We are going to use Zoneminder as sort of a computerised video security system for both home and small to large businesses. This would also be good for keeping an eye on babysitters or for use in a child care center. This will allow you to keep an eye on your property and record suspicious movement by employees or others. The great thing about this project is that an older or lower end computer will work just fine for this project. You can access the video cameras via the web so you do not have to baby sit the computer running zoneminder.

We were able to do this whole set up in a manner of minutes. The set up is not as scary as some people might think. Excepting one glitch (the fix is  documented), this was a a piece of cake to set up. You might want to visit a security store to get some hidden cameras to make the system even more secure and hidden. We just used some inexpensive web cams from a local electronic store. Also have an ip camera (networkable camera) so you do not have to directly connect the camera to the host computer. I will add our set up of it later. The video at the end of the instructable should for how to set one of those up.

Notice: this instructable requires knowledge of linux via the command line. But do not let the command line scare you. I set the whole thing up in minutes very easily.

Note: You could certainly use an internet enabled touch pad to keep an eye on things. On the last panel is a little blurb about motion which is another video capture program. It is perfect for low end machines. It had no problem with the webcam I hooked up.

Not my video, but worth looking at:

Step 1: Prerequisites

Hardware prerequisites:
Networkable (preferably hard wired to the network and not wifi enabled) computer with battery backup capable of running Ubuntu Linux 10.4 and as much memory as you can install in the system. One or more zoneminder supported webcams and enough usb ports to support them and or ipcameras (Warning: wireless units are easy to hack).

Software Prerequisite:

You should have a vanilla install of Ubuntu 32- or 64-bit up and running. Run updates before proceeding (System > Administration > Update Manager).

Do not install XAMPP, LAMPP, Apache, MySQL, etc. I thought I was going to be smart and bypass a bunch of installation steps by doing this, but it's just not necessary. If you do have LAMPP on your system and you still plan to use it, you better go read some docs on how to get it to start on another port, because the ZM installation is going to overtake all the default ports. If you have LAMPP and anything is running, stop all the services now with

sudo /opt/lampp/lampp stop

If you have existing Apache or MySQL running, you're on your own. This guide is meant for installing ZM on a dedicated box. Feel free to leave suggestions to include information on how to integrate zoneminder with a functioning Apache/PHP/MySQL setup.

<p>I have ZM installed on my Media Server that runs multiple programs including Apache, email server, and Mysql with no issues. I dont know if the earlier stages of Zm was picky like that but its more friendly now </p>
neat! do this to my room! :P
Cool. I also thought of maybe using this for a pod casting setup also.
Awesome. I was easily able to set up a video surveillance system at home and at work. Thanks!

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