Microsoft MCE Remote and LIRC

Getting our Microsoft MCE remote to work with LIRC (and MythTV) proved to be a little more challenging than expected. However, quite a bit of reading and a few hours of trying later, it works!

First, I tried the easiest option, found in the KnoppMyth user forums:

cp /usr/local/share/knoppmyth/remotes/mceusb2/etc/lircd.conf /etc/lircd.conf
cp /usr/local/share/knoppmyth/remotes/mceusb2/etc/lircrc /home/mythtv/.mythtv/

I also had to change /etc/init.d/lirc from:
start-stop-daemon --start --quiet --exec /usr/sbin/lircd -- $LIRCD_ARGS \
start-stop-daemon --start --quiet --exec /usr/sbin/lircd \

...which, after a reboot, apparently did nothing. I undid these changes and tried the instructions for setting up a Microsoft MCE 2004 remote, according to the KnoppMythWiki. Towards the end of the instructions, you're instructed to wget a new lircrc into /home/mythtv/.mythtv; the URI listed kept timing out. I Googled a bit and found another lircrc file to use. (Though I should have bookmarked the page to share!)

The result was a working remote! irw recognized key presses and MythTV correctly responded, too. Just for kicks, I decided to reboot to ensure it would still work... but it didn't. LIRC gave a few errors about a plugin and not finding the mceusb module (again I should have written down exactly what it said). Try as I might, I couldn't get the remote to work again.

Finally I bounced over to the MythTV Wiki and the MCE Remote page. I followed these instructions--which were primarily different in that I was instructed to use LIRC 0.8.0 rather than 0.7.2. Those instructions did work, and survived a reboot. Everything is good now!

I should point out that since the MCE Remote instructions don't end with detailing how to copy a working lircrc file to your /home/mythtv/.mythtv/ directory, I'd guess it wouldn't actually work in MythTV.

Anyway, it's working now. I'm going to work at keeping better track of all these little things I have to do. I can't contribute to the MythTV project as a programmer, but maybe I can help with the documentation--particularly from the newbie point-of-view.

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Dan & Sherree & Patrick currently uses Facebook for comments. Older comments are still here for readers, though. Read old comments »

Thanks mate. You saved my butt. It's a shame though that the transmitter that came with it won't work. That'll be tough to explain to my family. Even though most of the system is set up it is hard not to focus on the small failures like not being able to control the cable box with the MythTV.

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