IR blasting: basic steps?

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Linuxgrrl
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IR blasting: basic steps?

Post by Linuxgrrl » Wed Jan 06, 2021 5:02 pm

I just bought a Hauppauge HD-PVR. My set top box is an Arris VMS1100. I did not choose a cable card solution because one of the stations I want to record is DRM'd.
The Arris does not have a firewire port and my Googling has turned up no examples of channel change scripts for it. So I guess I need to get my hands dirty :) Please bear with me as I review the basic steps from my research. Does this sound right?
1. Verify through dmesg that the Hauppauge's IR receiver and transmitter are properly "seen"
2. Install lirc. I have seen mentions that the current version of lirc is broken (see https://twosortoftechguys.wordpress.com ... ntu-18-04/) and others mention that it may not even support blasting. So ... I assume I should install the downgraded version of lirc?

3. Configure lirc - this is where I'm a little confused. Am I configuring lirc for the FIOS remote (i.e. the blasting?) Or is there any reason that I have to configure a regular remote to control Myth, like the Hauppauge, first? I don't plan on using the Hauppauge remote at all. Seems like it might be too confusing to have 2 remotes configured (a blast and a receive). what's the right move here?

4. Use irrecord to grab the codes from my FIOS remote
5. Test the changing of channels with this script https://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Change-channel-lirc.pl combined with my lircd.conf for the FIOS remote
6. Point mythbackend-setup to the channel change script

One question - in addition to the general correctness of my approach: how will the blaster turn on the Arris? If it just sends the "power" button, it seems that could either turn it on or off depending on what state it's in.
TIA

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bill6502
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Re: IR blasting: basic steps?

Post by bill6502 » Wed Jan 06, 2021 8:50 pm

Been ages since I've used a blaster, but it didn't require a remote. Rather, the capture
card I had also had a jack that an IR blaster plugged into. Just a plug/wire/LED like ir
light.

Sorry, I don't have anything to test with. There is a mythtv-setup per-capture-card option
to add an external changer script. There is a "Startup command" that runs when
the backend is started, so a command/test to see if a device is powered on could
be done once. Or in the external changer script, every time a channel was changed.
It may be necessary to see if your Arris device has a discrete code for 'power on' as
opposed to a toggle.

Hints:
https://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Hauppauge_H ... wer_Status
https://www.mythtv.org/wiki/Hauppauge_H ... er_Support

Personally, I used a https://www.globalcache.com/products/gc-100/ so that I could
control the blaster via my LAN. Not clear if it's even sold anymore.

I had to get my cable box's remote codes from here: http://www.remotecentral.com .
This is what was sent just for the digit 0:

Code: Select all

'342,169,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,83,21,1630,342,83,21,3393,342,83,21,3887'
.

Maybe lirc is easier, I just don't recall using it.

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pgbennett
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Re: IR blasting: basic steps?

Post by pgbennett » Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:51 pm

When I was recording from a cable box I used and iguanaworks transmitter https://www.iguanaworks.net/products/us ... ansceiver/ . It worked well but was very painful to set up. It used lirc but I had to compile lirc myself to include the iguanaworks driver. I still have notes I made at the time if you are interested.

For turning on the box I developed a complicated script that would receive a few seconds of video then check it to see if the data was valid. If not the box was off and it would send the power button. If there was a valid stream it would know the box was already on.

gnurocks
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Re: IR blasting: basic steps?

Post by gnurocks » Thu Jan 07, 2021 5:06 pm

Your basic list of steps looks fine. If you plan to use the Hauppauge remote then, yes, you will need a distinct conf file to manage Mythtv and a separate conf file to blast FIOS remote things to your Arris.

I use a Tira-2 IR Transceiver: https://home-electro.com/products/tira-21. The Lirc version that's packaged with Ubuntu Mate 20.04 (Lirc 0.10x?) works just great on my test rig.

I'm the author of the wiki that's located here: https://www.mythtv.org/wiki/IR_Blaster_ ... able_Setup

I obviously need to update it since systemd and the new Lirc changed things a bit, with respect to where things go. I'll try to get to that this weekend.

Linuxgrrl
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Re: IR blasting: basic steps?

Post by Linuxgrrl » Sat Jan 09, 2021 2:49 pm

Thank you everyone for your suggestions. I'm so excited about this project and the links have been helpful.
After an hour's work I have already hurdled the unexpected wall at step 1 (or 0.1) ... my FIOS box was not putting video out the component jacks.
It turns out you have to change the Arris box from 700p to 700i and then it will give you component video. Random.
Onward and upward ...

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