Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Linux - fun with a cheap video camera


This is the camera I chose to replace the cheap chinese camera that I had before.  That lasted about 5 years or more.  This camera is 'starlight' which is very bright at night with streetlights, and has an IR led, which nobody uses.  Perhaps for the boonies.

All these cameras have a stinky static ip address, and you have to change it to dhcp, so your router can fix the address.  Doing that blew out my main computer and I had to reinstall Linux again.  I keep everything modular, so I can blow the main ssd all the time.  However, I keep forgetting I should keep samba.cfg and fstab, for all the mounts.  I was running 'sid' or unstable, but I loaded stable for now.  I suspect a new update in unstable was blowing my main computer and upstairs media computer.  They were doing very weird things, all fixed now.

You have to dig out of the boxes a very old network switch.  And find the right power transformer.  I have two full boxes of old stuff.  I still have the power injector from the old camera - which does power over ethernet - poe.  Hook up the camera to the switch and your computer.  Use the 'ip' command to change your ip to be compatible with the camera - it changes back upon reboot.

You get right into the menu, and there are so many things to screw up!  Right now, just change the fixed ip to dhcp, and you can plug it into the main network.  I have it on the floor right now, looking at my armpits.

Getting Frigate to work with the replacement is the joy of finding the proper rtsp link.  fun fun fun.

I used the onvif-tools and it shows the link, but you have to add the user and password.  Combined with all my related or unrelated disasters, it took me a day of head-banging.

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