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Macworld Exhibitor tip: disable the IR port on your Macs

Scott McNulty

As you may or may not know there has been something of a dust up across the tech blogosphere regarding a prank that a certain tech blog performed during CES. The prank involved a little gizmo that turned off a number of televisions at once, which one could use to turn off displays during presentations (which is just what the people in question did).

This childish prank got me to thinking about the havoc that someone could cause with one of those tiny Apple remotes during Macworld. Therefore, I am hoping to help exhibitors avoid this sort of mischief by advocating they either:

  • Disable their Mac's IR ports
  • Pair their Mac to a specific remote
Both are very easy to do, and well worth it for any Mac that you might use in public. Simply launch System Preferences and click on Security. You'll see an option in the General tab to disable the remote control receiver (which means no remotes will work with that Mac) or a button labeled 'Pair...' This will allow you to bind the Mac in question to one remote. You can use Front Row, or whatever you need to do with the paired remote but some random blogger won't be able to hijack your Mac.

Trust me, either of these steps will take you a couple of minutes but save you lots of headaches.

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