Harmony 900 remote + Ubuntu - how ?

I'm quite new to XBMC (and this forum) so please bear over with me if i ask questions that might seem oxymoron Shocked
Oh .. and please excuse my English, my native language is Danish

My better half and i decided to exchange out old HTPC with Palmbutler for a newer solution, and we fell in love with a nice little Eee eb1012, it came with Windows7 which we promptly got rid of and installed Ubuntu 9.10 instead.
Installation of XBMC went extremely smooth, i must admit that i had feared that it would take some tinkering, happy to admit i was wrong.

In any case we would like to get rid of the 5-7 remotes that we have now and have seen the Harmony 900 which would meet our needs in regard to our TV, DVD, Dreambox and so on, and i have read through the posts that i could find that i could find.
My questions; As far as i can understand Harmony remotes are used by some here, but do anyone here have a setup with Linux (Ubuntu) and the Harmony 900 remote ?
What would be the best way to use the remote, by IR or by RF - if indeed RF is possible ?
I'm not even sure if the Harmony 900 comes with a RF receiver, anyone know? if not, any suggestions ?

I think I'll stop the flow of questions here, and hope that there's a generous soul here that can help Big Grin
There's really noone here who can/wants to answer ?
I think the delay in responses is due to how generic your question is.

First, you'll need something to get the remote signals to your PC. i.e. an IR Receiver A MCE compatible USB adapater is likely the easiest to setup and can be purchased for $20 or less. Search the forums for suggestions on which may be best.

Once physically installed you'll need to install and configure LIRC to accept the input from the IR Receiver into Linux. There are sticky's and several forum posts on how to do this.

The Harmony can be configured as a Windows Media PC or KLS VDR as the device type. Once it is configured and LIRC is properly accepting the input from the remote you just need to configure Lircmap.xml and Keymap.xml. Again, there are sticky's and other forum posts that go into detail on how to configure these.
In my opinion, your best bet is an IR keyboard and receiver. I use this with a Harmony 880 and it truly replaces all of my remotes. Also, the harmony will learn any command you type on the keyboard including multi-keys such as alt-ctrl-x so you can use Ubuntu's keyboard shortcuts to do things like start xbmc, reboot, etc...

Something like below will do the trick and there's no need to mess with Lirc or other event handlers.


I have an older airboard keyboard and IR receiver and it works like a charm!

Good luck
Someone told me that the XBMC Live CD took care of all the LIRC stuff, not sure since I have never used it.

If you decide to use Windows it is as simple as installing EventGhost and you are done.

IR issues is why I'm not using XBMC on Linux. Maybe I'll try again some day but for now I decided to spend my time using XBMC and not trying to get it to accept IR.
I'm not an expert but I play one at work.
@sgeoxd: heh, i did say that I'm quite new in this field. Thank you for your responce, i had little idea about what questions to ask, your post gave me some great answers, and an idea of what questions to ask next, all though i'll wait to i have looked your suggestion through. thanx :-)

@bobrico: Thanx for the info, am i to understand that you use both an IR keyboard and a harmony 800 ?
I like the 900 because of the RF, with that i would be able to put away all (or most) of my gear and still be able to control it.

@Livin: well i seems like linux and xbmc goes hand in hand, and that IR isent such a big problem, i only wonder if RF would be as easy to implement, but thanx for your input.

I do have a logitech Harmony with RF Extender however, the RF extender is just a box, that translates one-way RF signals to IR (there are some wired transmitter LED what can be connected to the RF remote receiver and one can plece them near the IR Eye of the HiFi / TV devices - so in the End it is still IR the "last inches".

The Goal is just to control devices behind walls or warderobes...

I doubt there is no compatible RF receiver, that can be directly plugged in to an USB Port or so.

As far as I know in some countries there are power sockets, that can be controlled using RF directly with the Harmony - but havenot seen them yet.

I Use for Power management a jbmedia scony IR 2 RF 443MHz called LightManager.
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Harmony 900 remote + Ubuntu - how ?00