Possible fixes for IR receiver or remote problems after installing Update Rollup 2 for MCE 2005

There have been a few reports so far from customers who have installed Update Rollup 2 for Media Center 2005 and have had problems getting their infrared (IR) receivers or devices such as remote controls or wireless keyboards to work correctly afterwards.  Update Rollup 2 setup installs an updated set of IR drivers (also shipped independently as KB888795) that have caused some sporadic issues.  Here is a list of the workarounds we have seen be successful so far to resolve IR receiver/remote control issues after installing Update Rollup 2:

1.  The IR receiver appears to be installed correctly but pressing buttons on the remote does not do anything

In this scenario, it is possible that the remote control has been configured to broadcast on a channel range that was supported previously but has since been removed.  You can use the steps that I previously posted here to reconfigure your remote control to broadcast on a different channel to resolve this issue

2.  One or more of the IR drivers is configured incorrectly in Device Manager

In this scenario, if you look in Device Manager (by going to the Start menu, choosing Run and typing devmgmt.msc), you will see yellow exclamation points next to one or more items in the Human Interface Devices category.  The following steps will resolve this issue in most cases:

  1. Go to the Start menu, choose Run and type devmgmt.msc
  2. Expand the Human Interface Devices category
  3. Right-click on each of the items with eHome Infrared Transceiver in the name and choose Uninstall
  4. Unplug the IR device from the computer and wait for approximately 30 seconds
  5. Plug the IR device back into the computer and wait for Windows plug-and-play detection to kick in and re-install the device

3.  Some remote control buttons (number keys, arrows, enter) fail to function, while other buttons work as expected

We have not yet been able to reproduce this scenario in our test lab, but we have seen this set of steps resolve this issue on some customer machines so I wanted to post it here in case someone runs into a similar problem:

  1. Delete the file named %windir%\inf\keyboard.pnf.  Please note that the correct file to delete ends in PNF - do not delete keyboard.INF.
  2. Go to the Start menu, choose Run and type devmgmt.msc
  3. Expand the Human Interface Devices category
  4. Right-click on each of the items with eHome Infrared Transceiver in the name and choose Uninstall
  5. Unplug the IR device from the computer and wait for approximately 30 seconds
  6. Plug the IR device back into the computer and wait for Windows plug-and-play detection to kick in and re-install the device

4.  If none of the above suggestions work

There are some cases that we have seen where none of the above suggestions work.  A customer posted a comment indicating that it sometimes helps to short the Media Center remote control to forcibly reset it.  You can see more information about how to do that in this blog post.

<update date="12/29/2005"> Added a link to a new post I created with a description of how to short a remote control </update>


Comments (104)
  1. Daniel says:

    Does this fix the problem with the mouse pointer on the "Remote Keyboard for Windows XP Media Centre Edition"?

    Here is a review of the keyboard:


    And here is where the problem is mentioned:

    In the normal Windows interface, things aren’t so smooth. Here, instead of the confined up/down/left/right movements you experience in Media Center, users expect a full range of movement with a mouse or similar pointing device. The Pointer nubbin on the Remote Keyboard does not provide this type of freedom at all. In fact, it’s horrible. It can only move in eight directions (up, down, left, right, and diagonal) and you have to really push the thing to make it go at all. I’m a pretty strong guy, and I have trouble making it move. My kid would be reduced to tears if I made him use this. The Click and Right Click buttons, which emulate the first two buttons on a typical mouse, work fine.

  2. Hi Daniel – the mouse pointer issue you describe is not a driver problem, but an issue with the hardware itself. I have heard from some other folks who don’t like the design of the pointer (they would prefer a trackball or some other easier-to-move device), but I have also heard from some folks who really like the pointer. It seems to be a matter of personal preference. For what it’s worth, I have had a hard time using the pointer on my remote keyboard as well, but it seems to be loosening up a bit as I use it more and "break it in"

  3. Daniel says:

    Hi Aaron, thanks for your reply, i was hoping it was a driver issue. I have read on other forums that you need to "break it in", one guy even said that he no longer has to apply downward pressure to get the pointer to move. I am looking forward to that day. 🙂

  4. Richard says:


    Im having problems with my Microsoft MCE remote / irblaster when coming out

    of s3 standby.

    I can enter standby by using the remote, and also wake the computer from s3

    with it. The issue is that after waking the computer it takes 15-25 seconds

    before the remote/blaster is working again, so when waking it automatically

    to record a scheduled program it is unable to change the channel on my

    set-top box and it does not start recording.

    It seems as if it has to rediscover usb units when waking from s3.

    Anyone have experience in this field? Anyone with a working mce remote and

    settop box recording from s3 standby?

    Any help appreciated.


  5. Hi Richard – This issue might be related to the emitter check that is done before a scheduled recording. Can you please try to set the following registry value and then try this scenario again:

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionMedia CenterService]


    Please let me know whether or not this works, and if it is successful I’ll post this as its own blog post so it will be easier for other people to find if they run into this issue.

  6. Richard says:

    Nope, did no good. I leaning towards the theory that my MB does no support s3 properly. As i mentioned it is as if it has to rediscover the Remote when waking from S3 even though it has power applied. Will try S1 and see if it works. But i think the mobo is to blame (Asus p4r800-vm)



  7. Tom says:

    Awesome! Ever since I installed the rollup my navigation buttons have not been working. The steps outlined in 3. fixed it.

    Thank you!

