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Last pushed: 3 years ago
Short Description
A surveillance solution base on Motion and Docker
Full Description


A surveillance solution base on
Motion and Docker.

It's easy and ready to use. Just plug in a webcam and run dockmotion, then
videos and images will be saved once a motion is detected while a notification
e-mail including the recorded video and a preview image will be sent. On top of
that, the webcam can be accessed anytime via HTTP live streaming.

Quick Start

Clone this project then cd into it:

git clone
cd dockmotion

Build for pull the image

Then build your own dockmotion Docker image:

docker build -t dockmotion .

Note that a pre-built image is also available:

docker pull kfei/dockmotion

Custom settings

Modify the sample motion.conf to
suit your webcam, e.g., videodevice, v4l2_palette, etc.

If using Gmail, change account and password settings in the
sample and save it as ssmtp.conf.


Run the container with configs , e.g.,

docker run -it --device=/dev/video0
    -p 8081:8081 \
    -e TIMEZONE="Asia/Taipei" \
    -e MAILTO="" \
    -v /data-store:/var/lib/motion \
    -v /path/to/motion.conf:/etc/motion/motion.conf \
    -v /path/to/ssmtp.conf:/etc/ssmtp/ssmtp.conf

Note that:

  • The --device flag should be replaced by your webcam's device ID.
  • Expose port 8081 so that you can watch the live streaming, e.g., vlc http://localhost:8081.
  • Set TIMEZONE to Asia/Taipei instead of using UTC time.
  • All alarm mails will be sent to the e-mail address provided by MAILTO.
  • Mount a volume to /var/lib/motion for container since there might be lots
    of images and videos produced by Motion.

Runtime Configs

There are some environment variables can be supplied at run time:

  • TIMEZONE is for correct time stamp when motion detected. Check
    /usr/share/zoneinfo or see the full list of time
  • MAILTO to specify who will receive the alarm e-mails. Please make sure
    you set up this correctly.

Settings in motion.conf can be overridden:

  • MOTION_PIXELS to specify the capture size of image, e.g., 1280x720.
    Note that the size must be supported by your webcam.
  • MOTION_THRESHOLD for threshold.
  • MOTION_EVENT_GAP for event_gap.
  • MOTION_TIMELAPSE for the time-lapse mode, e.g., 600,86400. Please see
    below for further explanation.

The Time-lapse Mode

Using dockmotion to capture
time-lapse videos is
quite easy. The MOTION_TIMELAPSE environment variable has two parts:
interval and duration, both in seconds. For instance, if a -e MOTION_TIMELAPSE="600,86400" is supplied, Motion will capture images every 10
minutes within 24 hours. Note that in time-lapse mode, the motion detection
will be disabled.

An example run, for capturing one frame per hour within a week:

docker run -it --device=/dev/video0
    -e MOTION_PIXELS="1280x720" \
    -e MOTION_TIMELAPSE="3600,604800" \
    -v /data-store:/var/lib/motion \
    -v /path/to/motion.conf:/etc/motion/motion.conf \

Now a weekly time-lapse video will be in /data-store.

A cool time-lapse:

(If you happen to know the author of this time-lapse, please let me know so I
may source them properly.)


There are many types of hook can be set in Motion. For instance,
dockmotion just provides an e-mail notification script as the on_event_end
hook. Please dig into motion.conf and define your own hooks.


  • E-mail Notification

  • HTTP Live Streaming

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