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advice on setting up linux security webcams, and advice on which cameras to use?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I've recently had some legally sticky situations, and am faced with at least one more semester in a dorm operated by people who REALLY dislike me, and so it's occurred to me that it would be good to protect myself with security cameras in my room.

I only run linux, and do have an old computer I can throw at this. I don't have any webcams yet.

I've seen some tutorials for setting up webcams with motion and the like, which is cool.

What I'd ideally like is to have my "security" computer, with a live image from all my cameras, which will either begin recording upon sensing motion, or (ideally) also give me a button to click if I want to record a full scene. I'd like to have 2 or 3 cameras, and I'd like it to timestamp all the footage.

Is this realistically possible? all the tutorials I saw looked rather limited.

Also, any suggestions for cheap security quality webcams that will play nice with linux, and not be DOA?

Bear in mind, I know NOTHING about this stuff, and have never even owned a webcam.... so if I seem ignorant, I am.
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post #2 of 4
look into IP cameras, there are several different variations. The nice thing about them is they are accessible via the network. I recently did a corporate project involving some cisco IP cameras that allow users to access them from a web browser, they could be setup to begin recording audio and video when motion is detected.

You should come up with a price point and go from there, but IP cameras can be had for cheap if you look around, some are even PTZ as well
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post #3 of 4
I don't know anything about security cameras, but I can recommend that most Logitech webcam models work perfectly with the Linux kernel.
post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
Ahh, well i got some cheap cameras on amazon.

Reviews said they worked with ubuntu 8, so I don't see a reason they shouldn't be fine on my ubuntu 10 system.

I'd thought about IP cams, but the thing is, my system is inside a dorm network anyway, I can't run a server or anything else, so I went with 5 dollar webcams. Cheap and I imagine they COULD be set up on an IP if I was smarter...

But I'm still wondering about the software aspect, all I know is that it can be done. I'm sure i'll make SOMETHING work, but if anyone has anything to throw in, I'm sure it would be a great help.

If I do manage to set up a neat system, I'll post it up. Hoping to have a camera looking through my door's peephole, a camera on the outer area in my dorm room, camera on my private room, and one set up as a normal "in your face" webcam.

I just need to be pointed in the right direction to set up a screen that lets me see them all, so I can feel like a cool rent-a-cop....

If this works I might think about an ITX style build for my car, with forward and rear cameras, too.
Edited by davek - 7/25/11 at 5:13pm
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