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I have a Dell Latitude D620 running Windows 7. I use it quite a bit for media (i.e., Boxee, Hulu Desktop, Windows Media Center) so I was wondering if I could use the IR port along with a remote (I have a Samsung universal remote and some old VCR remotes) for use as a remote control, for at the least just to navigate the menus (←↑↓→ and Enter are plenty).

Dell Product Image from

What kind of setup do I have to rig to make this work?

Update: I plan on installing Linux Mint 9/10 as soon as I can snag an external hard drive for backup, so Linux solutions are good too.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Unfortunately as far as I know, you can't. The closest possible thing was on the old Sony palm powered machines that had a universal remote control feature.

The native infrared port (that Windows detects as an infrared port) on computers is designed solely for data transfer and it can't send or receive regular remote control signals.

Every "remote control" type device you can buy (such as the Microsoft Media Remote Control), come with their own receiver that then plugs in to USB or other port which converts the signals. To the computer, these devices are not actually remote controls.

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Updated my question. Any Linux solutions? – digitxp Sep 12 '10 at 0:07
@Digitxp - I think it is a technical limitation of the diode/control chip otherwise someone would of come up with a solution for Windows by now... I have never looked at doing this in Linux, but I would imagine the same - but I am also interested to see if anyone else is/has been able to do this. – William Hilsum Sep 12 '10 at 0:09

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