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  • IP camera Software

    Want to find out what is in the market that this hot or not...

    Interested on IP software without any licensing need per IP camera connection... There are way too many offers out in the market, so lets see what is avail at this time and what the member think of each one.

    What are the pros and the cons and why..? I had seen few answers from different forums and curious what are the members of this forum think.
    http://www.cctvshowroom.com
    http://www.everythingcctv.com

  • #2
    I, personally, do not know of a camera that does not either 1) require a license, or 2) suck. It's one or the other.

    There are companies out there who give the license away for free, such as ACTi or D-Link. That isn't quite the same thing, though, as you still need to pay if you are going to be using a whole big bunch of cameras or if you are setting up a multisite system (ie the "freemium" model).

    I'm always eager to learn new things, however.
    The CCTV Blog.

    "Expert" is something like "leader". It's not a title that you can ever claim for yourself no matter what you might know or might have done. It's a title that others bestow on you based on their assessment of what you know and what you have done.

    -SecTrainer

    Comment


    • #3
      I understand there are quite of many companies that live from license fee per IP camera connection, yearly maintenance fees, some charge for server software and some do not. Some have pricing start at $100K per package some start at $5K and by the time you start adding all the other costs, it pushes over $15K...

      From what I see, this section of our industry is very much stagnated. Dependent who you talk to and depends what your application is, the pricing could be very discouraging factor to offer to end users. Bottom line is that we, the security industry, do not have any industry standards on hardware or even software. It is mainly controlled by selected few companies and none of them actually like to share their standards nor agree on any standards. If you buy Bosch, then you stuck with Bosch... if you buy American Dynamics, the same applies and in each case, your choices are limited and restricted.

      Some that we tested are ok, but the functionality is cheesy... Better ones start in a such high cost that it is very difficult to offer to end users.

      Few major manufacturers recently came forward with single license for software solutions up to 64 connection... Panasonic, CBC and few other jumped ship so far. I hear that American Dynamics is about to do the same. It makes no sense to have a IP solution that caters the top 10% when they can sell more for the rest of the 90% customers.

      I have few fairly large projects that we need decent software, but nothing from our lineup makes any sense. Most likely we will provide the hardware alone, but thus far I have not seen anything tangible in IP software that makes any sort of sense.

      We recently implemented a new project for open source industry... Existing architecture of this new software operates in both Linux and BSD environment. In its basic format it supports over 90% of the cameras in the market and including MP IP cameras as well... Future releases will support Windows operating system too..

      The idea is to provide this software for free download for anyone and everyone who cares to use it and with no strings attached. At the present format, the software is very stable, but non-user friendly. We are working on a brand new GUI that will make this task simple and easy and have an estimated release date for the first launch by December this year...

      Our initial plan is to have three different flavors of this distribution as follows:

      1. Light version covering up to 16 IP cameras.

      2. Standard version covering up to 64 IP cameras

      3. Extreme version that can take number of IP cameras up to 1,024 - this is an inherent limitation on BSD side, which will increase at one point of time. Windows version will not exceed more than 128 IP cameras (Windows design limitations) and the Linux looks good for up to 256 IP camera connections). Of course you will need major network infrastructure behind such solution with fiber channel or other very well known network components, but it is possible to make this to work. Most manufacturers of IP cameras started shifting their efforts to product products that spit out H.264 compression based video, which will help in the long run.

      How do you think this could effect our industry if such solution becomes available?

      The main idea behind this new open source software is to allow "ordinary Joe" to have access to video surveillance by installing this software on any spare PC and hooking up any available IP camera... I see that the pricing of IP cameras are dropping faster than before and it is matter of time until they become a lot more affordable.

      We have not named this open source software yet, but working on it.. We have three in-house engineers working on this new concept software. Some of the initial feedback that we received about this was that we are mad, or have some sort of hidden agenda and other opinions. If someone fully understands how Linux community came about and why it became popular and even better, BSD community that is very powerful and grows exponentially due to its major advantages, then hope that our new concept software could pick up a traction going forward.

