Kodi 14.0 – Helix alpha 3

Posted By: Martijn Kaijser on Aug 31, 2014 in Pre-Release

Kodi 14, which we gave the codename “Helix“, is shaping up to be what is often called a “stability” release. In software development, many projects operate on a sort of tick-tock release schedule. The “tick” often introduces new features, dramatically alters the UI, and can likely dramatically alter the underlying framework of the software. The “tock” on the other hand, goes back and cleans up the code, fixing old incompatibilities, eliminating UI inconsistencies, and often preparing the groundwork for the next major tick. Where Gotham was quite definitely a “tick,” Helix is shaping up to be a “tock.”

This months alpha release doesn’t contain anything that could be picked out as a real “feature’. Most of the changes are under the hood and should further improve stability and user friendliness. However we will highlight some of the main visual changes so far.

International keyboard layout

keyboard_layout_setting The virtual keyboard which included in Kodi has been the same for many years, with a set layout. From this alpha release, it’s now possible to change the layout to some well of the well known ones, like QWERTY and AZERTY. Additionally there’s also a Hebrew and Bulgarian layout included. Important: As an affect of this change you will notice that most of the third-party skins will now have a blank keyboard layout as they have not been updated yet.

Auto update add-ons

keyboard_layout_settingWe have added several option considering the updating of add-ons. You can set it to always auto-update,  so you never have to worry about not being up-to-date. Second option is to let you notify you when there are updates available. You can then manually install them. Third is simply turning it all off. This means no add-ons will be auto update and you won’t be notified. You will have to manually trigger the check for new updates.

The changelog for Kodi 14 alpha 3 alone contains 138 changes so far. Alpha 2 had 333 changes Needless to say, they can’t all be summarized here or are to technical or boring the regular users. Here are some that are surely worth mentioning:

  • * Ability to increase font size in Confluence skin
  • * Add 5.1 PCM playback for Android.
  • * Improved MusicBrainz matching from tags
  • * Ability to choose between auto-update, notify or off for updating add-ons. This is a global setting for all add-ons.
  • * Extend JSON-RPC which is used for by a variety of services and remotes
  • * VP9 video codec now uses software multi-threading. This codec has no hardware support yet.
  • * Simplifying and improving core code.


As for this Helix release, so far there have only been small things changed in regards to add-ons. So we are happy to say that almost all add-ons that worked in Gotham, will also work in Helix. There are of course some exceptions, however this should be only be a minimal amount.


Creating a skins for Kodi takes many months of designing, coding, testing, tweaking and a lot of patience to get it just right. However with every major Kodi (past XBMC) release there is the problem of skins becoming incompatible due to various code changes. So for every release people who put a lot of effort creating these skins, need to adapt it for the next Kodi version. This could mean that your favourite skin doesn’t work in the next Kodi version. We are very glad to say, that thanks to a group of skin developers, there are already 2 Helix compatible skins available in our repository. From memory this has never happened before, that within the alpha stage there are already skins available for you to enjoy using. On our forum there are several more skins being worked on, to get these into shape for people to use. So hopefully by the time of final release, there will be several more available. So let’s all thank the developers for their hard work they do for the community.

Helix compatible skins in our repository at the moment are: Aeon Nox 5, Transparency!, Conq
Other are still included however they may lack the functionality you have been used to in some areas.


Should want to download and install this alpha (monthly) build please visit our download page. You will notice that you can still see “XBMC” in certain areas as we are still in transition to the new name, which takes time.

Get involved

If you use these builds, we encourage you to report problems with these builds on our forum first and after if asked submit bugs on Trac (following this guide: How to submit a bug report). Do note that we need detailed information so we can investigate the issue. We also appreciate providing support in our Forums where you can, or donate to the XBMC Foundation if you like. For a current FAQ on Kodi 14, visit our Helix FAQ. You can of course also foll0w or help promote Kodi on all available social networks. Read more on the get involved page.


http://xbmc.org or http://kodi.tv is the only official place anything XBMC/Kodi related. This includes news, announcements, information or XBMC/Kodi downloads. There are of course manufacturers who also provide support with customized XBMC/Kodi versions, tailored for their devices. Should you have purchased from them it would be wise to first check, if it’s a known issue with that specific version. Any other third-party websites, offering you XBMC/Kodi installations, or people offering you pre-installed devices, are not officially supported by Team XBMC and may contain unwanted and unsupported additions, changes and add-ons. Installing these versions is at your own risk. XBMC/Kodi does not provide any media content on it’s own and comes with no add-ons installed regarding this. Should you have problems please contact the correct add-on developer or website should you experience any issues.


Discussion - 80 Comments

  • Jarrett Tennis Aug 31, 2014 

    Perhaps you could sneak in an option to disable auto-repeat on videos. Right now the option is hidden, and not available at all on certain skins and somehow it seems to just enable itself for no decernable reason currently.http://forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=77528 is an example of what I’m talking about.

