As surveillance systems in both homes and businesses continue to advance, network video recorders (NVRs) have become the norm for monitoring security camera footage. NVRs offer reliable digital recording and storage options superior to older analog DVRs. However, like any piece of technology, NVRs can occasionally encounter issues requiring a reboot or reset. This guide will explore the most common NVR rebooting problems and provide troubleshooting tips to get your system back online quickly.
Why Your NVR May Need Rebooting
While NVR equipment from top brands like Hikvision aims for maximum uptime, glitches can happen. Power surges or outages, flawed firmware updates, connectivity problems, or incompatible apps trying to access the system are among potential triggers that could cause an NVR to freeze or endlessly reboot.
If you notice your NVR struggling to boot up properly or cameras failing to display live views without any obvious cause, then a reboot is often the first troubleshooting step. The hardware reset clears any temporary software bugs disrupting normal functioning.
How to Safely Reboot an NVR
Before initiating a reboot, check your NVR and confirm all hard drives are correctly installed and cables properly connected. Improper physical configurations can hamper reboot success.
Use the power button – Locate the power button on the front or rear of the unit. Press and hold for 5-10 seconds until the NVR powers down. Release the button and allow the system to fully shut off. Press the button again to restart the unit. This cold boot forces software to close and hardware to reset.
Disconnect power cable – If the power button fails to respond, unplug the power cable from the rear of the NVR to cut electricity to the system. Leave unplugged for 60 seconds, then reconnect and press the power button to restart.
Use reset switch – Some NVRs have a reset pinhole or switch, usually located on the rear panel near the power port. Use a pin to press this recessed button for 3-5 seconds until the unit shuts off. Removing power this way overrides any unresponsive software.
Disconnect all cables – For problematic units that stay stuck rebooting, disconnect all ethernet and video cables in addition to the power cord. Wait 1 minute before carefully reconnecting cables and power cord. This full disconnection of NVR hardware often resolves persistent reboot loops.
Factory reset – If less drastic reboot methods fail and issues persist, most NVRs have an option to factory reset all software and restore original settings. Note this erases custom configurations. On Hikvision units, press and HOLD the reset button on the front panel for 10+ seconds until the system resets.
Why Rebooting Your NVR May Not Work
While properly rebooting typically gets NVRs back on track, it’s not a magic fix-all.
If frequent restarts are needed to maintain functionality, faulty hardware may be causing havoc. Power supplies, cooling fans, hard drives and internal components do eventually wear out. Excessive dust or humidity can also damage electronics over time. Professional inspection and potential part replacements may be the long-term solution.
Likewise, glitchy video, streaming interruptions and recording failures after rebooting often indicate deeper software conflicts. Updates to buggy firmware or trying alternative monitoring apps can possibly resolve these technical incompatibilities preventing normal NVR operations.
Advanced Troubleshooting of NVR Reboot Loops
When an NVR gets stuck endlessly powering down and restarting – possibly showing only flashing lights and no video out – several tricky tweaks may alleviate the reboot loop trap.
Update App Causing Conflict
As outlined in a Hikvision technical bulletin from summer 2021, defects in version 4.15 of the Hik-Connect mobile app were determined as the catalyst causing certain NVR firmware builds (v3.4.100) to continually crash and reboot.
To break this cycle:
Download the previous stable Hik-Connect app version that does NOT induce restarts (v4.14 for Android users)
Delete/uninstall reboot-bug app version from mobile device
Install and connect to NVR via proven good older app
This rollback circumvents the flawed app release while allowing mobile access to cameras without disrupting NVR operations. An updated app fixing the bug is now available as well.
Adjust NTP Clock Settings
For other cases not tied to app conflicts, adjusting network time protocol (NTP) alignment in the NVR settings may halt reboot cycles. Outdated time and date information often causes system confusion. But simply enabling NTP alone does NOT always work – daylight savings time (DST) options should remain off/disabled based on Hikvision’s analysis.
Use Alternative Viewing App
Trying a different viewing app besides the main platform app provided by your NVR manufacturer (i.e. Hik-Connect) provides another path to break an NVR reboot loop. Hikvision’s iVMS 4500 app still enables remote access to camera feeds without crashing the recorder. Downloading an alternate app that stably streams NVR footage points to the vendor’s own buggy software as the reboot culprit.
Update Problematic Firmware
When dealing with a Hikvision “Q series” NVR trapped restarting, fresh firmware matched exactly to that model from the company can eliminate instability triggering reboots. Strict firmware requirements can render even slightly mismatched firmware incompatible and glitchy. Contact Hikvision support with your NVR model details for tailored firmware best resolving any lingering software gremlins.
Reset NVR to Factory Defaults
If all else fails in soothing a persistently rebooting NVR, use either the hardware reset switch or button to fully factory reset – wiping all recorded footage and custom settings in the process. Essentially reverting to its original out-of-the-box state often removes any problematic configurations causing the unit to crash. Reconfigure cameras and recording schedules from scratch once the NVR resumes normal start up and stays online.
Maintain Your NVR to Minimize Reboot Headaches
While even properly functioning NVR setups benefit from the occasional restart to clear memory leaks or temporary software snags, frequent full-system crashes and reboot loops indicate bigger issues in need of correction.
Practicing standard maintenance like keeping equipment clean and cool while promptly installing firmware security patches reduces technical hiccups that can spiral out of control if left unaddressed.
Knowing the proper procedures to safely reboot locked-up NVRs provides short term restoration of camera visibility and recordings when glitches strike. But fully resolving finicky NVRs prone to failure requires identifying and fixing the root causes – be it faulty hardware components, outdated firmware or software conflicts.