Suggestions for ways to improve my setup
  • Afternoon, I'm after some ways (if they exist) to improve my setup. I think the way I've got everything configured is a bit cumbersome, so maybe someone can help?

    My setup...

    1. The cameras are Wansview IP camera, cheap but surprisingly good (I think!).

    2. Four of them are connected via ethernet to an ethernet switch, which in turn is connected to my Airport base station.

    3. I find the cameras can drop out from time to time requiring powering down to get them back working, so all four are run off one mains plug with a timer switch set to go off for one minute every twelve hours, thus "resetting" the cams twice a day.

    4. An old iMac is connected by ethernet to the Airport base station running SS.

    5. The iMac also connects to the internet via the same ethernet cable/Airport base station.

    The issue: It just feels a bit of a flakey way to do things. Security Spy loses connection to the cams regularly, sitting here just typing this and they cams have "gone down" then come back up twice. I'm pretty sure this isn't the fault of SS but my setup.

    The Airport base station serves out the wifi to my entire house, with some range extenders here and there, it's a house of four adults (us parents and our grown-up kids) so the wifi is under constant load.

    I'd love to hear anyone's ideas for better ways to set things up. Buying better cams is not an option!

    I have a feeling that connecting the cams via the switch directly to the iMac will improve things, but I can't work out a way to do that and still allow the iMac to connect to the web.

    Happy to answer any questions, and grateful for any help offered.
  • As the Ethernet switch is connected to the Airport base station, then you can connect the Mac to the Ethernet switch without losing Internet connection to the Mac, so this would be the first thing to try. However the Airport is a pretty solid bit of hardware, so I would be surprised if this were the thing causing the connection issues.

    As for the WiFi, this shouldn't be relevant if the Mac and the cameras are wired.

    What is the make/model of the switch? A low-quality or slow switch could cause the problems you are describing, as can poor-quality cabling, so these are two further things to check.
  • Hi Ben, the switch is a TP-Link TL-SG1005D 5-Port Desktop Gigabit Ethernet Switch, £15 from Amazon. Given what you've said, I suspect that might be the issue?

    Sitting at my desk this morning, in the last three hours or so none of the cams has dropped out, it's a very sporadic issue. Which'll make finding the issue real fun!

    As for connecting the switch directly to the iMac, this bit is confusing me: On the back of the iMac is one ethernet port which connects to the Airport base station. How would I connect the switch to the iMac?

  • That switch looks perfectly fine to me, and has good user ratings, so it's unlikely to be the source of the problem. To test this, do you happen to have a different switch you can swap out with it by any chance?

    Since the switch is connected to the Airport, any device that you connect to either the Airport or the switch will have Internet access. So in this case you simply disconnect your Mac from the Airport, and plug it into the switch instead.
  • K, will have a play Thanks for the help.

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