  • shadowr Aug 31, 2014 

    I hope Kodi will be faster and more stable. Thanks for the release

  • JOe K. Aug 31, 2014 

    Will RetroPlayer be included in this final release?

    • Nathan Betzen Aug 31, 2014 

      Unfortunately not. Retroplayer is a huge project, and the main dev behind it simply hasn’t had enough time to get it done for this release.

  • Pete Aug 31, 2014 

    Thank you
    But we need more advance settings under pvr simple iptv
    Ex: we can add xml link and scripts and plugin
    Please will be good if we can get those advanced settings
    Regarda xbmc/kodi ROCK

  • unique Aug 31, 2014 

    Is there going to be 64bit support for ios

  • moravec Aug 31, 2014 

    You should update the installer, (Windows). XMBC still everywhere…

    • Nathan Betzen Sep 01, 2014 

      yup. All part of the slow process.

  • Jace Aug 31, 2014 

    Please stop xbmc from changing the IP address. Seems to be the most difficult thing to stop, even from within ubuntu and xterm settings.

    • Ego Sep 02, 2014 

      Set a static reservation in your router. It’s much easier than managing within the OS itself

    • AuXBoX Sep 08, 2014 

      Why don’t you assign it an ip address at the router/modem

  • jonc Sep 01, 2014 

    Jace, it is your dhcp server in your modem router that changes your IP address, no xbmc/kodi, xbmc/kodi merely reports what it is (unless you taking about an rpi, if so simply set a static IP)

  • Albert Sep 01, 2014 

    Please fix the keyboard issues with other skins. I love Bello….I don’t wanna switch just to type

  • Pat Sep 01, 2014 

    I am so tempted to use Helix full time. I’ve been dying to see how much space I save and how H265 looks.

    • Artur Sep 02, 2014 

      try it! Helix works great with HEVC (x265) :)

  • lonewolf Sep 01, 2014 

    I think that you are moving to fast. I think it is more important to have stabler releases than just releases. Especially now with kodi you need to make good impression

    • Nathan Betzen Sep 02, 2014 

      I’m not really sure what point you are trying to make. This is very clearly listed as an alpha release. And with the last alpha release we made fairly clear that in many ways the final release of 14 was going to be a stability release over 13. So Kodi 14, by definition, should be a stabler release than XBMC 13.

      • fenix Sep 04, 2014 

        The point he is trying to make, 13.2 is super buggy and unstable, yet they are pushing towards a 14 version? I’d like to see a stable, bug free version as well. Using XBMC reminds me why I don’t use linux distros.

      • fenix Sep 04, 2014 

        And what is that supposed to mean? v13 is a “hey we will break stuff, but still give it’s own version number”. That’s crap. v13 should have never reached a ‘final’ in the first place, let alone begin working on v14.

        • SoonerStigma Sep 08, 2014 

          You sound like a child. Don’t use the extremely awesome and free software if it’s so horrible and such a bother for you to use.

          In what way do you contribute that entitles you to act and degrade the software in this manner?

        • lonewolf Sep 09, 2014 

          fenix i dint mean it like this.13.2 is ironed out. And i have all the faith to team kodi that works tirelessly and for free, to give us a superb program

        • Adam Sep 10, 2014 

          @Fenix You’re a retard Kid If you don’t know how to use to softer and your demented brain can’t cope don’t use it simple

      • lonewolf Sep 09, 2014 

        To @Nathan Betzen thanks for the answer. Yes XBMC 13 had some bugs and minor crashes but everything got ironed out.. Thanks for all your great effort.I dint want to sound ungrateful

      • abrasion Sep 10, 2014 

        That’s irrelivant, don’t release it if you’ve got no particular reason to release.
        Stability should be in 13.3, 13.4, 13.41 and so on – I see no value in releasing 14 without substantial changes, ESPECIALLY if you’re going for an entire new name for the product.

        I’m baffled how 14 is coming so soon considering how long 13 took.

        • Martijn Sep 10, 2014 

          Then you have absolutely no clue how software works

        • reksp13 Oct 02, 2014 

          Wow! It amazes me that Team Kodi puts in all this work and does not charge a dime and still knowing that people complain. If you read the post, they have added to it. Thanks Team-Kodi

  • Arthur Sep 01, 2014 

    will xbmc have voice search like amazon fire tv,,,,,,,,,,? an addon would be nice tx for the amazing work guys and girls

  • CJ Sep 01, 2014 

    Can u make a feature that you can lock and still stream from iPhone to Apple TV using airplay, and do other things like using other apps while using airplay?

  • Tad Sep 01, 2014 

    Are you guys planning dual monitor support for linux, I hope so cos I’m tired of using windowed mode.