  8. Ikke says:

    None of the above fikses works. The probleem is windows thinks you have the ir so you have the keyboard and installs the drivers >> 3 in total (checks keyboards in hardware devices) If i remove those 3 drivers everything is fine.

    I dont have the keyboard so everything is f$#@$ up. I want an option to disable them or a patch to get rid of them. It’s that simple actually.

  9. David says:

    My MS MCE remote was dead and not responding. I tried everything here with no success. I then went to newegg to buy a new one when I saw the following comment by a user. It absolutely worked for me and saved me 40.00.

    "If your remote dies.. (remote light doesn’t come on, remote stops functioning) read this..

    "Solution: reset the microcontroller by removing power. The issue here is that there is enough capacitance… More »

    on the board to keep the thing alive for hours after you pull the batteries. But that’s easily fixed. Simply short two of the adjacent battery terminals on the remote for a moment, and the capacitors drain. I don’t know which two adjacent ones are the ones wired to the board (the other two are simply a short to connect one battery to the other), so I shorted both pair. It took a paper clip and all of a few seconds, and the remote was fine again."

    As I stated ealier, this brought my remote back to life! Since I did not see this solution anywhere, I thought I would spread the word.

  10. GSephton2000 says:

    Hi David, could you explain to me more specifically how u shorted the remote. I have had 2 of the remotes and both have subsequently died on me. My grasp of electronics is virtually none existant but I have a paper clip ready a just need a few pointers.


  11. Darren says:

    Hi Aaron. Hoping you can help me.

    I previously had MCE setup for a single tuner (set top box) and the blaster worked fine. I’ve added another set top box and connected to the secondary input of my dual-tuner card. I plugged in the second IR bud and went to reconfigure the TV signal. I selected two tuners, etc. (everything seems to go fine, identifies the remote codes, etc.). However, when I get to the channel change test, there is no activity on either bud (no blinky blinky).

    If I cancel setup (going back to current, single tuner config), the blaster works fine (blinky).

    So, basically, if I try to configure dual tuner, the emitters do nothing – single tuner, everything fine.

    Any ideas? Anything I can check? Thanks in advance.

  12. Hi Darren – I checked around on our team and found the following information that might be helpful here:

    Sometimes the receiver will detect a non-existent "bud" (emitter) and try to transmit to that. Could you try out the "Try next emitter" button on the test channel change page and see if that helps?

    Also, a couple of other notes here:

    1. If there is only 1 tuner but multiple emitters, the Media Center IR driver will transmit to all emitters by default.

    2. Unplugging and re-plugging the receiver or rebooting the machine should cause the phantom emitter to disappear.

    Hope this helps!

  13. Darren says:

    Thanks Aaron. I actually got it to configure and emit by unplugging the receiver, waiting and replugging *twice* during setup.

    I went through normal setup for dual tuners and when it got to testing channel change, I got no emission from either bud. Unplugged the receiver, waited, replugged to different USB, retried and got emission from the first bud.

    Went on to second tuner… same problem, no emission from either bud. Unplugged, waited, replugged to different USB, retried, got emission from second bud.

    Most surprising is that it all now works. Both set-top boxes are controlled independently and correctly (knock on wood).

    I saw a reference on the net by someone that was having a similar problem (no emission). They mentioned replugging the receiver during setup, which led me down this path.

    No offense, but the software/hardware for the receiver is just poor. It shouldn’t be this difficult.

    I can provide any system/log/registry information the team might need if they’re interested in diagnosing this problem. Let me know: darren_merrill@hotmail.com.

  14. Craig says:

    I had a different remote issue brought on my MCE RU2, if I pushed any button twice only the first press would actually work. (e.g. up, up, up, up would only move up once. However, down,up,down,up worked properly) The light blinked on the receiver on every press, but MCE would only respond to the first of each button.

    Anyway, after trying EVERYTHING, I just wanted to post that the fix posted here ‘Friday, December 02, 2005 12:53 AM by David’ about resetting the remote finally fixed my problem. It certainly didn’t seem like a remote problem, but it’s always the last place you look!

    PS – Good post Aaron, your blog’s helped with many other issues I’ve had too!

  15. Sam says:

    3. Some remote control buttons (number keys, arrows, enter) fail to function, while other buttons work as expected.

    I encountered this problema fter going through and disabling some of the services in services.msc that I always disable on windows xp computers. It turns out that the HID input service is required for all of the remote buttons to function correctly and this needs to be set to automatic for the remote to function correctly. It would be extremely helpful if someone would put together a list of services that are necessary in MCE but not normal windows XP since I have been learning the hard way. I have also found out that SSPD Discovery Service, HTTP SSL, and Universal Plug and Play Device Host are needed to connect a XBOX360 to Windows Media Center. Anyone know of others?

  16. Zack says:

    I had the same problem as Craig (December 24, 2005 12:20 AM) where only the first button press would be recieved by mce and then I’d have to press another button before the first would work again.

    I had reinstalled drivers, system restored, the whole works…. just like Craig, turned out my remote was, in fact, the problem. Resetting it by shorting both battery terminals did the trick. I had earlier left the batteries out and then replaced them with new ones, so I was surprised when "shorting" fixed it.

  17. jkominar says:

    Just wanted to let you all know that I had situation #3 occur recently when I installed the Media Center roll-up, where the remote was 90% functional, with the exception of the arrow and ok buttons in the center. The solution posted on this site that involved deleting the keyboard.PNF file and reinstalling the eHome Transceiver drivers did indeed correct the issue. Everything’s working fine again in remote-control world.

