Two cameras, neither connects

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thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:08 pm

After quite a bit of struggle I got ZoneMinder up and running (the repo was down, so installing and configuring took ages).

But I am finding it a bit challenging to connect to the cameras.

One I have is a "SolarCam" that seems OEM and doesn't even connect to its own app well. The other is a Foscam G2. It is connecting well to its own app but I have several issues in trying to connect to ZM.

1. I haven't a clue which stream to use: rtsp? http tunnel? I didn't find the G2 in any list of hardware, so perhaps it's not even supported at all?
2. Using nmap, I seem to be unable to find it on my network. Is it somehow not connecting to my network even though I'm watching the video feed on the screen?
3. I don't see it on my router either.

Any help would be great. I tried a rtsp://<name><password>@ip.ad.dres.here:554/some/dir/path line but it didn't do anything and I feel like I'm just guessing. Isn't there any way to find out specifically what I need to do for this camera to get it to work?
Last edited by thesun on Thu Nov 14, 2019 6:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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snake
Posts: 334
Joined: Sat May 21, 2016 2:20 am

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by snake » Tue Nov 12, 2019 9:56 pm

You have an existing thread with the same issue at viewtopic.php?f=14&t=28719 There is no need to make a new post.

Someone got the G2 working here:
viewtopic.php?f=38&t=28588

What nmap command did you use?
thesun wrote:
Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:08 pm
I tried a rtsp://<name><password>@ip.ad.dres.here:554/some/dir/path line but it didn't do anything and I feel like I'm just guessing. Isn't there any way to find out specifically what I need to do for this camera to get it to work?
If you can get that path to work in VLC, it will probably work in ZM. Use VLC to test out stream paths.

As I mentioned before, it's best to start with a well supported camera if you are unsure how ZM works, or are new to the software. See the Hardware Compatibility list on the wiki. Used cameras from older generations can be had extremely cheap. ZM is not difficult to use, just realize that some cameras are proprietary and try to make you use their app only, so not all cameras play nice with others, and will work.

thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Wed Nov 13, 2019 2:09 am

Thank you, @snake, for the additional help. In the other post it was a different camera and I didn't have a model number, but if you mean I am still asking how to connect to ZM then yes, they are similar. :-)

But this WAS my attempt to get a more common camera. In this one, it's the Foscam G2, and thank you for finding that thread. It looks very useful. Based on that thread, it seems the camera is going to be at IP 10.10.10.10??? Is that something the camera will set? (I had placed it in my router via the MAC address reservation at 192.168.0.170...yet wasn't seeing it showing up when I ran nmap).

I guess at this point I will try the directions in the other thread and come back if I need to. At that point, if I still end up stumped, I'll try to get a known camera and verify that my ZM setup works...

Does anyone out there know how to get more info about my "SolarCam"? Unlike the Foscam, I AM able to assign this one a static IP that I can see with nmap. Is there a way to figure out which port it's using somehow?

CountyLine
Posts: 63
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:22 pm
Location: USA

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by CountyLine » Wed Nov 13, 2019 4:02 am

Once you have the Foscam camera's IP address, you should be able to point your web browser at that address and log into the camera's web interface. There you should find a checkbox or something similar that selects DHCP. Uncheck that to unselect DHCP and you should be able to enter a static IP address into the camera and save that permanently.

Foscam has a desktop application that should tell you what DHCP IP it has been served, if you can't get the information from your router's web interface.

CountyLine
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Location: USA

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by CountyLine » Wed Nov 13, 2019 4:08 am

From what I can see, SOLARCam is a modified smartphone and not a true IP camera. I'm not sure there is any way to make it work with ZM.

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snake
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Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by snake » Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:23 am

Some cameras have default IP addresses, or if they are used they may be set with the previous owner's IP. The Foscam G2, aka FI9902, has a user manual at Foscam's website. Use the tool that Countyline mentioned, first. Alternatively you can use wireshark or tcpdump and look for camera packets. They usually are verbose on the ethernet network, and will announce their IP by trying to connect to the WAN.

The RTSP path from the other thread is also in that user manual on page 8, section 2.4. Note that they misspelled videosream, where I think they meant videostream. In the description they have it correct.

https://www.foscam.com/download-center/user-manual.html

They actually have a pretty good write up for rookie users regarding VLC there.

thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Thu Nov 14, 2019 1:40 am

I want to thank everyone for their help. The Foscam G2 is up and running fine on ZoneMinder and to boot, I have a nice live feed in VLC!!!