    • fritsch Sep 06, 2014 

      Already in helix. Give the nightly a test.

  • Encrypted Sep 01, 2014 

    Still no updates to the OpenSSL version? Are you ever going to upgrade it so the windows version of XBMC/Kodi can be used with HTTPS connections to hostnames!?!

  • Zeke Sep 01, 2014 

    Eh. Still not liking the name, and the childlike logo isn’t helping either. Loads of references to XBMC still abound. Yeah sure I get the legal reason excuse for the name change, but maybe a better name should have been chosen, and the name change announced after most of the XBMC references the user can see removed, otherwise new users might think “XBMC, what’s this? I thought I was installing Kodi? Must be spyware/addon downloads with browser tracking. Delete!”

    • Nick Sep 01, 2014 

      I believe it was mentioned in a previous announcement that the current logo for Kodi is a placeholder; the final logo will be decided upon when a stable release is made. As for the name, you’ll get used to it (not being flippant – just that surely there’s more important matters in life to get stressed over than a simple name for a media center).

  • Joe D Sep 01, 2014 

    Tried installing on W7 and receive thIs message:
    “Error: with a name like “Kodi” this does not appear to be a valid win32 application…Please try installing on an Apple device, but only after getting mommy and daddy’s permission….Long live XBMC!”

  • Andy Yu Sep 02, 2014 

    Really hope Kodi could support Leap Motion or Kinect in the future, so that I can use gestures instead of remote~~
    THX for the release~

  • Riccardo Sep 02, 2014 

    Please add an MP3 passthrough option.

    I’d like to seamlessly switch the output from HDMI to SPDIF without having to go
    into the System menu.
    We can do that for AVI/MKV, but not for MP3 while playing music.


  • james Sep 02, 2014 

    How long untill alpha 3 will turn into a beta? Im lookin forward to the new name change and wanna wait till its more stable

  • Minh Trang Sep 02, 2014 

    Will Milkdrop 2 music visualisation be in this release instead of old Milkdrop 1?


  • Artur Sep 02, 2014 

    How will you handle the name change of the AppData folder?

    • Zebraitis Sep 05, 2014 

      Good Question! If that sub-directory structure changes, then 14 is a complete new load and not an overlay.

      Unless they build in a directory migration as part of 14 final.

  • Artur Sep 02, 2014 

    When will be see 64bit windows release?

    • Anthony Sep 03, 2014 

      +1 for 64-bit version for Windows

    • Martijn Sep 03, 2014 

      there’s no gain in 64bit

    • Noway Sep 07, 2014 

      No advantage to 64 bit unless you’re addressing more than 4G ram. Disadvantage is loading 64 bit registers and 64 bit pointers to ram.

      • eema Sep 08, 2014 

        Actually for ffmpeg hevc decoding there is. It’s often more than twice faster in x64 version. Read my links above.
        Of course it’s not only because of x64 instructions only but because the devs gives more interest to the x64 version so it’s better

  • Steve Muller Sep 02, 2014 

    Any updates for 3D Blu-Ray ISO support?

    I am still using TotalMedia Theater for playback and would be wonderful if Kodi can integrate this.

    • nickr Sep 03, 2014 

      Encourage the ffmpeg devs to get MVC working and then Kodi will get MVC support.

  • wobi Sep 03, 2014 

    Will there be Vetter support for BD-Menus in Kodi 14??

    • eema Sep 07, 2014 

      libbluray is not yet ready for the prime time yet. but probably kodi devs will start to create builds with enabled menus to be able to test it and improve it faster.
      The problem of libbluray is that you have to test on more discs possible so more people helps with their logs quicker it will improve.
      Follow this topic in the forum if you want more info:

  • jb Sep 04, 2014 

    Can we get support for specifying the fanart for movie sets in the nfo file? There doesn’t seem to be a way to do this other than using the Kodi interface.

  • NiRa Sep 04, 2014 

    Is there an Option for documentation videos?
    We have Films am Series but nothing for Documentation-Movies :o )

    • .:B:. Sep 08, 2014 

      Most skins support custom menu entries (which you can then link to e.g. playlists). Try it.

  • Marvin Sep 04, 2014 

    Kodi seems mostly smooth so far. For som reason though I was able to favorite youtube addon, but then after that can no longer favorite anything, the option when I right click is completely gone. Tried changing skins back to confluence but still no favorites.

  • Thorsten Sep 05, 2014 

    You mentioned the problems with skins not working on new main releases. I thinks thats a fault in implementing the skin API. You should define a fixed API and don’t change it with every version. That’s bad software design.

    I would like to create a skin, but I don’t have the time to change it every time the software is updated. So I will definitely not create one.

    It’s the same with other APIs. Ages ago I did a driver for a VFD display which used the webserver of XBMC. Some day the web API changed and I have no display since then. And I have not the time and will to research the API once again.

