Holy heck, I suck. Webcam/live broadcast help....

I'd like to set up a live webcam with a spare laptop I have, but the only way I know how to do it is with Windows Media Encoder. I'd like to embed the video into a webpage so people (mainly me) can click on the link and it takes me right to the live, real-time streaming video. Why is this so impossible? You'd think people would use webcams for more than MSN and YouTube, no?

I'd like to set it up a security system so I can check on the house when I'm at work, on vacation, etc etc. What software do I need? I tried Adobe Flash Media Encoder, but I have no idea how to set up a server or anything.

I have a broadband (super fast) connection, 3-4 webcams, but I really only need to use 1. My laptop is a dual-core @ 2Ghz, with 2GB RAM and 250GB HD. So powerful enough...easily.

Any web gurus out there willing to help. I'm at wits end. Seriously. LOL!
Consoles are for children.
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  1. there is full of free software on the internet. one thing is that you need to have a PC (or a machine or something with which you access the internet and send the information - usualy a PC is the simplest decision), then you need proper software and a webcam or something like that. Google can help you a lot if you search for webcam security download :) by the way, i used with succes dorgem and u-broadcast - those 2 free programs are quite nice :) depends what you actualy want: dorgem does pictures (and can do live broadcast too) from your webcam to a specific folder (which can be a web folder or a gmail drive - so is checkable on the internet) - while u-broadcast just broadcasts live to a specific URL (you can broadcast either to another big broadband server or you can just view it at a remote address/port using, for example - VLC media player.
    or you can - the decision that i would take - you can simply use VLC ( from www.videolan.org ) media player's open capture device and it's streaming feature(s) for great (with more than enough satisfying quality, i say) broadcasting/viewing activities. perhaps also the webcam doesn't have such great quality image, so you can be satisfied with almost any of those sugestions.
    also - a lot of webcams (especialy the expensive ones) have integrated web server software - from which you can even turn your webcam left, right, up, down - surely, this requires special hardware (webcam) and software.
    you can be more specific, and, if no one else answers you to this question any more, my email is s3nin@yahoo.com (i`m more on yahoo messenger). maybe (not sure if) i`ll have time to help there also.

    shalom, and thanks for asking help on this website!...

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