I genneraly recommend that you don't install any software that you arn't going to use.Every time you install software, your computer is altered by the installation process and removing the software doesn't always set your system back the way it was.If you are going to use a service (discussed further down the page) and the camera is UVC, then you have the option of not installing the extra software.

However, some features of the camera may not work without the drivers that come with it. For example, some of my auto focus cameras won't auto focus using the UVC driver, others will.

Some cameras have various resolutions that arn't available without installing the drivers that come with it.

Many web broswers now have built in webcam capability for point to point communication. Use a webcam service such as SKYPE or Google Hangouts. However, this method requires the other person to install the same service in order to see your camera and usually gives the poorest image quality.

This means you communicating with one other person. There are also a number of pay webcam services, but I don't have any experience with them so they won't be covered here. Use webcam software that uploads pictures to a website via FTP (File Transfer Protocol).

This method is more complicated than #1 and you must have your own website which is FTP accessible.

This may be the best method if you have a dial up connection, and expect to have more than one person watching at the same time, or your camera will be pointed out a window or at a scene that doesn't change much. Use webcam software that uses your computer as a web or streaming media server.

FTP If you don't already have a web page, or don't know what FTP is about, this is not the best choice for you to start out with. Once set up and running, this method works quite well and is easy to operate.

However, this is the system that tends to give people the most trouble getting started, especially if you don't have any experience troubleshooting FTP problems.

Once installed and connected to your webcam, you need to setup the FTP system within the program.

Depending on the software, you may need to build and put in place a web page "wrapper" to show your webcam image.

Software and Drivers Once you have your camera, you then have a choice to make; whether to install the software and drivers that come with the camera or not.