As I have an old Dell computer (Pentium 4 with on-board graphics) running Windows XP I tried first some windows programs.
First I tried Genius Vision which seems to be a solid program with a lot of useful features and pretty user friendly. The problem was that on XP I got a disk cache error almost every day and the program crashes. Then it requires a lot of resources that will slow down visibly even newer computers (especially the playback application). Also I was not able to use my D-Link VGA camera with it.
After that I tried ISpy application but I was not able to see the D-Link camera either.
Then I wanted to try something on Linux. As I had an old laptop with Ubuntu I erased everything added a clean new version of Ubuntu. That was my first mistake as ZoneMinder (ZM) - the free application I intended to use on Ubuntu - is not compatible yet with Ubuntu 14.04 (at least not the stable one).
I have reverted to Ubuntu 12.04 and after watching a lot of tutorials and read a lot of articles, I was able to have a working ZM application. Believe me it was not easy as I had to run a lot of commands/change permissions and still ZM log shows a lot of errors. During my search I noticed people saying that they installed ZM on the latest Ubuntu version. I thought i should give it a try so I have re-installed Ubuntu 14.04.
Now using my experience with previous ZM installation In can tell you this:
- ZM will not gonna work out of the box. Whenever I installed it from Ubuntu Software manager it will crash. My idea is that it crashes due to the fact that it is not able to display MySQL "Set root password" window.
So I got into manual installation. There I found another error as the MySQL database will not be installed by default (for cases where you want to use your own database) .
The trick with manual installation is that you need to add some suggested packages that can be required (in my case MySQL). I start installing MySQL and I considered mysql-server-5.6 to be a good option. Unfortunately it wasn't. ZM requires mysql-server whitch requires mysql-server-5.5. So I have uninstalled mysql-server-5.6 and installed mysql-server-5.5. Well that raised another problem as the installation didn't allow me to downgrade MySQL.
Finally I considered useful to put together a document to include all steps required to install ZoneMinder on Ubuntu 14.04. You can find it here:
1) until 1.28 is released use Snapshots PPA
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:iconnor/zoneminder-master
2) increase shared memory for improved zoneminder performance
sudo gedit /etc/sysctl.conf
- for 128Mb add this line in the first section of the file:
kernel.shmmax = 536870912
- for 256Mb add this line in the first section of the file:
kernel.shmmax = 1073741824
-save and close the file then run this command:
sudo sysctl -p
3) pre-install mysql-server
Using Ubuntu software installer the installation may freeze
Installing using apt-get will not install mysql by default and no db script will be executed
4) other pre-install library that may NOT be required though
5) install zoneminder
sudo apt-get install zoneminder
6) if web interface is not accessible then you need to configure it using
- first edit the file and correct some bugs
- the files should look like this (basically you need to add quotes around the path):
Alias /zm "/usr/share/zoneminder"
php_flag register_globals off
Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
7) link the file to Apache conf folder
sudo ln -s /etc/zm/apache.conf /etc/apache2/conf-available/zoneminder.conf
- then enable it:
sudo a2enconf zoneminder
8) for some reason cgi is not enabled in Apache after zoneminder install to correct this run:
sudo a2enmod cgi //without this the application is not streaming (view events)
9) restart services in the following order
sudo service apache2 stop
sudo service zoneminder stop
sudo rm -vf /tmp/zm/*.* //remove some invalid files
sudo service zoneminder start
sudo service apache2 start
10) some commands that I an NOT sure are required
sudo adduser www-data video //add Apache user to video group