Re-using cameras on existing NVR setup

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Re-using cameras on existing NVR setup

Post by thril » Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:03 pm

I was hoping to replace a Galaxy system with Zoneminder and keep the cameras. If I get it going I will document the experience in the compatibility section here!

The data sheet for the cameras lists ONVIF so I was hopeful. I've got one of the cameras taken from the job site and I've setup a temporary LAN with the right subnet to match the existing network. However, I don't have the NVR hardware the camera normally talks to on the LAN. The camera has no physical button or method that I can see to 'factory reset' it other than a glued in battery. The user/install guide online lists a default IP address but nothing about resetting the unit. At the jobsite the cameras can be found on the network with eg Nmap, but on my LAN they don't even register.

Just wondering if this is a common thing or if anyone has encountered this. I do have remote access to the site.

They have 3 different models in use, here is one:

Guide: ... 7773937267

It says you can login with the default IP to configure the camera in a browser so I was hopeful for ZM compatibility.

I am powering it with a 12V AC adapter I had handy that fits the socket and amp rating is higher than it will need, however on site it is POE and I don't have a spare POE injector currently. The light does come on and then go off after likely it boots up so it has power. I assume it doesn't also need POE in addition to the 12V tail connector.

I am a n00b with security setups. Anyone have any ideas if I'm doing anything wrong or is this likely normal behaviour to prevent tampering?

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Re: Re-using cameras on existing NVR setup

Post by iconnor » Fri Mar 26, 2021 5:03 pm

It may have been given a hard coded ip that is outside your subnet. Or maybe you don't have a dhcp server in your test net?

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Re: Re-using cameras on existing NVR setup

Post by alabamatoy » Mon Mar 29, 2021 12:46 pm

I would get a PC, install wireshark, get a dumb switch, plug the camera CAT5 and the PC CAT5 into the dumb switch, fire up wireshark and see what the camera is saying. Its IP address should become readily apparent. Its probably trying to find a DHCP server to give it its address. I cant imagine its a truly fixed address, cause then you couldn't have more than 1 camera on a given subnet, they would fight over that one address and nothing would work.

As iconnor said, the camera *should* be doing DHCP requests. So I run my ZMs on a Ubuntu box with a DHCP server installed, so I can control what camera gets what IP. You set the MAC of the camera in the DHCP to a specific address as a fixed allocation, then cycle the power on the camera, and it should come up with the address you assigned it. This is what most home routers do for you.


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Re: Re-using cameras on existing NVR setup

Post by mikb » Mon Mar 29, 2021 2:45 pm

alabamatoy wrote:
Mon Mar 29, 2021 12:46 pm
I cant imagine its a truly fixed address, cause then you couldn't have more than 1 camera on a given subnet, they would fight over that one address and nothing would work.
Partly true. Many cameras on one IP address -- not going to work.

However. There is precedent for devices "new out of the box" or having been given a hard-reset (or possibly when crying out for a DHCP server that hasn't answered) to come up on a "default IP" address, and yes, all cameras of the same type will use the same IP address, as they are all the same.

I've seen devices come up on 169.something.or.other which is outside my subnet (192.168.0.X) and so I couldn't talk to it until I re-config'd my computer to be 169.x.x.x, gave the device a web-reconfig (and, of course, immediately lost it again ...) then switched back PC to 192.168.0.X -- all good.

Then you've got devices that decide their default is -- thank you for that, I was using that address already. Much confusion. Move other device out of the way (pull the plug), shout at new device, plug things back in.

It happens. I second the idea of running wireshark, tcpdump, or other net-monitoring software, with your PC and the camera as the only two devices to eliminate confusion. You may not even need the hub/switch, just a direct crossover lead between the two. Heck, if your PC or camera is smart enough to do Auto MDI/Auto MDX, it will take a straight-wired cable and sort it out.

Power the camera on and watch/wait. It'll do *something*, with a MAC address (and maybe a default IP address) attached.

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