Living in Microsoft Country, you can walk into any computer store in Seattle and buy an OEM remote control for Media Center. After a week of use, the remote control would not respond; no blinking lights, no backlit button, nothing. The logical conclusion it that the batteries are dead, but no amount of fresh batteries would fix the remote. I ended up taking the remote back and getting a replacement.
Several months of use and my new Media Center remote did the same thing. I did a little research and found this was a known issue. I don’t know why, but the remotes must be “rebooted” by removing the batteries for 30 minutes and then reinstalling them.
This did the trick, and the remote has “died” and been revived several times.
Microsoft has made great strides with excellent products like Windows XP and Server 2003, and then they make a remote that has to be rebooted. Maybe they should have called it Media Center Remote Bob or Media Center Remote 3.1…