  18. ART says:

    where do i find the %windir%infkeyboard.pnf file in order to delete it?

  19. Hi ART – you should be able to click on the Start menu, choose Run and type %windir%inf and then press Enter to be navigated automatically to the folder that contains the file named keyboard.pnf. %windir% is an environment variable that will be resolved based on the location that you have your OS installed to. Typically this file will be located in c:windowsinf if you installed Windows to the default location.

  20. Jellybean Cowboy says:

    Hi Aaron, I’ve been having problems coming out of S3 for a while now. When putting the computer into S3 with Media Center open, on waking it from S3 I hear a device removal notice noise and then a device insertion noise before my Media Center remote or keyboard will function. The second time I do this with Media Center open I don’t get any device removal/insertion noises and the remote and keyboard do not function even though the light on the receiver lights up.

    However, if I close Media Center before going into S3 everything is absolutely fine, and I don’t get removal/insertion noises at any point.

    The frustrating thing is that when Media Center is shut down it does not wake up to record a scheduled programme, but if I leave Media Center open it wakes to record, but then doesn’t shut down – and then I have to press the power button on the computer to turn the darn thing off becuase my remote and keyboard don’t respond!


    Do you have any ideas what’s up?

  21. Fred Punke says:

    Great suggestion. Thanks very much for your effort in putting this together. I was at a loss after Update Rollup 2, but number 3 worked for me.

  22. Pete says:

    Wow, glad I found this. Had the remote spontanously stop working and have gone through issues before with the remote just dieing but this time it worked for TV and showed light for reciever and did not work! So on to this blog and installing r2 for the receiver which looks to have been released just 1 day ago? Tried all options so not sure which one worked but it is up now.

  23. Sean says:

    I have a strange problem since I purchased a Sony 40" XBR LCD TV. The light on the IR receiver is on constantly when the TV is on. If the TV is off the light comes on when I use the keyboard or other remotes as it did before and then goes off when it’s not receiving an IR signal. So it seems the TV interferes with the IR signals since I have to be almost right in front of the receiver for the remote or keyboard to work. Ad even then it sometimes takes couple button presses to accept the command. I tried your solutions above but nothing worked. I’m going to contact Sony and see what they have to say but thought I’d try here as well. Any ideas?

    1. Rudi Hendrix says:

      I know this is an old thread, but I also have the issue that when I switch on the TV the LED of the IR receiver continues to be lit. I have a Samsung TV.

  24. Hi Sean – I would suggest trying to install the new IR rollup package from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en and see if that helps here.

  25. Dave says:


    My remote works with the first 1 – 4 buttons pressed, then it stops working. The red light still comes on when a remote button is pushed, but it doesn’t do anything.

    If we take the batteries out and short it, it will work for a few more button presses, then stops again. I deleted the keyboard.pnf function, that got us one or two more button presses before it dies.

    What else can I try???

  26. Hi Dave – it is possible that this is a hardware issue.  You may want to try to contact the hardware manufacturer or the store where you purchased the remote and ask for a replacement.

  27. Jxp220 says:

    Help Request: The navigation keys and audio controls on the right and left side of the keyboard work fine, but there’s no response to the standard keys in the middle.  I installed Rollup 2, but no help there.  Any guidance?  Thanks much… this site is a great resource.

  28. Hi Jxp220 – I am not sure if you have tried all of the steps in this blog post yet, so if you haven’t can you please try those and see if they help at all?  Also, you mentioned that you installed rollup 2, but is that the Media Center rollup 2 or the IR rollup 2?  If you haven’t yet, please try to install the IR rollup 2 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en.  If none of the above work, can you please try the trick listed at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/archive/2005/12/29/508147.aspx?

    Hopefully one of these will help…

  29. steven says:

    I cant change channels even before role up 2 d-10 reciever     hp m1160n      microsoft is a rip off

  30. Charlie says:

    #3 fixed my remote control problems! Thanks! The problem was driving me up the walls.

  31. VPN-User says:

    Installing KB912024 resulted in my remote not working anymore after hibernste/standby. Rollback to KB888795 and forcing reinstall of all IR drivers solved it for me.

    Microsoft, listen: When providing a fix, please don’ t break more than you fix with it.

  32. Hi Steven – have you tried the steps listed in this blog to try to work around this issue, and have you also tried to install the IR rollup 2?  I would encourage you to try both of these steps and see if they will resolve this issue on your system.

    Hi VPN-User – I’m sorry for the issue that has been caused by KB912024 on your system.  I will pass this on to the folks on our team who work on remote control functionality.

  33. Tim K says:

    I have tried all the fixes with none of them working.  I have 2 home built media centers, one is new and is used strickly for media center.  I pulled the IR receiver from the old and put it to the new, ran all the windows updates it allowed me on the new mce pc.

    I have the remote and also the mce keyboard with the mouse pointer… Both act the same and it worked fine in the original mce computer, so its definately a software issue in the new mce pc.  The back button and all the play buttons do not work (stop, rec, fwd, rew, skip, replay all dont work)  Ch buttons work, numbers work, the ‘more’ button works, and all the recorded tv/guide/live tv/dvd menu buttons work.  Any help would be appriciated.

  34. Ryan L says:

    That paper-clip trick worked like a charm!!!  Thanks for the help.

