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I had been using Ubuntu 11.10 with all the bells and whistles, every thing fine. I download and install the newest version of Ubuntu (12.04) and the webcam doesn't work. I tried installing cheese, but this application reports that it does not find any devices. Then I found a similar question here, but installing the application gave me the same error:

Guvcview error:
Unable to open device
Please make sure the camera is connected
and that the correct driver is installed.

I have an HP G60 with integrated webcam that worked perfectly under 11.10. What should I do?


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Procedure to install web cam in UBUNTU 12.04 LTS OS

First download the libwebcam0 files from Ubuntu one. then, enter the command : $ echo guvcview It will ask your root pass word: *** Give your pass word ,then it will unwrap required files itself. before that it ask the consumption of disk space ,Give Yes

After completion of this step give : guvcview libwebcam0

your web cam will activate.

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I also had this problem with a webcam someone gave to me yesterday. It is USB device, a Genius iLook 320. Naturally there are windows and mac drivers, but nothing official about using it with Ubuntu.

Therefore, RTFM for guvcview. Open a terminal, and type

man guvcview

It says, among other things:

"-d, --device=VIDEO_DEVICE Video Device [default: /dev/video0]"

Make sure your webcam is attached. Then go to the terminal and enter the command:

ls /dev | grep -i video

The reply is:


Aha! The default device that guvcview uses, video0, DOES NOT EXIST!

Therefore, you must make guvcview use the device that exists, because that's where your webcam is.

at the terminal:

guvcview --device=video1 &

and it should work. If you run guvcview from the menu, edit the menu item, adding "--device=video1" The "&" is for running from the terminal. There are other command line options given in the man page, and I have not tried to figure out what they do yet.

When you run guvcview from the terminal, you will see a lot of messages about "ALSA lib" which is for sound (which my camera does not have), and other messages such as: "{ pixelformat = 'RGB3', description = 'RGB3' }" These messages might help you configure video quality.

The first time you run it, it will create a configuration file in your home directory: ~/.guvcviewrc-video1

You can edit this file as desired. The default picture quality of my device leaves a lot to be desired. YMMV.

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I'd like to note that after I rebooted with the webcam attached, it was then on /dev/video0. – Wastrel Apr 4 '15 at 0:46

Similar experience, figured out a temporary workaround. You can find it posted here: The post's toward the end, it doesn't work 100% but if your problem is the same as mine it should help a bit.

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Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. – Eliah Kagan Sep 16 '12 at 14:33

Use guvcview and select video type as YV12. It will solve the problem.

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It may help the person who asked the question if you could fill the answer with a bit more detail. This may then help other users who have similar problems. – SimplySimon Jul 29 '13 at 13:45

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