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oofti

Setting up new Flirc for XBMC and Harmony remote

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Hi everybody

 

Have discovered the Flirc and looking forward to getting it working with my XBMC and Logitech Harmony 1000 remote.

 

So far I installed the latest software from the Flirc website (v1.2.2) and also added the Media Center PC > Flirc profile on my Harmony remote.

 

I have noticed that the buttons on the Harmony do not seem to activate the controls on my XBMC screen, so proceeded to map some buttons manually from the Flirc software to button presses on my Harmony remote – after a while I noticed that not all buttons were able to be mapped as the XBMC grid within the Flirc software (File, Controllers,XBMC) did not have a button for Context Menu, Toggle Fullscreen, Fullscreeen etc..

 

Having a look around this forum I noticed that I may need to install some Beta software to get the XBMC fully working (i.e. not have to manually assign buttons/key presses etc)

 

Also, do I need to install any Flirc addons from the XBMC Add on Repo?

 

It has been a few months since some of those posts were updated so wanted to check in to ensure I was doing the right steps to get this Flirc/XBMC/Harmony combo working well.

 

Appreciate if people could point me in the right direction to get everything started.

 

Thanks in advance,

 

oofti

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Can anyone (somone from Flirc perhaps) give me some advice on the above?

 

I have switched from a PC remote solution to what I believe to be a better solution.

 

thanks in advance,

 

litfoo

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I have no idea about Harmony Remote so have no idea what all is in the Profile's pre-configed settings.  I'm pretty sure that there is a config file you have to download somewhere and load it into your Flirc. It wouldn't make sense to have those keys pre-mapped as that would eat up space for people that don't use Harmony remotes.

 

The XBMC GUI in the Flirc software doesn't have everything, you're right.  I suggest using the Full Keyboard screen and mapping what you want to the keys on there.

 

I'll look for a bit and see if I can find that config.

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I have no idea about Harmony Remote so have no idea what all is in the Profile's pre-configed settings.  I'm pretty sure that there is a config file you have to download somewhere and load it into your Flirc. It wouldn't make sense to have those keys pre-mapped as that would eat up space for people that don't use Harmony remotes.

 

The XBMC GUI in the Flirc software doesn't have everything, you're right.  I suggest using the Full Keyboard screen and mapping what you want to the keys on there.

 

I'll look for a bit and see if I can find that config.

 

I appreciate the reponse Deadpool

 

Are there any Flirc/XBMC/Harmony gurus there at Flirc (Chris, Jason?)  that could answer my questions above including:

 

  • Do I need to install some Beta software to get the XBMC fully working (i.e. not have to manually assign buttons/key presses etc) - and if so where is the latest beta version available for dowload (I recall seeing something on the forums regarding a 'retired version')
  •  
  • Also, do I need to install any Flirc addons from the XBMC Add on Repo?

 

cheers

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Ok, I've only been using Flirc for about 3 hours so far with my Harmony One. 

 

After initial setup I also noticed that some of the buttons on the Harmony remote weren't doing anything, but instead of trying to map them in Flirc I instead added some mappings in 'Activities' (not the 'Devices') tab of the Harmony Remote software.

 

I edited the new activity I'd just set up (called XBMC) by clicking Customize Buttons. The top button (for example) is 'Menu' which I set using the dropdown to Device = Media Center PC and Command = ContextMenu. 

 

I have noticed that the buttons on the Harmony do not seem to activate the controls on my XBMC screen, so proceeded to map some buttons manually from the Flirc software to button presses on my Harmony remote – after a while I noticed that not all buttons were able to be mapped as the XBMC grid within the Flirc software (File, Controllers,XBMC) did not have a button for Context Menu, Toggle Fullscreen, Fullscreeen etc..

 

I'm not running any beta software and I've not installed an add-on in XBMC. 

 

What might be confusing the issue is that the Harmony remote uses it's own setup software that adds an extra bit of confusion to the whole thing. Fullscreen for example is a touchscreen button on my Harmony One and is not mapped to a specific hardware button. 

