on June 19, 2012
I've read the negative reviews, and let me just say that I suspect the people writing them were just a little confused about how to set up and operate these cameras. I agree that the directions are terrible! (I mean really bad) but if you've got any level of technical know-how, you wont have any trouble figuring these things out.
Here's some help getting them set up:
Note: If you're configuring multiple cameras, I recommend you do the configuration one camera at a time. Leave additional cameras unplugged to prevent any confusion while obtaining settings information.
First, you can't just plug the camera in and expect it to work if you have a wireless network that requires a passkey to connect. (You do protect your network, don't you?!) In fact, I thinkg the wireless settings are disabled by default anyway. So, to get on the network, connect the camera to your wireless router using the provided network cable. This way it can get on the network without needing a password (This is exactly what they say to do in step one in the user's manual).
Next, insert the CD, and it should auto-run - Oh, I guess I should point out that this part of the instructions are for Windows based PCs. If you're running mac/*nux, then I suggest you borrow a windows laptop or run a virtual windows install to get this done. (Too bad they didn't supply a native app). If you're technical enough though, I'm sure you can figure out how to find your cam on the network. If so, then you wont even need to run the CD. (Hint: look at your router's DHCP client list.)
Assuming you are on Windows; When the EasyN window appears, click on "Search IP Camera". On the "Select Mode" screen, click the "Advance Mode" button. In the "Equipments" box, you should see a list, and the camera should be in it. Should be Series F, name IPCAM1, IP ###.###.###.###. single click this line in the list to select that camera. Now in the right hand side, you should see detailed info. What you're concerned with now is the HTTP Port #. Write down the IP Address and HTTP Port# of the camera, and you'll also want to write down the "sunet mask", "gateway", and "primary DNS" values from the top left pane of this window. You'll need them later when setting up the network settings for the camera.
Once you know the camera's details, you can close this program.
Next, open your web browser and in the address bar put [...] where ###.###.###.### is the IP address for the camera and PP is the HTTP Port that you found above. It should look something like: [...] (but the numbers may be different for you).
Now you should get a login prompt. The default login is "admin" (no quotes), and there is no password. Once you log in, you'll see a menu.
The option you choose here depends on which browser you're using. If you are using Internet Explorer, use the ActiveX mode (the top one in the list). This one is the most full featured (i.e. will let you control the camera, and hear/send audio from/to the camera). If you're not using Internet Explorer, select the second option "Server Push Mode". This mode still allows you to control the camera, but doesn't support audio. (I wish they had used a java or flash viewer. I hate IE, and refuse to use it. But the IE version is the only one that supports the extended features.)
Regardless of which one you selected, you should now see the camera viewer with controls at the right. You'll want to click the "options" icon (looks like a gear) at the bottom of the controls.
Once in the "EasyN IP Camera Options" screen, there is a menu on the left. Just follow along:
First, I set my own admin username and password. Do this from the "Users Settings" menu. I highly recommend you change the user name and password. Just click into the box that currently says "admin" and change it to something else that you'll remember. Then click into the Password field to the right, and enter a password you'll remember. Make sure group still says "Administrator". Then click the "Set" button at the bottom. You'll be prompted to log in again. Use the username and password you just set. The device will reboot. Just be patient because once it's finished, you'll be back on the device status page.
Next, I turned off the DDNS feature they offer. I don't want just anyone being able to connect to my cameras from outside. I know they're password protected, but I was able to find a way to capture an image without a password. So I suggest everyone turn this feature off. This can be done on the "DDNS Service Settings" menu. select "none" in the "DDNS Service" dropdown then click "Set". Again, device may reboot. Just be patient.
Next, I set up my network configuration.
Go to the "Basic Network Settings" menu, I recommend you uncheck the "Obtain IP from DHCP Server", then set the IP Address and other details according to your network config. In my environment, My camera IP was 192.168.1.12. But I decided to set a fixed address for each camera so they'd never change. I wanted to have my cameras start at 192.168.1.240 and each additional camera, I would set up with that same address + 1 (i.e. 192.168.1.241 then 192.168.1.242, etc.) So, I unchecked the "Obtain IP from DHCP server", then in the "IP Address" box, I put "192.168.1.240" (no quotes).
