Author Topic: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?  (Read 2225 times)

freymann

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I've been fiddling now for at least 4 hours and I'm completely lost.

On my core, I have a Microsoft MCE 2005 Remote with the USB IR Transceiver.

It appears fine in the Admin page, Media Director, and uses mce_usb2.

The remote itself is working fine in LinuxMCE and partially in MythTV, but I want/need it to control my Bell ExpressVU Receiver.

In the admin, I've managed to add an interface..

#47, Lirc embedded Transmitter, in the RecRoom, controlled by mce_usb2.

So now I go to A/V Equipment, Select RecRoom, and add device.

For Manufacturer, I select EchoStar (80)

Under Device Category, I select Satellite Boxes < AV (108)

Apply Filter comes up with nothing.

So I Add Device Template.

Provide Model Number 4700 with infrared. Click Next.

Next on delays.

Next on how to tune.

single toggle button, next.

Then for

#1 - My device does not have multiple input sources, it only provides this 1 type of media

I choose "Live TV" and next

My device doesn't have DSP Modes, next.

And then I get a few notices on the core saying the device was added but some config files are missing and need to be downloaded from the internet later. Then eventually you are told to regen.

Now I have

Pick the Infrared Group that works for your device

and there's nothing in there that matches/works. (well, one of my tests but it doesn't do anything)

So I type in an infrared group, like Bell Black Remote, and add IR Group button.

And now I'm here:

Edit IR codes
WARNING: the changes will afect all devices created from device template 4700.
Device Template 4700, category Satellite Boxes and manufacturer Echostar.   
Delays: Power: 7000 miliseconds, Mode: 2000 miliseconds, Other: 0.25 miliseconds [change/explain]   
Tuning: No fixed digits
  • terminate with enter [change/explain]   

Power: Toggle [change/explain]   
Inputs Discrete: [change/explain]   
DSP Modes Discrete: [change/explain]
This device is controlled via: LIRC Embedded Transmitter
Uses Group/Codeset: Bell Black Remote
Implement Command Groups:
I check off
EPG (TV/Cbl/Sat) Control
On-Screen Menu Navigation
Click Update

And now I get a screen where I can type in the IR codes I assume?

Each of the input lines are empty, and I have the desired command on the left, the input line, and delete or test code buttons.

This is where I'm lost. What it is looking for? Where can I find the codes?

I've searched and read and been to other sites and I'm more confused than ever.

I opened up a Terminal window and ran:

irrecord -f --device=/dev/lircd test.conf

and pressed some keys and then I get:

-no data for 10 seconds, aborting
-gap not found, can't continue

Also today, which is my 4th day tinkering with LinuxMCE, at 1:24pm I once again had no keyboard or mouse control. I had to tell it to power down. Then I powered back up. I notice it always says Failed to get IVTV drivers. Odd, since I can see in the dmesg display there really are there?

I do my tinkering, and by 2:16pm, I can't load the admin page. The core is doing weird things, I have my first HARD RESET of the day (I had at least 3 yesterday).

And why is it, when I go to the KDE screen, and then want to get back to the orbiter, most times if I click on the orbiterGL box, nothing happens? I have to regen in order for it to appear. Sometimes I have to power down.

I think I've done pretty darned good over the last 3 days. But if i can't control the dish, this system is completely useless to us.



 




tschak909

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2008, 05:38:58 pm »
you can choose to either Learn the code (this will be available for your mce ir blaster very soon), or
you can enter in a Pronto code (you can google for pronto codes for your reciever).

I use a USB UIRT (and a GC-100) both of which are supported as Learning devices in LMCE, so I am able to add support for a new device in about 5 minutes.

-Thom

freymann

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2008, 08:31:04 pm »
you can choose to either Learn the code (this will be available for your mce ir blaster very soon), or
you can enter in a Pronto code (you can google for pronto codes for your reciever).

 Searching for pronto codes brings up a lot of stuff, of which, since I don't know what I'm supposed to be looking for, is all rather strange.

 I keep seeing remotecentral.com but their *.ccf files are binary.

 I found this, which I thought may be helpful:

Quote
begin codes
          info                     0x0000000000000000
          power                    0x0000000000000800
          play                     0x0000000000000C10
          1                        0x0000000000001000
          2                        0x0000000000001400
          3                        0x0000000000001800
          frwd                     0x0000000000001C10
          4                        0x0000000000002000
          5                        0x0000000000002400
          6                        0x0000000000002800
          menu                     0x0000000000002C00
          7                        0x0000000000003000
          8                        0x0000000000003400
          9                        0x0000000000003800
          ffwd                     0x0000000000003C10
          select                   0x0000000000004000
          0                        0x0000000000004400
etc...

 And I pasted that into the admin screen but still nothing.

