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Programming Keyboard Commands into a Harmony Remote
Previous | Next by elfie 06 May, 2010 - 5:58 AM

So I successfully completed my "get my PC onto my TV from 25 feet away" project for a grand total of $31.14. I'm very happy with it. The ONLY drawback is that I need to hit a keyboard command in order to switch my video output to the HDMI. While most things I'd be doing with the PC (ie Gaming) will require me to grab the keyboard anyway, sometimes I might want to do something Media Center-y that I would otherwise be able to do using JUST the remote.

I've got the Logitech Harmony 880, which is a very fancy programmable remote. And I've got a USB IR receiver for my PC. Unfortunately the Harmony database only has IR commands for things that would normally appear on a Media Center remote, which would NOT include a full keyboard. I can think of two solutions and I'm not really sure how to go about either one.

Solution 1) I could teach the Harmony keyboard commands. Generally the only way to teach the Harmony new commands is to already have a device that sends those commands and point it at the Harmony. I'm not trying to buy an IR keyboard just to teach my remote new commands though. If I knew a device to look up in the Harmony database that already did this, I might be able to teach it that way, but I'm not sure what to look for and I'm not sure the IR receiver would understand the signal.

Solution 2) The Media Center receiver already understands several commands I don't really need, like "Guide" or "Live TV." If I could re-purpose those commands in Windows so that they would be translated into keyboard shortcuts, I could just send commands that the Harmony already knows, but let Windows interpret them differently. I couldn't find any way to do this in Windows Media Center though.

Any Windows Media Center or Logitech Harmony experts out there who might have any idea how to accomplish either of these tasks?

5/6/2010 >> elfie

I hate when I spend several hours trying to figure something out, fail, then spend an hour typing up my woes on DTC, only to discover the solution myself 15 minutes later...

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