Home security and monitoring are the buzz words today. Every home has some kind of security and monitoring tools installed nowadays. Be it for perimeter security, in-home security, baby monitoring and many others.
In this age of the internet and open source world, a home brewed solution is not a tedious task to achieve.
This post concentrates on one such solution listing all the tools which are completely free and open source. Subsequent posts will detail the installation/setting up and configuration of each of them in detail.
1. A Linux box:
Installing linux have never been so easy. Gone are the days when a linux installation from scratch would take hours – debug, find solutions for problem specific to the hardware being used. It used to be a big task to hunt for the device drivers for specific hardware. That is all a problem of the past now. Popular distributions like Ubuntu, SuSe etc have all that is needed to get you up and running in less than an hour’s time. There are numerous guides for how to install linux on a particular desktop/laptop etc.
In my case I am using my old laptop, fully functional. Being a old system, it is too slow for modern day requirements. A system with 1GB RAM, atleast 40GB of HDD, USB ports, RJ45 LAN ports and/or WiFi is sufficient.
2. Any USB camera and/or IP camera:
Lots of USB webcams are available in the market for a very good price. Any USB camera will do. Just make sure you are satisfied with the image quality ofr your application. As to the IP cameras, lots of them are available in the market with several features – built in WiFi , Infrared, PTZ (Pan Tilt Zoom) functionalities. Pick up the one which suits you best. I ordered mine from Ali Express for 40$ USD. It is working beautifully for the past 1.5years. It is a Chinese make ( What is not these days :)).
Setting up motion is a easy thing to do. Read the documentation to configure it for your usage. Detailed below is for the configuration I have, but it should not be too different for different configurations.
Dropbox is a useful tool to have. If you haven’t signed up for it yet, you should. Here, it is optional that you have Dropbox. But if you are the types that you want the images from anywhere in the world, then Dropbox is the easiest way to go!
As mentioned earlier, I will shortly blog in detail on how to install and setup each and every one of the above .