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Ok, I've only been using Flirc for about 3 hours so far with my Harmony One. 

 

After initial setup I also noticed that some of the buttons on the Harmony remote weren't doing anything, but instead of trying to map them in Flirc I instead added some mappings in 'Activities' (not the 'Devices') tab of the Harmony Remote software.

 

I edited the new activity I'd just set up (called XBMC) by clicking Customize Buttons. The top button (for example) is 'Menu' which I set using the dropdown to Device = Media Center PC and Command = ContextMenu. 

 

 

I'm not running any beta software and I've not installed an add-on in XBMC. 

 

What might be confusing the issue is that the Harmony remote uses it's own setup software that adds an extra bit of confusion to the whole thing. Fullscreen for example is a touchscreen button on my Harmony One and is not mapped to a specific hardware button. 

 

Thanks for the input daunorubicin

 

To be honest, I spent the money on the advice as I truly thought it was going to take out the headache of manual process/config etc. There are far cheaper remotes out there, that with some tweaking, and potentially editing of keyboard.xml could accomplish a full install for XBMC/Harmony combo.

 

Maybe my frustrations are that I expected the Flirc mods/gurus to have been more responsive to offer guidance/help.

 

I feel a little let down at present.

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I'm at work at the moment so can't offer a detailed reply and I've got the same setup as yourself. I also have a Harmony One and a Flirc.

I don't use the preconfigured profile. But even so using a Flirc can greatly simplify setting things up, in my experience the Harmony setup is the most convoluted complicated program I've ever had to use.

My strategy is this:

Firstly print off a list of the keyboard commands that can be used to control xbmc.

Secondly decide which key you want mapped to each button on the Harmony, eg x for stop, e for guide, whatever suits your needs.

Then in the Harmony setup, add a remote, doesn't really matter which one, I used the Samsung TV profile that is recommended in the forums somewhere. Rename it XBMC or something. Assign the keys to all the Harmony keys, add and rename keys for any touch screen commands you want to send.

Then record onto the Flirc.

I've found this method essentially goes you the most flexibility as it's like having a keyboard to control your HTPC, but in a remote control package.

At home I have a table with all my key assignments on it, I'll try and post it over the weekend.

Hope that helps show a slightly different way of accomplishing things, which I feel gives a greater degree of flexibility, I think Jason and Chris do great work but I do think a very simple solution would be to create a Harmony Profile that just has all the keyboard keys recorded for people to then assign as they see fit to whatever application they choose.

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in my experience the Harmony setup is the most convoluted complicated program I've ever had to use.

Totally agree! The two step device then activity setup whilst making a lot of sense seems to confuse me nearly every time. Not to mention the seemingly endless wizards for nearly every step or alteration you need to make!

 

At home I have a table with all my key assignments on it, I'll try and post it over the weekend.

That would be very handy. What I'm lacking at the moment is either how to just map keys / key combinations or something that tells that when the Harmony setup says 'Zoom+' what that actually means in XBMC!

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Then in the Harmony setup, add a remote, doesn't really matter which one, I used the Samsung TV profile that is recommended in the forums somewhere. Rename it XBMC or something. Assign the keys to all the Harmony keys, add and rename keys for any touch screen commands you want to send.

Then record onto the Flirc.

 

 

Thanks for the above CHBMB

 

Have decided on what keys I want to use for the Harmony/Flirc combo

 

When you get a chance, can you elaborate a bit further on the 'adding a remote/Samsung TV profile' - this is in the Harmony Remote

software under 'Adding a Device'? Should I be adding as a Device in the software?

