Periodic wifi and SD vs. cloud event storage

I have the pan cam at my vacation place where I have a weekend only wifi package. I would like to use the SD card for recording EVENTS while wifi is off. There seems to be a lot of confusion on SD vs. cloud storage in other forums so wanted to be sure this would work.

If so, then I assume when wifi is connected, I can still go online and play back from the SD card any events from the week. Right?

Appreciate the verification.

You are correct, with one caveat.
You need to set up the camera, get it working, and configure for recording ‘events’ to the SDcard on the weekend, while you have WiFi. The camera will then happily record ‘events’ to the SDcard, even after the WiFi disappears at the end of the weekend. When internet connectivity is restored (i.e., when your weekend WiFi comes back on, you’ll be able to access the camera remotely, and view whatever ‘events’ were recorded to the SDcard during the week. Needless to say, during the week, since the camera has no internet connection, it won’t be able to send any 12-second clips to the WyzeCloud, nor send you notifications about ‘events’ that were detected.

The caveat - if the camera should lose power during the week, it will stop recording, and will not resume recording until the weekend when it is again able to access the internet. When these cameras boot up, they require an internet connection to WyzeHQ in order to start up.

If the power grid at your vacation place is problematic, you could consider powering the camera from a UPS in order to maintain power during brief outages.

Some more information about 'off-line recording is here:

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Unfortunately not correct. kyphos is correct that you need to have WiFi to start recording, but the current firmware (and many prior releases) will stop recording to the uSD card about 8 hours after loss of WiFi. This issue goes back farther than the well known (and now fixed) 90 minute restart “bug”. However, this issue remains. Also note, that after the camera stops recording to the uSD card it also will NOT automatically reconnect to the WiFi when back in range of it (or it is turned back on) without a power cycle. One of my cameras is used as a dashcam in my pickup truck. Absolutely reliably about 8 hours after I drive away from home, the camera stops recording to the uSD card. So, I get to observe this every work day.

Does event vs. continuous matter? I would never get 8 hrs of events. The Wyze guys really need to clarify what is/isn’t possible w/ the SD…

Also, assume while wifi is connected I will get notifications and will be able to access both the cloud and the SD…correct? Obviously, I won’t when disconnected.

Thanks for the correction. I’ve done lots of tests with various use cases, but have not tried recording sans WiFi for 8 hours, so I’ve never encountered that failure mechanism.

However, my V2 does reconnect to WiFi when it reappears (or is turned back on). I’ve tested that scenario a number of times. When I turn the WiFi back on, the Wyze LED continues to flash for a while, perhaps for 10 or 15 minutes, but the camera has always reconnected to the AP, and thence to the internet. I haven’t tested that use case since I updated the firmware to 4.9.4.108, so I’ll try it again and see what happens.

Is your failure-to-reconnect-to-WiFi scenario after 8 hours of no radio? Maybe after 8 hours it fails ‘hard’ and is no longer able to reconnect, whereas my WiFi outages have never been that long.

In my case, the camera is being used as a dashcam, so every day I go to work, it is out of range of my home WiFi for in excess of 8 hours. If it comes out looking right, you can see my log for the past few days. You can see that the last recording was about 7.5 hours (I rounded it up to say 8) hours after I drove out of coverage. If the out of coverage time was short, recording was not stopped, and the camera would autoconnect to the WiFi when I drove back home. If it stopped recording, it also would not autoconnect and I had to power cycle the camera. This is something that has gone on for at least a year, but I had not carefully documented it until recently.

Drove out of coverage Last recording Drove into coverage Autoconnect
Date time Date time Date time or power cycle
7/16 4:54 7-16 12:11 7-16 22:08 Power cycle
7/17 4:48 7-17 12:13 7-18 18:45 Power cycle
7-19 4:52 7-19 12:23 7-19 18:45 Power cycle
7-20 11:42 7-20 12:39 Autoconnect
7-21 11:14 7-21 13:05 Autoconnect

Well, it messed up the formatting a little. The times go with the date to the left. For example, the first line is 4:54 on 16 July for driving out of coverage, and 12:11 on that same date for last recording.

Never tried that. I have always had that camera set to continuous recording. I will change it to events only this evening and we’ll see what it does tomorrow.

