Wyze Cam Dafang Hack discussion


#1

Continuing from Dashboard with CCTV

What is this? Reason I ask is, the SW auto night detection does seem flakey but I am not sure why. Works at times, doesn't work at times, but bringing up the SW auto night page on the browser always sets it right. So worst case, I can hit each camera's browser and set it manually.

Do you think Wyze RTSP will be faster? I actually did try the RTSP using VLC on my Windows 10 PC, but when I had all 4 cameras going it was ridiculously slow. I did some research and am leaning toward it being my wifi bandwidth but not sure how to prove that. If that is the case, then I would guess it would not be good with any RTSP.

Did you use PoE for the Wyze cameras? If so, how did you set that up? Seems like that would be the only way to fix my bandwidth problem, but I have no idea where to start, if it is even possible.

Did you get Blue Iris working with the hacked cameras? And if so, did you get good sound? I didn't even try to set up Blue Iris based on what I read from other users having a lot of trouble with it.

For now I will use the hack and snapshots on the dashboard and see what the future brings!


#2

Wyze as you know, don’t have Ethernet, so PoE isn’t possible. However, I ran a really long power cable by cutting a micro USB cable in half and then joined the two ends to stanadaed 5e cable. I covered the connections with shrink tubing. Hand soldered the end near the camera, toting the cable through small holes, then used low temp solder connections with my heat gun at the other end and plugged it into the included Wyze adapter.

These are very handy to have around.


#3

Would this work? I use one for my firehd10 on the wall


#4

The reason is how the Wyze cameras have IR-LED and IR-CUT configured internally on the hardware. Basically, it's been difficult at best to get reliable results from auto night vision on the Wyze cameras using Dafang. OpenIPC is a bit better, but the real underlying issue is the hardware itself.

Isn't the point of home automation NOT to have to doing something manually in order for it to work though? :wink:

I'm hopeful that it will be. With Wyze implementing RTSP themselves, they have access to the base operating system of the camera and can [hopefully] get it tuned properly and achieve good performance. We already know what they can do in a tiny package with their own app, so I'm hoping they can apply that knowledge to this task as well. The slowness you saw was probably due to the RTSP hack and not your own network. However, considering that RTSP does have UDP capabilities, and I am not 100% certain if Dafang uses strict TCP or UDP, it IS possible that they were flooding your network with UDP packets. It wouldn't be unheard of coming from a hacked firmware.

I did, but for power only. I have a ton of these adapters around. If you are serious about wanting to go PoE in your house (and seriously, it's 2019, who WOULDN'T want to go full PoE?!?!?!), then you should think about having a few of these on hand:

I did, and no. The sound was horrible and the video was laggy as hell. In BI, you basically just grab the RTSP stream and go from there.

I'm all for hacked firmware, but when the hardware isn't built for something and features have to be shoehorned in, it can lead to issues. What Dafang and OpenIPC do is run a custom operating system on something that isn't tuned, hardware wise, for it.


#5

Yup. I have quite a few of that very same model. Works a treat off my UniFi Switch 8s.


#6

I would be lost without my butt connectors. LOL

Ok, it's weird reading that, but you know what I mean... :rofl::rofl::rofl:


#7

So in my mind's eye I saw an Ethernet cable coming from a PoE connection on the switch, going into a magical device that would convert wireless to Ethernet and also provide power. It would solve my possible wireless speed issue and power in one fell swoop! :smiley:

But seeing as I have 4 cameras, that sounds like even if such a device existed, it probably wouldn't be worth the money.

We have Ethernet to wireless converters for our Global Cache IP2IR devices, they were a pain to set up (let hubby do it, still not sure exactly how that works!) but work pretty well. I assume something going in the opposite direction exists but maybe not?

I actually bought these: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07L9QZGBH to give me plenty of length for the camera power cable, so far so good on that.

Once Wyze puts out the RTSP, I'll take a look at Blue Iris again. I sure do like having the browser on the camera though!

Would love to keep this discussion going once folks using the Wyze cams start using the RTSP. I've not had a lot of luck getting good answers by hanging out on the Wyze forum.


#8

I was talking to a co-worker yesterday about "job grade penetration" and he started laughing and got all red...I had to roll my eyes! :laughing:

Can't wait to retire at the end of April and get away from the bureaucracy!


#9

Yeah, it didn't make sense for me to buy those extensions. They weren't long enough, and even if they were, it would have forced me to drill several large holes to route the cable. Since I had a spool of black cat5e, and tons of those micro USB cables, it made the most sense to go the DIY route. What's nice about using Cat 5e is I have additional wire pairs available for other stuff.

