Getting older, not necessarily wiser!
A while back I acquired a bunch of cheap IP Wifi cameras disguised as smoke detectors. Looking these up on the various shopping sites, they run anywhere between $20 to $40 dollars, depending on model, options, and seller. I am going to be testing two of these to see what I can do with them.
These cameras come in lots of different forms beyond fake smoke detectors. I have seen cameras in clocks, light bulbs, power adapters, and just the camera a centimeter or so in size. And they all seem to have some common features; Horrendously short battery life that never lives up to what was advertised being top of the list, android/iphone apps which are no longer available due to no updates for more modern phone operating systems, and only work on the 2 GHz WiFi band.
These are the two different IP cameras I am testing. They look very similar from the outside, and while there are differences inside, they mostly work the same. You can find similar products on most shopping sites.
Each device I am testing suggested a different application to be used (iMiniCam and HDMiniCam). If you have an up to date phone or tablet, and look for either application in your app store, you are unlikely to find them. Or if you do, there will be a message about incompatibility with your current Operating System (OS). However they are available from other sources, if you really want to install them. I did install HDMiniCam, and it worked with both devices. There were a few issues with the device recommending iMiniCam (I had to force a manual restart), but it did work once setup. There are some other similar, but more current, applications I plan on trying out latter to see if they perform as well.
In my case, I am going to use my computer and a web browser to perform basic setup. This will provide a clearer understanding of what is happening in the supplication for these devices.
The basic procedure mimics what the application do. A compatible application just does it automatically for the most part, while offering some help along the way.
During testing, I setup both devices via the Android app (HDMiniCam) to compare settings. The Android app setup DHCP and left P2P on. Otherwise the settings were the same as what I did manually.
Next I turned off my phones WiFi, and attempted to connect from outside my LAN. This was a failure. I have successfully done this on my previous internet provider, so I suspect it is something to do with the CGNAT that my current provider is using. Be warned, if your provider uses CGNAT, you may not be able to log into your device remotely.
I hope this quick introduction to min IP cameras helped you set yours up. Sometimes the instructions can be a little obtuse unless you know what/why you are doing things.
I will be posting more information on these particular mini IP cameras as I play around with them. So stay tuned.