Baby Cam Part 2 – Foscam Setup

If you missed Part 1, you can find it here:

Baby Cam Part 1

Foscam is the leader in the baby camera market.  They make a wide variety of cameras.  I’d recommend the 1983P, which produces a 1080p image.

Unfortunately, the Foscam set-up is a huge pain in the ass. We here at are no strangers to technology or network administration, but trust us, it’s about as intuitive and easy as setting up a network in the Windows 2000 era.

Prepare yourself accordingly. Tell your wife you’re going to be busy for a while, get a cup of coffee or perhaps something stronger and dig in. This will take a while. The following instructions are for Windows.

The basic idea here is that we are working with pretty good hardware and really lame awful software.  Proceed with the appropriate diminished expectations.

Network Set-Up

You will want to start working next to your router with the Foscam connected directly to your computer.

Bring up your router config screen and go to your LAN settings.


Assign the Foscam a hard IP address and disable DHCP.

The best practice here is to set/limit your DHCP range and then to use only IP addresses outside of that range for your hard/manually entered IP addresses.  So in other words, reserve IP addresses outside of DHCP for your cameras.

Download Foscam Software

Go to the Foscam website and download two files: the Foscam Search Tool and Foscam Web Components.  Install both.

Using the Foscam Search Tool, locate the IP address that you just manually entered and verify that it is recognized.Note that it will assign a port number after your IP address.

Now log in to that web address and port number on Internet Explorer.  That’s right IE.  Foscam doesn’t play nice with Chrome, Firefox or Safari.  Deal with it.

The Foscam Settings Panel

Go the Basic Settings tab on the left.  Assign your camera a name.

Go to the Network Settings tab. Note that there are 9 sub-entries here.

Click on IP Configuration.  Make sure Obtain IP from DHCP is unchecked. Verify your IP address, Gateway and Primary DNS Server, all of which should be the number that you manually entered on your router above. Leave your subnet alone unless you did something weird to it and don’t worry about Secondary DNS Server.

Click on Wireless Settings.  Enter your network name and password.

You can ignore PPPoE, DDNS and UPnP.

Click on Port. Here you can manually change the http port that was previously assigned by the Foscam tool, should you so desire. Good luck getting the https port to work because we couldn’t. Same for the ONVIF port.

Mail Settings. Only do this if you are a hardcore masochist.

FTP Settings. Ignore.

P2P Settings. Ignore

Are you having fun yet?

That’s all we’re going to do for right now.

At the top of the Foscam web interface, click on the Tab that says “Live Video”.

It Works! Maybe!

Once the Foscam is recognized on the network, it will rotate noisily and the LED lights will come on.  An image should appear in your browser.

Now disconnect it and see if it works wirelessly.  Hopefully it will.

See Part 3 for more tips and tricks and best practices on using this device, here: Baby Cam Part 3 – Tips and Tricks


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