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Seeking remedial help for latest updates (an 'update for idiot's' in needed)

Seeking remedial help for latest updates (an 'update for idiot's' in needed)

I received updates last night, and while I have tried searching for answers, I came up empty handed. Sentry----exactly how does one get this started? I understand the Controls > safety & security > sentry mode > on steps, but I am confused about the following: One article said this feature was for model S cars built after August 2017 (think mine was built around July or August as it was purchased in September 2017 from inventory sitting out in CA----it was one of a few dozen 90's they were pushing). So, is sentry now available for all S's? Additionally, in searching today I read something that said a formatted USB had to be inserted before turning on Sentry-----is there a special formatted USB needed (or one that works best), and will it work if I already have an USB plugged in all the time for my music (or can I just use the 2nd USB port)? Is there much of a battery drain while this feature is on----I will set it so it is off when in our garage, but was curious about all the other time if, with the new update, I set it to come on automatically?

Finally, is there any downside to taking advantage of last night's update regarding the software updates-------I can now elect to get the updates 'as soon as they are available' in my region by selecting "Advanced" (versus 'Standard') in the software update preference? It seems like a no brainer to select the "Advanced" option.

Thank you for your help once again---us old timers appreciate your patience.

p.c.mcavoy | 25 mei 2019

@mcmack15 - Sentry is available for all MS that have AP2 or the side cameras. Folks like myself with AP1, or those that have pre-AP cars are still out of luck.

Some of the confusion on do you need a USB drive gets into the latest cars actually save the Sentry videos to USB drive wile the first AP2 cars before the MCU2 update only save them to Tesla cloud. It sounds like your car is on the borderline about whether you can save the videos locally to USB drive. If you already had the ability to record dash cam images to USB, then you'll be able to record the sentry videos there also.

TeslaTap has a pretty complete write-up about USB drives on his site. It has details on what to look for as well as how to format the USB drive.

https://teslatap.com/articles/usb-flash-drives-for-tesla-dashcam/

As for vampire drain, yes, using Sentry will prevent the car from going into deep sleep mode, so vampire drain is increased. If you already use overheat protection it may not seem as back, but I've seem some report upwards of 5-8% a day with sentry.

I cannot comment yet on what the real benefits of the new option regarding software updates. I've also just received it, and until the next new update comes out, unable to judge whether it really influences how soon you get updates versus is a good placebo to placate folks always asking about 'when am I going to get it'. If you're one of the folks that is always impatiently waiting to get the latest, then doesn't seem like any downside, but unclear just yet to me if a real benefit.

spineeric | 25 mei 2019

@mcmack15...Tesla stopped production of the 90 and 90D in January 2017, I think. That’s when the 100D was introduced. If there were still a few dozen 90's available in New Inventory, hopefully those were all HW2.0 vehicles. Do you have the refreshed front end? If you have the cameras in the B-pillars and front fenders then you have Sentry Mode. If you do not have the side cameras then you don’t have Sentry Mode. Are you sure you didn't purchase in September 2016?

Your 90D would have HW2.0 at best and not 2.5. Everything I have read says HW2.0 does not have the capability to capture video on a USB drive. HW2.5 and up do because those vehicles have the newer MCU2 (center screen hardware).

Check your VIN here (TeslaTap again!) to see your production year:
https://teslatap.com/vin-decoder/

TeslaTap.com | 25 mei 2019

@spineeric - Good info, but to clarify, MCU2 is not related to HW2.5. There are HW2.5 cars (which can do dashcam) that have MCU1 and MCU2. It's confusing, so I wrote an article a few weeks ago to clarify HW/MCU and Autopilot variants and timelines: https://teslatap.com/articles/autopilot-processors-and-hardware-mcu-hw-d...

Thanks for the VIN plug :)

@PC also thanks for providing the dashcam link

spineeric | 25 mei 2019

Right...sorry for the misinformation TeslaTap. I have HW2.0 and MCU1 and do have Sentry Mode, but I cannot record via USB.

mcmack15 | 25 mei 2019

Tesla tap---just fantastic articles you have written on the USB's and autopilot variants, etc. I am guessing you wrote manuals at some point in your career. Excellent information! Great job!

I do have Sentry mode---I have that little icon, and when I stopped into the SC this afternoon they confirmed I had it as well. Unfortunately, I got there late and only one person was there, and they weren't up-to-date on the Sentry, so they couldn't tell me if I would use the cloud or a USB.

My car is a 2107--per the vin check spineeric provide (thank you), and per my purchase paperwork. I bought the car in September 2017---and spineeric you are correct--they were trying to get rid of the 90's to make way for the 100's. As a result, these cars sitting on the lot were discounted---I got $7,500 off.

Tonight I will go thru tesla tap's information on the timelines to see if that helps me out.

Thank you everyone.

TeslaTap.com | 25 mei 2019

@mcmack - If your car is really a 2107 - let me know what new feature Tesla has come up with in the last 88 years :) (I make the same error on occasion).

When you open the driver's door, on the lower part of the B pillar you'll see a label. On it will be the month and year the car was made. If August-2017 or later it will be HW2.5 and you should have the dashcam feature. If older, then HW2.0 and no dashcam :( Still having Sentry mode is cool even if you don't have the Tesla dashcam. Might be worth a separate dashcam, which in many ways works a bit better. Top dashcams include time and location stamps in the video, and work when parked without affecting range like Sentry mode does.

mcmack15 | 25 mei 2019

What is 88 years among friends......................that is what happens when I rush.

