Can I connect my raspberry pi 0 w that has a camera to my pc thats running octoprint

I am using FREENOVE 5MP Camera on a RPI 0 w

Can I connect my RPI to my pc that runs octoprint, and will octoprint detect that there is a camera. I bought the camera before I really understood octoprint, I know that you can run octoprint on the 0 w but I have unreliable wifi so I want to use my pc. Any help would be very appreciated.

No. AFAIK, in theory, the raspberry pi could "emulate" a USB webcam, but you would need to install software to do that (The Raspberry Pi makes a great USB webcam for $100 | Jeff Geerling). But even then, you need to run software on the PC that runs octoprint to use that webcam to create an MJPEG stream, which you can then point OctoPrint to. OctoPrint by itself does not "detect" cameras.

An easier route to try is to install Motion Eye OS (Home · motioneye-project/motioneyeos Wiki · GitHub), and connect the Pi to the same network as the PC. Then point OctoPrint to the MJPEG stream provided by Motion Eye OS.

Would this work without a consistent wifi??

Since it's a usb webcam - yes :smiley:

Another way would be to run a webcam server and use a virtual network over usb.
In theory an OctoPi image should work, but you need to add the usb network stuff to the configs.

And to your question in the other thread - yes displaying the webcam stream on the hdmi port would also work.
I just don't know any good way to do it. If possible you want to display just the cam output and not load a full desktop environment.