  35. Hi Tim K – You might want to try installing the latest IR rollup package (from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en) to see if that resolves this issue.  Also, the workaround described at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/archive/2005/12/29/508147.aspx may help here as well.

  36. clueo8 says:

    I tried the IR rollup but that did not help.  Shorting out the remote will not help because the buttons do not work on the MCE keyboard as well as the remote.

    I ended up reformating and reinstalling media center all over again and watching what MCE updates were run.  I ran all critical updates and the media center rollout 2 that was like 60mbs i believe… and the back button has continued to work.  I’m afraid to update my mce any futher since its all working right now!

  37. aslu says:

    I have the Rollup 2 installed on my computer and when using the MS Remote Controller in MCE or in i.e Windows XP Explorer it jumps 2-3 rows at a time. Is there any solution for this?

  38. Hi Aslu – I have not heard of this issue before.  Have you tried the suggestions in this blog post yet?  Also, if you haven’t yet, can you please try the workaround at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/archive/2005/12/29/508147.aspx.  If none of that work, is it possible that the keys on your remote are sticking and causing multiple presses?

  39. Hi Clueo8 – I just noticed at home that the rewind button on my remote doesn’t work, while the entire rest of the remote buttons work fine.  I’ll try to figure out how to fix my remote and then post any info I’m able to find back to my blog….

  40. david says:

    I dont want to install rollup2 – as it screws my TV display – I have everything working fine, but i need the god dam remote drivers – i cannot believe how pathetic this is all,  a humax 9200 seems a much better option – can anyone send me the IR drivers stand alone or show me a working link! please

  41. Hi David – There are 2 IR driver rollup packages currently available.  IR driver Rollup 1 is included as a part of Media Center Update Rollup 2, but I cannot find it offered as a standalone download anymore.  You can download Media Center Update Rollup 2 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=E5DAF37E-E243-4410-BC51-81CF2B56FE6E&displaylang=en, save it to your desktop, extract it (but do not install it) by running WindowsXPMediaCenter2005-KB900325-usa.exe /x:<path> and then going to <path> and running the setup package for KB888795 from there.

    IR driver Rollup 2 is located at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en, but it requires Media Center Update Rollup 2, which you indicated you cannot install currently, so that will not be useful to you I believe.

  42. Robert Mahle says:

    I am having a strange IR receiver issue.  It seems to conflict with my Belkin wireless USB device.  At times the IR will be fine but the USB wireless will not work until I remove both devices and install the Belkin first.

    I also have the MCE keyboard and have a problem with the mouse.  It’s bad enough how the device works but sometimes the mouse won’t move at all even though the keyboard is still transmitting (the light is blink).  Stop using the mouse and start again and it will move another couple inches before it stops again.  I think it’s related to the USB conflict.  Any ideas?

  43. Hi Robert – You can use the first workaround listed above in this blog post to try to change the IR transmitting channel to try to solve conflict issues.  I have had issues with the mouse on my MCE keyboard too and it appeared to be very stiff and didn’t react unless I put a lot of pressure on the eraserhead.  That might loosen up as you use the eraserhead more in the future.

  44. Robert Mahle says:

    Thanks, I’ll give it a try.  

    You wouldn’t happen to know why my machine won’t go into standby automatically once I launch MC?  I even close the media center app but the machine won’t standby by the power settings timer afterwards.  It works fine before launching MC.

    I read somewhere else this is a rollup 2 "feature" and to try turning the sound effects off.  It didn’t work for me.

    Thanks again.

  45. Robert Mahle says:

    LOL, I read it on another post from your blog.  I posted the question there so disregard it here.

  46. Jake says:

    I am haveing a promlem geting the 2 IR buds that come with the MS remot control to work.  The red light on the main remote sensor does not even come on when using the IR bud as the sensor and any button on the remot is pressed.  The IR buds are pluged in to the main sensor.  Any ideas?

    Thanks in advance.

  47. vori says:

    hello I have a version OEM and want to buy the remote and receiving control, like or where I can buy thanks.


  48. Hi Vori – You can check out the web page at http://www.microsoft.com/hardware/mouseandkeyboard/ProductDetails.aspx?pid=065 for options and pricing information for remote controls that work with Windows Media Center.

  49. Hi Jake – I have not heard of this issue before.  Can you please try some of the other workarounds that I have posted for IR issues (listed in the "Remote control and IR receiver errors" section of http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx)?  Also, can you try to install the latest IR hotfix rollup from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en and see if that helps in this scenario?

  50. Russell says:

    I have a problem where my remote appears to work (during setup, the numbers appear correctly on the MCE TV screen) but my Direct TV receiver does not change channels, or only "catches" one of the  three digits and subsequently doesn’t change channels.  I have tried adjusting the "speed" of the IR signal, "relearned" the channels from my settop remote, the IR rollups 1 & 2, changed the broadcast channels (tried channels 1-4 as per the workaround), and checked my device manager (no yellow exclamation marks).  It appears that the MCE gets the info fine from the remote, but the settop reciever is struggling to understand what is being emitted from the emitter.  Any suggestions?  Thanks!

  51. AMDluvr says:

    I have fresh install of MCE 2005 on a new Shuttle xpc and everything works perfectly except the remote.  I’ve installed all updates and tried all fixes mentioned here and elsewhere – ALL of them – and nothing works, I get no remote functionality.

    The remote is broadcasting, the receiver is receiving and shows up as functional in the hardware device list, the channels match up, everything should work.