The bizarre thing is that after an hour of tech support, in which Foscam used TeamViewer to come on my Windows machine and attempted to login, then had me reset the camera, then I reinstalled their app, redid their settings, logged into the network...suddenly I look at ZoneMinder and it's running and capturing a nice image!

So the settings that mattered were these (for all who need it in the future!):

Name: (your cam name)
Server: None
Storage Area: Default <-- didn't change
Source Type: ffmpeg <-- tried libvlc and it doesn't work (see Note 1!)
Function: Mocord
Enabled: (check, uncheck as needed)

Source tab
Source Path: rtsp://<username>:<password>@192.168.?.???:88/videoMain <-- Replace ? with your own IP numerals
Method: TCP
Capture Width: 1920
Capture Height: 1440 <--- not even sure these are correct for a 4K video, will play around more.

I have not touched any other fields so am leaving them out for now.

Note 1: Interestingly, the rtsp:// line works in VLC even though the "libvlc" option in ZM does not. To get a live stream in VLC I have to run "admin:@my.cams.ip.add:port/videoMain" If I try to run with the line "username:password@my.cams.ip.add:port/videoMain" it fails to find the feed. But with the "admin" line it comes up and prompts for the admin password...and I have to change that to my username and then add the password for it to connect. It doesn't connect if I just leave the username as "admin" and the password blank.

Like this:
rtsp://admin:@192.168.?.???:88/videoMain <-- fill in the ? with your own IP numbers.

Note 2: The current Foscam user's manual for the G2 is a bit confusing because they have a typo -- it's not "videosream" but obviously "videostream." However, that word is just a variable for the three options: videoMain, videoSub, and audio. I haven't tried either of the other two but it was "videoMain" that worked.

Now I just have to figure out some settings in ZM so that I can control the recording better and set zones. But very exciting to have this working. Thank you all for the links and help.

thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Thu Nov 14, 2019 1:54 am

@countyline, thank you for the info on the SolarCam -- is there any chance you can explain to me the sleuthing you did? How would I (for this or maybe for a future camera!) be able to determine this info up front? Thank you!

CountyLine
Posts: 63
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:22 pm
Location: USA

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by CountyLine » Thu Nov 14, 2019 3:40 am

OK.

All I did was enter solarcam into a search engine (I use duckduckgo) and got the SOLARCam web site.

https://www.mysolarcam.com/en/

If you scroll down the page you will find the description of the phone stating that it is a "modified Sony Android smartphone." Maybe there is a way of getting that thing to work for you, but if there is, I don't know what it is. The fact that you haven't received any replies saying it will work with ZM is a pretty good indicator that it won't work or nobody who is really knowledgeable has given it a try. It also appears to be far more expensive than an equivalent quality IP camera.

Normally, you want an IP camera with an Ethernet port and possibly WiFi. I prefer to run Ethernet cable to the cams for superior performance, having had poor performance from my two WiFi capable cameras when using that feature. A POE (Power Over Ethernet) capability is a real plus as you can install cameras in places without a nearby power outlet. Stick with major brands and don't hesitate to ask the forum for an opinion on a specific model.

thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Thu Nov 14, 2019 3:00 pm

Okay, that's what I thought. This isn't the product I have. It's sold on Amazon by Eversecu and they call it a SolarCam but I have repeatedly asked them for tech specs, what the OEM maker is, etc. It uses a "ToSee" app on the App store if that's helpful.

But no, this isn't the product. The one I've got is https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07H6F9T27. When I say "SolarCam" that's what this product says, but I don't find any branding or model number or anything on it.

The frustration is that their tech person in Taiwan doesn't want to say anything other than "you have to use our app." I have gotten the cam to use a static IP but I don't know the other stuff, the port number, the name of the video feed, etc. Are there any ways to find this out?

CountyLine
Posts: 63
Joined: Thu Aug 29, 2019 5:22 pm
Location: USA

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by CountyLine » Thu Nov 14, 2019 4:14 pm

Your post said you had a "solarcam." It did not say "solar camera." Those are two completely different things. Web searches for "solarcam" do no return anything like what you have.

You should have put that Amazon link in your very first post.

thesun
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2019 4:26 pm

Re: Two cameras, neither connects

Post by thesun » Thu Nov 14, 2019 6:24 pm

Yes, you're right. I thought I had, but I guess I was more specific in the other post, even there I don't think I had the actual link. My apologies.

Moving forward, what steps could I take to get this solar camera up and running with ZM somehow? I am considering opening up the camera and seeing if there's any id inside it. Would that be useful?

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