[OBSOLETE] Howto: Blasting and using MCE replacement plugin.

Discussion in 'IR Server Suite (IRSS)' started by andyd, April 23, 2007.

  1. andyd
    • Premium Supporter

    andyd MP Donator

    Joined:
    February 2, 2007
    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    0
    Occupation:
    IT Professional
    Location:
    Auckland
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0
    Home Country:
    New Zealand New Zealand
    This howto will help you in installing Aarons's (the nice guy who has developed this plugin) fantastic MCE replacment driver plugin for Media Portal. This will assist you in getting the driver installed and assist you in getting the STB blasting function working. This howto is to help any user wanting to use this plugin and hopefully should help the developer focus on the important stuff like making the plugin better! :)



    It doesnt include every feature, but will assist in geting you up and running quickly. Please ensure that you read this howto before posting in the plugin forum.

    Before I start I have to complement Aaron (aka And-81) for this plugin. In most open source software developers will only do enough to get the program running and forget about the documentation, other polished bits and very little support. And-81 has done an amazing job with this plugin with full docs and great support.

    Once you have installed the plugins, check out the help file that came with the plugin under -> "start menu" -> Programs -> Media Portal

    So hats off to And-81 for this fantastic plugin keep up the good work!

    What you will need to get this running:

    MediaPortal 0.2.2 + SVN (if you want SVN builds)
    https://www.team-mediaportal.com/download.html for latest stable version.
    https://forum.team-mediaportal.com/mediaportal_nightly_builds-f198.html (for SVN nightly builds)

    MCE Replacement Plugin
    https://www.team-mediaportal.com/files/Download/Plugins/Input/

    .NET 2.0
    This can be downloaded via Windows Update for XP and is installed with Vista by default
    http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com

    a Windows XP Sp2 or Vista x32 machine (x64 will not work at this stage due to driver issues)
    a Microsoft MCE remote + IR receiver + IR Blasters (those are the long cables with LED's at the end, put those LEDS right beside your STB or device to be controlled)

    If you are using Vista x32 then you can get the replacment driver for Vista from here:
    https://forum.team-mediaportal.com/windows_vista_mce_replacement_driver-t20094.html
    **** Note: Aaron has mentioned that this may be soon included in a future release of the plugin ****

    Install and Prepare the Operating System (both XP andf Vista)

    1) Install OS and PATCH and PATCH again (cant stress this enough!)

    Note for Vista: DISABLE USER ACCESS CONTROL and ENABLE the administrator account. In vista the administrator account is disabled by default. Both can be found inside "Control Panel" -> "User Accounts" Why I say this is because the replacment driver is not signed and will prompt you before it will install. There have been issues that if you dont click allow fast enough it will stop the driver from installing. Strange but true! Also assign a good password or pass phrase to the administrator to help with security. These are NOT requirements, but have helped in installing drivers that are not signed and I get really sick of the "Allow" button that kept coming up with UAC and installing software.

    2) Install your drivers for your TV card and plugin your USB MCE receiver. Under Vista this will be automatically installed. Under XP SP2 this should also be automatically installed as well.

    3) download Media Portal 0.2.2 and install and configure. make a note of the directory you have installed into as you will need to know this for installing the plugin. By default it is installed in "c:\program files\team mediaPortal\MediaPortal". You can find more information on configuration for MediaPortal in the wiki so I wont cover this here!

    If you are running Vista you will need to install the replacment driver you downloaded before. Download the driver and extract it to a folder you can easily remember where you put it. Once you have done this, run "install_vista_x86.bat" this should install the driver. Have a look inside device manager under "Universal Serial Bus Controllers" for a device called "MCE Infrared Remote Control" if you dont see it have a look for "Ehome infrared Receiver" if you find this one. The drivers have not installed correctly. So you will have to use "update driver software" procedure.

    Under "Device Manager" you can find this under "Control Panel -> System -> Device Manager", find the device "Ehome infrared Receiver" under "Universal Serial Bus Controllers". Right click and select "update driver software..." and then select "browse my computer for driver software" then find the folder where you extracted the driver. Then click next and click yes or allow to any prompt that comes up next to allow the driver to install. Once this is installed restart the computer. VERY BIG NOTE RESTART THE COMPUTER!!!! The driver wont work until you restart.

