How to Connect Your Security Camera to the Internet

June 15, 2018 by

In order to use your security camera to its fullest capabilities, you’ll need to network it to your home computer or mobile device. Understanding how to network the security camera is essential when you establish an Internet connection with your security system. When you network a security camera to a network with only one router, the process tends to be easy and lacks technical expertise. First, you’ll need to understand the basics of computer networking, how networking applies to your camera system, and how you can control your remote viewing capabilities without any additional monthly charges.

Connecting Security Camera To Internet

The Difference Between a Modem and a Router

Though both modems and routers are important to the Internet connection process, they both handle slightly different parts of networking. The modem is the piece that gives you your IP address or your Wide Area Network. This information is then transmitted to the router, which is used to connect your various devices to the modem’s Internet connection.

It’s important to note that modems don’t come with a built-in firewall, so if you’re connecting your security camera directly to the modem, you’ll need to change the password to keep your connection secure.

All routers, meanwhile, have some level of built-in firewall protection to prevent unauthorized users from accessing your networked devices. You can create an exception or rules regarding the functionality of the firewall in order to allow specific Internet requests to access certain network devices.

What is a Network IP Address?

Every device on your network has a unique IP address, whether it’s the router or not. These addresses allow devices to connect with each other and share information over the network. IP addresses are unique combinations of numbers, generally four sets of random numbers that are separated by periods. Each number set is referred to as an octet.

In many ways, IP addresses function similarly to street addresses. The first octet refers to the country that the user is in, the second to the city, the third to the specific street, and the fourth to the exact house number.

While networked devices don’t need to have the exact same IP address, they do need to adhere to the router’s IP “scheme.” To do this, all the devices need to share the first three octets of their addresses even if the fourth octet differs.

Conflicts with Multiple Devices

Devices cannot have the same exact IP address or a conflict of interest will be caused. Because of this, if you have multiple security cameras, each of these will need a unique IP address. That address also can’t match the address of any other devices on your network, so you’ll need to learn the already-existing IP addresses of your networked devices.

If you have a conflict between two device addresses, follow these steps:

  • Disconnect both devices from the shared network
  • Reconnect one device to the network
  • Change the IP address of the connected device
  • Connect the second device

Only one device needs to have its IP changed. Make sure you don’t change it to an address that another device already has.

How to Find Your IP Address

For this, you’ll want to go into the Control panel of your computer and run a command. Use the ipconfig command to learn the IP address of whatever router the device is currently connected to. You’ll also learn the IP address of the device itself if it’s running on a self-contained network.

After you type ipconfig, a few rows of information should pop up. You want to look for IPv4 Address under the Ethernet adapter Primary information. This will reveal your computer’s local IP. To find the router’s address, look at the Default Gateway line.

All of the devices that are networked to the same network must match whatever IP address scheme the router is using. To add a security camera to the IP address, you’ll need to understand the address pattern and assign the camera an appropriate related address. When you have multiple cameras or systems to install, each device will need to have its own unique IP address.

How to Assign an IP Address to Your Camera

Now that you’ve established what a network is and what an IP address is. You understand how to find the configurations of an IP address, deduce an address scheme or pattern, and choose a new IP address or addresses to assign to your security camera. Now you’re ready to do the actual assigning.

In the networking section of the security camera, the following values will need to be manually set:

  • A unique IP address adhering to your router’s address scheme
  • The Subnet Mask, which is usually 255.255.255.0
  • The value of the router’s IP address, which is found in the Default Gateway line when you run the ipconfig command on one of your networked computers

You should follow these steps to assign the values:

  • Access the camera by using a monitor that has been connected to it
  • Right-click on the monitor
  • Scroll down until you see “Main Menu”
  • Click on Main Menu
  • Click on the Setting section
  • Click Network
  • Look for the TCP/IP button and click it
  • Change the device’s IP to match your network scheme
  • Click Apply followed by Save

That’s it. You’ve successfully networked your camera to your router. Now you can use the remote viewing software to access images and video feeds from the camera without needing to pay a company for their remote viewing capabilities.

Assigning IP Addresses to IP Cameras

At some point, you’ll probably need to change your IP camera address to match your home network. This might happen if you reconfigure your network IP entirely or invest in a new router. To change the preset IP of your camera to fit the specifications of your router, follow these instructions:

  • Download a software that can analyze the devices on your network and tell you whether the devices adhere to the router IP scheme specifications
  • Click on the camera or cameras that are no longer compatible with the specifications
  • Change the IP address from within the software
  • If this option is not available, change the IP address through the physical camera by using the previously outlined steps

If you would like more information about Canadian Security Professionals, give us a call today at 1-877-494-9911.

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