I got my mother an android smartphone for her birthday. One of the great apps I like is the IP Webcam. I’ve experimented it successfully on my own network at home. By way of port forwarding, I can use a web browser from anywhere in the world to view what the smartphone is seeing. The typical application is home security/surveilance. But for me, being able to see whatever my mother sees at her home 180 miles away would be instrumental in helping her solve daily problems.
Unfortunately, what worked for my set up didn’t work on hers. Same phone, same router, and the same ISP, but somehow I just couldn’t make port forwarding work in her home. I couldn’t even access her router remotely even though such feature was enabled for her router. Finally, I found the culprit — she had an Ooma Hub (for VoIP telephony) placed between the cable modem and the wifi router. This is the default setup for Ooma and works for perhaps 95% of the users, except for the 5% who run network servers from their home networks. The Ooma Hub had either blocked incoming ports and/or masked the external IP address (http://canyouseeme.org showed a complete different external IP addresses with and without the Ooma Hub). I am not quite sure. The bottom line is that it would not work with the default recommended setup.
Some suggested designating the local IP address of the wifi router as the DMZ in the Ooma configuration. But there have been complaints that it didn’t work, so I didn’t bother trying it, even though I didn’t get to the bottom of it.
I took the other approach — placing the Ooma hub behind the wifi router. I made it to work. Since I couldn’t find this documented anywhere else, I am hereby documenting the solution that works for me.