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RouterThe router needs to be configured. Essentially this is setting up a static IP address assignment for the mini server and port forwarding to the mini server. As such access to the router needs to be available (login password) and it needs to have the ability to be able to set a static IP address and forward the ports.

The available bandwidth within the Local Area Network (domestic or business network) is the prime factor in what frame rate and what resolution is usable. The surrounding regional network also effects the bandwidth. Also the number of people accessing the camera at any one time is a factor.

Under normal circumstances this is certainly not a problem. The protocols used work very reliably under most conditions and over long distances. Using 5GHz WiFi will provide a faster link.

A 2fps 640 x 480 pixel resolution feed is certainly doable and this can be increased. The cameras supplied are 720p (1280 x 720 pixel) cameras. The camera can stream at 24fps (movie speed) network bandwidth permitting.

All parameters in the set up can be tweaked and this can be done via configuration pages or be done by us remotely.

Accessing the System
via the Dynamic
Domain Name System

Domestic and small business LAN's normally connect through a modem router that is assigned an IP address dynamically (for historical reasons). This may be changed to a static assignment with NBN or via arrangement with your ISP. A dynamic IP address changes typically twice a day. We provide a system for registering your local IP address on our web site at no charge. If you have a DDNS arrangement already set up (where your site is registered with a Dynamic Domain Name Server) this can be used - your router can be configured to register automatically with such a service or you may have a device on your local network that is doing this.

If you have difficulty accessing the network (hence the webcam) just refresh your browser - Ctrl R. The IP address is updated regularly so you might have to wait a few minutes for the link to be restored. If all else fails delete your recent history in your browser cache and try again.

Static IP Addresses

If you set up your Local Area Network to have a static external IP address this will ensure that the camera can be directly linked to at any time. This can be done by arrangement with your ISP, or if you are on NBN, by a configuration switch on your modem's configuration pages. Using a static IP address is the preferred method as it's a direct connection and hence more reliable.

Connection Reliability

The system uses the HTTP protocol that is used with web sites and is prioritised on the Internet. As such the connection and bandwidth are very reliable and can be used over long distances.

The system has been thoroughly tested. It is very reliable and can be accessed easily from anywhere in the world. I have accessed it frequently from England and France including on the train in England and the EuroStar in France as well as on domestic and hotel networks. It usually takes a couple of seconds to connect but it is very reliable.

System Reliability

The mini computers are very reliable. They use Linux which is used extensively for servers around the world. If the link goes down this will be due to either i) the DDNS IP address changing - if so - wait up to 10 minutes and then reload the frame - Ctrl R, ii) the router having a memory fragementation problem - if so - reboot the router, iii) the local or wide area networks having a large amount of data being transfered - such as DVDs being played, games being played or a large daily backup occuring - if so - wait until the transfer is complete.

Heat and Rain

The mini computer is very temperature tolerant however it should be kept out of direct sunlight and it should be kept in a ventilated area. It is supplied in a plastic container that allows it to keep cool and protects it from rain. However it should be kept away from storms. The outdoor camera is storm proof.