IP camera configuration could be confusing to many. Anyone new to this field could have questions like:

What's an IP camera? How does it work? How to configure the IP camera network? Or more specifically, what's my camera IP address? How to find the port number of my IP camera?

Follow this IP camera network configuration tutorial, and you'll get answers to all questions concerning the IP camera configuration and start video monitoring at once!

In fact, the configuration of IP cameras can be super easy (with or without a router)! And the cameras can record, save videos and stream live view even without IP camera configuration. Do check these solutions out if the tech is not your type of thing, or you are just looking for an IP camera with easy setup.


#1. What Is an IP Camera (How Does It Work)
#2. How to Configure IP Camera
∙ Configure Network
∙ Configure LAN Access
∙ Configure WAN Access
#3. Shortcut to IP Camera Configuration
#4. CCTV Camera Configuration Without Router
#5. IP Camera Without Configuration

Ready. Set. Save!

Big selection, big SAVING. Get your hands on Reolink security cameras & systems before the best prices slip away!

What Is an IP Camera

IP camera (Internet protocol camera) distinguishes itself with a direct connection to the Internet, which enables it to send and receive data via the Internet.

After proper IP camera configuration, you are able to access the CCTV camera via your network mobile devices (phone, PC or tablet). That's to say, you can watch camera live, receive push alerts, and check the camera recordings wherever you are (inside or outside home network).

IP camera data transmission is based on the IP camera address assigned by the router or the NVR. So typically, you will need to find the right IP camera address to access the camera on the Internet.

IP Camera

IP Camera Configuration Guide

Technically, the major task for IP camera configuration is to get the right IP address of your camera which serves as the only clue to find it among various devices attached to the same network.

Note that the IP camera installation and configuration on the local area network (LAN) could be a little different from that in the wide area network (WAN). And whichever way you go with, the cameras should be on the network so that they can be accessed.


So we'll break the IP camera configuration with networking into three parts:

Step 1. Configure IP Camera Network

Before you start setting the IP camera configuration, make sure both your monitoring devices and CCTV cameras (and NVR) are connected to the home network. This could be done with or without router.

Here is a CCTV camera wire connection diagram for your reference:

PoE IP Camera Network
Reolink RLC-410 PoE IP camera network diagram

Check full explanation of security camera connection here.

Step 2. IP Camera Configuration on LAN

To configure IP cameras on the LAN, like the typical home network, you need to find out the CCTV camera local IP address.

Previously we introduced 3 ways for you to do that.

And then you only need to input the IP address on the web search bar to get into the camera's web UI, and then everything will appear.

Here is a CCTV camera configuration video tutorial on the LAN.

Step 3. CCTV Camera Configuration on WAN

As for IP camera configuration on the WAN, port forwarding is a typical way to go, which generally requires the camera local IP address, HTTP and RTMP port number, and the WAN IP address.

What is port forwarding?

Simply put, port forwarding transfers your local IP address into a public one which is used to access a specific camera in a wide area network (WAN), like crossing the neighborhoods or even countries.

Follow the detailed steps in our previous post for a quick IP camera configuration.

You shall get something like with the address format http://(wanip):(httpport). Input it on the browser, you can start video monitoring right away.

Shortcut to IP Camera Configuration

Get confused by the technical terms on the IP camera configuration steps above?

Is there any easy way to configure IP camera for people with the only basic understanding of the Internet?

The answer is absolutely YES.

P2P technology makes the IP camera configuration easy enough for even beginners. Moreover, P2P security cameras (including both wireless cameras and wired PoE cameras) effectively save your trouble of fixing the IP address for stable remote viewing.

So what is P2P? How to configure IP camera on Internet with P2P?

Simply put, each P2P enabled security camera is registered at the P2P server at the developer level and identified with a unique ID number (UID). So every time you want to access the camera locally or remotely, you only need to ping the P2P server via the security camera software with the camera UID.


For P2P IP camera configuration, basically, only 3 simple steps are required:

(Here we take the P2P camera Reolink RLC-410 as an example to detail the steps on CCTV camera configuration on the Internet.)

#1. Download the IP camera configuration software Reolink App or Client to your phones or PC.

#2. Launch the Reolink App or Client and enter the UID to add the security camera.

Connect IP Camera Network via Mobile Phone
(CCTV camera mobile configuration screenshot)

#3. Click the camera on the software and the configuration of CCTV camera is done. You can then watch the live view inside and outside your home network.

Is the IP camera configuration secure via the P2P server?

