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Mission accomplished … wait, scratch that

Posted by joeabbott on January 2, 2016

Earlier this vacation I made the bold claim that I’d get our backyard webcam … our ChickenCam … working on the internet. It was a bold claim and appears to have been too optimistic. I tried for a couple hours yesterday and failed, so I’m giving it a break so I can talk to a few folks at work to see if they understand why I’m failing on this one.

Here’s how I understand this to work.

First, you need something that’s pushing content or viewable. That’s our ChickenCam. We can see it when we log onto the local network, that is, connect to our router, so I know that’s working. We have a CenturyLink router that uses a familiar 192.168.x.x:88 format URL; you can see we append the port it’s using (88). After a login we see


Well, we see our little slice of heaven.

Now, to appear on the World Wide Web, I think we only have to open a port to our router!

So, in the handy dandy router port forwarding page (accessing it using a different http://192.168.x.y local URL … and logging in through that admin page), I think I’ve done it correctly:


What this tells my computer, again, I think, is that when I get a request coming in on port 88, it should forward that request to the “LAN IP” listed … which is the local ChickenCam 192.168.x.x. Now I can see I may be getting confused on my port assignment but it’s where I need to talk to someone else who knows what they’re doing here.

After this, we just need to know what my IP address is so, instead of the local IP (the http://192.168.x.y that the router uses), I can call into the address my computer uses. For this I used the server and that page, in addition to a lot of advertising, shows me what my URL is.


Someone could now go to the IP address listed there, add the port 88, and get to the ChickenCam.

To make things a little easier, I’ve employed the services of our Site5 domain hoster to help point to the ChickenCam. That is, we use Site5 to host the site and using their DNS services, have connected the address to the computer URL … it’s the record at the very bottom.


Once again, in reverse

The above describes what happens from the signal to the user … taking it in reverse, here are the steps a user would get to our ChickenCam signal:

  • Someone goes to
  • That is directed to the Site5 folks who then point it to the http://75.172.x.x
  • That comes to my computer or, more accurately, to my router … it’s not the local address (the router 192.168.x.y) but what the outside world sees
  • My router then sees this is coming in on port 88 and forwards that to my ChickenCam
  • The ChickenCam then asks for it to login and you can see our backyard

I think it’s the ports

Talking through the above, I think it’s a problem with the ports. You see, in the JoeAndSuz DNS lookup table, I never associated port 88 with the address, so that wouldn’t be coming through. But, I didn’t see a place to do that and it wasn’t in a few of the videos I found on YouTube describing how to make this all work.

So, I’m down to waiting until I can talk to someone. Someone who can explain why something is being done, and not just what to do.


And, if you’re wondering why I’m posting this little blurb, it’s purely to capture a few details so I can have a reference piece to chat with folks back at the office with on Monday. So, for those tuning in and hoping to learn or see something neat … apologies. For those who know how to setup a ChickenCam, please leave comments! <g>

As always, thanks for dropping by.


2 Responses to “Mission accomplished … wait, scratch that”

  1. Jay said

    Hi Joe, I’ll read in detail later but I just wanted to respond to the picture of your back yard – WELL DONE! 🙂 You and Suzy have made a beautiful – and functional, space. Very cool!

  2. joeabbott said

    Thanks … that picture makes it look nicer than it seems in person. Too little color this time of year! But, not bad for a patch of earth that started out as mud and blackberry brambles!

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