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Using Linux ZoneMinder For Video Surveillance - page 2

Installing and Setting Up ZoneMinder

  • January 11, 2011
  • By Eric Geier

After the installation is complete, you need to configure Apache by opening a terminal and running the following two commands as a superuser:

ln -s /etc/zm/apache.conf /etc/apache2/conf.d/zoneminder.conf

/etc/init.d/apache2 force-reload

To enable access to the video devices you must add the user www-data to the video group with the following command in a terminal as a superuser:

adduser www-data video

Now you should be able to access the ZoneMinder GUI from your web browser on any computer connected to the local network:

http://ip_address/zm

Before you begin configuring monitors, you might want to enable authentication to the web interface so everyone on the local network can't access ZoneMinder. On the main screen, click the Options link in the upper-right. Place a checkmark next to OPT_USE_AUTH and click Save. Then close the ZoneMinder windows and access the interface again with the IP address. Now you should be prompted to login. You can use the default username admin and default password admin. After you login, click Options and select the Users tab to change the password and/or add additional users.

When you want to add a video feed, click Add New Monitor. At first it's best to stick with most of default settings. Check the supported hardware page to see if there are any details on your specific camera.

A key setting on the first tab is Source Type. For example, you can choose Local for cameras physically connected or Remote for network cameras. Function is another key setting, which Monitor is initially recommended. The key settings on the Source tab are the Path, Device Format (usually NTSC or PAL), color Palette, and Capture Width and Height.� See the ZoneMinder documentation for additional help.

Once you have monitors added, make sure ZoneMinder is running. You can see the status on the top of the main page. If it says Stopped, you can click it to start the server, and then you can stop by clicking Running. Then you can click on monitors to view the video streams.

After you have basic functionality of your cameras, you might want to look at the Options window again to set system, email, FTP, and other settings. You can also look into the other functions and create zones, which allow you to zoom in into selected portions of images.

Eric Geier is a freelance tech writer and has authored many networking and computing books for brands like For Dummies and Cisco Press. He's also the founder of NoWiresSecurity, which helps businesses protect their Wi-Fi networks.

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