    4) download and extract the MCE Replacment plugin to a folder you can find. THen double click the MCE Replacment Plugin installer. Select your version requirement (Non SVN or SVN) then click on next. Select the folder where you have installed Media Portal and click on install.

    ********* NOTE YOU NEED TO DISABLE MCE Remote support under "Remote" on Media Portal Setup *************
    5) Once you have configured your EPG (either XMLTV or other) and imported it into Media Portal. You then need to tell MP that its a channel that needs to be changed by using IR blasting. Inside mediaPortal Setup click on "Television" -> "TV Channels" then double click the channel and click the last tab "external" and change the channel type from "Received by TV card" to "Received by external Set Top Box" and change the "input Via" to your selected Input and put the channel number you have to change to on your STB. You will have to do this with EVERY channel you want to have setup. So 100 channels may take a while.

    6) To enable the plugin go into MediaPortal Setup and enable the plugin in "Plugins" -> "Process Plugins". Right click the plugin and select "disable" this will enable the plugin. Once it is enabled, right click again and click "configuration". This will bring you into the main configuration screen for the plugin.

    7) in plugin configuration:
    Enable Extended Logging - Tick! (not required but should help as the logging is good)
    Require Focus - Tick! (I found I needed this for the blasting to work)
    Tune External Channels - Tick! (only if you need STB blasting)
    Enable MCE Remote - Tick! (VERY MUCH required!)

    Once the above are done, click on "IR Commands" tab to learn the remote. Click on "New" and type the name of the button you want to learn then click learn. Now place your STB remote as close as possible to the IR receiver and press the button you want to learn. If you get an error message 'failed to learn IR" increase the learning timeout to 4000Milli seconds (thats 4 seconds) in the options tab. You will have to this for the basic buttons on your remote ( 0 - 9 and select ).

    8) Once you have learnt you IR codes. You will need to map them using the "External Channels". THis is quick easy as you just need to map your IR codes to your channels. You can use the quick setup if someone has submitted the ir codes for your STB. Also I found that blasting would not work in Vista with "blaster_Port" was set to both. So change this to your appropriate port.

    9) Once all this is done, you can then close the plugin and test in Live TV inside media portal.

    todo:
    incorporate any feedback or changes
    make a pdf version with pretty pictures.

    If you have any ideas or advice. Please email @ andy dot denley at gmail dot com

    Cheers

    Andy
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. and-81
    • Premium Supporter

    and-81 Retired Team Member

    Joined:
    March 7, 2005
    Messages:
    2,257
    Likes Received:
    183
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    IT Consultant/Developer
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Ratings:
    +183 / 0
    Home Country:
    Australia Australia
    Great guide!

    Thanks mate.

    This is going to help a lot of people I reckon.

    Cheers,
     
  4. andyd
    • Premium Supporter

    andyd MP Donator

    Joined:
    February 2, 2007
    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    0
    Occupation:
    IT Professional
    Location:
    Auckland
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0
    Home Country:
    New Zealand New Zealand
    I hope so mate, coming into this MP clean you can spend hours figuring out what you did wrong.... So hopefully this will help out
     
  5. Flippy
    • Premium Supporter

    Flippy MP Donator

    Joined:
    April 23, 2006
    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    1
    Gender:
    Male
    Ratings:
    +2 / 0
    Home Country:
    Norway Norway
    Hi thanx for the guide but im having problems with the blaster. I have learnd the "codes" succesfully and i can see that the transmitter is sending(blinking) the signal to the stb but it does not respond to the commands its beeing sent. This works well in mce. In mce i have to do every button 2 times. I guess this is so that it can confirm that it read the command correctly. This has in the past been a problem and i had to do it many times for it to accept the key and move on to the next. Is there any way to adjust something here? And how long should i keep the key pressed?

    I have used mediaportal with my stb before and i think i the used a plugin called blaster. I got it working there but it was mutch work.

    please if you can give me som hint on how to get it working it would be great :)

    Flippy
     
  6. wlgspotter

    wlgspotter Portal Pro

    Joined:
    December 3, 2006
    Messages:
    117
    Likes Received:
    7
    Location:
    Auckland
    Ratings:
    +8 / 3
    Home Country:
    New Zealand New Zealand
    Show System Specs
    Hi Flippy:

    Have a look at this thread - https://forum.team-mediaportal.com/mce_replacement_plugin-f165.html

    I was started by me. apparently I've had exactly the same problem you're seeing- and it worked using MyBlaster before.

