I've upgraded from Ubuntu 16.10 to 17.04, which is the first Ubuntu version including LIRC 0.9.4c-9,
that includes support for IRToy out of the box.
After booting, the LED was always ON and a quick check revealed, that the device was put in flash
mode having USB ID 04D8:FD0B instead of the normal operation mode 04D8:FD08.
Power cycling / re-pluging did not reactivate the device and i had to use the fw_update tool to perform
a reset. The first time i reflashed the firmware because i thought it was broken but the 2nd time i only
did a read:
./fw_update -r -v -m flash -vid 0x04d8 -pid 0xfd0b -ix USBIRToy.v24.hex
The suggested command from the website "fw_update -reset -vid 0x04D8 -pid 0xFD0B" did not work
and just gives "At least one command must be specified" as an error, so i though a simple read operation
would be the least intrusive way, because all i needed was the reset function.
Now here's the nasty part. After disabling every LIRC service (about 3-4) within systemd other than the main
lircd.service this behaviour went away and the device wasn't semi-bricked on every reboot. Also, just manually
starting the LIRC daemon with the right option would also work fine. So it must be some additional LIRC related
service or socket activation or whatever.
This behaviour was reproduceable with 2 different otherwise fully working IRToy devices. I highly doubt this
is the fault of the hardware.
Since the Ubuntu LIRC packages are probably just imported from Debian, it could affect other systems too.
You should report this issue at https://sourceforge.net/p/lirc/tickets/ (https://sourceforge.net/p/lirc/tickets/) or on the Lirc mailing https://lists.sourceforge.net/lists/listinfo/lirc-list (https://lists.sourceforge.net/lists/listinfo/lirc-list)