Thursday, December 6, 2007

How simple is it to install an internet camera?

Recently I have client project which involves the installation of an internet based camera (IP Camera). He wanted me to set up the camera to his shop so that he can remotely monitor it from home or from wherever. Honestly, it took me quite a while to set it up but with a few trial and error and lots of perseverance, I was able to have it up and running (or shooting?).

For this system to work you need the following set up:

  1. Internet Connection (at least 256 kb/s upload speed)
  2. At least one personal computer
  3. broadband router
  4. IP Camera
  5. CAT5 Cables

The IP camera I used was an Edimax IP Camera Model IC-1500. It’s a pretty decent camera. Aside from the fact that you can view the camera remotely via streaming video anywhere through Internet Explorer, it has the following features:
  • It supports Motion JPEG Images Compression
  • Supports Motion Detection and sends the snapshot of events
  • Records Video Clips on a Predetermined Schedule
  • Supports DDNS and UPnP (although I experience some issues with this)

For the router, I got a DLINK 4 port broadband router.

The set up was quite straight forward:
  1. Read the accompanying manual of your camera and router.
  2. Connect the router to your DSL modem
  3. Connect the PC to the router
  4. Install the camera in the most strategic place (Note: the camera I got needs an external power source so you may want to plan ahead regarding where to plug it. Some cameras have “Power over Ethernet” features. This is cool feature since the camera is powered by the same cable connection you used to connect it to your network).
  5. Install the camera software in your computer.
  6. Access the web page of your broadband router (normally, its via your web browser.
  7. In your router web page, forward the ports of your IP camera (typically its 80 for the web port and 4321 for the video port).
  8. Run the camera software and if there are no other problems then you’re done!

I won’t talk about the actual step by step procedure since this pretty much covered by the products manual (see step 1). Now having accomplished the above task, I can view my camera over the local area network.

I have one SIMPLE problem though: I can’t view it over the internet!
After reading and re-reading the manuals, browsing hundreds of sites over the internet, contacting the product customer support...I finally figured it out.
The solution is with the ISP! My client’s internet connection is under a dynamic IP set up. For the camera to work all I need to do is to have my client’s ISP to issue a static IP address to our internet connection. One phone call and a day after, my client is now contentedly viewing a streaming video of his shop from his home 10kms away.


Mimi said...

you are way above my head in your use of the computer... good luck with your own business...
I enjoy Hailey's blog so much you can be very proud of her...
she sounds like a very devoted wife and mother...
I pray for your business that it will be a success!!!
thank you for your visit to my blog..

jeferrer said...

Thanks! We really need those prayers!