When it comes to broadcasting your web cam over the network, we usually think of bulky software like Skype. But you can put your webcam on the network by using a very simple, small and free tool called IPCamera. It is a very small portable program created by Gmax. The download size of this portable program is less than 1 megabytes and it is able to broadcast the video in HD format.
Being a portable program it does not need to be installed on your system. Just extract the files from the downloaded ZIP archive to a folder and run IPCamera.exe from there. If you have multiple cameras on your system, then you have to select a target camera from the dropdown list.
You can select the resolution of the video for your broadcast. The available resolution depends on the model of your camera, but IPCamera is able to support high definition (HD) resolutions. You can set the refresh rate, IP address and the port number. There are options to broadcast grey color video or apply smoothing to the video. You can also adjust the compression (quality) of the video. If you increase the compression, then the quality of the video is reduced. When you are ready, just click on the Start button, to start the broadcast.
Once the broadcast has started, anyone on your local network can view your camera by typing the ip address followed by colon and the port number in the address bar of their web browser. You yourself can watch the video from your own camera by clicking on the Test button which opens a web browser with correct address filled in. You can also use a media player like VideoLan VLC player to open the stream and view the video.
You can download Gmax IPCamera from http://www.gmax.ws/app.html.