How-to: Webcams

What is live streaming video?

Live streaming video is the video image from the LifeCam that appears on your computer screen. Live streaming video:

  • Shows you how the video image will appear when you capture a video clip or start a video call.
  • Indicates whether your LifeCam is functioning correctly and is ready for use.

You can use live streaming video to check your LifeCam's positioning, and to learn about the features and controls of the LifeCam. By moving the LifeCam itself, or by using the Microsoft LifeCam Dashboard, you can change what you see.
When you are satisfied with the live streaming video, you can use your LifeCam for a video call, and to capture video clips, audio clips, and photos.


  • The LifeCam's light indicates whether live streaming video is currently being sent to your computer.
  • When you start a video call, you must close the LifeCam window to stream video to the instant messaging program. If you don't close the LifeCam window, video will continue to stream to the LifeCam software and you will not be able to make a video call.