      Do you think that security industry is ready to try a new type of application from open source community that costs nothing?
      http://www.cctvshowroom.com
      http://www.everythingcctv.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Check out BlueIris, it's $50 for the unlimited version and a lot of people use it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by buellwinkle View Post
          Check out BlueIris, it's $50 for the unlimited version and a lot of people use it.
          Any url may help?
          http://www.cctvshowroom.com
          http://www.everythingcctv.com

          Comment


          • #6
            IP Software

            We use a lot of Lenel NVR's which cost about a couple hundred dollars per camera channel license. I hear the same about OnSSI, Honeywell, and Pelco everyone charges a per camera license now. Axis has a software which charges I think 25 bucks per channel but it is really limited they can only handle 50 cameras total. They say the reason they do that is because they are not trying to compete with the big boys. I think if someone comes out with an open source program for IP cameras that was really reliable and strike fear into the big boys they would definitely look at the way they approach IP. I just checked out that Blue Iris and it only can handle 25 cameras so it's not really unlimited.

            http://www.blueirissoftware.com/
            Last edited by rgenegabus; 09-23-2009, 04:06 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by rgenegabus View Post
              I think if someone comes out with an open source program for IP cameras that was really reliable and strike fear into the big boys they would definitely look at the way they approach IP.
              http://www.blueirissoftware.com/
              Funny...

              Well, the idea is not put any fear on anyone nor try to push them off the cliff, even though many of the same manufacturers are in contact one way or another about our intentions..

              I can tell you that the code is solid and has been around in the open source for roughly 10+ years.. It never received a serious traction, as it was not as user friendly as people expect. However, this code in one form or another has roughly 12,000+ followers, so it is not really new or a new concept.

              What we are doing is allocating engineering time and funding to take this code to the next level... We assigned three software engineers for this project just in-house.. the open source community is behind us and they are allocating over 110 software engineers throughout the world... Our targets are very simple and realistic... Clean the code for best stability, build a brand new GUI and then start adding all the features and functions that are known to be popular and available from the big boys...

              At the present format, it already has most of such important features, such as zoom capability during or after the video record, video analytic to name the few. It requires more work to accept the latest cameras in the market and make the drivers available to maximize the picture quality. It does support H.264 protocol, but we need to compile the necessary drivers for lets say Arecont series of cameras or Hikvision or others... but it already supports over 90% of all known brands in the market...

              The first cut release date is estimate on December this year and we are making huge progress daily... so, who knows, we may even beat our own release targets...

              Once this distribution is released, then we will support it across the board for any of its variation or packages. As I explained above, we will have three different distributions going from low end to high end applications and will have all the documentation, CDs or the support behind it going forward. The concept could qualify one IP camera per household concept that most of everyone has been talking about, but yet to provide any substantiated evidence of the costs and the means to make this claim legit... who knows, we may find few IP camera manufacturers who will work with us to introduce sub-$100 camera solutions that homeowners can purchase and add more as they need them...

              Just another note... This distribution will be available initially in Linux platform and later on BSD platform... More work is being addressed right now to take this distribution to Microsoft environment... They can be available as a package to add in Linux or BSD or just an application into Microsoft environment... My personal preference is having this free software download riding on BSD operating system combined... so someone can download the image, drop it into an older machine and have it do its trick... Once installed and ready, plug in a known camera and ... you have it working immediately. Our tests are using IP cameras from (8) different manufacturers... and more on the way..
              http://www.cctvshowroom.com
              http://www.everythingcctv.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Before I throw in my 2 cents, the first thing I have to point out is that I think you are on the wrong side of "the cloud" for a long term investment in software. Everything is heading IP and DVR's and local recording will soon become a thing of the past. I think the software you are talking about is meant to run on a local PC, where really what you should be designing is a server platform

                Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
                From what I see, this section of our industry is very much stagnated. Dependent who you talk to and depends what your application is, the pricing could be very discouraging factor to offer to end users.
                Not any more. My company and a small number of others allow Monitoring Centers to offer IP Camera solutions at a very low cost to end users. Approx $3 per camera per month.

                Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
                Bottom line is that we, the security industry, do not have any industry standards on hardware or even software. It is mainly controlled by selected few companies and none of them actually like to share their standards nor agree on any standards. If you buy Bosch, then you stuck with Bosch... if you buy American Dynamics, the same applies and in each case, your choices are limited and restricted.
                Accept it and move on

                Our camera monitoring platform allows you to record from any make and model of IP camera that supports snapshot commands. If a camera doesn't support snapshots, then it's not a serious camera.

                Our platform doesn't care what the camera is called or who made it, you just provide it with a command, tell it how many snapshots and the interval between them and it will record images safely on the server.

                There are many good residential IP cameras for under $100 these days and they will one day become as common as PIR detectors as part of a security system.
                IP Alarms

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thank you much for your comments and please find some of my responses below!

                  Originally posted by IP-Alarms View Post
                  Before I throw in my 2 cents, the first thing

                  I have to point out is that I think you are on the wrong side of "the cloud" for a long term investment in software.

                  That is obviously your own assessment without consideration of business plans behind such a task. If we are doing something wrong, then we stand to loose and we are not in the business to loose. Obviously you are not familiar with Linux or BSD open source community that prospers and continues to expand and make money. You probably not even familiar with so many major players coming from the open source community that at the moment racking more than a billion dollars per year for providing support, documentation and assistance for anyone who cares to use Linux or BSD based applications.. I bet also you do not know that fact that over 80% of the world server use and operate some sort of Linux or BSD platform or application and still make money.

                  Here is yet another angle that I'd like to explore... Not everything you do has to make money - give back to the industry that fed you in so many years. Just because you and your company suddenly decided to do monitoring for IP or DVR based solutions does not quantify for your position on a concept that is legitimate for more users that you can comprehend...


                  Everything is heading IP and DVR's and local recording will soon become a thing of the past. I think the software you are talking about is meant to run on a local PC, where really what you should be designing is a server platform


                  I disagree with you 100%!

                  Well my friend, what you are stating with your above paragraph is nothing more than a self promotion of you and your company and nothing more. I think you are missing the entire concept and viewing it only from your self serving bird's eye view angle, which is by the way is not a new service offer nor a new concept.

                  Obviously you did not read the parameters of this new software nor want to understand it due to restrictions that may effect your company...

                  How do you account a software that can work with up to 64 cameras or better yet, with 1,024 cameras? Were you expecting it to operate with a simple PC or some sort of powerful server? I think that addresses one of the points of your concerns.



                  Not any more. My company and a small number of others allow Monitoring Centers to offer IP Camera solutions at a very low cost to end users. Approx $3 per camera per month.

                  Well, we are very happy that you and your company and others are getting into a monitoring business, which again, is not a new idea nor a new concept. If you want to advertise about your company, I think there is a separate section in this forum for that task and not to slam an legitimate idea that will serve many, rather a monitoring idea that may serve few...


                  Accept it and move on

                  Interesting... I guess you and your company gave up with the fight on industry standards that still does not exist. Wouldn't be better that someone, anyone could initiate a consortium of companies that could agree on certain standards that will serve our industry better? I guess from your comments, you do not care nor interested, as the only area that you care about is "monitoring" of IP or DVR video.. WOW... Are you really interested in anything besides monitoring and what your company offers?

                  Our camera monitoring platform allows you to record from any make and model of IP camera that supports snapshot commands. If a camera doesn't support snapshots, then it's not a serious camera.

                  Very broad and yet unrealistic announcement.. Sounds like you are part of yourr company's marketing or sales side... and what you say is not really true nor you stand a chance to prove it... So, if there are few major brands that do not follow "your" snopshot theory of how IP cameras suppose to work, then they do not know anything about IP cameras... WOW... what a open ended statement that means absolutely nothing!.. You should spend little time with your technical side of your business not to be trapped into these type of comments and yes my friend, you are making mistakes on your assessments. You can not nor will anybody care to comply with your "idea" how IP cameras suppose to work.. Which means that you have some sort of software at your end that is very much limited on how it could work with broad range of cameras in the market.

