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eisenb11

Flirc-SE + Kodi... advice for newbies here

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Intro and a Rant: ;-)

Thought I'd share my steps so far in case this can help anyone. Flirc is uber cool, but I've found the set up process to be completely confusing and frustrating. I'm pretty sure I've worn my middle finger out flicking it at the screen! ha ha Once I figured out what to do, the set up process isn't too bad.

To the Flirc dudes: you really need to sort out the instructions. Following the Ubuntu instructions didn't work - there is no package to add. I imagine those who are less technically included who buy this will be extremely frustrated unless they can find someone to help them through the process. Anyway, that's my rant - now that things are working you guys really have a totally solid product otherwise and I'm really liking it so far.

The goal:

Get flirc up and running on my Kodi setup (standard Kodi live)

The problem:

Kodi live is a minimal environment... can't get the tools working. Also the instructions on the website don't work. The install package is missing. The paths are wrong for wget. Argh!

If you have a USB flirc you can set it up on a Windows machine first... but the Flirc-SE is installed in my case and I'm not dual-booting so that option is out.

The solution:

  • Part 1 - get to a desktop.
    • I created a bootable Ubuntu USB drive. I'm going to skip explaining this part. There is a great set of instructions here. Ok, now I can boot to an Ubuntu desktop.
  • Part 2 - Get the flirc driver.
    • Just start Mozilla (it's on the desktop), go to the flirc site's download area and grab the (probably 64-bit for most people) generic linux driver at the bottom of the page.
  • Part 3 - Add packages
    • It's not going to run, you're missing the prerequisite packages. First we need to update the repo listing - hit the "..." in the bottom corner (or windows key on your keyboard) and type "software". Launch the "Software & Updates" icon. Add "Software restricted by copyright" to add all the repos (probably overkill, but it's easy), the "Close" to update.
    • Now press "..." and type "Terminal" and launch it. Run:
      • sudo apt-get update
    • You're going to be missing 3 packages. Run these commands:
      • sudo apt-get install libhidapi-hidraw0
      • sudo apt-get install libqtxml5
      • sudo apt-get install libqtxml-patterns5
  • Part 4 - Get Flirc driver ready
    • In the terminal, "cd Downloads" directory and run:
      • tar -xvzf flirc.latest.x86_64.tar.gz
  • Part 5 - Run Flirc
    • In the Terminal, type:
      • cd Flirc-3.11.6
      • sudo ./Flirc
    • Now you can program your Flirc. Yay!

Other Stuff - Motherboard-related:

I bought the Flirc-SE because my case had a slot for it. Also, I liked the idea of being able to power on my system from the S5 state - which if "off" for all practical purposes. Getting this to work was a pain. Especially so, because you can't tell if the motherboard is powering the USB ports.

To Flirc dudes: in the next iteration of the flirc-se please add a small led light or something!

Anyway, each motherboard will be different, but for mine (Asus Z170I Pro Gaming) I found 2 critical options in the UEFI bios (under Advanced mode) that needed to be configured for it to work.

  • ErP power magement
    • Make sure this is disabled - otherwise the motherboard will go all energy star and disable power to the USB ports
  • USB 3.1 device charging
    • Make sure this is enabled. Why doesn't make any sense because the flirc plugs into the USB 2.0 port and not the USB 3.1 port... but for whatever reason, this needs to be on or it won't work - took me a long time to figure this out

Some caveats:

Once I got the remote power button to power on from "off", I found that the button will no longer shut down Kodi (it used to before I "fixed" it). I'm sure there is a solution to this, but that's where I stopped because it's easy enough to shutdown Kodi from its own shutdown menu option (and this prevents me from accidentally shutting down the PC by pressing that button).

I'm planning to migrate to Libreelec later when Kodi 18 is released, but since the flirc is externally configured in my case, I don't forsee any issues during that transition.

Any way... just wanted to post this stuff in case it can help anybody. I'm really happy with how everything is working now and have totally forgiven the flirc dudes!

Edit:

It sounds like there may actually be a led on the flirc-se... you guys really need to mention this somewhere as it could have avoided a lot of guessing as to whether the USB was powered or not. My flirc-se came in a box with no instructions manual and finding a manual for it online isn't easy (not under the product page or user guide area in downloads).

Edited by eisenb11

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