    Any ideas that have not already been mentioned?

  52. Paul says:

    Ok, I have a slightly different problem. The remote works fine once MCE is running. I just can’t get MCE to start using the green button. Any ideas?

  53. Dave says:

    "3.  Some remote control buttons (number keys, arrows, enter) fail to function, while other buttons work as expected"

    This was my problem and your solution worked PERFECT. Thank you!Thank you!Thank you!

  54. Chris says:


    I seem to be having a slightly different IR problem to those that have been reported so far.

    When the PC is rebooted MCE doesn’t always have focus, probably 2 reboots out of ten (MCE is set to run when Windows starts and always be on top),consequently none of the keys on the remote appear to work until the Green Button is pressed which appears to return focus to MCE, everything then works perfectly.

    This is proving to be quite irritating for some customers. This also seems to be quite a recent problem. We are running all the latest updates (express & custom) Is it possible one of these has caused the problem?


  55. Hi Chris – It sounds like you have already enabled the item called "Media Center window always on top" in Settings | General | Startup and Window Behavior, but if you haven’t can you please make sure that is checked?  If this still happens even with that checked, I am not sure what could be causing it.  Are there any other programs that are launched when your machine boots that could be "stealing" the focus away from Media Center?

  56. Thomas says:

    I have installed all updates from Windows update.

    I have problems that the Microsoft remote controller doesn’t work after being in S3 standby. It only happens if LiveTV have been accessed. Hope you have an idea what to do?!

  57. Ted Fay says:

    Any idea how to get two trancievers working at the same time in MCE 2005?  I have one monitor and speakers in one room, and another set in another room on a KVM USB extender. It works great, except that I can only plug in one tranciever at a time, or my other one stops working.  They both work, just not at the same time.  Any suggestions?


  58. Hi Ted – This scenario is not supported.  The IR driver only listens for the HID commands sent by the remote control on one of the receivers.  You may want to try out IR blasting devices for this kind of scenario.

  59. Why are the comments from Jellybean Cowboy and Thomas (even though he’s only got the problem after live tv) ignored in this blog?

    I’ve got the same problem, USB disconnect- and connecting sounds while resuming from S3, and after that a not-responding remote.. I haven’t got a clue what’s causing it, I’m guessing that all USB-devices (it appears also my videocard) are ‘refreshed’ and for USB that doesn’t work like it should.. devices aren’t ‘found’ again until you force a reboot or disconnect the USB-plug and reconnect it..

  60. Hi Kristian – I haven’t been ignoring the comments from Jellybean Cowboy or Thomas.  The problem is that I don’t have any suggestions to try to solve this issue that I think would be useful.  I decided it would be better to post nothing rather than post ideas that are nothing more than guesses.  I’m sorry I’m not able to be more helpful here.

  61. Hi Aaron, I can imagine it’s tough to reproduce every problem announced here, I apologize for my earlier comment.

    After trying many possible solutions I think I’ve got my problem fixed now.. It seems that restarting the eHome application on shutdown/resume fixes my USB-detection problem. Still, the USB re-detectionproblem exists, but by restarting the eHome application it uses the updated (not ‘previous session’) USB-devices, at least this works for my remote.

    I’m using a tool from http://www.xs4all.nl/~hveijk/mst/indexe.htm to do this, since I don’t know how to set XP to "restart" an application automatically.

    Is there an option to reset this program without the MST-tool?


  62. Beren says:

    Hi Guys,

    Has anyone found a fix for the problem where all the media center controls work fine, but the mouse and keyboard don’t?



  63. Hi Kristian – No need to apologize for anything.  I am glad you were able to resolve part of the issue.  I’m not sure I understand your current question – is your goal to automatically restart Media Center?  If so, there is an option to cause Media Center to perform periodic optimization (which will stop and restart Media Center and some of the services it uses).  You can find this option in Settings | General | Optimization if you have Update Rollup 2 or later installed.

    Hi Beren – Can you please try to install the most recent IR driver package from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en and see if that helps solve this issue on your system?

  64. Jamye says:


    I have tried everything listed here (including shorting the battery contacts on the remote).

    None of these suggestions have worked, so some of the buttons on my MCE remote still do not work. Basically, the only keys that work are the number (channel) buttons, the green start button, the channel up/down button, arrows, OK, more, PC off, DVD menu, Live TV, Guide and Recorded TV. All the other buttons don’t do anything (ie, volume, mute, play, pause, etc).

    I’m at my wit’s end … are there any other ideas?



  65. Franck T. says:

    I have a WinTV-HVR-1300, included "Microsoft Media Center certified remote control"

    Some buttons, on my Remote Control doesn’t work.

    The following buttons are not working:

    – Play, Pause, Stop Record, Forward, Backward, Skip Forward, Skip Backward

    – Back

    – Volume +/-, mute

    I install "IntelliType Pro5.3 Keyboard Software", and more button work but

    not All

    The following buttons are not working:

    – Play, Pause, Record, Forward, Backward

    – Volume +/-

    It’s better but not good, I can’t control the volume and can’t pause/record it’s a pain…

    Franck T.

  66. Hi Franck – Have you tried suggestion #3 listed above to see if that helps in your scenario?  Also, there are some other suggestions that you might find useful in the "Remote control and IR receiver errors" section of my blog article at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx.

    Hi Jamye – I’m sorry but I don’t have any other suggestions other than the ones I’ve already posted on my blog.  You may want to contact your computer manufacturer to see if they have any additional troubleshooting steps that they can suggest.  I’m sorry for the inconvenience.

