ContaCam is an all-in-one software solution that can cover all your video surveillance needs. You can install it on your computer, connect several video cameras to your PC, then start using it as your personal DVR (Digital Video Recorder). It’s actually one of the best webcam surveillance tools.
You can either configure it to act like a motion-triggered surveillance system or like a live webcam. That way, you can either receive notifications upon occurring events or keep it online 24/7 and view its feed any time you want.
ContaCam’s system requirements
Although the official website splits the required components to run ContaCam, we’re going to list them all here. As you know, every software solution has a list of prerequisites that it needs so it can run properly. You’ll be glad to know that ContaCam makes no exception. Here’s what you need or better yet, what your PC needs to run this program.
- Operating system: Windows 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Vista, XP, Server 2019-to-2008 (32- bit and 64-bit)
- For 1 camera: single or dual-core processor
- For 2 cameras: a dual-core processor minimum
- For more than 2 cameras: 1.5 cores per camera (3 cameras = 4 cores, 4 cameras = 6 cores, etc)
- RAM: 2-4 GB RAM per camera
- Camera: a network/IP camera, USB webcam, DV camera, PCI, PCIe, USB capture device with Windows drivers
Note: you shouldn’t disable the page file. The reason behind this notice is that ContaCam buffers the video frames using RAM, and then transfers it to the page file. If you want the program to work with longer motion detection sequences, you’ll need a page file.
- Easy to deploy
- Motion detection
- Adaptable video saving speed
- Interface a bit dated
How to install ContaCam
First of all, you have to download the installation executable (i.e. the installer). Once you’re past that step, you can go ahead and launch it. Notice that the installer wizard’s welcome screen is in fact a License Agreement, which you can review and accept.
The only things you need to configure during ContaCam’s installation is the location where you want it to be deployed and whether or not you want the wizard to generate some shortcuts for your convenience. The rest of the process carries on without your assistance.
ContaCam help guide
Although ContaCam’s interface is a bit dated and unattractive, at least it’s user-friendly. Meaning that no matter your PC operating skills, you’ll be able to figure it out like a pro in no time. The main screen of the program offers you a bunch of instructions on how to connect your cameras.
The brief instructions actually give you some helpful details, like where to find certain options or which links you can access to view live streams or recordings, based on your activity within ContaCam. At the end of the mini-guide, you can see a single-step instruction on how to remove cameras.
Coming back to the interface, it sports a plain grey theme and traditional menus. You can use these menus to navigate through the app’s File, Camera, Settings, and Help sections.
How to use ContaCam
We’ve already told you that ContaCam is an effective way to turn your PC and cameras into a DVR. However, now you’ll learn why is this program so efficient when it comes to video surveillance. First thing’s first, go to the Camera menu and select one of the cameras that are connected to your PC. If you plan on using ContaCam on a network camera, make the proper selection when prompted.
After you’ve selected the camera, you need to perform a bit of configuration so it can run properly. Decide whether you want your camera to run in motion detection mode or continuous recording. You can choose a relevant name for your camera, especially if you plan on adding more than just one device.
Choose the web client’s appearance and language from the appropriate menus. You can even configure how many thumbnails should ContaCam display per page. Last, but not least, decide how long should the program keep files on the disk, and what notifications should it send you (if any).
Records and sends you notifications
In the Email section of the Camera Basic Settings window, you can notice a bunch of checkboxes and a dropdown menu. You can set the app to alert you about camera failures by simply clicking the designated checkbox.
You can also configure ContaCam to send you a video of the capture it made by selecting the attachment from the menu. You can choose from a full video, small video, start picture, or a picture-video combination. It’s also possible to set a delay (in seconds) that represents the minimum time the program takes between recording event messages.
FAQ: learn more about ContaCam
- Is ContaCam safe?
ContaCam is 100% safe. It’s a free and legitimate video surveillance software program that can help improve your home security by turning your webcam into a monitor and detecting any webcam motion. But you should get webcam protection software anyway.
- Why is PTZ control not supported?
To put it shortly, this is mainly because each developer has its own PTZ protocol to handle it. Since it’s very difficult to provide native support for all the protocols, ContaCam doesn’t provide you with PTZ support.
- How do I select which drive/folder to store the files on?
ContaCam lets you configure a unique folder for it to save content in. Look for the program’s Global Settings section, then change the Parent Directory of all Cameras destination path to the one you want.
Overview of ContaCam features
- Support for multiple languages
- Can handle any operating system from Windows Vista to Windows 10 (both 32- and 64-bit)
- Starts recording upon motion detection in a fashion that’s similar to CCTV security surveillance
- Present motion detection recordings as animated thumbnails in your web browser
- Can send you emails with motion detection captures
- Perform actions upon motion detection, such as launching a program
- Creates a daily summary video if you want it to
- Record or take snapshots manually
- A built-in password-protected web server with Internet and Intranet support
- Includes a plate recognizer feature that lets you recognize license plates
- Watch your cameras remotely using port forwarding or a cloud client like Dropbox
- It’s possible to set up an unlimited number of cameras in parallel
- Restreamable video sources through the web server component
- You can start it as a Windows service if you want to
- Features audio support for USB webcams, RTSP IP cameras, and capture cards
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