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Re: help needed with initial use of IrDa and LIRC

On Fri, Mar 16, 2012 at 07:59:54AM -0700, keitho@strucktower.com wrote:
> I have never used IR before, and I thought I'd try to use it on my old
> Dell laptop. I simply want to be able to invoke commands using an
> arbitrary remote.
> I'm confused as to whether I should use IrDa or LIRC, or both. The man
> pages and other docs I've read don't discuss the difference/relationship
> between IrDa and LIRC.

IrDA is basically high-speed data transfer over Infrared. LIRC is a
daemon for talking to Infrared remote controls. Note that most remote
controls DON'T use IrDA, but rather the related CIR (Consumer Infrared).
It's a bit like the difference between a USB mouse and a USB hard drive,
both use USB, but different aspects of it.

> Here's what I've done so far:
> Went into the BIOS and made certain that the Infrared was turned on, set
> it to COM2, Fast IR. Since it doesn't tell me, I assume that COM2 is 0x2f8
> and IRQ3, which AFAIK is associated with ttyS1

Yes, COM2 (windows) is typically ttyS1 (unix).

> Downloaded irda-utils.

Not needed unless you're sending files by IR.

> At some point, not sure when, I noticed that on bootup I was getting this
> message:
> "Loading saved-state of the serial devices. /dev/ttyS0 at I/O 0x3f8 (irq =
> 4) is a 16550A"
> I assume this is the physical RS-232 serial port on the back of the
> laptop. Don't know why this message appears.

This message appears due to the package setserial. It's not relevant to
us here.

> And this message: "Skipping IrDa Service: irattach (not enabled) ... done"
> root@eve:~# irattach /dev/ttyS1 -s
> I loaded the lircd daemon wth this command:
> root@eve:~# lircd -p 0666

OK. This shouldn't typically be necessary. "/etc/init.d/lircd start"
works fine

> Looking at the LIRC webpage I see that the remote that I had wanted to use
> is not supported... it's a SONY RMT-CE100A

That's normal. There are thousands of remote controls. It's not uncommon
to have to make your own config.

> Reading some instructions over the web it seems I could use irrecord to
> create a lircd.conf file for my remote, so I tried:
> keith@eve:~/temp$ sudo irrecord ce100a
> irrecord -  application for recording IR-codes for usage with lirc
> Copyright (C) 1998,1999 Christoph Bartelmus(lirc@bartelmus.de)
> irrecord: could not get file information for /dev/lirc
> irrecord: default_init(): No such file or directory
> irrecord: could not init hardware (lircd running ? --> close it, check
> permissions)
> keith@eve:~/temp$ ps aux | grep lirc
> root      4425  0.0  0.0   3380   384 ?        Ss   22:11   0:00 lircd
> keith     4539  0.0  0.1   3484   764 pts/0    S+   22:14   0:00 grep lirc
> So it seems I need to configure LIRC first, then use irrecord... but I am
> unsure how to do that. Help?

As the error message reports, you need top stop lircd first. Then run
irrecord (I think the reason is that both want direct access to your IR
port), this will produce a file that you can use as /etc/lirc/lird.conf.
Next, check /etc/lirc/hardware.conf is suitable for you, then run
"/etc/init.d/lircd start".

Darac Marjal

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