Security Camera software suite options?

I’m just starting to work on setting up cameras around the house to help monitor things. Now, I know that SmartThings camera integration is limited, and that’s OK at this point. What I want to do is have multiple cameras set up, but only end up port forwarding one port on the router to handle the camera feeds. There’s a handful of Windows based security software suites that I have found, but even though I know they say ‘You get what you pay for’ I’m looking for the lowest cost solution that actually works… free is of course always best, but that might not end up being the best solution.

Currently, I have ISPYconnect installed and configured with my first webcam (my McGuyver setup of an old android phone with IP Webcam software installed, strapped to my garage door opener to watch the garage door status) -though seeing a weird FPS issue after awhile, not sure if it’s the IP Webcam software or ISPYconnect.

My question comes to this - what do you all have for this, and why?

Zoneminder - awesome bit of software but it runs on Linux (you could run it in a VM sessions on your windows machine).

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I use and recommend Blue Iris software for my IP cameras. It utilizes software processing instead of hardware based processing that came with my IP cameras, but the overall functionality works much better in my 8 camera environment. If you have any specific questions, I will try to answer them.


I was a former with ispy but switched to blue iris and pretty happy with it. Some members here also use sighthound.

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I use Netcam Studio and I’m very happy with it. Free for 4 or under cameras.

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I looked at SightHound, it looked really nice… but the licensing $$ for more than 2 cameras :frowning:

I know. That was the reason why I went with Blue Iris. They have coupon sale all the time. I got it for around $60 a year ago. I heard sighthound has really good detection so if you are into that then it’s worth it.

I’ll also vote for Blue Iris, started using it a few months ago with four cameras attached (various Foscam) and been very happy with it.

I’m experimenting with the Blue Iris trial and it looks much easier to use than iSpy plus the playback is muuuuch smoother. I saw a listing on Amazon for ~$45, is that the same thing that they’re selling directly at BI website?

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Will zoneminder run on OSX?

I haven’t tried it natively but it will work in docker or vm in linux quite nicely (as it does for me)

Can you describe a little more about the hardware vs software processing? Typically hardware processing would be better… less load on the processor correct?

Are there any IP camera you all would recommend (based on cheap price, good quality, good feature set) or ones to avoid (they all provide a stream that St or one of these software suites can access easily???). Thanks!

I got Blue Iris a couple weeks ago and have been happy with it. If you are looking to get another camera at the same time, the chat sales guys on the Foscam website will do a bundle deal cheaper than anywhere else I could find. I got a Foscam C1 and Blue Iris for $90 shipped.

I’ve also been happy with the Blue iris Profile integration SmartApp. It’s nice to set the motion detection on/off for certain cameras based on the mode in SmartThings.

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