Business Spotlight

Security Cameras


If you were to tell any rancher ten years ago that he would be able to save babies during calving with a camera and a cell
phone, he would probably tell you you’re crazy. If you ask the Browns of Montpelier today, they would tell you that now they have it, they couldn’t go without.

The C-B Charolais farm and ranch operation has had a security camera system for three years now, and it has completely changed the way they operate during calving season. The C-B Charolais’s calve out around 450 calves each year, and third generation Troy Brown claims that even with three of them around there, it was still hard to keep up without a way to monitor the cows, which resulted in lost calves each year.

Troy explained how calving season went before having a  camera system. The process went something like this: someone would physically go check on the cows at least every hour to see if any of them had started calving. Once one had started, they would move them into the barn (if they weren’t there already) and keep checking every hour at least. There’s a chance a calf would be born shortly after the last check, and if anything was wrong the calf probably wouldn’t
make it. In doing the checks hourly in the middle of the night, the cows would stir, causing them to go through more straw. He also noted that when they were stirring up the cows at night, more calves were born then too.

Once they realized that the calving process could be done so much more efficiently if they had a way to monitor the cows without actually going out to the barn, they decided to invest in a professional grade camera system. Dakota Central  technicians installed a point-to-point solution that brings service from the house to the barn with Access Points, eliminating the need to bury fiber to the barn. Four cameras were installed, three inside the barn in different areas, and one outside. Three of the cameras have the ability to rotate or zoom, which they can control from an app.

Now, things run a little different. It really is a complete family operation, down to Troy’s two year old son who already helps watch the cows on the iPad. If the guys are out in the field or busy, Troy’s wife or mom can watch the cameras from the phone or iPad, and let them know if anything is wrong. Troy said even if all of them are gone, they can still be checking the cameras. Before cameras, they weren’t able to go anywhere together during calving; now, they can all run into town for dinner and they don’t miss a thing.

When a cow starts to calf, they make sure they are watching her closely because if there is an issue they usually only have minutes to get to the calf to save it. “The camera system is definitely worth it for us,” Troy said. “It saves us at least five calves a year, if not more.” He explained how he saved one specific bull calf last winter, and when they sold that
one alone it covered the cost of the camera system. Calves aren’t the only thing the cameras have saved. Troy explained
that they weren’t expecting the cameras to save straw as well. Because they are not stirring up the cows in the middle of the night, they tend to rest more at night. This also means less calves are born in the middle of the night because the cows aren’t moving around as much, and waking up less in the middle of the night is always a good thing. “The cameras
save me plenty of sleep,” Troy said as he laughed. “My dad can go right back to sleep after going out, but if I go out at 3:00 in the morning, I’m up for the day,” he said.

The Brown’s are also impressed with the picture quality of the cameras. Because the picture quality is so good, with the outdoor camera they are able to see other things farther away, like coyotes moving through the calving pens at night. Troy explained, “Now that we have the cameras, we find other ways to utilize them other than for calving. We are able to aim the camera at the house when we’re gone in the summer to keep an eye on it.” He said it’s nice to be able to see what the weather is doing when they’re away, and they are able to tell if the power goes out because they will lose connectivity to the cameras.

Of course, as with all technology there are sometimes hiccups. Outdoor cameras may have issues more often due to the elements. For example, Troy explained how there have been times when the snow has been too heavy to see through or the camera has iced up, but he was able to troubleshoot from his phone and rotate the camera so that it thawed itself out.
Overall, the Brown’s are pleased with their camera system, and we are happy to help their operation run more efficiently. Now, if the cameras could feed the cows too, they would be set!

NDSU vs. Missouri State on ESPN+

NDSU Football on ESPN+
Important information regarding the NDSU vs. Missouri State Football game this Saturday, Nov. 10 (because we know you’re wondering!)
This away game will NOT be aired on TV- you will have to STREAM the game via ESPN+, which is a subscription-based channel through ESPN. The good news is that they are currently offering a 7-day free trial, so you will be able to watch the game for free.
You need to CANCEL your subscription before the 7-day free trial ends, or you will automatically be billed $4.99.
You will need a device that is connected to wireless Internet. Devices that can be used are smart phones, tablets (iPad), smart TV, or streaming devices (Roku, Apple TV, Fire TV, Chromecast, etc.).
On your device you will need to find and download the ESPN app, and then search for North Dakota State University vs.Missouri State on ESPN+. You will then be directed to create an account to begin the free trial.

Fall Sun Outage Information

Twice a year, in the spring and fall, you may experience brief television interference known as “sun outages” or “satellite sun fade.” This happens when energy from the sun overpowers satellites’ signals, which in turn causes interference with TV quality picture and sound. Interruption to TV service due to sun outages can last several minutes a day. Satellite sun fades typically occur between February and March in the spring, and September-October in the fall.