 I'm at a complete loss here. Since I can't record the key presses from the remote that came with the receiver, I can't be sure of anything right now.

 Making this work is one of the last things I need to do before I can say, "there! it works!"  To get stalled on what should be a simple step makes my last 4 or 5 days of pissing around seem like a total waste of time and effort. Oh well, it is what it is.

tschak909

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2008, 09:11:10 pm »
those are not pronto codes...

pronto codes are groups of four hex digits, and yes, the pronto codes that you'll find, are in CCF format... there are tools to extract this information if needed...

however

I would SERIOUSLY recommend getting a usb-uirt, and using the learn feature on it to get your IR codes. It is the most painless option, and you'll be up and running in roughly 10 minutes.

-Thom

I would also recommend getting a Xantech 286 double IR emitter in addition.


freymann

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2008, 09:25:44 pm »
those are not pronto codes...

pronto codes are groups of four hex digits, and yes, the pronto codes that you'll find, are in CCF format... there are tools to extract this information if needed...

 Thanks. That gives me a little more info to go on at least.

Quote
I would SERIOUSLY recommend getting a usb-uirt, and using the learn feature on it to get your IR codes. It is the most painless option, and you'll be up and running in roughly 10 minutes.

 Something that can be done in 10 minutes? holy cow batman!

 But seriously...

 It's $50 + shipping for the USB-UIRT, PLUS the cost of yet another emitter?. What happens with the existing USB IR Transceiver that the MCE remote uses? sell them on eBay? or does it just stays there too? or would it take the place of the MCE USB thingy?

 Crap, I'd have to buy two of those things, one for upstairs, and one for downstairs.

 I specifically bought the Hauppage PVR-150-MCE's that included the remote and USB IR Transceivers so "it would work"

 Am I mistaken in thinking that these work fine in MythTV or would I have the same problem?

Quote
I would also recommend getting a Xantech 286 double IR emitter in addition.

 Nice, more money.

 I think I'm up to $1200 CDN in equipment now for a core and two media directors. And to think I had simple samba shares, Tversity (on Vista) or TwonkyVision (on ubuntu) as the server software connected on the LAN to two D-Link DSM320's working just fine.. with web access to any other device in the house, and gave that all up for the thrill and disappointments that await me with LinuxMCE. At least, for now, I can still chuckle over it. My wife thinks I've completely lost it.  ???

tschak909

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2008, 09:29:57 pm »
those are not pronto codes...

pronto codes are groups of four hex digits, and yes, the pronto codes that you'll find, are in CCF format... there are tools to extract this information if needed...

 Thanks. That gives me a little more info to go on at least.

Quote
I would SERIOUSLY recommend getting a usb-uirt, and using the learn feature on it to get your IR codes. It is the most painless option, and you'll be up and running in roughly 10 minutes.

 Something that can be done in 10 minutes? holy cow batman!

 But seriously...

 It's $50 + shipping for the USB-UIRT, PLUS the cost of yet another emitter?. What happens with the existing USB IR Transceiver that the MCE remote uses? sell them on eBay? or does it just stays there too? or would it take the place of the MCE USB thingy?

 Crap, I'd have to buy two of those things, one for upstairs, and one for downstairs.

 I specifically bought the Hauppage PVR-150-MCE's that included the remote and USB IR Transceivers so "it would work"

 Am I mistaken in thinking that these work fine in MythTV or would I have the same problem?

Quote
I would also recommend getting a Xantech 286 double IR emitter in addition.

 Nice, more money.

 I think I'm up to $1200 CDN in equipment now for a core and two media directors. And to think I had simple samba shares, Tversity (on Vista) or TwonkyVision (on ubuntu) as the server software connected on the LAN to two D-Link DSM320's working just fine.. with web access to any other device in the house, and gave that all up for the thrill and disappointments that await me with LinuxMCE. At least, for now, I can still chuckle over it. My wife thinks I've completely lost it.  ???


you know.. I really love it when people don't follow our hardware recommendations, and then have the balls to complain...

LinuxMCE is _A LOT MORE THAN MYTHTV_

if you want just TV and media control. Install MythTV, and be happy.

This system does so much more than that, but for now, the hardware selection is more constricted, and it will be until we have more people jump on to help develop the necessary software wrappers for plug and play support for more devices..

Yes, more money, the devices I am telling you about, WORK OUT OF THE BOX.  Please stop assuming things, and if you really want help with your hardware, jump onto the chat session so you can talk to us, we can help you.

-Thom

freymann

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2008, 09:46:02 pm »
Quote
you know.. I really love it when people don't follow our hardware recommendations, and then have the balls to complain...

And after reading and researching, I was led to believe support for the IR Transceiver was here.

But that's an issue with this thing. Documentation is hard to find and many times there are different versions saying different things. And you wonder why I have the balls to complain?