Actually, P2P is not a new technology. It has been used maturely on many fields including the Skype. And reputable brands like Reolink have adopted many ways to keep the data transmission absolutely secure, including using multiple servers and advanced encryptions.

So if you are looking for an IP camera with easy setup, the P2P camera will not let you down (Download the IP camera client manual for more detailed guide with screenshots of every setting step).

IP Camera Configuration Without Router

Generally speaking, the CCTV camera router configuration is indispensable for remote viewing.

Yet the 4G P2P LTE camera makes it possible for you to set up wireless cameras without connecting to a router.

The trick is that 4G security cameras are running on the cellular network provided by a SIM card, and thereby its data transmission and the whole CCTV IP camera configuration are independent from the WiFi network.

But how could we do the IP camera configuration if it doesn't have an IP address (since it is not connected to the router)?

That's where the P2P technology comes in. P2P provides an easy exit for remote viewing with no need of an IP address: Simply entering the UID and password on the camera app or client, and then you can access the camera.

So the 4G LTE camera is your best choice if you don't want to mess around with the IP camera router configuration.

Reolink Go

100% Wire-Free 3G/4G LTE Mobile Camera

No WiFi & Power Needed; Rechargeable Battery or Solar Powered; 1080p Full HD; Starlight Night Vision; 2-Way Audio; Live View Anytime Anywhere.

CCTV Camera Without Configuration

To make IP camera configuration even easier, you can just skip the whole IP camera setup thing with an NVR security camera system.

The configuration of DVR/NVR camera surveillance is a little bit different.

The point is you don't need to do the IP camera configuration with NVR if you only want the cameras to record and save on the network video recorder (NVR).

That's because the NVR and cameras connected to it will automatically build a private network once powered up. Within the subnet, cameras and NVR could communicate with each other. So you don't need to connect it to a router or do any IP camera configuration.

For example, the Reolink RLK8-410B4 can save your trouble of IP camera NVR configuration and offer you 24/7 protection. Check the NVR CCTV camera setup with this diagram:

RLK8-410B4 Diagram

However, if you want remote viewing, say accessing the cameras on your phone or receiving push notifications, you still need the help of a router and add the cameras to the surveillance software. (Don't forget the P2P technology can simplify the CCTV camera system configuration.)

If you have any questions about IP camera configuration & remote access, let me know by commenting below and I will reply to you soon.

  • Dave D

    I have a simple query...
    Is the IP camera configuration secure via the P2P server?


    • Flora

      Hi Dave, yes, the P2P cameras are secure. Reolink camera video streams are secured by multiple encryptions (including the SSL encryption, WPA2-AES encryption, and SSL-TLS). And the P2P server authentication must be done by at least 2 servers to ensure the data security and connectivity.

  • Bill

    I'm looking for NVR capabilities but have 1-2 cameras that will be too far/too blocked to directly connect. Is there a solution that supports recording via cameras connected via both direct wifi and wired via a subnet?

    • Flora

      Hello Bill. The WiFi cameras could solve your needs. Here is how to make it work: Connect the WiFi cameras to your router wirelessly, and then connect the router with the NVR via Ethernet cable. In that way, the wireless cameras could be added to your NVR system via WiFi connection. That's to say, you can have both WiFi and wired camears in one security system. I hope that answers your question.

  • mouse53

    Our cameras are all connected by BNC to a NVR will port forwarding get us connected for remote viewing? We also want to upgrade our cameras, does Reolink have some better cameras that will work with our NVR?

    • Flora

      Hi there, generally those BNC connected cameras can not perform port forwarding for remote viewing. You'd better check that with the camera manufacturer. And we suggest using Reolink cameras with Reolink NVRs to avoid compatibility issues. Please feel free to let me know if you have any further questions.

  • Grzegorz Ochrona

    Hello, is it possible to have wifi cameras connected to wifi router and then router with one cable to ”nvr without wifi”?

  • Support

  • ducker74

    Hello Flora. I have my cameras all going to the RLN8-410 NVR. I am trying to see the IP address of each camera but it is only showing the NVR IP address. So if I use Tiny Cam it will only show camera 1 feed and none of the others. Can you please advise how to fix this?

    • Flora

      Hello there, you can obtain the individual camera IP address by connecting the NVR system to a monitor (following the steps here https://support.reolink.com/hc/en-us/articles/360006694133 ). Go to the IP Channel page and you will find the IP camera addresses.

