Motion is an open source and free command-line software implemented in C and designed from the offset to be used for monitoring video signals from video4linux capable devices, such as webcams, under any GNU/Linux operating systems and several BSD flavors.
Features at a glance
The software supports output from motion as JPG and PPM files or MPEG video sequences. It features support for capturing snapshots of movement, simultaneous playback of multiple video devices, simultaneous multiple inputs on a single capture card, and live streaming webcam.
In addition, the program allows users to create MPEG movies in real time using the libavcodec library from the FFmpeg project, capture automated snapshots on regular and irregular intervals using cron, as well as to track motion.
Getting started with Motion
To install and use this command-line software in your GNU/Linux distribution, you will have to grab the latest source tarball from Softpedia, save it on your PC, unpack it and open a terminal emulator.
In the terminal window, you must use the ‘cd’ command to navigate to the location of the extracted archive files, run the ‘./configure && make’ command to configure and compile the software, followed by the ‘make install’ command (as root or with sudo) for installing the software system wide.
Use the ‘motion --help’ command in a terminal emulator to view the program’s command-line options. Among these, we can mention the ability to run the software in non-daemon mode, in setup mode or in debug mode.
Additionally, users will be able to specify the full path and filename of the configuration file, as well as of the process ID file (PID file). Please note that if do not specify a config file, the program will automatically read the motion.conf file from the current directory or /etc/motion.