I ordered another HDHomeRun Thursday and was expecting it to arrive Friday. Well, after having some friends over for dinner I got around to checking the UPS order tracking and it stated “Delivered – Front door”. Well, I certainly couldn’t find it. So I started D-ViewCam to check the security footage from our front door and guess what? No UPS guy had ever walked past our front door Friday.
The software that comes with certain D-Link web cameras is pretty awful. It also creates proprietary files (MJPEG/MPEG4?) along with additional information such as motion detection details. This was the first time I wanted to actually get the video out in a format that I could actually forward on if needed which I didn’t end up needing. Amazon had placed a replacement order with free next day shipping about two hours after I emailed customer support. Of course, this didn't really help on a Friday (OK, OK… Saturday) past midnight.
Turns out that D-ViewCam doesn’t work all that well on a Windows Home Server, at least through Remote Desktop. I was able to set the start and end cue points only once for an export. Other times they were disabled making it impossible to actually export anything. And the one time I was able to export, I ended up with a zero length file.
Long story short (I’ll leave out having to install VS2008 in a virtual machine since D-ViewCam doesn’t work under 64-bit Vista either), a few hours later I had a custom utility that will take a .DVF file and convert it into an .AVI. Unfortunately, I have to use the libraries from D-ViewCam to do this, which means you’ll need to have that installed. In addition, the format (compression) doesn’t seem to work (It doesn’t have any effect. The same goes for exporting via D-ViewCam).
The story also has a happy ending, the person who received the package a few streets down was kind enough to bring it over this morning, so now I have 4 tuners in Vista MCE, but getting that to work is another post altogether.
The utility is a quick hack. It will only convert the whole file, and this will take several hours. It doesn’t do batches, and you can’t cancel it (unless you kill the app with Task Manager). I didn’t want to spend the time writing these unless someone actually asks for these features.
It’s available on the downloads page. Just extract and run DvrConvert.exe. Let me know if you want the source.
I’ve only tested with D-ViewCam 2.03 (available here) which is listed to work with the following cameras: