4.2 Webcam + Motion

Motion is an awesome software motion detector, that you can use to set up an surveillance camera or (as I did) a timelapse video recorder..


Installing a webcam can be different for each make and model. There are special camera modules for the RPi, but since I only have experience with a Microsoft Lifecam (which worked out of the box) I won't go into detail about those. Google is your friend here.


Use Motion to configure the Pi to use a webcam for time-lapses or as a security camera. It is meant to take snapshots, compare frames and when motion is detected, record a video. It is very configurable.

Start by installing Motion:

sudo apt-get install motion
sudo chmod 644 /etc/motion/motion.conf

Edit the config file to your wishes, it is well documented. Note: test the recordings before relying on them. If the images turn up plain gray, you might want to set an image quality larger than 320x240. Depending on the amount of GPU memory set in rpi-config, the Raspberry can't handle large images.

Start running the motion deamon by setting 'yes' in /etc/default/motion. Then start the deamon as you would with every daemon:

sudo systemctl enable motion

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