How to remotely view cam's and use NVR from portable devices?

mat-with-one-t

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Hi again all and I hope all is well! I've left my NVR/cam's alone for a while to just see if they all work well enough, and so far so good. So next is to sort out remote access - am I correct in saying a VPN setup is the best way to do this? If so, I'm new to VPN's and would love a little help! If not, how else does one go about it?

Initially I'll aim for ability to use SmartPSS on a remote device (iphone, ipad, laptop (mac or pc), etc) to look at cams and NVR recordings. Eventually I'll aim for a more comprehensive remote access, where I can also look at my NAS (yet to be set up) remotely. Small steps though! I assume I'll need to set up a VPN to do all this securely, or am I barking up the wrong tree?

The gear:
NVR: Dahua DHI-NVR5216-16p-4ks2e
Cam's: a range of Dahua units
Router: Asus RT-AX86U
All above gear at home is hard-wired with Cat6 ethernet cable

Now, my router has a VPN section, where I don't think I should require any further software or subscriptions (or do I?).

It has 3 choices under "VPN server":
  • VPN Server PPTP
  • VPN Server OpenVPN
  • VPN Server IPSec VPN

After that, there's a tab for "VPN client"

There's also an option called "Instant guard", but I'm not sure what that's about?

Anyway, some basic help would be appreciate, or even let me know if I'm going about this the wrong way! I'll add some screenshots to show what I'm seeing on my router. Thanks in advance! Mat

asus VPN.png


Screenshot (108).png

Screenshot (109).png
 
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wittaj

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OpenVPN is the way to go.

OpenVPN is simple, but we make it way more difficult than it needs to be lol.

I was there too once with OpenVPN...tried to do all this research to find directions and got to the point I said screw it and just enabled it and kinda of followed what it was asking and it worked.

Just go to OpenVPN and enable it and see what it says - probably asks you to create a user/PW, DDNS name, encryption method, and create certificate. Then email that certificate to you and save the certificate on your mobile device. Then install the OpenVPN app and select the certificate and then connect and you are on your home network.

It really is simpler than our minds make it out to be.

This guide will help.

 

toastie

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I setup a Raspberry Pi server running Wireguard. I can use my Android phone to access my home LAN, so when away I can access my Hikvision NVR, Blue Iris PC etc, though mostly I use it for BI's UI3 interface on my Android phone.
I previously had an RPi running openvpn server, (not for CCTV), so had my modem-router's settings all ready. There's a script to install Wireguard or openvpn on the RPi which now makes things far easier than a few years back. It all works rather well.

My main modem-router doesn't have openvpn, and I connected a second m-r on DDWRT running and openvpn client to occasionally access a commercial VPN.

 
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Swampledge

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Great guidance from wittaj! When I set up OpenVPN on my Netgear router, I found a how-to on the Netgear support forum. It was very simple. I only ran into difficulties when it came time to add my certificates to the OVPN client for my iPhone. My router had produced 3 separate certificate files, but my client app expected to see a single “unified” .ovpn file with the cert and key already embedded. A quick web search showed that I could create that unified file by cutting and pasting the files I had using a text editor. That worked first try!
 

mat-with-one-t

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Thanks guys. Most helpful. I'll have a go at OpenVPN.

- Flint, they are screenshots of my Router's GUI. It has the three VPN configurations on offer, built into the router it seems

- Toastie, as a beginner, I'm afraid I didn't follow a single word of your post! I'm also unfamiliar with Android devices and Raspberry Pi's, so all was lost on me! Thankyou either way for the quick response!

- Wittaj, I'll work the the link you kindly provided and report back. I'm sure I'll have a stack of questions as I go, so keep an eye out on the thread!
 

mat-with-one-t

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Ok. 1st issue. I initiated the Open VPN following the link above from Wittaj, which seemed to go ok. One problem now is for some reason I cannot login to my Asus router's GUI as I normally do. It usually resides at 192.168.50.1, where my home network is 192.168.50.xxx. I just get "unable to connect". The only thing I've changed is initialising the Open VPN.
I've tried manually resetiing it - no go. It seems to be functioning fine.
I can log into any other device (such as my Dahua NVR at 102.168.50.2) without an issue.
Thoughts?
 

mat-with-one-t

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Tried both. Also tried a laptop directly into router via Ethernet to make sure it wasn’t switch or something else.....
Addit:
So went back to the guide (above) and, rather than logging into my router with 192.168.50.xxx, I used https://[name of my VPN}.asuscomm.com:8443
This got me back into the router (whew!).
Question: If I'm at home, and the VPN is not installed on a client (or is installed and turned off), shouldn't I be able to access my router at its "normal" address (192.168........)?
 
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