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DIY security system?

Anonymous Coward writes | about 10 months ago

3

An anonymous reader writes "For geeks that want to secure their home, it seems that the choice of Do It Yourself solutions are limited. And in case you prefer to use a company, most of them require to subscribe to a contract for 3 years that costs at least $20 a month. In case you want to make a DIY security system without a monthly fee, few options are available. Some products (such as ismartalarm, Lowe's Iris system or also the fortress security) let you install your own system but seem not to be very mature (for some the alarm is not loud, for others they do not use the internet and only a land line, etc.).

Is there any recommendation for a basic DIY home security system for monitoring the house and just have notification by e-mail or through a mobile application? Is there any open standard for home automation and security devices? Any suggestion about how to build something simple, affordable and efficient?"

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Not enough connectivity (1)

egcagrac0 (1410377) | about 10 months ago | (#45862313)

The most recent round of people who audited the security system at the office were pushing for a cellular data link to back up the internet link and the phone link for the system - because it's harder for a backhoe (or a determined attacker with a wrench and a snipper) to take out a battery backed-up cell modem.

Assuming you're hacking something together yourself, that redundant connectivity is likely to cost you $25 a month or so (thinking prepaid 3G hotspot or similar). This is already in excess of the price point you didn't like.

If you don't care enough to have it able to report when the phone (internet) lines are cut, do you care enough to do it at all? (Flipside, if you're considering a commercial, monitored system: how does the system tell the monitoring company if the phone lines are cut? How quickly will they alert you?)

All other considerations aside, if I wanted a security system, I want a keypad, a controller, contacts on each exterior door and window (and I want anti-tamper resistors in place), a few motion sensors, smoke/heat sensors, and possibly a sensor to know when the doorbell is rung (ideally it will also capture a camera image). It's all got to have its own battery backup.

I don't know if I could get that all in a simple, home-brew system. I know I'm not interested in fishing alarm wire to every door and window, and would want a contractor installing it - especially since they're going to be better at doing the almost-invisible sensor installs..

Re:Not enough connectivity (1)

sjames (1099) | about 10 months ago | (#45863067)

Or just change the sense of the signaling. Have it send all's well messages. If they top, there's a problem (which may be that the internet connection is down).

Depending on how often that happens, it might be reasonable.

Two suggestions... (1)

procat (915456) | about 10 months ago | (#45862697)

If you want an alarm system, check out a DSC PC1832 alarm box or kit, which can be had for 100-150 online, you run your own wires/sensors, wireless options available. You don't have to connect it to monitoring service, just hope that baddies will run off when the alarm goes off, cause they think police have been called. I've paired mine with a VM101 module by http://www.myvirtualmonitoring.com/ [myvirtualmonitoring.com] , which offers low cost monitoring via ethernet/cell tower and soon looks like WiFi, which can txt and/or call you when you have an event. Pay a little more and you can have them contact local law enforcement. No contract. If you just want logs and text messages, try an Insteon starter kit available at Costco.com. It's not going to be an alarm, but the wireless motion and door sensors will txt you when they are tripped. Also their webcam can be set to upload motion pictures to Gmail or FTP server. This option is good for not alarm, but monitoring. If you buy into the Insteon system you also have have remote control of lighting and relays. This service is free and no contract.
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