[mythtv-users] Several Items: Remote, IR Receiver, Fedora 9, etc.

Douglas Wagner douglasw0 at gmail.com
Fri Apr 18 02:27:38 UTC 2008

First, apologies for the new thread on this and the number of items in it, I
wasn't sure if I should create separate threads for the topics
or consolidate, I went with the "less traffic to the list" option, hope no
one minds.
In about a month I'm going to be going through my yearly "re-do the PVR"
routine, no it really doesn't need it but given I'm about 3 versions of
fedora behind and a whole release of Myth I figured what the hey you're
redoing other machines at the same time anyway.

So I'm trying to fix some issues and look at replacing some of the things I
wanted to do better with my last install.

Questions:  First, has anyone tried Myth with one of the beta/pre-release
versions of Fedora 9?  I know we're about a month away (I expect 9 to ship
right around the time I start this project) from it's release and I'm trying
to figure out if I should "blaze the trail" so to speak with a new setup or
go with Fedora 8...I kinda hate being a version of software behind at the
git-go but on the other hand I have 2 weeks to get the WAF back up to at
least where it is now.  Opinions?  8?  9?  I'm mostly worried about the
support for things like LIRC and NVidia drivers...I guess I could simply
custom compile everything but the RPM upgrade concept is really nice.  I've
only used the binary installations of LIRC, Myth and NVidia drivers, I
assume each component can be compiled separately?  I.e. I can use an RPM
install of Myth .21 but custom compile the LIRC and NVIDIA binaries myself?
 This would give me a stopgap till packages become available for Fedora
9...or hell maybe just keep that stuff compiled and not worry so much about
upgrading the kernel and having the drivers not available.

Second question: IR Receivers.  I posted to the list a while back (several
months in fact) about an odd issue I was having with my IR Receiver.  I have
a home brew (purchased from someone) IR serial receiver.  In the evening
times it basically stops working.  I've run the mode2 command on it to see
what it's outputting and it's really odd...in essence my receiver gets
BOMBARDED with IR at nights when the lights in the house are "dim" (i.e.
only one light on) where as during the day there's GENERALLY no issue.
 Basically I can shield the IR eye and it'll stop spamming the screen with
output and when I release it starts up again.  Frankly I have no idea where
i'd be getting IR signals from.  I've gone so far as to shut down just about
everything in my living room (lights, fan, whatever) and I still can't
figure it out.  Part of me wonders if my IR receiver has gone bad or wasn't
well made or got chewed up by a cat or whatever...shorting out or something.
 SO (long lead up, short question) can someone recommend a serial/usb IR
receiver I can purchase that works well?  I'm not really interested in the
"combo" receivers and Remotes (see next question) like the MS stuff.
 Recommendations?  BTW my media center case is not visible in the
entertainment center (heated up WAY too much when I put it in a cubby of my
entertainment center...not enough opening for intake) so whatever the
recommendation it's going to have to be able to sit outside the PC case.

Third: Remotes.  I know there's 20 zillion choices and all of them will
work.  I had a OTA Remote that I loved for it's usability (one of the 8
device ones) but one of the kids dropped it and now there's rattling inside
the case.  To be honest it still works tho it feels like the range of the
remote has gone down significantly and loose plastic pieces rattling around
on the inside simply can't be good even if it does work...i've not tried to
either re-program it or like update it or re-learn keys or anything
and I'm guessing it's some function of that nature that's busted...got to be
something.  So, I'm looking at new remotes.  Anyone have experience with the
Logitech Harmony 520/550?  I can't really go that expensive and I'm going to
have to do some "creative shuffling" with the cash in my personal account to
get this one without the wife getting upset so going beyond the 99$ price
tag is just not an option...I even feel funny paying 100$ for a remote
control.  I could probably pick up another OTA remote of what i've got but
the "upgrade" bug has got me and I'm wondering if the Harmony's are all
they're supposed to be cut out to be...not to mention the added WAF of her
being able to press a "watch DVR" button and it automatically swapping
inputs on the TV and pulling up the Myth box...the "power it all off at
once" thing would work well for her also...she's not a technophobe by any
means but is one of those "just make it work" kinds of people.  Anyone have
tips on setting them up for myth if you're using one?  Also, as a "side
project" anyone know of a good, learning, small remote, something that'll
control say 3 - 4 devices and is "small" in size (doesn't need a whole lot
of features).  I'd like to get a remote for the kids to use so that they
don't have to go touching (and thus breaking) daddy's 100$ remote...but any
remote they use would HAVE to be able to control Myth and switch the inputs
on the television and for that I need something learning (not to mention two
different remotes would have to be able to send the same signals to the IR
receiver), yet not complicated...yea, I know I'm asking a hell of a lot

I think that's about it for now, sorry about the length and the multiple
questions, eagerly awaiting your opinions...

--Douglas Wagner
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