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WeTek Showcase: How to improve your remote in Kodi

WeTek Showcase: How to improve your remote in Kodi

Hello internet! I am pleased to announce that WeTek will be featuring a new blog series on it's website called WeTek Showcase. The idea behind all of this is to showcase cool uses of WeTek hardware, tutorials, helpful hints, answering questions, or anything else we think might be interesting to the community.

So let's get started with our first post:

How to load a better keymap file for WeTek remotes in Kodi

This tutorial applies to the WeTek Play, OpenELEC, and Core remotes. This guide requires Kodi v16.0 or higher.

Kodi allows for different "keymaps" to be loaded to change what buttons do on your remote control. By using a modified keymap we can tailor those button presses for the various WeTek remotes.

First, we are going save the following keymap into a plain text document from a desktop or laptop computer. Save this file as "wetek.xml" (or anything, as long as it ends in .xml). Make sure the file actually ends in .xml and not in .txt: https://raw.githubusercontent.com/NedScott/test/master/WeTek_Universal.xml

Next we need to load it onto the WeTek. For this we will use the built-in file manager in Kodi, which works for any WeTek box and for any OS. First, copy the file to a USB thumb drive. If you have a NAS or network file share, you can also use that:

  1. Save the keymap you want to use as a plain text file as "wetek.xml" (it can be anything as long as it ends in .xml) on the USB thumb drive or file share.
  2. Go to the File Manager in Kodi. For the default skin, Confluence, highlight the "System" tab and then select the submenu "File manager" option.
  3. Add the file share as a source in the "A" window, then navigate to where the keymap file is. When using a USB thumb drive, this should automatically be one of the available folders. 
  4. In the "B" window go do the Profile directory which will be the userdata folder, then open the keymaps folder.
  5. Highlight the keymap file from the "A" window, then press menu, and then select copy. This will copy the selected keymap to the Fire TV's userdata folder.
  6. Now just restart Kodi to load the new keymap.

The keymap file is now loaded. What does it do? Let's take a look:

Globally:

  • F2 opens the live TV EPG window (when the on-screen keyboard is open, F2 does "shift" for the OpenELEC remote).
  • F3 opens the Kodi homescreen
  • F4 and F7 are mapped to the Kodi context/pop-up menu. Note that in Kodi v16, you can also use the context menu by long-pressing the select/OK button.
  • Long-press F4 or F7 to open the "sidebar" menu.
  • F11 toggles subtitles on/off
  • Long-press on escape or back will go to the Kodi home screen.
  • The number keys will "jump" in file lists based on the text/SMS keys. For example, pressing 7 will jump to files starting with the letter P.

When video is playing:

  • F4/F7 will open the current playlist. This will also show you what is "next" when you have "play next video automatically" enabled. On Live TV this will open the channel selector.
  • Backing out of a video will now stop the video, instead of playing it in the background.
  • Long-press on backing out of a video will keep the video playing in the background.
  • Select/OK will play and pause the video.
  • Long-press on select/OK will bring up the on-screen-controls.
  • Long-press on left/right arrows will do rewind or fastforward.
  • Long-press on up/down will go to the next or previous video, if you have multiple videos on a playlist.

There are a few other little tweaks here and there, such as being able to "highlight" multiple items in Kodi's file manager by long-pressing left or right (only in the file manager). You can use this keymap as a guide on how to add or change your own custom commands. A full list of commands you can use, as well as more details about keymaps, can be found here: http://kodi.wiki/view/Keymap

You can also use the "Keymap Editor" add-on in the Kodi.tv official add-on repository to map keys without having to edit any xml files. 

Questions? Comments? Have a request for a future Showcase post? Feel free to tweet @WeTekNed or post on our WeTek support forum.

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