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Merging and Detaching Servers

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Merging and Detaching DW Spectrum® Servers

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Affected Roles:  Owner, Administrator

Related Digital Watchdog VMS Apps:  DW Spectrum® IPVMS

Complexity:  Low to Medium

Last Edit:  March 11, 2020

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Merging Servers

When utilizing multiple servers for a location, it can be time consuming to constantly have to switch between server connections to monitor all of the cameras. DW Spectrum® makes it possible to virtually tie together two or more servers together as a single System.

This is typically done if the System Administrator wants to view the connected cameras from a single instance of DW Spectrum®.  The cameras will still record to their respective, local servers when merged, but by tying DW Spectrum® Servers together, user accessibility to the System increases and makes it easier for Administrators to manage their DW Spectrum® System.

This article will outline how to merge DW Spectrum® Servers together and how to detach a Server from the merged System.

**NOTE:  It is recommended to avoid merging MEGApix® CaaS™ cameras and DW Blackjack® MINI™ units into a DW Spectrum® System comprised of regular servers (computers running WinOS, Ubuntu/Linux, or Macintosh) as this will cause processing issues for the System as it will then be an aggregated combination of differing types of Servers.

Supported/Affected Devices

  • DW Blackjack® Series

Defining the System

  • System – a single DW Spectrum® Server or multiple DW Spectrum® Servers that are merged together.  This represents your overall configuration of DW Spectrum®.
  • Server – the device where the DW Spectrum® Server software is installed.  The purpose of the Server is to receive video streams from cameras, manage local camera settings, process and analyze video for motion or other special settings, to archive and store footage, and to act as the central device in the surveillance network.  Typically, this device will have both the DW Spectrum® Server and the DW Spectrum® Client installed for setup and configuration purposes.
  • Workstation – a client-based device that is used primarily for the viewing, exporting, and management of the DW Spectrum® Server.  Camera footage is not recorded directly to this device, but is viewed by using DW Spectrum® Client to connect with the Server.

**NOTE:  In order to avoid overworking the Server’s CPU, it is recommended to use a workstation that is separate from a DW Spectrum® Server for regular monitoring of camera video.  To learn more about using the Server as a client workstation, you can read Using A DW Spectrum Server As A Client.

Requirements for Merging

  • Merging Servers must have the same build of DW Spectrum® Server installed
  • If the merging Servers are connected to DW Cloud™, they must have the same DW Cloud™ Owner
  • Merging Servers are recommended to share the same LAN (Local Area Network) for connection.  Otherwise, the Servers must be able to communicate over the Internet to connect by WAN using either a Public IP Address or DW Cloud™.

**NOTE:  Merging through a NAT or VPN is possible, but is likely to encounter streaming or connectivity issues.

How to Merge Using DW Spectrum® IPVMS

To merge Servers with DW Spectrum® IPVMS:

  1. Launch the DW Spectrum® Client.  This can be done from the Server itself or from a connected workstation.
  1. Connect with the System and log in as an Administrator.
  1. From the Resource Tree, right-click on the System, then select Merge Systems.

  1. The Merge Systems window will display.

If the Server that is going to merge with your current System is on the same LAN, use the drop-down to select the Server from the detected Servers in the Server URL list.

If the Server does not appear in the list or you are connecting with a remote server (WAN), enter the Server URL manually.

  • Server URL Structure:  http://<IP_Address>:<Port>
  • Example IP Address:  192.168.100.2
  • Default DW Spectrum Server Port:  7001
  • Example Server URL:  http://192.168.100.2:7001

  1. Enter the Login and Password to the Administrator user of the merging Server, then click the Check button to verify the connection.
  1. Select the System that will be acting as the primary Server.  This selection will determine the name of the System and the login of the Owner profile of the merged configuration.

Click Merge Server to finalize the merge.

How to Merge Using DW Cloud™ Portal

DW Spectrum® Version 4.0 now allows DW Cloud™ Servers, with the same DW Cloud™ Owner, to easily connect with each other and merge through the DW Cloud™ web portal.

**NOTE:  To merge Systems using the DW Cloud™ web portal, both DW Spectrum® Servers must be linked to the same DW Cloud account as the Owner.

To set up DW Cloud™ for a server, please read DW Cloud Setup.

To merge Systems with DW Cloud™ Portal:

  1. Launch a web browser and connect with dwspectrum.digital-watchdog.com.

Click the Log In button, then enter the Email and Password to the DW Cloud™ account.

Alternatively, in the DW Spectrum® Client, click on the DW Cloud Login tool, then select Open DW Cloud Portal.  You will automatically log into the web portal.

  1. Your DW Cloud™ connected Systems List will display.

Select the merging System by clicking on the corresponding tile.

**NOTE:  Do not click on the Open in DW Spectrum® button, unless you intend to open the DW Spectrum® Client to connect with the System.

  1. Click the Merge with Another System button.

  1. Select the System that the current Server will be merging with.

Select the primary DW Spectrum® Server.  This selection will determine the name of the System and the login of the Owner profile of the merged configuration.

Click the OK button, then enter the Password to the DW Cloud™ account.

Click the Merge Systems button to finalize the merge.

Detaching (Unmerging) Servers

Detaching Servers from merged Systems is a rare occurrence and is typically performed only when replacing a Server. 

**NOTE:  By isolating a Server from a System, the Server will be completely detached from DW Cloud™.  All DW Cloud™ user accounts will be deleted from the detaching Server, including the Owner.  Only the local user accounts will remain.

**NOTE:  If recording licenses have previously been activated on the Server that is being detached, Servers remaining in the merged System will no longer have access to those licenses.  This will be denoted with a “Server Not Found” error message.  Licenses from the remaining merged Service will need to be used instead.

To detach a Server from a merged System:

  1. Connect with the Web Client of the detaching Server.

This can be done by:

  • Entering the Local IP Address and Port of the detaching Server into a web browser

  • Entering 127.0.0.1:7001 into a web browser at the detaching Server itself

  • From the Resource Tree, right-click on the Server, then select Server Web Page

  1. Log in to the detaching Server.

Select the Settings tab.

Under the Server tab, click on the Detach from the System button.

  1. Enter the Server’s current Password, then click the Detach button to finalize the detachment.

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  • 12-Mar-2021
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