Sign up ×
Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free.

I have installed Ubuntu 11.04 on my MacBook and am trying to get the Apple Remote to work with it. Does anyone have a set of instructions that will help me get it to work.

share|improve this question

3 Answers 3

Infrared Remotes are handled by LIRC.

Install it via sudo aptitude install lirc

share|improve this answer

I have Googled this information for you, and hopefully this should be what you need.

Setting Up The Apple Remote Control On Ubuntu

share|improve this answer
Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. Imagine the linked site goes down for maintenance or forever - your answer would become worthless. – htorque Dec 27 '11 at 21:55
Or just if the page was printed out. – Thorbjørn Ravn Andersen Nov 2 at 9:55

set up the infrared remote control on a MacBook with Ubuntu.

In order to recognize and active the infrared commands and execute the actions for each key, we will use the package LIRC (Linux Infrared Remote Control). In Ubuntu, it can be installed, along with utilities, from the command as super user:

# aptitude -y install lirc lirc-x xautomation
# mkdir /etc/lirc/lirc

After the installation, simply create the configuration file to start using the remote control. The configuration file is located in /etc/lirc/lirc/lircrc and contains the mapping of commands to be executed for each action of the control. My file can be downloaded here. Below are shown two blocks of this configuration file.

prog = irexec
button = PLAY
config = xte 'key XF86AudioPlay'
prog = irxevent
button = PLAY
config = Key F5 CurrentWindow
repeat = 0

The first block is activated when the daemon irexec is running, while the second is activated when the irxevent is running. Both represent actions that must be performed when PLAY button is used. Being the first block responsible for simulating the play key on the keyboard, and the second the F5 key.

In my case, I always active the irexec for multimedia and and irxevent for presentations. However, the switching of daemon was not a practical task, then I decided to create a GNOME Applet specific to work with LIRC, the ir-switcher (other projects). To install it, just run the commands as super user:

# wget -O ir_switcher.deb
# dpkg -i ir_switcher.deb
# rm ir_switcher.deb

Then you must add it to a notification panel of your environment.

Clicking the right mouse button on the icon you can choose which daemon will run: irexec, irxevent or both. To start the daemon selected, click the left mouse button over the icon and it will change, indicating activation.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.