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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?

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Old 02-04-2010, 04:39 AM   #1
johnny23
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Registered: Aug 2009
Location: Edinburgh, UK
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 21

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Information: Webcam compatibility - check carefully!


I've found that the latest revisions of webcam drivers can break things that were working. For instance, I have a Genius Webcam that worked fine until the GSPCA driver was moved into the kernel source, now it's useless. From my Googling this doesn't appear to be confined solely to the model of camera I have.

I might be able to get it working by retro-fitting the old driver, hacking on the broken new driver, or somesuch but it's no longer simple to get it working.

Do some Googling looking for the (kernel) version of Linux you're using and the webcam you intend to get, to confirm from actual user reports that the camera really works for that revision. Don't rely on what's reported on various hardware compatibility lists because they may well be out of date and things that used to work don't necessarily do so now or, at least, not without a great deal of messing around.

[383687.268638] usb 4-2: new full speed USB device using uhci_hcd and address 28
[383687.439503] usb 4-2: configuration #1 chosen from 1 choice
[383687.442395] gspca: probing 0458:7007
[383689.139441] zc3xx: probe 2wr ov vga 0x0000
[383689.258709] zc3xx: probe 3wr vga 1 0x8000
[383689.263722] zc3xx: probe sensor -> 0014
[383689.263727] zc3xx: Find Sensor CS2102K?. Chip revision 8000
[383689.267821] gspca: probe ok

Bus 004 Device 028: ID 0458:7007 KYE Systems Corp. (Mouse Systems) VideoCAM Web

Guvcview output:

video device: /dev/video0
/dev/video0 - device 1
Init. USB Camera (0458:7007) (location: usb-0000:00:1d.2-2)
{ pixelformat = 'RGB3', description = 'RGB3' }
{ not supported - request format(859981650) support at http://guvcview.berlios.de }
{ pixelformat = 'BGR3', description = 'BGR3' }
{ not supported - request format(861030210) support at http://guvcview.berlios.de }
{ pixelformat = 'YU12', description = 'YU12' }
{ discrete: width = 320, height = 240 }
Time interval between frame:
{ discrete: width = 640, height = 480 }
Time interval between frame:
{ pixelformat = 'YV12', description = 'YV12' }
{ discrete: width = 320, height = 240 }
Time interval between frame:
{ discrete: width = 640, height = 480 }
Time interval between frame:
checking format: 842093913
vid:0458
pid:7007
driver:zc3xx
Could not grab image (select timeout): Resource temporarily unavailable
Could not grab image (select timeout): Resource temporarily unavailable
...

The camera is listed as compatible and working with the GSPCA driver, specifically zc3xx. Won't work with Gucview, as can be seen above, or Cheese, or Skype, or Sane or whatever I've tried.

This is true for Ubuntu 9.10, Slackware 12.2, and Slackware 13.0.

The camera does, however, work fine with the SPCA driver (kernel 2.4) on a Slackware 10.2 machine.

Also, although a camera may work with some apps, it may not be consistent and work with all - e.g. Skype might not work even though Cheese will.
 
Old 05-24-2010, 11:45 PM   #2
fiz65
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Registered: May 2008
Posts: 7

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Hi Johnny23, I am having the same problem with slackware 13, using the latest kernel 2.6.34.

The Genius Ilook 300 gets recognized, but it doesn't work. If you have been able to solve your
problem, could you please tell me how you did it?
Thanks!
 
Old 05-25-2010, 03:47 AM   #3
johnny23
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Registered: Aug 2009
Location: Edinburgh, UK
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 21

Original Poster
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Serendipidously, I was playing around with this last night.

The Quickcam Pro 9000 can be made to work under Ubuntu 9.10 with Gucview using the UVC driver. Unfortunately Skype doesn't play well with the UVC driver.

If you install and pre-load the v4l compatibility layer

LD_PRELOAD=/usr/lib/libv4l/v4l1compat.so

...Skype will work with the camera in "test" mode in the "options" dialog but it crashes Skype in actual use on a call.

I was planning on trying with a Slackware 13.1 box (well, Slackware-13.1 RC of course) at the weekend.

Things would stand a better chance of working if Skype re-tooled their Linux version to play nice with the latest drivers.
 
Old 05-25-2010, 03:50 AM   #4
johnny23
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Registered: Aug 2009
Location: Edinburgh, UK
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 21

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Oh, just checked the ChangeLog - it will be Slackware 13.1!

Wed May 19 08:58:23 UTC 2010
Slackware 13.1 x86 stable is released!
 
Old 05-25-2010, 05:05 PM   #5
johnny23
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Registered: Aug 2009
Location: Edinburgh, UK
Distribution: Slackware
Posts: 21

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 16
Now I have a Quickam Pro to play with I shan't fiddle more with the old Genius Camera I have.

I just tried a Logitech Quickcam Pro 9000 with Slackware 13.1 and a download of the latest Skype (static link library) version. It works OK, the UVC driver and latest Skype seem to play OK. Had a video call that lasted about 10mins and appeared to have no significant problems (the camera's microphone worked too).

Things look promising for cameras that use the UVC driver.
 
  


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