                  Our platform doesn't care what the camera is called or who made it, you just provide it with a command, tell it how many snapshots and the interval between them and it will record images safely on the server.

                  Are you suppose to ask these questions to your end user customers or respective manufacturers of IP cameras? I am missing the point who are you suppose to ask these questions... Or, do you think that IP camera manufacturers will cooperate to give you this info just because you asked, or asked nicely? No my friend, they will not tell you or share such info... you have to figure it out yourselves...

                  There are many good residential IP cameras for under $100 these days and they will one day become as common as PIR detectors as part of a security system.

                  There are total of seven companies that we know for the fact that make IP cameras below $100 range and none of them will qualify with open source solution that we are talking about. We have seen and used all of them and nothing works to our expectations nor we will recommend them to anyone... Most are junk and not even worth any money... There are two companies that we are talking with that are willing to produce robust IP outdoor cameras with warranty and decent resolution... easy of use, POE capable, etc... and those cameras are what we like to bring into the market and not something that is called IP camera and does not conform with minimal requirements.
                  http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                  http://www.everythingcctv.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    YOU DIDN'T LIKE MY LAST POST THEN ?

                    I'll bite.

                    Take 100 people off the street, ask them what Linux is and I'd be surprised if 5 of them could answer you correctly. You might have to ask a few hundred more to find anyone that actually has one in their home.

                    DVR's are on their way out - or so I'm told by the people in the security industry that we deal with. We listen to them, because they are the people that drive our industry and steer consumers in the direction where they believe there is a future.

                    Good luck in getting all the manufacturers to agree on standards. Let us know how that goes.

                    I agree you are probably on the right path for very large camera systems, but you mentioned using a Linux box for a single camera in peoples home's. My view, and it's only a view, not a threat, is that this would not be very popular.

                    Chill - we're on a discussion forum
                    IP Alarms

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I am ok with your comments... no harm done that I can see... heck, we are discussing applications and if someone will get mad, then they have to take a long breath and think why they are here in the first place..

                      It does not matter which operating system you choose nor it matter if people know what Linux or BSD really is about... What does matter when an application works...

                      Typical system will come with a CD that has "OS" and "Application" combined and it will install the entire "system" combined... People will not care which OS it is based on nor care most of the time if systems work as intended... Ordinary Joe does not or will not care if IP software works in any OS.. as long as it costs them nothing...

                      In a larger systems, type of OS being used does matter... for a simple reason - IT departments are very picky adhering on something that is not secure.. such as Microsoft platform for an example.. Medium and larger business build their servers using mainly BSD and sometimes Linux, as these OS systems are the most flexible and secure platforms that work day in and day out.

                      My personal observation is not how many people may choose to use this new application, rather I know for a fact that it will serve our customer base. Once released and we start delivering, it also will be there for anyone who cares to use it... and no obligations or any hidden agendas behind them...
                      http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                      http://www.everythingcctv.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
                        It does not matter which operating system you choose nor it matter if people know what Linux or BSD really is about... What does matter when an application works...
                        Couldn't agree more.

                        Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
                        Ordinary Joe does not or will not care if IP software works in any OS.. as long as it costs them nothing...
                        Usually true, however, there are some out there that get suspiscious if it costs nothing.

                        Originally posted by MetzLyov View Post
                        My personal observation is not how many people may choose to use this new application, rather I know for a fact that it will serve our customer base. Once released and we start delivering, it also will be there for anyone who cares to use it... and no obligations or any hidden agendas behind them...
                        Well, your timing is certainly spot on. Any honest business providing services related to IP cameras should flourish over the coming years
                        IP Alarms

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          To be totally honest with everyone here, we did not take on this challenge to serve everyone's needs... We were so frustrated with the IP solutions available from most of the companies in our industry that we decided that we can do better by designing a brand new software platform and serve our customers more efficiently and with least amount of cost...

