Now find out the IP address of the computer that will receive the streaming video. This is the number that identifies it on local network, and is usually allocated to the router. To reveal the IP address in Windows Vista or 7, click Start and type cmd into the Start menu search and press Enter. In XP, click Start followed by Run, type cmd and press Enter. Now type ipconfig and press Enter again. Note down the first number returned (you may need to scroll back up through the text to find it). Typically, it will take the form 192.168.1.X, where X varies.
Now move to the computer that will be broadcasting the video. Ensure the webcam is properly installed and connected. Launch VLC Media Player to check that it can display the output of the webcam. Open the Media menu and click Open Capture Device. Click the Capture Device tab and, for Capture mode, select Direct Show. Now choose the webcam from the dropdown menu alongside the Video device name heading. Click Play. If the video shows properly, click the stop button below it to turn your camera off again.
To set up streaming, choose Streaming from the Media menu. As before, click the Capture Device tab and select the webcam. Now click the Stream button. In the Source Output dialogue box that appears, the information in the Source area should not need changing. So, click Next to move on and enter the Destinations settings. To display the output of the webcam on this PC as well as the destination one, tick the Display locally box. Under Destinations, select RTP from the dropdown list and click Add.
Now enter the details of the receiving PC. Next to Address enter the IP address of the receiving computer (noted down in Step 1). Stick with the default port number of 1234. Keep all the other settings the same and click Next. On the Options screen, keep the default settings. Click Stream to begin streaming the live video output from the webcam and point the lens at whatever it is you want to monitor.
Now return to the receiving computer. Launch VLC Media Player and choose Open Network Stream from the Media menu. Under Protocol, select RTP from the dropdown list. Type the IP address of this (the receiving computer) into the Address box. Refer to the instructions in Step 1 if you need a reminder of how to find this computer’s IP address. Ensure that the port number is the same as the one set on the sending computer, which was 1234. Click Play to begin receiving the video that is being streamed from the webcam on the other PC.
VLC Media Player should display the video from the webcam. To halt it, click the Stop button beneath the picture. If it’s unable to display the video, VLC Media Player will show an error message. Check the settings on both of the computers to ensure that the protocol, IP address and port numbers match. Also check that Windows Firewall allows communications to and from VLC Media Player on the local network. If it’s being blocked on either PC, the streaming video won’t work.