On the bright side, sun outages DO NOT affect Internet or Voice service!

TV outage caused by sun interference

What is a connected device and how many do you have?

What is a connected device, and how many do you have?
Speaking of multitasking, let’s talk more about devices and how they affect your Wi-Fi. First of all, let’s determine how many connected devices are in your home (Wired and wireless). The obvious examples are smartphones, laptops/desktop computers, tablets (iPad), streaming devices (Roku), and gaming consoles (Xbox/PlayStation). The not-so-obvious devices are wireless printers, security cameras, baby monitors, any Wi-Fi enabled appliances, smart TVs, thermostats, lightbulbs and speakers (Amazon Echo). These devices are always connected to the internet and running in the background, so they are easy to forget about!

Now that we’ve cleared up what is exactly considered a connected device, let’s talk about how it affects your internet signal and speed. How well your Wi-Fi performs depends largely on the number devices that are connected, but also what you are using the internet for. Streaming, gaming, homework, work from home, shopping, surfing, the list goes on; your internet is working overtime these days!

In order to ensure your connection is working up to par, here are three things you can check:

1- The location of your router
Chances are your devices are used all around the house, heck, maybe even on the patio! Make sure your router is centrally located to reach all of those nooks and crannys. If you find it’s having a hard time reaching, you may need an access point to extend the signal. Give us a call and we can help you determine the best solution!

2- The age of your router
While you’re at it, it would be a good idea to make sure your router is up-to-date. If you aren’t sure how old your router is, you should be able to look up the model number to find out.

3- The actual speed you are getting- do a speed test!
If your device is directly plugged in with an Ethernet cable, you should be close to your subscribed speed. If you are connected via Wi-Fi, you should be getting around 80% of your subscribed speed. So, if you subscribe to 100 Mbps, you should get around 80 Mbps when connected to Wi-Fi. If you have multiple devices streaming and gaming simultaneously, they will all have to share that speed.

If you feel like your internet service isn’t able to keep up with your devices and usage- it may be time to upgrade your speed! Start a chat or give us a call to speak with a team member!

Upgrade: SD to HD!


Does this little silver box look familiar? If so, it’s time to upgrade! These little babies are nearing end of life and we would like to set you up with the most up-to-date technology. The new set-top boxes are HD/DVR compatible and allow you to pause/fast-forward/rewind/restart programs, search for programs with an interactive guide, view most watched shows, and more!

Interested in HD? Call or chat with us today to upgrade!

Digital TV 110 Set-Top-Box

Dakota Central TV Channel Additions

We are excited to announce to addition of the highly requested Hallmark Drama channel! Featuring iconic dramas, original movies, series and timeless favorites!



Hallmark Drama channel


We have a few new High-Definition channels on the line-up,
just in time for fall sports!

BEK SPORTS PLUS HD – 720 & 721


It’s a GO! (HBO GO)

We are extremely excited to finally announce the launch of HBO GO and MAX GO! We’ll explain what this means to you: Dakota Central HBO and Cinemax subscribers can now watch their favorite shows and movies anytime, anywhere- at no extra cost. If you’re anything like us, this is a big deal! You want the freedom to be able to stream Game of Thrones (or whatever you’re into) when and where it’s convenient for you. We get it!

Not only does HBO offer original series like Game of Thrones and hit movies, you will also find a great variety for kids, sports, documentaries and more. It’s the perfect cure for your post-summer blues.

Sharp Objects (Series)
Succession (Series)
Insecure (Series)
Ballers (Series)
Hard Knocks (Sports)
Esme and Roy (Kids)
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Movie)


Let’s work together!

consultation for business services
Business owners- are you lacking expertise for things like IT support, Hardware/Software and Network Management? Do you struggle to find advice for certain IT projects but can’t afford to hire an IT expert on-staff? We hear you, and we’re here for you.
  •         Network Management
  •         IT Support
  •         Remote Helpdesk Support
  •         Unattended Remote Support
  •         Performance and Preventative Maintenance
  •         Virus and Malware Removal
  •         Managed Firewall Services
Let’s work together to get your IT network in order, or simply have the peace of mind to know we have your back if you’re ever in a pickle!

Jamestown Office Addition

In case you haven’t heard yet, we have some exciting things happening in the Jamestown office! We are in the process of building an addition onto the existing office, which will allow for more workspace and storage, as well as a larger training area and conference room. Construction began in the beginning of May, and the project is expected to be completed by the end of the year. When construction is complete customer parking will remain the same, but there will be a new customer entrance to look for, on the South side of the new addition. We apologize for any inconvenience throughout the process, and we appreciate our customers’ patience! We are excited for the project to be complete!