notes for remote control support for mirofullscreen on linux

Note: This is an old post in a blog with a lot of posts. The world has changed, technologies have changed, and I've changed. It's likely this is out of date and not representative. Let me know if you think this is something that needs updating.

I spent the greater part of today adding remote control support to the Miro Fullscreen project. I thought I'd do a write up on it because there are a lot of pieces involved and it took me ages to figure it out and I'm paranoid I'll forget.

Quick caveats:

  • I'm doing this on Ubuntu Intrepid (8.10). If you want to translate this to your favorite distribution, feel free to add any notes in the comments.

  • If you're using OSX or Windows and want to know how to get things working there, I have no idea how to do it and that's not going to be covered here.

  • I used a StreamZap remote and didn't try it with other remotes.

  • This is a set of notes; it's not a good essay and I'm definitely not an expert.


I installed three packages: lirc, python-pylirc, and gnome-lirc-properties.

sudo apt-get install lirc python-pylirc gnome-lirc-properties


lirc has a web-site at I had no idea what I was looking at while wandering aimlessly through that site. I think the important pages are these:


The only useful site I could find for this project was at It says that Paul Hummer took over the project and moved it to, but that's a dead link. I found Paul's blog at He uses tagging on his blog, but there's only one article tagged as pylirc2 at I couldn't find anything useful about pylirc, the project, its status, or what's going on. Paul suggests he was going to add LIRC support to Entertainer, but it doesn't look like he ever did that.

Anyhow, so I ended up going with the documentation on and that seemed to work out ok.


I don't know if I really needed gnome-lirc-properties.

The .lircrc file

So you install the three (or two--depending on whether gnome-lirc-properties is really needed) packages and you create a .lircrc file like this:

    prog   = mirofullscreen
    button = MUTE
    config = n
    prog   = mirofullscreen
    button = VOL_UP
    config = Up
    prog   = mirofullscreen
    button = VOL_DOWN
    config = Down
    prog   = mirofullscreen
    button = UP
    config = Up

where prog is the string you pass to pylirc.init, button comes from the remote control lirc file and config is the string you add handling for in your application.

the Python code

The sample code at gave me enough of an idea on how it worked to implement the code in Miro Fullscreen.

In closing

Hope that's useful to someone at some point.

Want to comment? Send an email to willkg at bluesock dot org. Include the url for the blog entry in your comment so I have some context as to what you're talking about.