    However, I've solved my issue by having to :-
    1/ Physically plugging the blaster to port 2 of the MCE IR receiver
    2/ Configure my STB blaster to send out via port_2

    Still dunno why it wouldn't work on port_1 altho it seemed to work under MyBlaster, but at least I got this working.

    Hope it'll help you as well.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. 50chickens

    50chickens Portal Member

    Joined:
    March 4, 2007
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    4
    Ratings:
    +4 / 0
    Home Country:
    Any chance to get this updated for the current versions of MP and the IR Server ?
     
  8. 50chickens

    50chickens Portal Member

    Joined:
    March 4, 2007
    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    4
    Ratings:
    +4 / 0
    Home Country:
    here's the updated howto for the current version of MP and IR Server Suite -

    This applies to the standalone version of MP - eg, the not using TV Server and using the standard MCE remote. I don't know if this cfg will work for other models of remotes. Also, the section on removing the OS handling the ir receiver only applies to Vista. I don't know how it will go with XP Media centre.

    Install MP 0.2.3.0 + latest SVN.

    Install latest IR Server Suite - this can usually be found in the sticky thread in this subforum (MCE Replacement
    Plugin). Make sure you install TV2 Blaster Plugin and Tray Launcher.

    Configure tv card attached to STB in MP. I usually configure my analog card attached to STB as card1. Do not enable the MCE remote option in the remotes section!.

    Go to Process plugins in MP configuration. Enable (if it is not) the MP Control Plugin for IR Server. Also, in the plugin's configuration clear the existing configuration and add the Microsoft MCE (full) remote.

    Under the process plugins -> TV2 Blaster Plugin for IR Server, go to the configuration and configure the blasting commands for your STB.

    Load IR Server Suite -> Input Service Configuration. Enable the send and receive for MCE Remote.

    Follow the instructions in this post to disable the handling of the ir receiver by the OS - https://forum.team-mediaportal.com/214180-post366.html

    Happy blasting.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. petsa
    • Premium Supporter

    petsa MP Donator

    Joined:
    January 23, 2007
    Messages:
    588
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Stockholm
    Ratings:
    +15 / 0
    Home Country:
    Sweden Sweden
    Hi all blasters ;)

    I've had some problems to get the blasting to work with the external amp I'm using. It simpy wouldn't accept the commands I sent.

    I have created a macro to turn off the LCD and the amp. Typically it first blasts "off" to the amp and then to the LCD. More often than not the amp would not recognize the command and just ignore it. The LCD happily accepted it though. Interestingly enough, when I tested the macro from inside MP Config it worked much better than when I used the MCE remote.

    By pure coincidence I reversed the order in the macro and suddenly it was with the LCD I had problems to get it to accept the command.

    Eventually I found the reason; apparantly the amp (and the LCD when I reversed the order in the macro) could not see the difference between the command being sent from the MCE remote to the receiver, and the subsequent command that was blasted from the receiver. Since the commands came right after another the amp (and LCD) got confused and ignore the command. When I added a short pause in the macro before the first blast all problems were gone.

    Hopefully the hours I spent on this can be saved for someone else with similar problems. :)

    /Peter
     
  10. and-81
    • Premium Supporter

    and-81 Retired Team Member

    Joined:
    March 7, 2005
    Messages:
    2,257
    Likes Received:
    183
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    IT Consultant/Developer
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Ratings:
    +183 / 0
    Home Country:
    Australia Australia
    petsa:

    How long a delay did it take before you got reliable results?

    I might hard code a delay in if it helps...

    Cheers,
     
  11. petsa
    • Premium Supporter

    petsa MP Donator

    Joined:
    January 23, 2007
    Messages:
    588
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Stockholm
    Ratings:
    +15 / 0
    Home Country:
    Sweden Sweden
    Hi Aaron,

    I didn't test that many different values, I just picked 500 ms and it works ;)

    /Peter
     
Loading...

Users Viewing Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 0)

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice
  • About The Project

    The vision of the MediaPortal project is to create a free open source media centre application, which supports all advanced media centre functions, and is accessible to all Windows users.

    In reaching this goal we are working every day to make sure our software is one of the best.

             

  • Support MediaPortal!

    The team works very hard to make sure the community is running the best HTPC-software. We give away MediaPortal for free but hosting and software is not for us.

    Care to support our work with a few bucks? We'd really appreciate it!