                          This idea is not new as I stated in the past. We started talking about it over six months ago that if we only have a solution that we can control and serve what our customers need and not what other manufacturers think. After spending numerous weeks talking to all the manufacturers who cared to listen, we realized that none of them really care about what we, their customers, really are asking nor they cared what our own customers wanted. Everyone attitude was, well, what are you going to do about it and that we had no choice but to comply.

                          Having very extensive engineering background, they (the software companies) pushed my wrong buttons and after I created the basic model of implementation and obtaining an approval from company management, I was give the task to produce a software that serves our own needs. This took time, money and three of our own internal engineers time to build a solid foundation to build such a new software platform.

                          What was very interesting that we found over 111 other engineers in the open source community that were in the same path looking at different solutions similar to what we were attempting to do. Long story short, we funded the entire project by allocating over $100K not only to cover our internal costs of this new venture, but pay these engineers for whatever ideas they did come up or experiences that they had on a similar concept. This included cleaning the code, adding newer features and functions similar to and better than what other software companies claim and do it at very low cost.

                          After the the foundation of this software was complete, then few of the engineers decided to talk to the open source community and to get their feedbacks. Response was and still is overwhelming, as most not only shown a great interest to test and to use such a solution, but also contribute time and resources to help us to launch the entire project.

                          In return, all they asked was to have this entire solution to be available to them and anyone or everyone within the open source community or otherwise. That made a perfect sense to me and to our organization. Everyone gets what they want and make money in the process...

                          We do not have all the answers and do not have the complete comprehension on every aspect of what the industry needs. Rather our customer's opinions are what we used as basis to get this project rolling... What became obvious with so many engineers in the loop and more importantly, many users and customers combined, we started gathering tremendous amount of information on feedbacks, pros and cons of such idea and even better, ways to make some money in the process..

                          Look at the parameters of this concept and tall me if these could be done by a one person alone.. It is impossible and I don't think anyone is capable to perform these tasks alone. Rather it takes an army of engineers and users to work together to perfect a platform that will serve most of us and more importantly the end users and customers. If we can serve the industry with such open minded solution and offer something that costs nothing unless someone needs the help regardless if it is technical, hardware or software, then why not do it and make this to work...

                          You probably can sense my excitement for this project. I am proud to be part of something new that could and will make the main stream. After receiving so many calls from our manufacturers on their dissatisfaction on what we do and why we even take on such as task, made me realize even more that not only this could become an area that can force all manufacturers to think of industry standards, but force such manufacturers to rethink their cost structure and force them to bring more cost effective solutions for the entire industry. Will they do it or not is not important. What is crucial at the moment is to push this project ahead and conclude its first cut by December this year and then manage going forward and watch how other manufacturers react. Once this becomes reality, then lets see what they may do and something tells me that they will better serve us all rather make decisions in dark corporate rooms with no sense of reality -
                          http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                          http://www.everythingcctv.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            By the way, we have not named this software solution as of yet... Any ideas for the name?
                            http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                            http://www.everythingcctv.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Here is the latest results on this software...

                              It operates on four different operating systems - in BSD, Linux, Windows and now MAC...

                              What is very interesting is that since we adhered to java protocol, it makes it so much easier to transport this entire solution from one operating system to another.. We knew that MAC OS was a derivative of BSD, but we did not know how easy it was to adapt to MAC environment...

                              Picture quality is somehow better in MAC environment.. I am sure there are many variances that we have not addressed yet, but it was a good run to find out that such software can and will work even with MAC systems.

                              Video analytics will also be available in this new distro - the part that we are implementing right now is to determine how viable it may be for 16 channel users... combined with its ability to operate with POS systems that will store transactions/video combination with very in-depth analysis capability, we figured that we can marry both the video analytics with POS integration to provide even more exceptions as targets. Once of the special requests we had from a customer if we can identify sweet hearting transactions without having security agent present and that to be an exception that can be viewed later. Looks like with more in-depth video analysis and integration to POS transaction monitoring solution already in place, it stands a very good chance to make it in one of the final cuts... more tests are needed in an actual sites, but thus far it looks great!
                              http://www.cctvshowroom.com
                              http://www.everythingcctv.com

                              Comment

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