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HOWTO Set up a personal FTP server for use with an IP camera’s image transfer function

May 1st, 2009 by Greg Innes

With the image transfer feature found in many IP cameras you can store a number of images in a central location as an archive for security purposes or maybe for building a time-lapse movie.

These images are sent using the FTP protocol which stands for File Transfer Protocol and is normally associated with transferring files across the Internet. It also works equally as well on a local network and this guide will show you how to set it up.

HOWTO

Step 1 – Download the FTP server software

We will be using FileZilla which is a free FTP solution. Visit the following website for the software:

http://filezilla-project.org/

FileZilla web page

Step 2 – Setting up the FileZilla software

Once installed, run the program. You will the see the following dialog box when you first run the program:

FileZilla server connect

Server Address: We’re running this on the local machine so this should be 127.0.0.1 (loopback IP)

Port: It’s fine to leave it on the default setting of 14147. This only becomes important if you are configuring external access.

Administration password: Type in a password of your choice here.

Click ‘OK’ to connect to the FTP server and you’ll be presented with the follow status screen:

FileZilla server settings

Step 3 – Setting up a user account

Before you can start transferring files you need to set up a user account. To do this go to the ‘Edit’ menu and select ‘Users’. You will see a dialog box like the one below:

FileZilla add user

On the right hand side in the ‘Users’ section click the ‘add’ button at the bottom of the column to add a user. A dialog box will pop up asking for the name:

FileZilla user name

Enter the name of your user here and click the ‘OK’ button. We’ll use the name ‘Guest’ in our example.

FileZilla password

Your new user should appear in the ‘Users’ column on the left as can be seen in the above example.

Final thing we need to do is configure a password for our new user.

In the ‘Account settings’ section put a checkmark in the ‘Password’ box and enter a suitable user password.

Don’t click ‘OK’ just yet, we’re not done…

Step 4 – Setting up a shared directory

The final step is to set up a shared folder for the user. This is the folder you will use to store the images which are sent from the camera using FTP.

First, create an empty folder on your computer in a location of your choice (My Document, desktop etc.), you will use this as your shared folder.

On the same ‘Users’ dialogue box select the ‘Shared folders’ option on the left hand side as shown below:

FileZilla shared folders

In the center of the dialog box, in the ‘Shared folders’ section click the ‘Add’ button to add a shared folder.

A pop-up dialogue box will appear allowing you to browse to a folder. Choose the empty folder you created earlier.

Now click ‘OK’ to save the settings.

FINISH

And that’s it. The FTP server is set up and ready to use.

When configuring the camera on the local network the FTP settings will be as follows:

FTP Server address: This will be the IP address of the PC running the FTP server.
Username: the username you created in Step 3.
Password: the password you created in Step 3.

10 Responses to “HOWTO Set up a personal FTP server for use with an IP camera’s image transfer function”

  1. Curt Wells says:

    re Personal FTP Server…is there a way to limit the maximum disk space used by uploading files or camera images?

  2. Greg Innes says:

    I had a quick look at this software and couldn’t see anything to limit the space used. You could create a partition on your HDD to limit the space used and create your FTP folder there perhaps? It’s not going to automatically overwrite anything though. What you perhaps need is a recording application.

  3. Jman says:

    My IP camera requires a port. The default was 21, should i change it to 14147?

    Also, it asks for a FTP Upload folder, would i just put the path to the folder i created in that box?

    Then it asks for a mode. PORT or PASV.

    Thanks a lot for this article it really helps!

  4. Don says:

    Great, another guide to get my camera to work remotely that doesn’t work.

  5. stitch says:

    Worked very well. Do not change the port from 21 in your setup. Do not specify a location in the camera software. It defaults to the home or original location you created. Ensure you set your firewall on your computer to allow for the flowing of images to the computer. PORT or PASV may depend. Try both if one doesn’t work. PORT worked for me with Wansview Camera.

  6. Lee says:

    You failed to mention that when you create a shared folder, you also need to “tick” write (or any other functions), if you want to send files to it. Otherwise it will fail.

    I just installed for use with my Trendnet Wireless camera, and it works great.

  7. henry says:

    is there a way to have my site display the files as a movie. Since they are being sent from an IP camera I’d like to play them just as if I was watching the camera.
    Thanks,
    Henry

  8. Tony says:

    Then you can use phpMyIpCam over your FTP server to see the uploaded images.
    facebook.com/ipcamsoftware?fref=ts

  9. Paul Robinson says:

    phpmyipcam is not working
    i’ve tried hosting it with different servers with php 5.2.x, 5.3, 5.4 versions
    keep saying ” Loading system. Wait a moment please ”
    please help
    anybody find English version of this?

  10. Velislav says:

    I had problems before with setting up my IP camera..A friend of mine recommended fennocloudcam.com , I use their cloud based storage and the setup is very easy, plus it is free!

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