%, ram at 3.5 to 4gb in use
Be sure you have gone through this carefully: Optimizing Blue Iris's CPU Usage | IP Cam Talk
 

IReallyLikePizza2

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Synology Surveillance Station works very well, but its pretty much limited to their equipment. I've setup some friends with it who didn't want a very complex setup and I've yet to hear any real complaints

Blue Iris frustrated me for a while, but I've slowly worked on fixing all of my frustrations and in the past few months I've got it to be rock solid with pretty much no issues. I think fast storage is the key, a lot of people myself included where/are writing to slow disks which just causes all sorts of issues. Especially if like me you just use trash drives you have laying around. I've moved all new clip storage to SSD, and its solved pretty much all of my issues
 

Neil Sidhu

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Currently using BIv4 and Geniusvision. I am testing to replace Geniusvision due to lack of active development, specifically H.265 support. I (mostly) follow best practices and have a dedicated PC for NVR. I run Win10Pro to use the group policies to dictate how the OS runs so my system runs predictable and stable. My need to investigate a current alternative is because I updated the firmware on my cameras and now the H.264 bitrate is uncontrollable/unpredictable. H.265 runs flawless.
My reasons for not liking the following programs run from usability issues to a hot mess of a user interface, some I tested for a time, others were immediately uninstalled because they just sucked, some is where the documentation was unclear on what they provided or that they only worked with a certain brand of camera, some because of the license pricing: Viewcommander, Oodlecam, Anycam, iSpy, Xeoma, NetCamStudio, NetcamViewer, Camviewer, RK VMS, CamNebula, Geovision VMS, Uniview EZStation, Polyvision, Freedom VMS, DSS Express, SmartPSS, Tinycam Monitor, ATVision.
The link fenderman provided above has even more programs I didn't find in my initial searches I started on last year, and may contain something better than what I've already tried.
Contenders I tested that moved closer to meeting my needs: Visec, Milesight, BIv5, Valerus, Milestone, iVideon, March Networks.
I very much liked DW Spectrum (NX Witness). It is an excellent piece of software and did everything I wanted it to do. It's expensive, and I was easily ready to drop the cash for 10-12 licenses, but it was taken out of the test pool because I have sent 2 emails to support with pre-sales questions (sent both pre and post COVID) and never received a response. There is no way I'm going to drop that kind of money when I can't even get a response to an email, because if that's the level of service before a sale, what about when I have a problem and I really need help. I think their licensing terms are quite restrictive for the money also. The strongest contender for a replacement I've tried is Luxriot, with a few caveats I think I can live with. I'm still testing for stability and have not committed yet. This is in addition to Blue Iris. There are some things I like that Blue Iris does well, and some things I would like it to do that I just use a second program for. Blue Iris is used for streaming and scrubbing thru MD video, secondary program records 24/7 main streams. That's what works for me.
Your price point is going to be a strong driver in what you want to look at, ranging from free (but less features and support) to $70 and up PER CAMERA for a license, but with more expectation of more features and the support to match that price point.
That's why Blue Iris is so popular, it is the sweet spot, which is why since you already have this, it may be more beneficial to find out what the issue really is, unless you really want to try something new. I don't know what your budget is for a replacement.
I got a 10 license demo from Nx Witness; the server and desktop client is great! but the web client is not the best. It only supports single cam view.. You would think spending all that money, they can do something better.. Their cloud systems has to run from your local server to their cloud and then down to your PC when viewing via cloud..
 

CCTVCam

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Neil, just a shot in the dark here from what Sampenhold said, but have you monitored system temps with something like CPU-Z? Especially on an older system, the CPU paste can age or the CPU can become slightly dislodged and this can cause CPU temps to become excessive. It usually causes a reboot during booting due to excessive temperatures. However, if system temps built more gradually, I see no reason why it couldn't also cause a reboot after some time. It might be worth looking at the idle temp and also the temps when in operation. You can also use a program such as 3D Mark to stress your system although if on internal graphics, I'd pick a very old legacy version as 3D mark is designed to stress graphics cards to their limits as well as the cpu and so a newer version will almost certainly crash your graphics very quickly. The legacy versions are usually free to download. It's also worth noting that stress testing can cause failing components to fail, so beware the possibility of hardware failure. It's rare but can happen. Fixing aged cpu paste is very simple, simply take off the cooler and clean the cpu and cooler base with a cpu cleaner and then reseat the heatsink / cooler with new paste. A 10 minute job with a proper cpu cleaner and decent paste such as artic silver. No need to go extreme on the paste as you're not running a performance system. I'm assuming here it's removeable as some of these integrated systems seem to have all sorts of strange configurations.

You can alos test the memory with memtest (free) although it does require a long test, usually overnight.
 
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