 

- It looks like I may have to add a as my actual TV is a Samsung one

- So this means as I am setting up a sequence on my Harmony remote, I naturally choose Samsung TV as the device I watch the display on, but now I should the Panasonic TV profile as the one I choose to play media (as opposed to choosing Media Center PC > Flirc, which comes with the limited XBMC profile)

 

And can you explain a little more on 'Record onto the Flirc' - I need to select Controllers > Full Keyboard and then manually assign each keystroke I want mapped

 

Then I need to save this config to the Flirc sofware? After I have set and saved the config, do I need to leave the Flirc software open and 'Connected' on my PC?

 

At home I have a table with all my key assignments on it, I'll try and post it over the weekend.

 

 

am looking forward to this and thanks again for offering your solution

 

Seems like to get full Harmorny/Flirc/XBMC control, the far superior away is to avoid the Flirc XBMC profile

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I've attached the table I used to map my Flirc, it's easily customisable to fit anybody's needs. So I've added a blank table if you want to use it to make your own record of what to do. Things to remember.

1. The actual remote and the keys you use are not important, although Jason has recommended elsewhere that there is a Panasonic TV profile and a Samsung TV profile that works well with the Harmony, I've used the Samsung TV Profile because I have a Panasonic Television connected to my HTPC.

2. Create the TV profile in the Harmony setup but don't add it to any activities initially, just map all the keys and get the flirc commands recorded. Make sure it all works then start experimenting with activities etc.

3. It is a frustrating experience, I know, I've been there, but trust me, the frustration isn't because of the Flirc, it IS because of the Harmony program, it is not at all intuitive.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/oirbs07pxrj9xek/Harmony%20One%20Button%20%28Blank%29.docx?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/oirbs07pxrj9xek/Harmony%20One%20Button%20%28Blank%29.docx?dl=0

If there are any blank spots in the table it is because there is no key asssigned, eg mute because I use my AV Receiver.

Good Luck guys, hope that helps

Edited by CHBMB

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When you get a chance, can you elaborate a bit further on the 'adding a remote/Samsung TV profile' - this is in the Harmony Remote

software under 'Adding a Device'? Should I be adding as a Device in the software?  Yep, you got it.

 

- It looks like I may have to add a as my actual TV is a Samsung one

- So this means as I am setting up a sequence on my Harmony remote, I naturally choose Samsung TV as the device I watch the display on, but now I should the Panasonic TV profile as the one I choose to play media (as opposed to choosing Media Center PC > Flirc, which comes with the limited XBMC profile) Just add the Panasonic TV profile as if it were another telly!

 

And can you explain a little more on 'Record onto the Flirc' - I need to select Controllers > Full Keyboard and then manually assign each keystroke I want mapped Yep

 

Then I need to save this config to the Flirc sofware? After I have set and saved the config, do I need to leave the Flirc software open and 'Connected' on my PC? No, you use the flirc software on your pc to record the commands, once recorded they are saved onto the flirc itself, no need to open the flirc software at all unless you want to record more keys or change things around.  I personally use my desktop PC to do all the recording then plug my Flirc into my HTPC downstairs once it's done.

 

 

Seems like to get full Harmorny/Flirc/XBMC control, the far superior away is to avoid the Flirc XBMC profile I think so at the moment, my understanding is the flirc profile has a set number of commands it is programmed for, however this way you can program any you like, for instance I use the arrow keys inbetween the guide and menu and info buttons to flick between a fullscreen interface and menu overlay, I also use the E & + keys at the bottom of my Harmony to access the context menu in xbmc and toggle the watched status.  It's useful to get to know xbmc using a keyboard and then you can work out what exactly you need your remote to do and what you don't.

 

The only thing I haven't really messed around with is commands like Alt-F4 for windows systems, because with my Openelec setup I don't need it and it has no use but I know from experience if you're using windows that may be useful.  Perhaps others on the forum may be able to help on this point. 

 

Edit:  Just had a play with the flirc software, just click Alt then F4 then record, it's that easy..

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Totally agree! The two step device then activity setup whilst making a lot of sense seems to confuse me nearly every time. Not to mention the seemingly endless wizards for nearly every step or alteration you need to make!


