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Today, we are going to let Raspberry PI turn into a remote security cam that we can control and watch live anywhere on the planet with using our mobile phone. This is the maker version of dropcam, nestcam, etc. We call it Butterfly PI. It is in public beta testing.

These are the things you need to have

Android Phone(4.0 or higher)

Raspberry PI 2

Raspberry Camera Module

Power Adapter 5V – 1A with micro USB output

USB Audio Adapter(Optional)

USB Wi-Fi dongle(Raspberry PI 2 compatible) and Ethernet Cable

Let's start. 


Install Butterfly TV from Google Play - https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.butterfly

Right now let's build the camera

 Here is the image of Raspberry PI for Butterfly PI. Download and write image to your SD card. If you don’t know how to write image to SD card. Please take a look at this tutorials for Linux, Windows, Mac OS.


After you write image to sd card. Plug the sdcard into the raspberry PI

Now it is time to mount camera to Raspberry PI. Make sure that power adapter is unplugged.

We just need to edit a file in raspberry. Plug the power adapter and if you have keyboard and screen plug them as well (if you don’t have, you need to connect via ssh(explained below)) and edit /home/pi/startup/startup.sh. Change the line

java -jar /home/pi/butterflypi.jar [DeviceName] [SecretCode] &

[DeviceName] and [SecretCode] are the parameters when you used registering the Butterfly PI on android app at step 5 on previous section.(Don’t remove &) – Please keep in mind that secret code is a kind of the password for your camera.

(Optional)if you don’t need to connect via ssh, skip this part: Connect your RaspberryPI to your wifi router with Ethernet cable. You need to know the ip address of the raspberry. You can learn it from your modem interface (probably with entering something like 192.168.2.1 to your browser). After you learn ip address use ssh like below

ssh [email protected]_ADDRESS_OF_RASPBERRY_PI

Password is “butterflypi”. If you still don’t know how to connect, try this way . Keep in mind that after you perform last way and edit the startup.sh, you need to restore the cmdline.txt file.


(Optional) If you try to record sound as well, please plug a USB audio adapter to Raspberry PI. Like this one or that one.


We are almost done. You need to connect to Raspberry to network via wi-fi or cable. If you use wi-fi, consider buying one of them. To learn how to configure wi-fi you can visit here. If you use an ethernet cable, just plug into Raspberry PI. Make sure that ethernet cable or wi-fi connection is connected to internet. If you want to use wi-fi, after configuring your wifi using Ethernet Cable, plug out the Ethernet Cable and restart the RaspberryPI. Now it will use wi-fi.

If you wish you can also put Raspberry PI to a case and it is better if you use a case with fan or use heatsink to get better performance. Lastly, Here is a Butterfly PI within a case

Plug the power adapter to raspberry and let it boot. When it is connected to network. Your camera gets online on Butterfly TV.

Click start button and wait then the screen becomes like below. To watch it just click the Play button.

So you have a mobile app controlled security cam, you can mount Butterfly PI anywhere you want. You can use this case to make mounting easy.

Lastly, welcome to your feedbacks and questions, keep in touch via [email protected] & @butterfly_tv

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