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Bluetooth is coming to RMIR
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t4_ravenbird



Joined: 01 Jan 2014
Posts: 38

PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A question ; Is the bluetooth support in these remotes all about programming the remotes or does it also mean that the remotes can control devices over bluetooth?

My Samsung TV has an original bluetooth remote, I believe (and a legacy IR interface that allows me to control it that way too)
The "smart-TV" functions of the TV seem to be available for the original remote only - over bluetooth - so it would be brilliant if a universal remote could control devices this way. I am not at all sure about this but my impression is that more features are available over bluetooth than IR, hence my question.
Thanks!
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mdavej
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

t4_ravenbird wrote:
A question ; Is the bluetooth support in these remotes all about programming the remotes or does it also mean that the remotes can control devices over bluetooth?

My Samsung TV has an original bluetooth remote, I believe (and a legacy IR interface that allows me to control it that way too)
The "smart-TV" functions of the TV seem to be available for the original remote only - over bluetooth - so it would be brilliant if a universal remote could control devices this way. I am not at all sure about this but my impression is that more features are available over bluetooth than IR, hence my question.
Thanks!
BT is only for programming, not control. Harmony does a little BT control, but not for your Samsung TV.

Post your missing IR functions, and we can probably find them.
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t4_ravenbird



Joined: 01 Jan 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks ! - I had a TV-change and a PVR-decoder change some time ago and the newcomers both had original bluetooth remotes. Using my good old URC with my previous Samsung-codes worked but lacked the "home" button on the new TV-remote. The PVR-decoder did not work at all and I assumed it had no legay IR-mode so gave in and started using 2 OEM remotes... But I recently discovered some information that claims the PVR also has a working IR-mode
and if I also find the Samsung "home" -code maybe it is possible to get a nice single-remote again after all.
I guess I need to investigate some more then;-)
(The PVR is Altibox / Huawei Q22)
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mdavej
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try the smarthub and menu commands from this upgrade:
http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/dload.php?action=file&file_id=13742

Here's an upgrade for your PVR to try:
http://www.hifi-remote.com/forums/dload.php?action=file&file_id=25059
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t4_ravenbird



Joined: 01 Jan 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2019 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Faboulus, thanks again
BTW ; what is the community thinking about the direction .. will more and more equipment switch to BT? Will IR be dropped in the process? WIll universal remotes come with BT-control, will they be hackable/extandable like some of todays IRs?
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mathdon
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 30, 2019 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Development build 6 of RMIR v2.07 is now available in the RMIR Development folder. It provides two new ways for Windows users to access the Bluetooth capabilities of RMIR, without the need for the Bluegiga BLED112 dongle.

THE ACCESS METHODS

To help understand these new ways, here is a brief outline of how RMIR works with Bluetooth. It makes use of three layers beneath RMIR. Layer 1, the lowest, is the physical layer that includes the Bluetooth radio hardware and a standardized interface to layer 2 above. Layer 2 is the Bluetooth stack that implements the Bluetooth protocol. Layer 3 is a library that provides the API (application programming interface) to RMIR or any other application. The interfaces of layers 2 and 3 to the layer above are not standardized.

The Bluegiga BLED112 dongle includes layers 1 and 2. It appears to the computer as a virtual serial port. The Bluegiga library of level 3 is incorporated into the RemoteMaster.jar file. This combination works with all OS supported by RMIR.

This new build of RMIR uses in addition the Bluetooth Framework of the Wireless Communication Library (WCL). This layer 3 library is included as dlls in the RMIR distribution. It supports two layer 2 Bluetooth stacks, the Microsoft stack that is part of Windows 10 and the Blue Soleil stack that is available as an installable download. Blue Soleil 10, the latest version, currently costs US $27.99. The WCL website also mentions support of a Toshiba stack and of the Microsoft stack for Windows versions earlier than Windows 10, but these stacks do not have the facilities required by RMIR. The Blue Soleil website says that it supports all versions of Windows from Windows XP onwards. All I can confirm from personal experience is that the combination of Windows 8.1 and Blue Soleil does work with this new build of RMIR, but this itself is a significant improvement over the Microsoft stack.

What about layer 1 for these Bluetooth stacks? Many computers, especially laptops, have Bluetooth hardware built in. If so, both the Microsoft and Blue Soleil stacks will find and use this hardware without anything extra needing to be done. You need to be careful, however, as the remotes that support Bluetooth use Bluetooth Low Energy, which is part of the Bluetooth 4 specification and may not be supported by the built-in hardware of older machines. If Bluetooth hardware is not built in, then any standard Bluetooth dongle should work, provided that it supports Bluetooth 4. My Windows 8.1 + Blue Soleil combination, however, does work with its built-in hardware.

