use imac for home security system

Discussion in 'iMac' started by mac81, Oct 1, 2011.

  1. mac81 macrumors newbie

    Feb 20, 2010
    I have an imac 2.66 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo from a couple years back.

    Is it possible to use the imac as the brains of a home security system with cameras and notification (but no fee-based service like ADT)?

    I see on the a lot of pages about this, but, honestly, it's overwhelming.

    Are there people who install mac-based home security systems?

    I also have an iPhone 4.

    Thanks for any help.

    Portland, OR
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    I suppose if you bought IP cameras and connected them all the necessary hardware (if the software runs on OS X), but it wouldn't really be worth it. The entire point of ADT and others like it is 24/7 monitoring and reporting, which a standalone system wouldn't provide.
  3. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    It's a roll-your-own thing, and you'll need cameras and networking for them. When all is said and done you'll spend more time and money than just buying a dedicated system from Costco or somewhere else. And consider that the person who burglarizes your house will probably steal your iMac…with all the security video on it. So unless he decides to post his exploits on YouTube, your're doubly hosed.

    If you still want to plunge in, try EvoCam for setting up cameras. And check out for posting security images.
  4. mcfly2 macrumors member

    Sep 9, 2010
    I have IP cameras that require no computer, they have built-in web servers. They stream live video, and they can be configured to email a still photo periodically, I do 1 per minute, and I have a separate Gmail account that receives these. (So even if something happens and they get stolen or shut off, you can still see what happened before that.) So all you need are the cameras and networking. These cameras can be had for less than $100 nowadays. There are also versions with motion and sound sensing, so you can configure them to notify you on movement or sound events.
  5. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    I'd think an iMac would be too vulnerable as a home security system; it's too big and too tempting for a burglar to simply grab.

    Another consideration is how vulnerable is your home? Are you in a high crime area? How good are your doors and locks? For some reason in the suburbs, lots of burglaries occur where people don't lock their doors or use cheap locks that are easy to defeat. Another question is what are you protecting? Do you have, for example, a really valuable set of sterling silver flatware? Often these days burglars are looking for cash or something they can sell quickly so they can buy drugs. Do you live in a town where neighbors are close or is your house isolated? Sometimes your local police will come and look at your house and make suggestions.

    I've been looking into something like a Mac for security, but so far haven't done anything. I would think more in line of a Mac mini in a hidden location that would send images to dropbox so it would be offsite. Also you could set up sensors, but sometimes it would be more trouble than it's worth.

    Also see if you can find a reputable local locksmith and ask them to come and look at your house and make recommendations.
  6. scottparker07 macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2013
    Home Security Systems

    Is it possible to use the imac as the brains of a home security system with cameras and notification.:)
  7. FuriousGreg macrumors member

    Nov 11, 2011
    theres this:

    "Witness turns your Mac into a home alarm system, using its iSight camera as a motion sensor. If motion is detected, Witness sends mugshots and video to your iPhone or iPad."

    My friend uses it and it works pretty well. The FAQ does say you can use other compatible cameras but doesn't mention multiple cameras. It may be worth contacting them to see if you can set up several cameras around your home that all link to the same computer and have it work.

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