  67. Beren says:

    astebner – THAT WORKED! If I was an old lady, i’d bake you a cake.



  68. Jamye says:

    Aaron (and Franck),

    referring to Franck’s posts it seems that installing IntelliType does something to help the problem of some buttons not working for MCE. (I have since installed IntelliType and can report the same results as Franck – ie. a few extra buttons now work – the same as Franck’s).

    Perhaps there’s a way to edit the key mappings in IntelliType to get the remaining buttons working?

    There’s a commands.xml file that appears to have application specific mapping, but it’s very cryptic …



  69. Hi Jamye (and Franck) – I have not heard of any previous cases where installing IntelliType has changed the behavior of the Media Center remote control, and I am not sure why that would be happening.  I don’t know of a way to edit key mappings in IntelliType to fix issues with Media Center remote controls either.  If you haven’t yet, I’d suggest that both of you try to install the latest IR driver package located at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en and see if that helps at all.

  70. Mits says:

    I’m having an issue with MCE setup since I formatted and reloaded Windows.  I’m trying to setup my Dish Network box again, but this time MCE doesn’t recognize anything when I press any buttons on the Dish remote.  The IR receiver blinks like it’s getting the signal, it just isn’t doing anything on the screen.  I have both update rollup 2 and IR update rollup 2.  I’m lost here.  Everything is setup exactly as it was before the reformat.



  71. Franck T. says:

    Hi astebner – I already try your suggestion #3 and installed all the KBs as I can find for Media Center and IR problem. I try as well to reset my remote, change the USB ports, remove other USB devices, install MCE diag tools… Reinstall Rollup2 and KB912024. Unfortunatily, Nothing work.

    I try IntelliType because I see my remote as "Microsoft eHome MCRI Keyboard", it was on my own initiative.

    FYI, I install the TV card and Remote after install Rollup2. I never see the remote working fully. I plug the remote on a XP Pro and the Remote can control Volume without pb. I don’t thing it’s a device problem, I guess it a matter of software.

    Thanks for you advice, I let you posted if I find anything.

    Franck T. (UK)

  72. Marco says:

    Hi all, I’ve performed all steps relating to IR remote issues in this blog yet still cannot get it to work.

    Installed RU2, ir ipdate 912024_v2 and recently the new April RU2 patch


    Issue is the M.Soft IR transiever flashs its red LED internally without any IR MCE remote bieng pressed.? Not sure why any ideas before i reimage PC again (btw this is a fresh install)

    Rgds Marco

  73. jb4short says:

    I have a DELL XPS Gen5 with a Lumanate dual tuner TV card, a Soundblaster Audigy 2, running Windows MCE. My Microsoft IR remote has only partially functioned since receiving the system last year. I have spent countless hours on the phone with DELL’s support and they’ve sent me now three remote kits (remote and USB IR interface) and two tuner cards. NOTHING has changed. The remote changes channels, flips between modes, arrow keys work, power on/off works but the VOLUME and the Record/playback sections do NOT work. Does anyone have any suggestions (Besides the obvious solution of tossing this out a window)? I’ve followed most of the instructions in these blogs.

  74. sudhir says:

    I just build HTPC system with MCE2005 remote and keyboard. My MS remote works fine all keys work fine. I have problem with the MS Keyboard only menu buttons on left and right of the keyboard work. Nothing else work.

  75. Shawn says:

    Is there a place where I can find settings for various STBs and MCE?  I’m trying to configure for a Motorola / Next Level Communications box that my Telco uses to supply my digital TV signal. The model number appears to be 2200N30000.  I’ve managed to resolve the ignore duplicate digits problem (122 transmits as 12) but I can’t get either the MS Keyboard or remote to transmit 3 or 9.  Any suggestions? I have applied both rollup 2’s – OS and IR.

  76. Hi Jb4short – The only suggestions I know of to try are listed in the "Remote control and IR receiver errors" section of the article at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx.  You mentioned that you tried most of these instructions, so I would suggest trying any of the other ones that you haven’t tried yet to see if that helps.  Since Dell has sent you multiple remote/receiver combinations, it does not sound like this is a hardware issue.  Just to confirm, have you installed the latest IR drivers from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en?”>http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en?

    Hi Sudhir – Are you referring to the Media Center keyboard, or one of the other wireless Microsoft keyboards?  If you are referring to the Media Center keyboard, I would suggest installing the latest driver package from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en and see if that helps.

    Hi Shawn – I am not aware of a place to find the settings for various set-top boxes.  Have you tried the suggestions at the top of this blog post to resolve the transmission problems for 3 and 9?  Also, can you try to short your remote using the steps at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/archive/2005/12/29/508147.aspx to see if that helps?

  77. Jesper Clausen says:

    I got the same error as described in scenario 3 (number keys, arrows, enter) fail to function.

    I need to restart MCE or unplug/reinsert the IR Device to get the keys back.

    I can then move around in all menus except the "videos" folder, every time i enter that folder the keys are not function again.

    My remote was working fine from installdate in january, but after i recieved a windowsupdate early april i got trouble with my remote.

  78. Jb4short says:

    Thanks for the reply astebner.

    I went through these instuctions again to no avail.

    I do have the latest IR drivers installed as I’d hoped that that would fix the issue prior to posting my original post.

    I’m still stumped.