Got it - thanks.
So if the cam has been out of WiFi range for a ‘long’ time (8ish hours), it quits recording, and gets into a state where it will not reconnect when it returns to WiFi. But if it’s been absent from Wifi for shorter interval (exactly how short is not known), it continues recording during the WiFi outage, and does reconnect to WiFi when it gets back in range. Is that summary correct?

My use cases have never gone 8 hours with no WiFi, so I’ve not run into this.

I did run into something yesterday that I’ve never noticed before. I’ve discovered many (hundreds) of motion-triggered recordings on my SDcard that I’ve never seen. They don’t appear in the Playback timeline. They don’t get found with skip-back or skip-forward commands. But the hundreds of mp4 files are saved on the SDcard in the /record folder. I discovered them when I pulled the SDcard, mounted on my MacBook, and examined the /record folder. Other than the most recent recordings, they do not appear on the timeline. Unless/until I manually scrub the timeline back to the precise time at which one of them was recorded. When I do that, like magic the video starts playing, and the tiny green line appears on the timeline.

Recordings captured the last day or two are rendered with tiny green lines on the timeline, but anything older than a day or two has gone missing. The files are still on the SDcard, but as far as the app is concerned, they don’t exist. I don’t know how long this has been going on.

Yes, your summary of the 8 hour issue is correct.

I’m running an 8 hour no-WiFi test overnight. Will report results tomorrow.

for a $6 sd card, i"ll try it in my use case and see what happens.

K6CCC,
I was not able to reproduce your 8-hour failure use case last night.

My V2 is configured for record events only to SDcard. Event recording to the cloud is not enabled. The IR LEDs are disabled.

  • turned off WiFi at 10:40pm. A minute later, the LED started flashing blue/yellow, indicating loss of network connection.
  • it recorded a 1-min video at 10:42pm when I turned out kitchen lights (as expected, recording to SDcard continued even though there was no internet connectivity.).
  • it recorded two minutes at 05:08am, as the IR filter flipped back and forth a few times as the dawn sky brightened.
  • it recorded 1 minute at 8:25am (I jiggled the camera to trip the motion detector)
  • at 8:26am, I turned WiFi back on.
  • at 8:28am, the camera’s LED went back to solid blue, indicating it had reconnected to WyzeHQ.
  • I opened the iOS app, and could Live View the camera, Playback the recorded videos, etc

Summary - the camera reassociated with the WiFi after a 9 hour ‘outage’. No power cycle was required to get it going. It continued to record all night long (or would have, had there been motion events to trigger it).

What’s different? My cam is set for event recording to the SDcard. If I’m not mistaken, yours is continuous. I wouldn’t think that should make a difference on the camera’s ability to reconnect to WiFi.
In your use case, you physically take the camera out of range of your WiFi base station, and then bring it back in range 8 hours later. In my test, I turned my base station off, then back on. That difference might be relevant.

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Interesting difference. Yes, mine is set to continuous recording to a 64GB high endurance card (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00V5Q1N1I/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1). Just to make it better, my camera did not stop recording yesterday while I was at work and it auto-reconnected when I got home. Only real difference was that I drove to work rather than drove to the nearby train station and took the train. Where I park at the train station is outside and at a location where I see all the cars entering and leaving the parking structure along with changes in sunlight. At work in the parking structure I see almost all the cars driving by to higher levels of the structure. That and a longer drive. Yesterday I also drove out to lunch, whereas today I will walk to lunch.

Very odd that yours decided to keep recording all day, and then reconnected to WiFi when you got home. These cameras are priced attractively, but they sure are quirky, temperamental, and/or unreliable, depending on your choice of adjectives.

Earlier today, I described how it recorded at 5:08am, then 8:25am during my no-WiFi test. I just launched the app, tapped Playback, then skip-back. It jumped back to the 8:25am recording. Skip-back again got me to the pair at 5:08am. Skip-back again went to a recording made on January 19th! It’s lost the recording captured at 10:42pm last night, as well as hundreds of recordings made between throughout Jan, Feb, March, April, May, June, and July.

Once the timeline is back in January, when I tap skip-forward, it jumps forward to current time, and reports “No more”, ignoring everything on the SDcard. Very undependable.