How to: Linux Setup and configure Webcam or Digital Camera

last updated in Categories CentOS, Debian Linux, Gnome, Kde, Links, Linux, Linux desktop, RedHat/Fedora Linux, Suse Linux, Tips, Ubuntu Linux

Following document was written to assist the reader in setting up and configuring a webcam, digital camera, or other video device in the Linux operating system. It outlines how to enable the necessary kernel and/or software support and various frame-grabber applications that can be used to access your device. It does not discuss the differences in graphic and video formats, the features and/or capabilities of particular devices, or the encoding or conversion of video formats.


My Experience with Logitech USB webcam

My experience is that many cameras work out-of-the-box 😀 . I have a Logitech USB webcam. I’m using xawtv and camorama software application to view, alter and save images from a webcam. Simply run the following command to configure web camera under Linux:
$ sudo apt-get install camorama xawtv has published an interesting but small how to:

If you want the old-time GNU/Linux experience, try configuring a Web camera. Unlike most peripherals, webcams are generally not configured during installation. Moreover, where printers have the Common Unix Printing System (CUPS) and its interfaces, with webcams you are generally thrown back on whatever resources you can find on the Internet and your own knowledge of kernel modules and drivers. These obstacles means that configuring webcams can be a challenge — but with determination and thoroughness, and maybe a little luck, you can get your webcam running in less than an afternoon.

Also don’t forget to check out:

Wireless network camera

I also recommend AXIS wireless network camera. It is perfect for monitoring various activities such as monitoring puppy, cat or babies at home, while you are at work or in your home-office. It offers excllent clear image quality. I’m also planning to install one more Axis camera outdoor for securing and monitoring outside activity. 🙂

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.


17 comment

  1. Day by Day i am falling more and more in love with Ubuntu. Its so cool..I have Ubuntu 8.04.1 release. The above configuration works smooth..The final app is much better than what we see on Windows..Keep up the good work.

  2. i hav microsoft vx500 live web cam , & Os redhat5 ent. on laptop
    plz tell me how to use it for skype2.0
    & how to configure it or install it

  3. I have a speed S8850i web cam and would love to be able to use it in Ubuntu. i am running the latest version of Ubuntu and have tried camorama etc. any ideas?
    Thank you in advance

  4. Hello friends ….
    i am new on ubuntu .. its excelent OS .. but
    the problem i am facing is i am not able to use my Kodak EZ 200 cam on it …
    i tried to find solution but not able to … please help me …

  5. Can xawtv’s streamer program would work fine with axis camera.?I want to implement its functionalities to capture from axis IP camera.Any help would be greatly acknowledged.

  6. If you need a high quality network webcam, why not go for something a bit more expensive that will give you crystal clear images? I recommend looking into Axis or Panasonic ip cameras, some of which are very affordable for highly detailed images.

  7. This tutorial was perfect!!! I was skeptical at first that simply installing a program would make the webcam usable, but it really worked. It downloaded the libraries necessary to make the internal webcam on my HP G6 notebook work without a hitch. Now in addition to the cool new camorama program, the other camera programs such as Cheese now work too. This was the best and most simple information for setting up a hardware device I have ever found. Too bad setting up an unsupported wireless USB card is not this simple. Love this author!!!

  8. Hellow
    I am planning to install centos..
    but scared that if the doest read the window 7 files…cureently i using window 7
    please help…i m need

  9. Thanks works great, CentOS6.x
    This Logitech WebCam has Window Drivers up to Vista and wouldn’t work with 7 no matter what I did.

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