  • Johannes Bjelke Hooperson Sep 05, 2014 

    Am I reading this right:

    Helix is mostly a “stability” upgrade to Gotham, so it’s not really a classic “Alpha” but unless you rely on a particular plug-in, it’s more of a recommended release?

  • Rikki Sep 06, 2014 

    Excellent work lads! Thanks so much :)

  • Stephen mosley Sep 06, 2014 

    Keep up the good work as kodi is alot better and more ad ons work on this release better .

  • adam Sep 08, 2014 

    If i install this version, will it install over my gotham version? Just wondering if I have to re-add all the add-ons again?

  • Igor Sep 08, 2014 


    Over-the-Air TV is awesome and most channels in the USA/Canada come with EPG and Closed Captions right in the stream. When KODI is going to be able to decode these?

  • nir Sep 08, 2014 

    when the kodi version should it published?
    i want to buy a streamer that support this xmbc -should i wait?

  • Robert Sep 08, 2014 

    It needs a new logo in CDR format or PDF curves necessary for the printing company that performs printing on the housing to the media center. Where can I get it?
    Help please

  • Bob Sep 09, 2014 

    I am not a PC expert and my IP support / supplier is not local.
    How to update my XBMC on Ubuntu system to current available.

  • Rikard Sep 09, 2014 

    What about touchscreen support out of the box for raspberrypi? I have been waiting for that a few years now. And yes I have tried most of the “hacks” that are out with a varity of results and were not pleased.
    I got a few 19 inch touchscreen which I want to use with my raspberrypi some day…

  • Tom Sep 09, 2014 

    again – eXciting, Bitching, Media Center

  • kodaxx Sep 18, 2014 

    Where do I report bugs? On the latest Android Helix release – the keyboard is blank? I’m using regular Confluence skin because I read that the change in keyboard layout would cause this. When I go into the Appearance Settings under International – there IS NO LAYOUT option. It seems to be missing! Any help appreciated.

  • Michaeldeo Sep 19, 2014 

    I found a problem with Kodi Alpha 3. Sometimes when I am trying to load a movie or TV channel, it just jumps out of the XBMC completely and I have to click on the XBMC logo again to get back in. In a few incidents, I had to click at least 2 or 3 times before it could really able to get back in.
    So far, the keyboard issue with Alpha version 1 and 2 seems to be gone. Many thanks to the XBMC team’s efforts.

  • satish Sep 27, 2014 

    does kodi solve all the script errors for third party addons

    • enen92 Sep 30, 2014 

      Yes and it even makes you popcorn…

  • MAlambre Sep 29, 2014 

    There is a problem with Virtual Keyboard and Skin Confluence custom mod. Not letter available to select. Also, when you go System->Setting->Appearence->International->Keyboard Layouts it don’t allow you to select Ok, to change it.

  • Fabian Gaytam Sep 30, 2014 

    Kodi it doesn’t work as xbmc….
    it freeze all the time..

  • McrRed Oct 14, 2014 

    Really liking the new helix alpha.
    Only two minor issues for me…I run from a PC , is there a way to enable recording to HD without setting up advanced.xml or way of flushing cache without using 3rd party add-on ?

    Fantastic work guys. Many, many thanks!

  • mark bridgeman Nov 11, 2014 

    I have nexus 9 running android lollipop 5.0 is there going to be a release which can work on that ? Thanks

  • macha Nov 15, 2014 

    Hi , I would like to connect my iPad running the constellation remote app to Kodi.
    Since there is no “network” tab in the settings in Kodi I can t connect it. like Idid in Gotham……:-( hope it can be implemented in the next release. thnx !

  • joseph stanley Dec 04, 2014 

    Why can i not download it it will not work for me

  • CamJ Dec 22, 2014 

    There are a few bugs that have been annoying me for a long time in XBMC/Kodi that Should be every simple to fix. The biggest one is that if you hit the scroll wheel on your mouse when watching a streaming program, it locks the system. Simply disabling ‘seek’ functions when watching a streaming program would solve this nasty bug.

    This may be a bug in the addon but a lot of streaming content such as that coming from Veetle and iLive seems to stop inbetween episodes thus making it a manual process to start up the stream again. Very Annoying! And it happens in multiple addons so I have to assume its a system issue not an addon one.

    • Martijn Dec 22, 2014 

      Saying that bugs are simple to fix is very dangerous or are you saying you can fix them? If so please go ahead and show us how easy it is

About Kodi

Kodi is a free and open source media player application developed by the XBMC Foundation, a non-profit technology consortium. Kodi is available for multiple operating-systems and hardware platforms, featuring a 10-foot user interface for use with televisions and remote controls. It allows users to play and view most videos, music, podcasts, and other digital media files from local and network storage media and the internet.