When I installed this, I knew ahead of time that I was going to add a door bell button, which we didn't have before. So before I routed the cable to my chosen location for the Wyze at my front door, I slipped some shrink tubing on to the cable and then just secured it without shrinking it. When I was ready to install the doorbell, I just spliced the cable near the doorbell button, joined the doorbell button wires to that point with those butt connectors, slid the shrink tubing up and hit it with the heat gun. At the other end in my basement, pulled out those two wires (really easy to find thanks to the color coding of ethernet cable) and attached two leads I had pre-soldered to a Xiaomi contact sensor. So when someone pushes the doorbell button, Alexa says "Someone is at the door" and Wyze records an additional 12 seconds of video, beyond what what captured when they walked up to my door.

I plan to use another pair at some point to power a motion sensor, since it's looking like Wyze isn't going to be able to fix their overly sensitive motion alerts that pick up every bug or snow flake that passed in front of the lens. This is a problem that I hear others complain about with even expensive cameras like Arlo. There was a request to ignore motion that lasts less than a second, but I'm not confident we're going to get that anytime soon.

You're correct about not bothering with adapters. The cost would be much greater or equal to just buying cameras that are PoE and RTSP ready. If you're having signal issues, You could switch to a mesh WiFi router if you're not already using one and then just add nodes closer to the cameras, or you could flash some routers with DD-WRT join the main WiFi and create independent APs for the Wyze. Since you're always accessing Wyze through cloud, it doesn't need to be on the main network. However, that won't be the case once RTSP is released, so in that regard, additional mesh WiFi nodes is a better solution.


#10

Exactly why I have wired PoE cameras. My DVR and Blue Iris both afford me controllable motion detection. Well, controllable everything really.


#11

I have had Foscam and Amcrest cameras in the past, but I think (correct me if I'm wrong) that they connect to the internet and that cannot be disabled. I really didn't want to go the Wyze route until I found the hacks, which totally disconnect them from the internet.

My current plan, which may change, is to mount the cameras on the walls in corners, so having the cable go down the corner is not a big deal, thus the extension cables are perfect.

We have a Netgear Nighthawk router right now, it seems pretty powerful (though the model is now discontinued), but it sits in our computer room which is at the opposite side of the house from our den...and the den/kitchen is where we spend a lot of time. I wonder if some access points might help with wifi coverage issues we experience sometimes, and the cameras too. Many years ago we dropped Ethernet to almost every room and most especially to the den, to set up a video distribution system. That was SO painful, for hubby more than me, so we don't really want to go through that again to get more Ethernet connections :wink: .

Since I want to be able to access the hacked Wyze cameras via VPN, I think they are going to have to be on the same network as the router.


#12

If you have drops nearby, you could try one of these. It's unclear if they pass the power from WAN to LAN, but they do say they can be powered by PoE, so at least the LAN port supports it. Still, I'm not a fan of repeaters. They just end up slowing down the entire network. If their onboard RAM is large enough, since they support OPENWRT, you might be able to instead turn them into a wireless client and then enable a VLAN. Get complicated though to keep them accessible via VPN.

Mesh WiFi would be my choice. I'm quite happy with my Deco M5 and I'll be happier if they extend the address reservation beyond 16 devices!


#13

False. Anything can be blocked from the internet (with a good firewall). :wink:

Foscam does try to dial out, but that can all be blocked at the firewall and in recent firmware versions you can disable it at the camera itself. In most Amcrest DVRs, you can turn off internet access completely. I'm not sure about their standalone cameras though.

My DVR, the Amcrest NV4432E-HS 32 (https://amcrest.com/amcrest-nv4432e-hs-32-chanel-16-channel-poe-network-video-recorder-supports-8-megapixels-at-30fps-realtime-onvif-compliance-usb-backup-supports-up-to-24tb-hdd-not-included-and-more.html) runs completely local.

A little background: My wife and I wanted a camera system that would run in the case of a power or internet outage. The reason being that our neighborhood, up until a few years ago, always had numerous break-ins during power outages (yay for Duke Energy and their totally non-reliable power grid!). It's much cleaner now thanks to a heavy police presence, but we still wanted our cameras going no matter what.

I had initially started out with Arlo cameras, and they were good, but no power and no internet made them worthless. So, we started looking at wired systems and settled on Amcrest for our DVR solution. My first one was a little 8 channel and it was fine for a bit until my wife wanted to see around every corner of the house. Since then, the system has grown.

To be fair, for all 14 PoE cameras, DVR and PoE switches, I've spent probably around ~$900 in total on the system. But, my wife feels safe and that keeps the WAF super high. So, money well spent, in my opinion. :slight_smile:

We have since gotten a whole house generator that powers a couple of lights in the house, a backup server rack which has all my PoE switches and power supplies, a cellular router and the camera system. It also powers backup pumps and heaters for my aquariums, but that's a different story. :wink:


#14

The Wyze cameras are quite nice but I don't try to force them into being something they aren't. For a quick look or a quick notification, they are great. They are inexpensive, but the money and effort required to make them fit into your requirements won't match a device made with POE and recording. There are inexpensive POE cameras that support ONVIF or RTSP.