Trouble getting cameras to connect

  • I have a couple of cheap Chinese cameras. They actually work really well — I currently use Synology Surveillance Station but hate it, so I'd love to get Shinobi up and running.

    However, nothing I try will get the cameras to connect. One of them is available at this url: rtsp://

    I can get VLC to connect to that URL and view the feed just fine. But no matter what variations I try, I cannot get Shinobi to connect to the camera.

    I have this cam working fine in Surveillance Station using settings based on that URL, and I had it working in Motioneye ( before that, so I'm not totally newb at this, but I'm totally stuck here.

    My install was using Docker on Mac, but I decided that perhaps my connection problems were to do with Docker, so I just ditched that and clean installed it manually on my Mac (I am a nodejs/php developer so already had node 8 etc up and running).

    Can anyone offer any help? Or at least tell me what I should paste in here in terms of debugging info? The most useful thing I see is this in Shinobi's UI:

    FFMPEG Process Started 17 minutes ago
    cmd : -loglevel warning -analyzeduration 1000000 -probesize 1000000 -rtsp_transport tcp -i rtsp:// -c:v mjpeg -f image2pipe -q:v 15 -r 2 -s 640x480 pipe:1 -update 1 -r 1 "/Users/jack/Sites/Shinobi/streams/2Df5hBE/front/s.jpg" -y

    The camera preview is just always black.

  • administrators

    hi there 🙂 if you are seeing FFMPEG Process Started and nothing after that then that is good. If the preview is black please try HLS, FLV, or JPEG API as the Stream Type. It looks like you are using MJPEG, i think you should only use this for compatibility for embedded streams on other web pages. If you just want to view in shinobi and other apps like VLC then try HLS or FLV. 🙂

    Once a stream type is chosen please wait about 20 seconds (at most) then press the plug icon on the stream's icon strip.

    Cheers! i hope it works out for you!

  • Thanks for your help! I tried what you suggested briefly without success.

    However, unfortunately I've hit a bigger roadblock that I'm still fighting. I unrelatedly had to restart my Mac and without changing any Shinobi config or code (that I am aware of) I am now getting a very similar problem to

    I've triple-checked the MySQL credentials I've entered into Shinobi's conf.json, and everything seems fine, just like it was yesterday. I can access the db using those credentials from Sequel Pro just fine. So, still digging...

  • Hmm, weird — $ pm2 restart all just brought Shinobi back to life. Not sure what that's about. Back to debugging the original issue 🙂

  • Wow, I'm on a roll 😄 The camera I was working on is now working just fine with the settings I originally had (even still have the stream type set to MJPEG).

    Sorry it's kind of a useless thread for anyone else who may have the same issue in the future! Maybe it was just needing the pm2 restart?


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