WinLIRC is described as 'allows you to transmit and receive standard infrared remote control signals. This allows you to control your computer using almost any standard infrared remote control. It also allows your computer to control other equipment which uses these signals (stereo equipment)'. There are four alternatives to WinLIRC for Windows, Linux and Mac. The best alternative is EventGhost, which is both free and Open Source. Other great apps like WinLIRC are Remote Buddy (Paid), LIRC (Free) and WIRR 0.01 (Free).
EventGhost is an advanced, easy to use and extensible automation tool for MS Windows. It can use different input devices like infrared or wireless remote controls to trigger macros, that on their part control a computer and its attached hardware.
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EventGhost vs WinLIRC opinions
pros, cons and recent comments
Gets much more done than WinLIRC, although lacking as much compatibility with IR modules. Much easier to use, for even semi-complex tasks. It can run your entire house, and is open source. Excellent support on it's forums. Absolutely worth a good hard look.