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Pairing your Apple Remote with your computer

If you have several Mac computers or an Apple TV that use the Apple remote, or other devices with integrated infrared ("IR") receivers in one room, you can "pair" your Apple Remote with a specific Apple device so it doesn't interfere with other Apple devices or IR devices nearby. (For example, you may have one or more Mac computers, an Apple TV, and a remote-controlled TV in the same room.)

Pairing allows you to set the receiving Apple device so that only it can be controlled by one remote. Learn how to pair your Apple Remote.

Pairing your remote with your Mac:

  1. Log in on your Mac as an Admin user.
  2. Get very close to your Mac (about 3 or 4 inches away).
  3. Point the remote at the infrared sensor on the front of your Mac.
  4. Press and hold the Menu and Next/Fast-forward buttons simultaneously on the remote for 5 seconds.
  5. Your Apple Remote is now paired with your computer. You should see a chain-link style lock appear in the center of your screen for a moment.

To delete a pairing between the remote and your Mac:

  1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple () menu in the upper-left menu bar.
  2. Choose Security from the View menu. 
  3. Click the lock and enter your Administrator password if necessary.
  4. Click Unpair in the Security pane.

Use the Security pane in System Preferences to turn the infrared ("IR") reception on your Mac off (or back on). To do this:

  1. Choose System Preferences from the Apple () menu in the upper-left menu bar.
  2. Choose Security from the View menu. 
  3. Click the lock and enter your Administrator password if necessary.
  4. In OS X Lion v10.7 or later, click the "Advanced" button in the lower-right corner.
  5. Enable the "Disable remote control infrared receiver" checkbox. 
  6. In OS X Lion v10.7 or later, click the OK button.
Last Modified: Oct 23, 2012
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  • Last Modified: Oct 23, 2012
  • Article: HT1619
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