One important thing to note. when you select an IP address for your camera, be sure you only change the last number. The first 3 numbers should stay the same (i.e. 192.168.1.xxx, only change the xxx part). Also, be sure you don't set the value to 0(zero) or a number higher than 254. And finally, make sure you don't set it to the same value as your computer, or the gateway. I recommend picking a value well above the DHCP range defined in your wireless router's configuration. You can get that info from your wireless router's admin page. (use google or the manual for help if you're not sure how to find it.)
Next, in the "Subnet Mask" box, I put "255.255.255.0" (Yours is probably the same). In the "Gateway" box, enter the value for Gateway that you wrote down earlier. In the "DNS Server" box you'll enter whatever value you wrote down for "Primary DNS" earlier. And finally, in the "Http Port" box, you can put any numeric value you want here, but I recommend you just leave it set to "81". Then click the "Set" button.
Ok, now your camera is going to reboot. But this time, you will not automatically end up back in the menu (the IP address is now going to be whatever you set it to above). So, you will need to change the location in the browser to [...] where ###.###.###.### is the IP address you set above, and PP is the port you set. (note. you may need to wait 20 seconds or so for the camera to reboot before you can access it again). You will be asked to log in again. Use the new login info you set up above. After that, you should be back on the main menu screen. Go into the ActiveX or Server Push mode screen, and click the gear icon again.
Now to get wireless working.
You should be back on the "EasyN IP Camera Options" screen. If not, get back to it, then Click the "Wireless Lan Settings" option in the left menu.
Click "Scan". You should see a list of available access points appear. You'll want to select yours from the list. Make sure the "Use Wireless Lan" box is checked. When you selected your access point, it should have pre-filled the remaining values except "Share Key".
Ok, I dont know if it auto selects the correct "Encryption" option, and selecting the correct one can be a little tricky if you dont know how your wireless router is set up. You can find this out by looking at your router's configuration screen, but most likely, it'll be one of the WPA or WPA2 options. I'm not going to talk you through finding this info though. For that, search google, or refer to your router's manual (Hint: you'll need to look at the wireless security settings to get the right encryption type).
Once you know the correct Encryption type, select it from the dropdown, then enter your wireless password into the "Share Key" box. Once done, click "Set".
The camera should reboot again. At this point, you should unplug the network cable from the back of the camera. It should now connect wirelessly.
You'll know it worked if you can get to it in your browser. Again, give it 20 seconds or so before you give up trying. If it still doesnt connect, plug the cable back, give it a few more seconds, then refresh the page, and check your settings. (You may not have the correct Encryption type set or the wrong Share Key). Keep trying. You will find the right value. just repeat the wireless setup using different values for encryption type. Assuming you are entering the correct share key (case probably matters), one of them should work.
At this point, I assume you have wireless working.
If you want to be able to access the camera from the internet, you'll need to set up a port forward on your router. Again, refer to your router's manual, or google for how to do it (there are a plethora of online tutorials for every router model ever made).
On mine, I set up external port 801 -> 192.168.1.240:81 and because I have more than one camera, I also set up external port 802 -> 192.168.1.241:81. this way I can just go to [...] (or:802) to view each camera. I recommend [...] for dynamic DNS. Yes the camera does support ddns, but I highly recommend you not use it because anyone who is familiar with their setup could potentially access your camera. Instead, get a freedns.afraid.org address, and set up your main computer to keep the address updated with the correct external IP. (again, google is your friend here. there are plenty of tutorials around for doing this)
Once you have your port forwards in place, and you have verified you can get to the cameras from outside, the next step is probably a mobile device viewer. The included viewer is junk. I repeat JUNK! However, I came across an application for iOS that supports these cameras quite well! (including listening to the audio stream). It's called "uNetCams" ([...]) . It's not free, but well worth the money! As for Android, there are some viewers out there, and I suspect they work fine, but I haven't tested them.
One final note: If you are going to be accessing the cameras from outside, I suggest you add an additional user in the "Users Settings" section of the options window. You can enter up to 7 additional users, and assign each one its own security level. Just add a second user with its own password, and give it the "Viewer" permission. Then use that user info when configuring the mobile viewer. This way, even if someone was able to "sniff" your settings, they wouldn't have administrative access to you camera.
Hope this writeup helps somebody! Good luck!