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Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

General discussion regarding Foscam IP Cameras

Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby berniecmills » Sat Sep 28, 2013 6:40 am

I just wanted to say that I managed to set up a Raspberry Pi with ftp server running within my LAN where multiple Foscam cameras are set up to drop motion detected pictures on the ftp server.

This works very nicely and allows you to store all images from the cameras without having to have a PC running somewhere in the house.

The Raspberry Pi is silent and very small (size of a Apple) and has very low power consumption (< 1W) and costs <£50, however can attatch to large external discs so can store lots of images. It runs a version of Linux which is quite easy to administer and all the OS software is free.

I just thought I'd mention this as it solves the whole issue of where to store the camera images. I have used an off site backup system, before and this works very nicely allowing remote monitoring of the images, however there is a costs and a lag to get the images there. In that case the images would be stored off site but if the camera WIFI LAN lost connection to the internet then they would not be able to save the images. This woudl be the concern if the cameras where being used as a security system.

In my case I have two cameras attached to a 300Gb drive. My PI is network attached however I believe it can also be setup to be wifi enabled so the storage of the pictures could easily be hidden remotely from the cameras within the range of the LAN. Pictures appear on the ftp server almost immediately saving 10,000s of images without any problem. The Pi is fast enough to also provide network file sharing so the images can be viewed easily. I used an iPhone app to view them quite easily however they can also be viewed on a PC or other.

The Pi is also powerful enough to run other services like web servers so I would imagine that the images from the camera could be made availlable out of the LAN, if your router was set up to handle that. I guess I will get around to investigating this at some point. I guess the Pi could also act as a image broker picking up new images and dropping them onto the web somewhere.. dropbox or other ftp server like This would be the beest of both worlds where the iamges can be saved quickly on the local LAN (in case the internet is lost) and then made avaialble over the internet (a few seconds later) if the internet is still available. I like the idea of this solution.

Even as it is at the minute this effectively provides a nice highly configurable home security system for not a lot of money which could be enhanced for the future with even more options.

Well done Foscam for your great cameras. Well done to the Raspberry Pi team for creating such a great machine which will revolutionise home projects like this. Keep up the good work all.

Let me know if anyone has tried any other Raspberry Pi based projects.
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Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby thierry » Sat Oct 05, 2013 10:51 am

Thanks for sharing that tips !! ;)
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Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 10:10 am

Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby bob06 » Sun Oct 20, 2013 11:42 pm

Great idea. Then you can also setup the PI to push the video outside using scp/sftp...
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Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby iLikeWaffles » Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:34 am

I'd like to setup my Raspberry Pi for this. Which distro are you using? Can you supply a quick instruction on how to get it going? thanks
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Location: New England

Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby iLikeWaffles » Thu Oct 24, 2013 5:50 pm

For anyone interested I got this working using the following guide...

Once you setup your PI you can login with FileZilla. I then created a folder on the PI desktop called Foscam.

Foscam camera settings:

FTP Server
The FTP server is the ip address of your PI. You can find it out by typing 'sudo ifconfig' in terminal.

FTP Port
port 21.

FTP User
FTP Password
The username and password are the same as your pi.

FTP Upload Folder
The FTP upload folder will be whatever folder you made, in my case it's /home/pi/Desktop/Foscam

FTP Mode
FTP mode should work in both settings.

Once all that is setup click 'Submit' then you can click the test button. When successful it sends a snapshot from the camera. To view the snapshot in FileZilla you have to right click on your folder and choose refresh, otherwise it won't show up.
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Location: New England

Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby iLikeWaffles » Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:27 am

I even went a step further and setup remote access via terminal (SSH) and desktop (TightVNC).

Here's a handy link for that...
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Location: New England

Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby HomerJSimpson » Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:47 pm

Hi berniecmills,
thank you for your report!

So you are using the on camera motion detection of the Foscam cameras? May I ask which cameras you are operating? I'm especially interested in running the 9805 and 9821 V2 cameras.

I, too, have a Raspberry, running with the software "motion", which is part of the Raspberry Wheezy distribution. Maybe you could give this a try, too. Runs very robustly for 3 months now with my 8910 camera and I managed to send the *.AVIs to Dropbox automatically.

I would like to run this with my 9805 and 9821v2 but for these cameras there is no such videostream URL as the 8910 has. Maybe JPG recording is possible, but I prefer videos.
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Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby paullomas » Tue Feb 25, 2014 12:13 am

I have set up the same system with a RPI and have written some bash scripts that sequence all the motion and timed uploaded images into an AVI file using the PI. These are then sent to drop box via the PI and made available to mobile devices, so have on and off site storage. In addition the PI monitors the cameras via a ping every minute and switches power on and off the local camera's via GPIO if the camera drops off the network. It works great. I have 6 cameras on this system, 3 in my house and 3 off site in a friends house. The PI is great for this. Its a little slow with video encoding (4FPS) but it gets there. Next step is to have it record live streams from each camera when the first motion detect image dumps in the FTP directory.
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Re: Using Raspberry Pi as ftp server

Postby djkjam » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:42 pm

Hi. I have a similar setup but saving to a 'local' ftp thumb drive attached to an Asus router.

The problem I am having is finding an app or application that will enable me to manage and review the images stored...paullomas talks about scripts that seem to help with that - I'm not tech savvy enough to do all that but it is surprisingly difficult to find an app that will present the saved images in a manageable format like for example sensr does..sorted by hour and can be reviewed as a mini 'movie' hour by hour

any ideas would be much appreciated...
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