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The DVR Software

In order to efficiently control, monitor, search, view and replay video and audio recorded over multiple channels and comprising, perhaps, hundreds or thousands of events and containing millions of images, you’re going to need one heck of a software program.

• How does the software facilitate storage of the images?
• What happens when multiple users simultaneously access the DVR?
• How does it prioritize tasks?
• What happens when you have to search through millions of images or conduct queries?
• How long do requests take?

To the novice, the software’s graphical user interface (GUI – the main screens) may look like a million bucks, but tells you little about its core features or performance of the DVR.

We are often asked who made the first DVR software, because many seem to “look-alike.” Again, the graphics of some systems may look alike, but that is where similarities end. You can buy a Rolex watch or Prada handbag, which cost $1,000’s and last a lifetime or you can buy “knock-offs” on Canal Street in Manhattan for $25 bucks. They both look identical but that is where it ends. Usually within a short period of time the buttons fall off, the strap breaks and it stops working; but it looked great the day you saw it.

Much of the software in the market place today is based upon adaptations of entry-level type basic video capture software from earlier generations. As technology progressed, many manufacturers continued to build on top of old programs that were outdated.

The key concern of the software is the quality of the underlying source code. While the database structure is very important to DVR stability, the quality of the written software is just as important. A simple incorrect string of data can cause memory leaks similar to problems encountered with Windows of years past and the system will gradually slow down and eventually freeze, reboot or crash completely. So understand that a simple successful product demonstration, speaks nothing of the product longevity. Software problems may not arise for days, weeks or months.