      Is there any specific error information reported when using Tiny Cam to access the Reolink NVR? If yes, please send us an email to support@reolink.com for further troubleshooting tips. (In any case, we suggest using Reolink app to avoid possible compatibility issues 😉

      Hope the information helps. Feel free to let me know if you need further help. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/cbad525963b75b95a842883feecf2b1b32b53815b336114fae7905f4be904817.jpg

      • ducker74

        Thank you Flora. I will give this a try this weekend and let you know. There was no error msg given, but I was looking into Tiny Cam because I was not able to login to the Reolink Phone App from other wifi networks other than my home network, for example my work wifi always says connection failed. But on 4G it connects fine, but this is eating up my data.

  • critor

    Hi Flora thanks for the article. I'm interested in the P2P option as a simpler alternative to port forwarding. I can see that remotely connecting to the camera (RLC-410W) is quite simple using the Reolink App or Client. What isn't clear from your article, however, is whether it's possible to use the simpler P2P option using third-party clients – or as in my case, Python. Do you know if it will be possible for me capture frames from the camera in Python using P2P or will I need to use the more complicated port forwarding set-up? If the latter, can you please help point me in the right direction? So far I've only succeeded in using the Reolink App or Client, but not in Python. Thanks!

    • Flora

      Hi there, thank you for your interest! There should be no problems running Reolink cameras in the Python. Actually we've seen users doing that before successfully.

      You may have a nice try 🙂 If you have any problems during the setup, you may email our support team at support@reolink.com for additional help.

  • George Varghese

    Hi Flora, sorry to bother you with my question. I have 4 FELIX make IP Cameras. The NVR came with those cameras is now faulty. My question is, can I use FELIX Make I P camera on Dahuva Mahendra NVR? Please help me with your answer.
    Thank you
    George Varghese

    • Flora

      Hi George, generally speaking, if you want to apply your security cameras on the NVR from another brand, it depends on whether both of them are supported by the same third-party service provider. So, it is best to consult the support team of your security camera brand for further info.

  • Jay Shelter

    Hi Flora! I have some unbranded analog cameras that
    i´m using with a Ip converter.
    The problem is: How will i know the Ip address for that camera?
    Thank u in advance.

  • Flora

    Hi there, sorry for the late reply. It is suggested that you contact the support team of your DVR brand and ask them for professional assistant. Hope that the issue would be solved soon.

  • Nick Stone

    Whats the best configuration for say a 12 channel system previously on an NVR, I have significant networking skills and general IT and marketing developer professionally but offer a lot of security services and I had someone ask about running the IP cameras through an AWS instance which would I suppose work on a hybrid setup but I dont know the benefit outside of it being separate and it comes with a whole lot of other negatives and some heavy lifting and troubleshooting if processes fail. Also wondered about a PCI-e card or two that probably exists out there where I could boot a little linux server for saving, running, and networking the devices. I guess is that the option above here (essentially the same with a 12 port switch but surely someone makes basic network cards with multiple ethernet ports only like 3x 6 port cards. I have some empty slots and then maybe could try using a virtual or ”soft DVR/NVR” or a FreeNAS partition setup in a VM inside the terminal. Basically thought I'd give the hardware needed or a separate card, bridge the connection and bridge the VirtualBox Network Connector that comes installed with virtual box. Run a NVM or NAS-like system image and SATA Drive utilizing a terminal with a basic OS on the boot drive

    Any thoughts or could these be viable ideas or is a waste of thought, and just go with an NVR or static configure each camera after connection then run a gui. I suppose I would have to have a power injector anyways so duh but the cheapest easiest way to get this back online. I just had a ton of towers and drives, NAS, HDD, and SSD NVMe, that I'd like to use up and get out of my office and now my home.

    Someone give me a creative Idea for this. I love this article good work. My temporary idiocy will pay off by the time I hit send on these posts lol I love that. I hate overthinking it but love it when it works and then refactor the idea and execution from there. I use a number of SSL VPNs and I'd rather run these if I were to run them on an isolate IP subnet maybe, point is isolation as I wouldnt want a cheap IP Cam to be the entrypoint into my network

  • James

    Do i need to find each indivual camera ip address if each camera is directly connected to the system via a network cable?

    will i be able to remote view?

    • Flora

      Hi James, generally speaking, after connecting each IP camera to an NVR, the NVR will assign an IP address for each IP camera automatically. To access the system remotely, you need to make sure that the NVR is connected to a stable network that can access the Internet.
      This applies the Reolink security system but we are not sure if this applies to security systems from any other brands. So, if you are looking for security systems from other brands, it is best to for you to contact their sales team for more info before making a purchase. Hope this helps.



Up to 15% OFF Reolink smart security cameras