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Debian Squeeze or Wheezy - e17 + Lirc & XBMC
Posted by dammitjim on Wed 13 Apr 2011 at 15:47

    This might sound silly and it might sound like this is the wrong place to post this, but I haven't really found a place out there that gives you steps to get lirc and XBMC running on Squeeze or Wheezy. I have successfully gotten this to work and there isn't really a difference between the two releases (up until April 8, 2011).

    So, here is my setup:

- Net install of Squeeze or Wheezy (beginner installation mode). I installed this with the default packages minus the graphical interface because I wanted this to use a pure e17 window manager.
- The machines that I tested on all had NVIDIA cards, so there was the extra step to get that working (see appendix A)
- The IR Remote and USB IR Receiver is the Windows Media Center Remote (

    Ok, here are the steps I followed. If I missed any details, please let me know so I can update this. Oh, and for the sake of this example, we'll use Debian Squeeze.
1) Install e17
    a) Download from
b) Install all the required packages as root or sudo:
    apt-get install subversion autoconf automake1.9 autotools-dev autoconf-archive gettext libtool libfreetype6-dev libjpeg62-dev libpng12-dev libtiff4-dev libungif4-dev libbz2-dev libltdl3-dev pkg-config libxine-dev build-essential flex bison byacc libxcursor-dev libcurl4-gnutls-dev libtag1-dev sqlite libxml2-dev libsqlite3-dev libxslt1.1 libxslt1-dev giblib1 giblib-dev libtool libtagc0-dev libmpd1 libmpd-dev libxcomposite-dev libxcomposite1 libxdamage-dev libxdamage1 libxkbfile-dev libxkbfile1 libxkbfile-dev libxkbfile1 libdbus-1-dev libtheora-dev libpopt-dev libglib2.0-dev libfontconfig1-dev libxrandr-dev libasound2-dev libxinerama-dev cvs automake libgstreamer0.10-dev menu menu-xdg xdg-utils liblua5.1-0-dev dbus-x11 libiptcdata-dev libexif-dev libpam-dev mesa-common-dev libudev-dev x-window-system slim
c) As root or sudo, run: bash -i (to install e17)
d) Follow the instructions at the end of the script's output
e) Set the path (the following steps are as the regular user): export PATH=\"$install_path/bin:\$PATH\"
f) Create /home/me/.xsession with 'exec /opt/e17/bin/enlightenment_start' (w/o quotes)
g) Create the symbolic link: ln -s ~/.xsession ~/.xinitrc h) To start e17, do: startx
2) Once e17 is installed, we can move on to the lirc install:
    a) Figure out what your kernel version is: uname -a (in my case: Linux myMachine 2.6.32-5-686 #1 SMP Tue Mar 8 21:36:00 UTC 2011 i686 GNU/Linux)
b) Install the appropriate packages as root or sudo:
    apt-get update
apt-get install linux-source-2.6.32 linux-headers-2.6.32-5-686 build-essential
c) All the following steps need to be performed as root or sudo: cd /usr/src
d) tar xvjf linux-source-2.6.32.tar.bz2
e) ln -s /usr/src/linux-source-2.6.32 /usr/src/linux
f) cd linux
g) make oldconfig
h) make menuconfig
i) make include/linux/version.h
j) make modules
k) Download version 0.8.7 (for kernel 2.6.32 because mceusb isn't part of the latest version) of lirc from (link on the left of the page)
l) mv /home/me/Downloads/lirc-0.8.6.tar.bz2 /usr/src/ (move it from the location you downloaded it to)
m) cd /usr/src
n) tar xvjf lirc-0.8.6.tar.bz2
o) touch /usr/src/linux/Rules.make
p) cd lirc-0.8.6/
q) You might have to "apt-get install dialog" for the next step
r) ./ (I think in here is where you need to select the first option, then USB, then Windows Media Center Remote, then save and configure)
s) make
t) make install
u) modprobe lirc_mceusb
v) apt-get install lirc lirc-x
w) cp /usr/share/lirc/remotes/mceusb/lircd.conf.mceusb /etc/lirc/lircd.conf (this is the configuration file for my particular IR receiver/remote. You might need to look for yours in /usr/share/lirc/remotes)
x) lircd (start the lirc daemon)
y) As a regular user do: irw and press some buttons on your control to see if it recognizes the key presses
z) If step y worked, then lirc is in good shape.
If for some reason you have problems getting irw to work, reboot your machine. You might have to do the following steps to get the test to work:
a) All the following as root or sudo: modprobe lirc_mceusb
b) ln -s /var/run/lirc/lircd /dev/lircd
c) ln -s /dev/lirc0 /dev/lirc
d) lircd
e) As a regular user: irw

3) Install XBMC
a) Add the following repo to your /etc/apt/sources.list: deb squeeze main non-free (use wheezy instead of squeeze if running WHeezy)
b) apt-get update
c) apt-get install debian-multimedia-keyring
d) apt-get update
e) apt-get install xbmc
f) I don't know why, but in e17, xbmc doesn't automatically create a menu, but you can start xbmc by doing Alt + Esc and typing xbmc, then enter. This will launch the application.
g) Use your control to navigate XBMC!

4) Happy Debian + e17 + lirc + XBMC!!!

Appendix A
If you have an nvidia card, you'll have to:
a) apt-get update
b) apt-get install nvidia-settings nvidia-xconfig nvidia-glx
c) If the resolution doesn't look good, then run nvidia-xconfig as root in e17
d) If the nvidia installation pulls in another kernel version (486 vs 686, try rebooting the machine and selecting the different options in grub while booting)


Comments on this Entry

Re: Debian Squeeze or Wheezy - e17 + Lirc & XBMC
Posted by Anonymous (173.164.xx.xx) on Thu 30 Jun 2011 at 15:12
If you upgrade your kernel to backport 2.6.38 lirc should be pached in to the kernel. You will still need kernel source package to install lirc upon however I use an imon receiver / pad remove. This comes in on /dev/event6 on post 2.6.36 kernels. This may keep one from recompiling the kernel. If you are daring upgrade to testing and add debian mulitmedia repos. XBMC is in the wheezy repo. This may be simpler to some looking for lirc on debian. E17 though I would concur. Build it as the stuff in the repos is quite old.

[ Parent ]

Re: Debian Squeeze or Wheezy - e17 + Lirc & XBMC
Posted by dammitjim (71.43.xx.xx) on Thu 30 Jun 2011 at 15:42
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Thanks for the heads up. I had heard that 2.6.38 had it coming, but wasn't sure. I'll be giving it a try (using Wheezy only) because I've been having crashes on XBMC from the squeeze debian multimedia repo.

[ Parent ]