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Asked — Edited

Control Over Internet?

I am very interested in making a "virtual presence" bot, which I can log into and drive around my work or home for security, checking if I left the stove on, or what the cats are up to. Basically this would be:

A large bot, wheeled or tracked
Camera
articulated arm
mic and speakers for bi-directional audio communications
hi-power wifi
Charging/Docking station

Can this be accomplished with EZBot parts?

Thanks!

AI Support Bot
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Synthiam
#1  
This can easily be done with EZ Robot.... But you will need additional parts... And what you want will cost $$$... A Roomba or an iRobot Create would be a good chassis platform because of its docking capabilities... It could probably carry a small laptop and a servo arm in addition to a EZ Robot V4 board.....

Roli could do what you want for less$$$, but you would have to devise your own auto docking system yourself...
#2  
I am thinking about using a large R/C 4wd truck chassis. I can "manually" dock. What I am unclear on is how the actual network config works. I can log into my home network over VPN. I presume I could access the bot through this? Is the video compressed enough that I can view it over the internet? Are there any functioning examples of EZBots working over the internet?
#3  
You'll have to open a port... you will need to setup "port forwarding" in your Router to connect to your EZB over the internet...
United Kingdom
#4  
I haven't seen any examples of internet controlled robots yet however it is on my to do list.

What you have described can be done with EZ-Robot parts, it should be pretty simple too.
#5  
Why not just install the ARC software on you computer at home. Then at work, if you can, just use a free deskop login program like Teamviewer or LogMeIn? You can control your robot and see the video, (bandwidth permitting) at work. I have even used it on my Iphone.....
#6  
Yes, this can be done in multiple ways with EZ-Robot. There are some considerations that you will have to take into account when choosing the best path for you to accomplish this. The three main considerations would be

1 How fast is your internet connection speed to the office and back
2. How good your wifi coverage is at your office
3. How good are you at configuring firewall rules(port forwarding) on your work firewall.

If you are good with configuring port forwarding on your router, and have good wifi coverage, and have a reliable connection from the house to the office, you would just port forward ports 23 and 24 on your firewall to the ip address of your robot, and then connect to your robot from your home using ARC.

Another option is to use a client like GoToMyPC (there are free ones also) to connect from your house to a pc in your office that is connected to the robot through ARC.

If your Wifi coverage isnt that great at the office, I would upgrade it using as many Engenius access points as you need. There are other brands, but I like these for many reasons. Once that is handled, you should be good.

Engenius AP
#7  
I have a telepresence robot. I am interested in controlling it anywhere in the U.S. on my cell phone.

When I read about port forwarding I get very nervous about security. I do not want to open my network up to the people looking for open ports. Can anyone help me understand if this can be done with mobile app and safe security.
#8  
@Ellis

Unless you are connecting to a computer running something like TeamViewer (which establishes an outbound connection to TeamViewer's servers rather than opening ports, then you connect to them and remotely control your PC) some port will need to be opened. Although you are relying on a 3rd party company for your security, this is the best option if you are not very knowledgable on networks and security.

Safest way to do it yourself with port forwarding is to set up a VPN server like OpenVPN and forward its port, and then you connect your device to the VPN and it is just like being on your home network (although limited by the internet speed of your phone or home network). You can install openVPN on a Raspberry Pi and it is quite secure. There is an open VPN client for Android that is quite good. I haven't investigated iphone, but I imagine there is one for it as well.

Opening a port directly to the EZ-B is probably pretty safe since it is not running a full operating system like Linux, so the exposure target for exploits is pretty small. However, since it essentially runs Telnet on port 23, this is not something I would do with my network.

Alan
Synthiam
#9  
1) Opening ports is fine, long as it's ONLY to the EZ-B

2) no one can relay from the EZ-B to any other computer in your network

3) You can change the port of your EZ-B if you don't want tcp 23 (for what ever reason). This is done in the EZ-B's config - OR - most routers when opening a port allow you to specify the Internal and External port. So you can make the internal 23 and external what ever you want...
#10  
Thanks Guys,

I will take your advice and discuss it with our IT department. The company is mine and my brothers. I just want to make sure everything is as safe as it can be. Your information is very helpful.
#11  
@DJ,

Thanks for the info security using the EZ-B

I have been able to get remotely control & view the camera on an EZ-B over the Internet from a local PC running ARC by forwarding in the remote router to the ports I assigned in the remote EZ-B (8023,8024) and it works great,.

However, When I try the mobile interface I created and use the same ports I can control through port 8023 on my IOS device but I don't see the camera... any ideas?

Thanks,
Frank
Synthiam
#12  
Oh I think the camera is hard coded port in the mobile app. Let me look into it