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How To Install IP Security Cameras

By Moshe Goldberg

When people tell you that Internet security cameras are the future of home and business surveillance, your best response is to suggest that they’re a bit behind the curve. The future is already here and doing well, too. With Web-based security cameras, you could monitor your locations in other states, even other countries, from your headquarters in your hometown. If you traveled to Miami on business, you could control things from there, too. If you were to take your laptop to a meeting with a prospective client, you could show them your manufacturing line or your marketing department, live, as part of your sales pitch.

Internet Protocol (IP) cameras can be set up to work with standalone applications, or you can use the client/server model to create broad-based, non-centralized recording, review and archiving systems. You could conceivably install dozens of IP cameras in dozens of different locations and manage them all from a single office with a single control center. They are appropriate for businesses of all sizes, as well as homes, and also offer worldwide access to many functions when the system administrator sets it up that way or permits it.

How do they work?

With continuing advances, IP cameras have quickly come to parallel the design and capabilities of the original CCTV surveillance cameras. The primary difference between them is the different ways the systems treat the video signals after they depart the camera and stream to the other hardware. The standard CCTV cameras have a transmission path that is dedicated to carrying the signal stream from the device to a recorder or some kind, a monitor or both. This means that you need a central, dedicated place set up for monitoring and recording. It gets confusing and involved with just a few feeds, and downright unmanageable and expensive to run a surveillance system with, say, 10 cameras, particularly if it becomes necessary to move the monitoring office.

On the other hand, IP cameras stream signals over a dedicated network according to the Internet Protocol, which means the Web-based signals are available to any properly equipped computer. Web-based cameras can support numerous users, numerous locations and do so in a non-centralized manner, so authorized personnel can record, review, archive and manage functions from different locations, simultaneously and from anywhere on the planet where Internet service is available. Moving or reconfiguring an IP-based system is simple. You would simply detach the video interfaces from your monitoring-recording computer and move everything to a new location. With changes in some basic network settings you will be back up and running fast.

Setting up your system

Some of the top IP security camera makers equip their units with dual digital video outputs in addition to a standard analog video output. With multiple video streams, you can view, record and archive video locally with a digital video recorder even as others view and record the same stream from remote locations around the world at the very same time.

There is no reason to overcomplicate the installation, which is straightforward and only appears to be tricky (especially to non-technical types). Anyone with average computer abilities can set up one, two or 20 IP cameras in a new surveillance network. And those of you who have networking and computer skills will find it easy, because IP cameras will use existing infrastructure. The basic, simple steps to set up network security cameras are common to just about every make and model, although you should always defer to the instructions provided by the manufacturer of the particular camera(s).

Generally speaking, these are the steps to install you IP security camera:

- Mount your IP camera(s), ensuring that they are located near power outlets;

- run the cables as necessary to establish network connections at all camera locations;

- connect the cameras to the network connections;

- plug the cameras into the power outlets; and

- load the appropriate viewing, configuration, recording and camera-management software on the PC that will be the control center.

When powered up, your PC will automatically search out all available IP cameras and establish connections to them. This process continues until every one of the IP cameras is connected, at which time they are ready to start streaming video to the PC and, according to your setup, a DVR, external/internal drive, tape unit or other device. Whatever model you select, and whatever software you use (proprietary applications are provided with some cameras, while some shareware and commercial applications can work with multiple makes and models), the general operations are similar. As previously stated, however, always give first place to the instructions and applications, if any, that come with your camera(s).

Home Security equipment and point of sale systems are only the beginning of what we have to offer at Gemini Computers. Visit us online to peruse our spectrum of products including POS System, Point Of Sale Software, ELO Touch Screens, symbol Barcode Scanners, Printers, Cash Registers, MSR, Scales, Intercom/Video Phones, IP Cameras, Accounting Software, and much more.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Goldberg, Moshe "How To Install IP Security Cameras." How To Install IP Security Cameras. 12 Jul. 2010. 6 Aug 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Goldberg, M (2010, July 12). How To Install IP Security Cameras. Retrieved August 6, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Goldberg, Moshe "How To Install IP Security Cameras"

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