I'm trying to find answers to questions, and for some reason everybody speaks in tongue here.

Quote
LinuxMCE is _A LOT MORE THAN MYTHTV_
if you want just TV and media control. Install MythTV, and be happy.

Yep, and that's why I started with LinuxMCE in the first place.

Quote
Yes, more money, the devices I am telling you about, WORK OUT OF THE BOX.  Please stop assuming things, and if you really want help with your hardware, jump onto the chat session so you can talk to us, we can help you.

Well, I guess, other than the IR Transceivers, my choice of equipment has been correct so far. Yes, if you search my other posts, I used a one-NIC configuration (oh boo scary), and again, I did that because the documentation said I could! Thank goodness I received help from somebody last night who steered me in yet another direction, which works (my media directors can now boot).

I never thought to enter the chat session thing. That would have likely saved me some panic time over the weekend.


freymann

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2008, 03:32:19 am »
I would SERIOUSLY recommend getting a usb-uirt, and using the learn feature on it to get your IR codes. It is the most painless option, and you'll be up and running in roughly 10 minutes.
I would also recommend getting a Xantech 286 double IR emitter in addition.

 Ok...

 Is this the proper USB-UIRT to buy? I think I need the 56Khz to appease my 4700 receiver...

http://www.usbuirt.com/overview.htm

 And the Xantech 286...

 This one?

http://www.futurehomesystems.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=FHS&Product_Code=XN-286M

 or this one:

http://www.smarthome.com/8172.html

 Would the ones that plug into the MCE transceiver work? (ducks)

 I will be ready to order these soon.. they are the last piece of the puzzle I require.


tschak909

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2008, 06:51:33 am »
I would SERIOUSLY recommend getting a usb-uirt, and using the learn feature on it to get your IR codes. It is the most painless option, and you'll be up and running in roughly 10 minutes.
I would also recommend getting a Xantech 286 double IR emitter in addition.

 Ok...

 Is this the proper USB-UIRT to buy? I think I need the 56Khz to appease my 4700 receiver...

http://www.usbuirt.com/overview.htm

 And the Xantech 286...

 This one?

http://www.futurehomesystems.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=FHS&Product_Code=XN-286M

 or this one:

http://www.smarthome.com/8172.html

 Would the ones that plug into the MCE transceiver work? (ducks)

 I will be ready to order these soon.. they are the last piece of the puzzle I require.



yup, that is the USB UIRT.

yup, the Xantechs shown there will work, they're both the same thing. as for ones that work with the mce transciever? I'm not sure, if they are standard mono jacks, then yes they will.

We'll get you up and running man, promise.
-Thom

freymann

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2008, 12:46:55 pm »
Quote
yup, that is the USB UIRT.

yup, the Xantechs shown there will work, they're both the same thing. as for ones that work with the mce transciever? I'm not sure, if they are standard mono jacks, then yes they will.

 Yes, the things that come with the mce transceiver have a little mono jack that connects to the bean bag. I suppose I could order a couple of the USB-UIRT's and if the MCE things don't work, then buy the Xantechs, and I won't bitch and moan about it either. ;-)

Quote
We'll get you up and running man, promise.

 Thanks Thom. It's pretty well up and running now, like I say, the remote control thing is important.

 I've tested booting up demo media directors, and the real things (2 of them) will be installed later this week (just waiting on a few more parts to arrive).

 Also coming is some X10 Home Automation equipment to get me started.

 I'll likely be ordering the USB UIRT's by week's end.

 I have continued to keep a log of my activity and the core's activity. There are still a few odd things happening that require either soft or hard resets I'll itemize later. I think once I settle down and start "using" the system (instead of tweaking, tinkering) then it will run smoother. I'll keep you posted, and thanks for not giving up on me.

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Re: How do I control a Bell ExpressVU Dish Receiver with the remotes?
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2008, 12:50:57 pm »
for your lighting control, you may wish to look at Insteon, and/or ZWave..both of these technologies are comparatively priced, and much more reliable. The ZWave is plug and play, unlike the X-10.

The Insteon driver is bi-directional (messages from a light switch, etc, will propagate back to the system), and much faster/more reliable. and Insteon by design can communicate with X-10. It is available from SmartHome, the link you gave above.

other I/O devices I recommend, the GC-100, is great for both AV and relay I/O control (I have one attached to a combination of my door contacts, window contacts, and window drape motors)

I both develop code for this system, as well as use it extensively. I literally have one of everything that works well with this system, and have tried loads of devices that currently don't (but will work later.) I know precisely what works and what doesn't, and hopefully with mine and other user's help here, we can get you running.

-Thom
« Last Edit: March 11, 2008, 12:53:11 pm by tschak909 »