  79. Jamye says:

    For those of you (like me) who had tried everything and still couldn’t get the MCE remote fully working, I think I’ve found a fix.

    Last night I installed a utility called HIP (Human Interface Programmer). This is freeware and is sort of like IntelliType for remote controls, but much more flexible.

    You can download it from http://byremote.com.au/HIP/

    Be sure you download the complete version, and select the MCE remote plugin when running the setup. When you load HIP, make sure you load the config file (.HIP file) for the MCE remote as it’s already got most of the buttons mapped (with the exception of the arrow keys, which is easy to fix).

    You may need to tweak a couple of things after the install. On my MCE PC I immediately got the use of the volume up/down buttons, play, pause, etc (ie. all the buttons that hadn’t been working previously).

    However a couple of quirks need to be fixed. Some of the buttons seem to result in 2 key presses in MCE – for instance the arrow keys. This was easy to fix by configuring HIP to translate a down arrow into a DOWN and an UP key press (basically this meant the cursor goes down 2 then up 1 – but you don’t notice it) – same for the mute button (just configure HIP to translate to 2 MUTE commands). I’m sure there’s another way around this, but thought I’d share the good news ASAP.

  80. f0rd42 says:

    Hi all

    I have a slightly different problem here. 1st of all, I just have the keyboard, no remote and no ehome IR receiver. Instead I use the PowerSconi IR Receiver.

    I can see all the IR commands comming in and have assigned the correct keystrokes for it. Everything works fine outsite of MCE, but as soon as I start it in full screen, the keys either doesn’t work at all or just 1 out of 10 and I have the "up up up up" Proplem.

    Non of the suggested tricks worked so far.

    Do i really have to use the ehome receiver AND the remote? As a remote I’d love to contiue to use my Harmony as I contral several other stuff with that as well and I spend a fortune to get it in order to have only one RC on my table.

    Does anyone else have a similar solution or any further Ideas?


  81. Hi F0rd42 – I don’t have a Harmony remote control but a couple of my friends do and they said that it works fine for them without needing the eHome transceiver or remote.  They had to go through the PC setup for the Harmony remote and after that everything worked fine.  You may want to re-run the remote control setup within Media Center to see if you can set a different remote command transmission speed and see if that helps in this scenario.

  82. apmeyers says:

    I feel like I’ve tried everything here.  Some of the buttons on my remote control do not work the playback buttons and volume/mute.  I’ve tried deleting keyboard.pnf and reinstallng the driver I’ve tried shorting the terminals..unless I’m doing this wrong?  When I reinstall the transciver driver I get 4 unknown devices under Human Interface Devices, 1 under Mice, and 3 under keyboards.  I’ve updated all these drivers but still no luck.  Any ideas?

  83. DavidLucas says:

    I have had the same problems for the past while and every time i reload windows, it works for 3 weeks and then breaks. my play and stop keys work, but the arrow keys and ok stop.


    eventually. It is totally unrelated to media centre and the remote. The people who are having this probelm have probably loaded a codec pack with FFDSHOW in. FFDSHOW does not work with media center. my beta copy of windows vista also breaks with FFDSHOW. To fix it, open the FFDSHOW vfv and video config utils and disable all the check boxes under codecs. you could probably get away with disabling all the divx and xvid codecs as media center only looks for .avi files. remember that you will have to load the xvid and divx filters now. i have successfully repaired this probelm using k-lite mega codec pack and performing the above steps. i still use the ffdshow audio codec to boost the overall volume to my hifi and for volume normalisation so that my recorded shows play at roughly thr same volume as my home videos and my music

  84. niffer says:

    I have tried every possible solution suggested in this post and others suggested and my remote still will not work.  It will work sporadically IF I first open Word, type a few numbers using the remote and open Media Center through the program menu so it’s already running.  Then the remote will work for that session.  I’ve downloaded every rollup, hotfix, the MCE tweak tool.  I’ve uninstalled the receiver and reinstalled.  Tried taking the batteries out and pressing all the buttons, tried shorting the remote, changing the broadcast channel. None of it has worked. Any ideas I’m missing?

  85. This article serves as a central location for all links to troubleshooting documentation that has been

  86. Sirnig says:

    I tried reviving my "lost" IR Remote RC6 supplied with my Sony VAIO AR21S (UK model – 290 in USA) but none of your suggestions worked. I eventually got it working by applying the download from KB905213 (of 6/12/2005)which restored all of the necessary HID profiles previously missing under "Device Manager". This might help others with similar problems.

    P.S. Your great article on restoring "lost" TV Tuner Cards under MCE 2005 helped me enormously after many fruitless hours of getting nowhere.Thanks Aaron for your time and trouble!I’ve posted a link on the European VAIO Users Forum.

  87. rbartl says:

    although this is about the media center, I bought the MCE keyboard and want to use it with XP Pro, SP2. some keys do work (sleep button, volume up, mute), all others don’t. also the pointer device doesn’t.

    any idea, how I can solve this?

    thx for your help!

  88. Hi Rbartl – I suggest first making sure that you have the most recent IR rollup package installed from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en.

    If that doesn’t help, the suggestions listed in the Remote Control and IR Receiver Errors section of the article at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx might help resolve this issue.

  89. JohnBirt says:

    I had problems with remote not working and also my dual tuner disappearing after installation of Rollup 2. I had to do a complete clean re-install and then monitor updates very carefully.

    My MSoft remote media keyboard partially worked all except the typing and function keys.