 


That would be very handy. What I'm lacking at the moment is either how to just map keys / key combinations or something that tells that when the Harmony setup says 'Zoom+' what that actually means in XBMC!  That's why I made the table, before I actually put it down on paper it was just a logistical nightmare trying to remember and figure it all out.  When you assign Zoom+ on the Harmony you can use that to record any letter you want to send via the flirc, but when going through the setup it helps to have it on paper in front of you.

 

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I can't remember, but I think I added it with the manual setting and then renamed it to watch XBMC afterwards.  The Harmony software lets you rename all the activities and the devices, eg.  although I added a Samsung TV to use with Flirc it's now called XBMC.  You've piqued my interest in getting my setup sorted, now I'm playing around with buttons to get the machine to suspend, hibernate, reboot and power off with the remote.  It involves adding a keyboard.xml file to the userdata folder though.  Found a good prgoram for creating the file though.

 

http://sourceforge.net/projects/xbmcmce/files/KeyMapEdit.exe/

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Well, thats a good outcome, I tried to help a fellow Flirc'er and now I've managed to get my XBMC box to suspend, (Alt-S) Reboot (Alt-R) and Power Down (Alt-P) and Resume (Wake) with my remote.  Have to take my hat off to Jason, the software has come on leaps and bounds since I first started using Flirc.  Must be good as I've updated my Flirc and even my technological philistine of a fiance has commented that the remote seems more responsive, must be good if she's noticed as I can't yet convince her that 1080p looks better than DVD, mind you I suppose if she's half blind might explain why she agreed to marry me.... :P

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Thanks everyone, this has been helpful.  Can someone clarify 'Record onto the Flirc' means record the Harmony activity or the Harmony devices.  

 

My main issue is the flirc (while connected to a PC) is not recognizing any key presses from the Harmony ultimate.  I'm running firmware 2.4.

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I think i've found a very simple way to trigger suspend/wake using a Harmony Ultimate Hub with the Flirc module using XBMC.

I am using the Flirc profile in the Harmony app as i find it is more straightforward than going through the hassle of using the generic Panasonic/Samsung TV profile and manually assigning buttons in the Flirc Windows GUI.

 

As the Flirc device in the Harmony app does not provide any poweron/poweroff commands in the Activity section, i did as follows :

- using the Harmony app, i assigned two unused commands (Zoom+ and Zoom-) to the "--" and "E" buttons on the Harmony remote (the ones at the bottom left and right)

- having done that, the two buttons became available in the Flirc GUI : using the Flirc keyboard layout, i overrode the Zoom+/Zoom- Harmony assignments and associated the "--" and "E" buttons respectively with the Wake and S keys

- back to the Harmony app, i was able to add start/stop steps to my "Use XBMC" activity (start command : "Zoom+", stop commands : "Zoom-" and "Select")

 

As of now :

- pressing the XBMC activity button on my remote turns on my TV/amp and wakes my PC from suspend mode

- pressing the OFF button turns off my TV/amp, calls the XBMC shutdown menu and launches the Suspend command.

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Hi, very new FLIRC owner here and more than a little puzzled. I have a Minix X8-h and bought the flirc because it seemed it was easy to set up so I could control the minix with my Harmony 650. From reading (and going round in circles) it seems I need to install software (a profile?) into the flirc device to make it work properly, but nowhere can I find what software is needed and how to actually install it. I get how to set up the harmony - that bit is easy. Anyone?

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Sorry for the delay in replying. Yes it did help because I now have play - pause, FF and rewind all working fine, not to mention the home button that takes you straight back to the main menu - nice.

 

Just a quick observation though, first their doesn't seem to be a context menu button (key 'C' I believe) in your software and second mute doesn't work (in firmware 3.1 or previous version). I did plug in two different keyboards (Logitech and  Trust) to my minix to test the mute out and they both trigger it correctly.

 

Anyway apart from that FLIRC is working fine so great work.

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