I am a total noob in this subject so be gentle. I want to install a small infrared beam and when something interrupts it, I get an alert to my cell phone and a few lights turn on. I am pretty sure this is easily done but I could use some pointers in the right direction. Any comments would be appreciated and if this is in the wrong section, feel free to move. TY in advance. 🙂
Thank you for posting your question. What you want to do is actually not trivial to setup. Alarm input / alarm output integration and setup is actually a more advanced topic for DIY installers. This article that I wrote explains some of the concepts to do something like what you are trying to do. It explains some basics on using digital IO ports (alarm in / out) using an IP camera.
In that article there is a panic button hooked up to the alarm input which triggers an event that FTP uploads a snapshot image to a remote server. The alarm also trips a relay to the alarm output of the camera where I have a simple low voltage LED light connected.
The concepts to setup what you describe are similar, but replace the panic button with an IR bean and instead of sending the snapshot to server, the camera can be setup to email the snapshot to you.
We have also documented how to setup alarm inputs on one of our stand alone CCTV DVR here: