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Linux spy cam streams to 3G phones

Nov 11, 2008 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 7 views

Lorex Technology is shipping a smart camera targeting home and small-business surveillance applications. The Easy Connect Network IP Camera LNE3003 runs Linux on an ARM9 processor, and with the help of PC software can stream 3GPP video to phones, Lorex says.

The Lorex LNE3003 camera can stream VGA (640×480) resolution video at 30fps (frames per second) over wired or wireless networks, using MPEG-4 compression, Lorex says. For security applications where higher still-frame captures are needed, MJPEG is an option, though Lorex does not say at what frame rate. Finally, the camera can stream in 3GP format, Lorex says, enabling viewing on phones such as Apple's iPhone that support video streams encoded according to the 3GP video specification.

The LNE3003 comes with remote access software provided by Yoics for PC and Mac desktops. The software is said to provide a secure, password-protected connection to the camera from the Internet, without requiring the use of a dynamic DNS service, nor any router reconfiguration. (Another Linux device shipped with Yoics server software is the Data Robotics's DroboShare storage device.)

Other touted LNE3003 features include the ability to view and record up to six LNE3003 cameras, as well as to play pre-recorded video. The camera also features a motion sensor that can trigger email notifications, automatically sending an MJPEG image attachment.

What's under the hood?

The LNE3003 camera uses an undisclosed ARM920T-based processor, and is equipped with 64MB of SDRAM and 8MB of flash memory. Connectivity includes an Ethernet port and 802.11b/g WiFi, and the device offers a two-way full-duplex microphone for remote voice communication, says Lorex.

The camera is equipped with a 4mm CMOS fixed lens, and is said to offer 10x digital zoom, low-light performance with night-vision LEDs, and a 58 degree viewing angle.

Specifications listed for the the Lorex Easy Connect Network IP Camera LNE3003 include:

  • Processor — 32-bit ARM920T
  • Memory — 64MB SDRAM
  • Flash — 8MB
  • Networking — 1 x 10/100 Ethernet RJ-45
  • WiFi — 802.11b/g
  • Display resolution — VGA (640×480) resolution, 30 frames per second
  • Media formats — MPEG4, MJPEG, 3GP
  • Audio — two-way full-duplex microphone (external speakers not included); RCA input
  • Other camera features:
    • Low-light performance with night-vision LEDs
    • 10x digital zoom
    • 4mm (1/4-inch) CMOS fixed lens
    • 58 degree FOV angle
    • 17 feet (5 meters) IR range
    • 6 x IR LEDs
    • IP 66 weather protection
  • Software features:
    • Yoics Easy Connect client for remote viewing on PCs, Macs, and 3G phones
    • Supports viewing on Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, and Safari browsers
    • Motion events trigger email notification with JPEG attachment
    • Six-channel surveillance application for real-time viewing and recording
    • Lorex DDNS included
    • Web-based user/password feature
  • Hardware features:
    • Metal wall-mount bracket
    • Antenna
    • 5V DC adapter
    • Ethernet cable
  • Operating system — embedded Linux 2.4.19 (in-house implementation)

Lorex developed the Linux 2.4.19 implementation on its own, using largely open source components, said a company representative. Software modules used in the LNE3003 camera are said to be as follows, with all modules licensed under GPL2, unless otherwise noted:

  • Armboot-1.1.0
  • Arm-linux-2.4.19
  • Boa
  • Busybox-1.00
  • Dosfstools-2.10
  • E2fsprogs-1.38
  • Frandom
  • Gdb-6.8 (GPL3 license)
  • Haserl-0.8.0
  • Libupnp-1.6.6 (Intel license)
  • Msntp v1.6 (Cambridge license)
  • Mtd-utils
  • OpenSSL-0.9.7d (OpenSSL license)
  • PPPoE-2.4.1 (Carnegie Mellon license)
  • RT61_Linux_STA_Drv1.1.2.0 (depends on GPL2/BSD libraries)
  • Tinylogin-1.4 (GPL2 and shadow utilities license)
  • Wireless_tools.26


The Easy Connect Network IP Camera is available now via major retailers for $300 per camera, says Lorex. More information may be found here. Source code for the above modules may be found here.

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