Upgrading to Kodi 17: The unintuitive bits

  • Move the old .kodi profile to .kodi backup and start over. Judging from the changelog there have been a lot of changes to the media libraries so we might as well start afresh.
  • On Ubuntu you will need to apt-get dist-upgrade to get Kodi 17 rather than just upgrade because of new dependencies. This is assuming you’re working with the official PPA.
  • On Ubuntu you’ll need to manually install kodi-inputstream-adaptive  (as a package using apt-get, not an addon in Kodi) in order for DASH to work. DASH is used by the YouTube addon to allow for greater and more variable streaming quality.
  • On Ubuntu you may have to manually install kodi-peripheral-joystick (again as a package) to get your controller working.
  • Installing SuperRepo v17 allows for browsing the packages but either something’s amiss with the repository or I’m being a dumbass. Lots of ERROR: CCurlFile::Stat – Failed: Couldn’t connect to server(7) in the kodi.log, though. To download a package manually from Superrepo.org, e.g. Steam, click the button that displays the number of downloads, the click SuperRepo location and save the zip file. Then choose Install from zip file in the Add-on browser (the cardboard box icon in the Add-ons menu). Or maybe you can just add the Jarvis repo instead of Krypton and get away with it?
  • Favouriting an add-on directly in the Add-ons menu is not possible as the option does not appear in the context menu. Go to the My add-ons submenu and find the add-on in the proper category, e.g. Program add-ons for Steam, Video add-ons for YouTube etc. Context-clicking it there will provide the option to favourite it.
  • Getting a play queue in the music player?

Running Kodi as a pure client on linux

When I got rid of the last Windows partition on any of my home computers, I thought I would finally give NFS a chance to replace CIFS as the reigning network file system in my house. To it’s credit, NFS took that chance and ran with it and it’s worked pretty much flawlessly ever since. Seeing how reliable it has been, it has become my primary means of accessing media located on my HTPC when not in front of/within earshot of the my TV/hifi but still on the local network.

That approach, however, has some serious shortcomings. I can’t see what I have and have not watched. I can’t see if I’m halfway through a movie – something that is depressingly common in this ADD world of media abundance. I have to move between file managers and video players, something that isn’t that practical when my 2-in-1 laptop is in a position that hides away the keyboard and I have to rely on the touch screen. And I find myself missing the inviting presentation of Kodi from my HTPC.

So recently the thought struck me: Could I not just set up a second Kodi instance on my linux laptop only as a client? Turn a full-fledged Kodi application into a dumb terminal? An… *makes sign of the cross* ‘app’? Only then I did I remember that, wait, wasn’t that sort of the selling point of Plex over Kodi? Apps aplenty? Streaming everywhere and anywhere? Well, yes. But it can be done with Kodi. Sort of. Here’s what I got.

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