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Thread: HOWTO: setup the VFD & IR of Zalman HD160 case

  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Re: HOWTO: setup the VFD & IR of Zalman HD160 case

    Quote Originally Posted by falela View Post
    I have recently built my MythTV on Kubuntu Edgy (my first ever linux) in a Zalman HD160 enclosure. This case comes with a VFD/IR module made by IRTrans. I have been googling on how to enable this little piece of hardware, and the only info I found is this.
    IRTrans provides linux drivers on their website. Base on the info from the mythtvtalk forum, and a little bit of messing around with the source code, I finally get the hardwares to work.
    note: all the commands below are for Debian based distro . If you are using other distro, you are on your own, as I don't know anything about their commands.


    If you are using a 64 bit system, download the 32 to 64 bit compatibility libraries:
    sudo apt-get install ia32-libs libc6-i386 libc6-dev-i386
    Get the checkinstall package:
    sudo apt-get install checkinstall
    Install the softwares

    IR Server
    This is the daemon for receiving the IR signal. According to the README, it replaces the lirc daemon, so you can stop the lircd daemon. Since I don't have other IR device, I don't have any issue stopping it. If that is not the case for you, you need to check if this irserver is compatible. The last command below pevents lircd from autostart on boot up.
    cd /etc/init.d
    sudo lirc stop
    sudo update-rc.d -f lirc remove
    Don't uninstall it, as the extra tools offered by lirc, e.g. irw, irexec, are quite useful.

    Download the compiled version of the server. Decompress the package and copy the program (irserver) to /usr/sbin/ directory:
    tar -xvzf irserver.tar.gz
    chmod 766 /path to irserver/irserver
    sudo cp /path to irserver/irserver /usr/sbin
    Create a 'remotes' directory, this is where the server stores the remote control configuration:
    sudo mkdir -p /usr/local/share/irtrans/remotes
    You can create this remotes directory in several other places: /etc/irserver/remotes, /usr/share/irtrans/remotes, or ~/.irtrans/remotes. Putting it where is up to you, but I don't recommend putting it in ~/.irtrans/remotes as the server has no access right to your home during system bootup. Thus, making auto-start fails.
    Note: Make sure you have only one remotes directory (out of the 4 options above) in your system.

    To test run the server, do the following but substitute x with the correct usb port #:
    irserver -codedump -debug_code -loglevel 4 /dev/ttyUSBx
    Press any button on the remote, you should see some printout on the terminal. Now it is time to setup the remote control.

    Learning the remote control
    Download the ASCII client off the IRTrans website. The executable is already included in the zip. With the irserver running, run the irclient:
    cp /path to irclient/
    sudo chmod +x irclient
    sudo ./irclient localhost
    The steps to learn the remote are:
    1. Select "2 - Learn" to start learning.
    2. Select "1 - Select remote", I enter 'Zalman' for mine.
    3. Select "2 - Learn Timing". Just press any button on the remote.(note: I am not sure if this step is necessary.)
    4. For each button on the remote, do "3 - Learn Command [Based on timing]". Enter the command name, then press the button on the remote that maps to this name.
      Note: The server treats the volume knob on your case as 2 IR codes, so you need to learn those as well
    5. After you finish, select "99 - Exit" twice to exit

    Note: I have yet to find out the difference between item 3 (Based on timing) and 4 (Command with timing). If someone know, please drop me a note.

    A Zalman.rem file is created in /usr/local/share/irtrans/remotes/ directory. I include a copy of my Zalman.rem config here, in case you don't want to mess with this learning part. I also have a lircrc to use with MythTV. I grabbed this off the web, and make some changes to match my button names. (thanks Jarod Wilson and Hugo van der Kooij for the config file). Copy the lircrc to ~/.mythtv/ directory.
    These configs are by no mean perfect. You certainly need to tweak it to suit your need.

    Remove the .txt extension from these files before using them.
    Attachment 19804
    Attachment 19805

    LCD daemon
    This is actually a forked version of the lcdProc package, so uninstall lcdproc if you have it:
    sudo apt-get uninstall lcdproc
    Download the IRTrans lcdproc driver source code and untar it:
    tar -xvzf /path to saved tar/lcdproc.tar.gz
    Configure with the irtrans driver, compile and install:
    cd /path to saved tar/lcdproc
    ./configure --enable-drivers=irtrans
    sudo checkinstall
    checkinstall will ask you some questions about the package (lcdproc). Just enter lcdproc in the description field. The default version number is messed up (don't know why), change it back to 0.4.3.

    The daemon LCDd is installed in /usr/local/sbin, and the client lcdproc is in /usr/local/bin

    Using checkinstall to install giving you the ability to uninstall it with your distribution's standard package management utilities(Adept or Synaptic).

    Modify the LCD configuration file, it is in the same directory you type checkinstall in. Use your favorite editor, I use nano here:
    nano LCDd.conf
    Find this entry in the [server] section and make the change:
    Chnage other settings (Heartbeat, backlight) according to your preference.

    Copy this file to the /etc directory:
    sudo cp /path to saved tar/lcdproc/LCDd.conf /etc

    Make the servers autostart

    You can auto start modules by putting the sysV init script in /etc/init.d directory. Use /etc/init.d/skeleton as a template. Here are the 2 scripts I use, remove the .txt extension and copy them to /etc/inid.d/.
    Attachment 19808
    Attachment 19807

    sudo cp irserver /etc/init.d
    sudo cp LCDd /etc/init.d
    Make the scripts executable:
    sudo chmod 766 /etc/init.d/irserver
    sudo chmod 766 /etc/init.d/LCDd
    Make them autorun when boot up:
    sudo update-rc.d -f irserver start 97 2 3 4 5 .
    sudo update-rc.d -f LCDd start 98 2 3 4 5 .
    Notes the . at the end. I set the scripts with sequence codes 97 and 98, so that irserver script starts before LCDd script (LCDd depends on irserver).

    Reboot and check if these 2 daemons start:
    ps -e | grep LCDd
    ps -e | grep irserver

    Run mythfrontend, go to Setup > Apperance > LCD device display. Enable LCD device. That's it

    Can I use this HOWTO for Vlsys M-PLAY 202 Plus?


  2. #42
    Join Date
    Aug 2012

    Re: HOWTO: setup the VFD & IR of Zalman HD160 case

    Thank you very much for this very useful tutorial.

    I am using XBMC and the only step to complete to make the remote work with XMBC was to update the /usr/share/xbmc/system/Lircmap.xml file.

    I have used your sample Zalman.rem file for irtrans configuration. Copied the remote section for mediacenter remote and changed the device to zalman.

    <remote device="mediacenter"> ... </remote>
    <remote device="zalman"> ... </remote>
    I also enabled "remote sends keyboard presses" in XBMC -> System -> System -> Input settings.

    Works like a charm. Ubuntu 12.4, XMBC 11 and Zalman 160 with irtrans.

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