We found the sticker way down the bottom (too low for me to bend and see-- my wife had to look at it for me). In the upper left corner of the sticker it says 8/17....this was the only date she could see on the sticker. The window sticker for the car says it was manufactured on 9/2017.

So, what does having HW2.5 and the dashcam feature mean------how would I use Sentry with these features? Do I need a USB?

TeslaTap.com | 25 mei 2019

Ok, good news - it means you have HW2.5, and can use the dashcam feature. With Sentry mode (when parked), the cameras look for people that get near the car and capture 10 minutes of that interaction to your provided USB flash drive. There's a bit more to getting the proper USB flash drive and setting it up. Much more here: https://teslatap.com/articles/usb-flash-drives-for-tesla-dashcam/

Also, you don't have to a USB flash drive/dashcam operating to use Sentry mode - it just won't save the video. It will still warn those who get close to the car.

mcmack15 | 25 mei 2019

p.c. mcavoy-----thanks for your help---greatly appreciated. 5% to 8% drain is something to keep in mind---especially since I would be more likely to use the Sentry feature when I was traveling and leaving the car parked overnight someplace (e.g., hotel parking lot). And thank you for the link to Tesla tap's info.

I am never in a rush to get the latest update----I am retired and in no rush to do anything. I need the latest update ASAP like I need more pills to take. But, I checked off 'Advanced' anyway----didn't see any downside to it.

p.c.mcavoy | 25 mei 2019

@mcmack15 - I cannot give you guidance on the new features from personal experience, but if you have the latest, 2019.16.2, then you are supposed to be able to configure Sentry mode to not operate automatically in specific areas based upon GPS location. Similar to how you can set the air suspension to automatically raise based upon GPS. Many might want to exclude say their home or other trusted locations but have it on automatically at other locations. You might want to check out that capability to see if this could be a reasonable compromise for you in terms of not needing to remember to turn it on each time but avoiding excessive vampire drain.

mcmack15 | 26 mei 2019

TeslaTap----I read the excellent information you put together about the USB's from p.c. mcvoy's post yesterday, and per the recommendations provided I was planning on going to Best Buy to get either the128-256 GB Sandisk Extreme Pro 3.1 or the 64-256 GBTranscend Jetflash--------formatted in FAT32. I am hoping both or at least one comes formatted in FAT32 so I don't have to worry about reformatting..........am I a dreamer in this regard?

Interesting point about being able to use the Sentry without the USB dashcam..........I am going to read more about this.

p.c., I am thinking of doing exactly as you suggested. We are getting a new two car garage built (with solar panels on the roof) ---excavation starts within the next 2 weeks, and once that is built there won't be any reason to have Sentry on while the car is at home (may need it while the garage is being built because I am not sure where the car will be parked).

mcmack15 | 26 mei 2019

Grandchildren stopped over so I didn't make it out to get the USB; however, I just tested the Sentry in my car without the USB----it works as the screen lite up with the Sentry icon when I walked around the car.

Tomorrow we will look to see how my wife's 3 is set up (purchased in November 2018), and then go buy a couple of USB's. I will keep you posted on how we make out.

Thanks again for all your help. This Forum is great because of helpful folks like yourselves.

TeslaTap.com | 27 mei 2019

@mcmack15 - I'd say it's about a 90% chance the drive will be formatted for exFAT (which is not usable in the Tesla). Not a big deal, and I walk through the instructions to format it for FAT32 on Windows and Mac in the article (link above). Don't forget to add the "TeslaCam" folder too!

mcmack15 | 28 mei 2019

Folks at Staples were pretty useless when it came to USB's (they don't carry Sandisk and the manager told me USB's and Fat 32 were well beyond his knowledge----the kid he sent over to help me told me he was going on break and would be back in a bit as he walked away); guy at Best Buy was much better. I got a Sandisk Ultra Fit, 3.1, 128 GB-----he 'thought' it was a FAT 32 mode------wouldn't bet my lunch money on that. My daughter is coming over later this week and will format the USB's for both cars.

TeslaTap----I was going to just follow your instructions about the formatting, but it involved downloading something, and my computer fix-it person on retainer (my daughter) has forbidden me from downloading anything, or even opening anything if I don't know the source---she threatened to stop fixing my computer form bugs if I didn't adhere to her wishes. Note---for years I was on a Corvette Forum and it had more viruses than you can imagine---every month she was de-bugging my computer.

Again, thank for everyone's help.

TeslaTap.com | 28 mei 2019

Hey, no problem.I understand the risks of downloading some unknown software, and it's wise if you have any concerns to avoid it. I've never had a virus, but I do a lot to make sure that it says that way, and have a lot of options should the worst ever occur :)

If you have a mac - thier standard formatter still does FAT32, but they confusingly call it "MS-DOS (FAT)".

mcmack15 | 29 mei 2019

USB works. So, now I have two icons that show up---one for the Sentry, and one for the Dashcam. I understand how to turn the Sentry on (tap on the icon and a red dot appears), and off (tap on the icon and the red dot goes away). However, I am not so sure about the dashcam. I will search on the Forum and play around with it the next few days, but a very quick attempt to use it said we corrupted the file------we must have pulled out the USB when the dashcam was still on-------I tried tapping it; holding the icon for a bit, but red light only came off momentarily. Once I think a green arrow came on.

We could play back the video (only about 90 seconds of testing), and it looks like we got most of it recorded so that we could watch it.

I think it is a feature we will use------not sure about the dashcam while driving, but pretty sure the Sentry feature will get a ton of use.