    I took heed this time of the advice to not install the .Net Framework 1.1 Hotfix KB886904 and then installed Rollup 2. Fingers crossed my keyboard and remote now work OK and my TV is back in action. It would appear that the Hotfix trashes the install of SP1 and the damage can’t be uninstalled and system restore was no use in my case.

    Is it safe to install KB886904 and is it necessary? Are there any other IR updates that are safe to install now?

    Thanks for a most helpful and informative weblog

  90. Hi JohnBirt – I’m not sure which IR updates you have installed, but the most recent IR hotfix is located at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=b39d53f1-0ac9-433b-b488-4cab82f31dc8&DisplayLang=en.

    It should also be fine to re-install KB886904 on your system as well – it is a .NET Framework 1.1 hotfix, and should not affect Media Center functionality at all.

  91. fiscap says:

    Hi guys – I was having problems with my Microsoft MCE remote and Media Center not responding to all the remote functions. Play, Ok, cursor buttons and Start would work fine, but not much else.

    I found in another forum that someone suggested to make sure the "Human Interface Device Access" service was enabled and started.

    In my situation, the service was disabled but when I enabled it and I tried to start it, it would terminate unexpectedly with the following error in the event log:

    The Human Interface Device Access service terminated with the following error:

    The system cannot find the file specified.

    After some more research, I found the below solution to be very helpful as it has solved my problem completely.

    – Service: "Human Interface Device Access" – From a newsgroup post: "The following error will occur if any of the following three files are missing, namely: “hidserv.dll”, “mouhid.sys”, and “mouclass.sys”. Error description: “Could not start the Human Interface Device Access service on Local Computer. Error 126: the specified module could not be found”. To fix this problem extract “hidserv.dll”“, mouhid.sys” and “mouclass.sys” from the file “drivers.cab”, located on the Windows XP Setup CD to "<SystemRoot>windowssystem32".

    1. Insert Windows XP Setup CD.

    2. Browse to <CDROM drive letter>:i386drivers.cab

    3. Double click the “drivers.cab” file. The compressed files in the “.cab” file will be listed.

    4. Copy the three files to “<SystemRoot>windowssystem32”. Reboot the computer".

  92. bob31411 says:

    Hi, I am having a problem getting my MCE 2005 Rollup 2 to allow me to reprogram a new satellite receiver remote for the IR blaster. Here is what I have done.

    Rollup 2 was installed about 2 months ago and I was able to still use my MCE remote to change channels on my Dish Network receiver. Last week I installed a new Dish Network receiver and I cannot reprogram my MCE remote to work with the new receiver. I have tried to enter the commands from scratch and it acts as if I have no remote pointed at the IR blaster. Any ideas?

    Thanks. Bobby

  93. Hi Bob31411 – The possible workarounds that I know of for IR issues are all posted in the "Remote Control and IR Receiver Errors" section of the blog article at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx.

    If none of those suggestions help in your scenario, I’d suggest posting a question at one of the following locations and hopefully someone there will be able to advise further:



  94. bob31411 says:

    Hi astebner,

    Thanks for your reply. I actually had already read through the "Remote Control and IR Receiver Errors" section. So I have posted the question on the Microsoft link that you sent. Thanks very much. Bobby

  95. kheinz57 says:

    My Sony VIAO’s remote control RC6 stopped working after installing the MCE 2005 Rollup 2.

    Per the posted suggestions, I installed KB912024, ensured that keyboard.pnf was not present (KB912024 appeared to have taken care of that), uninstalled the eHome Infrared Transmitter device and then unplugged and reinstalled the USB connector.  As expected, the system prompted to install a driver.  However, it could not locate a suitable driver using the default search.  The only way it could locate a driver was if I manually select %windir%system32ReinstallBackups.

    I also tried installing KB905213 but Windows still could not locate a suitable driver.

    I suspect the non-functioning cursor and OK buttons are a result of using the old driver; but without it the remote control does not work at all.

    How can I install an updated driver for my PCVA-IR8U?

    Thanks. Karl.

  96. Hi Kheinz57 – All of the workarounds that I know of for IR driver and remote control problems are listed in the section named "Remote Control and IR Receiver Errors" at http://blogs.msdn.com/astebner/articles/487537.aspx.

    If none of those help, you may need to search on the web site of your hardware manufacturer to see if they have any updates available that you can try.  You may also want to post a question at one of the following locations to see if anyone there can help suggest any additional workarounds:



    I’m sorry I haven’t been able to be more helpful in this scenario.

  97. charmaine says:

    my windows media player is starting to launch automatically every time I turn on my laptop.  How do I stop the media player from launching automatically and how to i retrieve my mozilla and internet icons? I just purchased this ASUS laptop and I can't seem to fix the problem. Can someone please tell me what to do.  I can't even launch my internet anymore

  98. Hi Charmaine – You should be able to run msconfig.exe and go to the Startup tab to view which programs are configured to run each time you restart your computer, and you can uncheck programs there that you don't want to run automatically.

    I'm not positive how to fix your Internet icons, but I'd suggest starting by looking at the Default Programs control panel to see if you can change settings in the Set Program Access and Computer Defaults page to help fix this.

  99. Scott says:

    Thank you very much.  Deleting the keyboard file in the windows directory fixed it for me.  

  100. Mr. Edward says:

    Before you spend a lot of time over thinking this problem, as I did, CHANGE THE BATTERIES. It was a simple fix.

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