Wansview Wireless IP Camera

Some research showed up a number of options for WiFI cameras, but this it was the cheaper option on Amazon and one that provides a pretty good solution.

The Wansview IP Camera, with motion detection etc, came from Amazon and at GBP 40.00 seems to be too cheap. However, if you some techie skills with your home network etc

You’ll need:
• a DSL or cable wired or wireless router, ideally something that does IP forwarded. I’m using a Netgear N300 router currently.
• some basic network knowledge
• you’ll need power near to where the camera is located and either wireless coverage from your router or wired ethernet (there are number of ways of doing this).
• if you are a Windows user, there is a supplied CD on installing etc
• if you are a Linux user (like me!) then no problems, it’s more manual but actually straightforward to configure.

I use Linode to host a Linux image which I use for my email etc, so configuring and testing things is straightforward.

Some key things to watch:
• the documentation with the camera is okay, but along with the online FAQ’s there are a bit basic
• the default static IP address for the camera is 192.168.0.178. Although this may be good for people with a 192.168.0.0/24 subnet at home (a lot of DSL routers default to this) it isn’t always the case. Some notes on setting this below
• when setting up either the email or ftp alarms, put in your values, submit them, then test. If you test before submitting, it will fail as it clears the values you’ve entered. It does say this on the form.
• the camera does support uPnP which is an easy way to configure the IP Forwarding, however it’s potentially a bit of a security compromise so I tend to turn it off.

Accessing the camera and configuration

Like most routers, the Camera runs a small webserver which gives you access to the picture and configuration. Default is 192.168.0.178, with user name of ‘admin’ and password of ‘123456’. Best to change the password asap.

The admin pages are pretty straightforward, but check through the settings carefully as the messages from the tests and diagnostics are not brilliant.

Network Configuration

You’ll probably want to change either the network IP address (192.168.0.178 default) or the port (1025). You will also probably want to get the wireless working. Two ways of configuring the device, either directly connecting your PC or laptop directly into the camera with the supplied CatV patch cable, or (better) connect the camera into your router (the Netgear’s usually have 1-4 slots on the back). This makes configuring the wireless easier, as you’ll have to enter the SSID for you home network as well as the right security type and passphrase. It’s not that intelligent and you’ll need to know what security you are using on your router.

You’ll probably want to go for a static address (ie not obtained automatically), as this makes Port Forwarding a lot easier later. The Netgear instructions are pretty straightforward, but if you do change the port for 1025, don’t use 8080, as this is port the admin interface uses if you have made it externally accessible.

Emails and Alerts

Results

Some of the latest images should be [ here : ->
http://www.twinshock.org.uk/ipcamera/ ]; these are uploaded every 5 minutes over FTP.

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