Finally a word of warning. There is evidence on the web that not all Windows computers will work with Blue Soleil even when they are nominally compatible with it. Also, our testing has found that there are Windows 10 machines where Bluetooth fails to connect to the remote when RMIR is used with the Microsoft stack. So nothing is guaranteed, though no harm will be done by trying. Blue Soleil can be uninstalled if required, and failure of the remote to connect via Bluetooth does no harm to either the remote or RMIR installation.

USING THE NEW METHODS

The introduction to this post mentions two new access methods. The "two" refers to use with the Microsoft and Blue Soleil stacks. The use of RMIR is the same for both stacks, but the initial preparation required is different in the two cases. Both stacks need an extender installed in the remote. The extender takes up no space in the user memory of the remote. An extender installer is uploaded to the remote, used once to perform the installation and then discarded.

The Blue Soleil stack needs version 1.00 of the extender, exactly the same as that for the Bluegiga dongle. The Microsoft stack needs version 2.00. Version 2.00 is supplied as a .rmir file and needs a JP1.x cable for its installation, version 1.00 is a .hex file that is installed via Bluetooth itself and so does not need a cable. Version 2.00 can be used where version 1.00 is required, but not the other way round. Both extenders are available for both the URC7980 and URC7955 and are in the Extenders - Bluetooth area of the File Section. Full instructions are in the ReadMe included in the extender package. The ReadMe for Version 2.00 also covers version 1.00 and includes more details of the purpose of, and differences between, the two versions.

As with the Bluegiga BLED112 dongle, the Bluetooth interface is accessed through the Remote > Interface menu of RMIR. Select the JP2BT item. The list of available ports in the dialog box that opens should then include "Windows WCL" in addition to any serial ports that may be present on the machine. Select this port and press OK. Everything else is the same as for the Bluegiga dongle, as described in the first three posts in this thread. Please see those posts for more details.

There is one difference in behaviour between the Blue Soleil stack and either the Microsoft stack or the Bluegiga dongle that should be noted. If a key on the remote is pressed while Bluetooth is connected, it terminates the Bluetooth connection. The Blue Soleil stack automatically reconnects but the other two methods accept the disconnection and RMIR displays a message to say that the connection has been terminated. Blue Soleil automatic reconnection even extends to removal and reinsertion of the batteries, so the batteries can be changed without losing the connection. So with the Blue Soleil stack, the only way to terminate the connection is from RMIR, by pressing the Bluetooth toolbar button or simply closing RMIR.
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Graham
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mathdon
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2019 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bluetooth support is now available for the URC-7880, the third UEI remote to have that capability. It requires development build 8 of RMIR v2.07, available in the RMIR Development folder. The ReadMe there says that build 8 is a test version not intended for general use, but the testing concerned has been satisfactorily completed so that proviso can be ignored.

This remote is at present only supported with the BLED112 dongle. Upload capability requires Bluetooth Extender v1.00 to be installed in the remote. The version of this extender for the URC-7880 is available here. As with the corresponding extenders for the URC-7980 and URC-7955, this is actually an extender installer. It is used once only, to install the extender, and can then be deleted. The extender itself takes up no room in user memory and survives a factory reset or change of batteries. It can be removed if required by use again of the extender installer, which contains facilities for both installation and uninstallation of the extender.
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Graham
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mathdon
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PostPosted: Mon May 13, 2019 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have now posted Bluetooth Extender v2.00 for the URC-7880. This is needed for Bluetooth support in RMIR with the Microsoft Bluetooth stack of Windows 10. Only v1.00 of the extender is needed for use with the BLED112 dongle.

This release of v2.00 means that all the Bluetooth access methods described in my long post above are now supported for all three remotes that are known to have Bluetooth capabilities, namely the URC-7980, URC-7955 and URC-7880.
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Graham
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chuliu



Joined: 04 Dec 2010
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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2019 1:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,
Just want to ask a question. If my understanding is correct, my urc-7980 will only connect through bluetooth in one of the two ways, bd-112, or windows 10 built in, but not both at the same time.

I also want to know if I want to test v2 of the extender, should I first uninstall v1 by the step b in the readme.txt?


Thanks for the verification.
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chuliu



Joined: 04 Dec 2010
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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2019 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I read the readme one more time and it seems v2 can be installed on top of v1, and v2 itself has the same feature of v1 and those unique to v2 (support to microsoft built in bt stack) I have a question: can I install v2 when a connection is established with a bled112 dongle? My jp1.x cable doesn't seem to work on my urc-7980.

Thanks.
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mathdon
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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2019 6:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, you can use a Bluetooth connection with the BLED112 dongle to install v2 of the extender, as you do not need to uninstall v1. In fact, that is what I did. And when v2 is installed, you can use the Remote > Interface > JP2BT menu item to select either the dongle or the Windows 10 built-in stack to connect. You can switch between the two connection methods whenever you wish.

I'm not sure what you mean by saying that you can't use both at the same time. Obviously at any one time you can only be connected in one way, but you can choose which method every time you connect, if you wish. Extender v2 supports both connection methods.
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