Kodi Community – May 2015

Posted By: Nathan Betzen on May 06, 2015 in Community Updates

Exciting Google Summer of Code projects, major developments in the codebase that need testing, and even a Kickstarter are just a few of the many items that have occurred since our last community roundup in January. Let’s get updating.

Official Android Remote

With the last community update in January, we mentioned a desire for someone to step up and help maintain an official Kodi Remote for Android. Developer syncd has stepped forward and offered up Kore as an updated, open source option for users looking for  Android remote control software, or even as a base for aspiring devs looking to make their own offering.


We are well aware that there are other closed source Android remotes out there. The goal of the Kore remote project is not to drive out or replace other devs and remotes, but rather to welcome new ones in by providing an open source base to work with.

Google Summer of Code

This year was an incredibly difficult one for deciding which projects to choose. We had enough mentors for 6 projects, but were only provided with 4 slots. Many years, this works fine, and it’s easy to narrow everything down. This year, there were so many great submissions that we ultimately took until the very last day to decide on the final four. There was even a period where we considered asking users to crowdsource fund the other two projects, but we ultimately deemed it too uncertain as to whether such an idea would get funded or would even be acceptable to the students’ schools. We decided not to get anyone’s hopes up only to have them dashed, and instead focus on the four projects we thought had the best combination of exciting/useful idea and feasibility.

With all that said, here are the four projects we chose:

Cross-platform room correction for Kodi: The only project submitted by a Kodi Team member that was accepted is one designed specifically for the audiophiles out there. While Kodi is currently able to bitstream to a hardware A/V Receiver that can often measure and deal with the ambiance of the room, team member Achim and others have been working to make the typical hardware AVR completely unnecessary. Significant work has already gone into integrating Digital Signal Processing features into ActiveAE, Kodi’s integrated audio engine. The next step in this process is… well, let’s let Achim explain it.

One focus of this proposal is to integrate external input sources into ActiveAE. With this new extension point it will be possible to connect a microphone to a Kodi capable device. This allows you to digitally optimize your listening experience while sitting on your favorite listening position e.g. your couch or your armchair, by compensating the influence of the interior room factors. This feature is widely known as digital room correction or digital room equalization.

For digital room correction, three other implementation components are required. One is the implementation of a convolution engine to combine and compute the audio signal with a calculated room correction filter. At the time of writing a first prototype addon adsp.xconvolver exists, this addon was written by me in order to evaluate the technical feasibility of this project. The addon is based on the highly optimized cross platform library LibXConvolver. The second and third component is the measurement signal and filter generation, which I want to implement in adsp.xconvoler during my GSoC coding time.

Put simply, with an integrated DSP and room correction, Kodi should be able to completely eliminate the need for most of the high end software found in most AVRs.

NVIDIA Gamestream: As the code that should revolutionize how Kodi handles inputs finally makes it into core, one of the first projects to take advantage of it will hopefully be a Kodi-specific implementation of NVIDIA’s Gamestream tech. For those unaware of Gamestream, NVIDIA has created a solution for streaming content from a more powerful gaming PC with an NVIDIA graphics card to any of NVIDIA’s Shield devices.


At least, that’s how it started. Since Gamestream was released, a dev going by cgutman created Limelight, an opensource library that makes it possible for any device or software to act as a Gamestream receiver. The goal of this GSOC project is to extend that capability to any instance of Kodi, so you could theoretically watch a show on your RaspberryPi2 running Kodi, then switch over to play some Assassin’s Creed Black Flag, and then listen to a little night music. There are some serious technical issues that will need to be resolved with this project, not the least of which is the potential for massive latency, but if it works, it should make for some really great experiences.

Better Profile Handling: Honestly, this one is far more exciting to us developers than to users. The issue is that as we move towards a model that allows for headless server instances of Kodi, all the instances of Kodi in your house will likely be run by different individuals with different wants and needs, and the other instances on the network simply aren’t smart enough to deal with that at the moment. So one of the great underlying needs of Kodi right now is a vastly improved handling of individual profiles. While users may not see a ton of direct impact on their day to day usage, this project should indirectly touch almost everything we do while using Kodi.

On-The-Fly Transcoding: It’s kind of the holy grail of UPnP server-client interaction and something Kodi doesn’t do at all. As such, this project is probably the most risky project, as it will effectively be an entirely new section of the Kodi code-base, but it may also be the most rewarding. Regardless, the entire team is excited (cautiously excited, in some cases) about this project, and we guess quite a lot of users will be too. As we move forward with it, we’ll keep you updated on its progress.

DVR Kickstarter

We don’t often mention Kickstarters in our blog, but since at least one team member is helping with the project, we figured we’d point out Silicon Dust’s DVR. While the company has already met their goal, their first stretch goal is to make a DVR add-on for Kodi that essentially extends the already fairly brilliant HDHomeRun add-on we featured last month. As many of us would like to use this software, we’re definitely hoping they hit their goal, and as off this writing, they’re only about 5k away.


Bitcoin Donations

Team Member Kib put in all the effort to make it possible for those of you who don’t like Paypal and don’t like banks to donate using the newest, coolest currency: Bitcoin. Many of you demanded it as an option. We’re happy we are finally able to meet that demand.

UPnP Library Integration

Yet another of the major requests we get on a regular basis is for a single library across all your devices without the need to use add-on workarounds or hacks or the AdvancedSettings.xml to make it happen. Team Member Montellese has been working on this task and is now ready for testers to start poking holes in his project: Media Importing and Library Integration of UPnP. A quick overview video can be found below, but simply put, with Montellese’s test build you only need to scan your folders on your network once. Every other instance of Kodi can just scan and grab the library from whatever your main device is. Now any UPnP device on your network can act as a library source.

Website Update

Finally, we’re beginning the process of updating the website to a new look that’s a bit more friendly for first time users. While we’ll talk more about that in the future, for now we’d just like to point out that most of the posts for the past 5 years or so have been categorized, as you should be able to see to the right. This means it’ll be much easier to find some of our favorite old posts, including all the old Feature Fridays, old April Fools jokes, and more.

Discussion - 42 Comments

  • C May 08, 2015 

    Great that you have started accepting bitcoin!

  • Simon May 08, 2015 

    Yes, I also prefer bitcoins for donations. I don’t like having a bank, PayPal or whatever “in between” whenever I want to donate something. Hopefully Bitcoins become more accepted in the future …

    Great updates btw Nathan! Kodi just rocks …

    • kingj0n May 09, 2015 

      I hope it doesn’t. Know why? Only the ones who makes the hardware is the one who can get nearly all of the bitcoins.

      Making millions and millions and then selling the useless hardware while making a stronger one.
      Stupid people will want this to be more mainstream. Make people buy the coins to trade around. lol
      While the ones making the hardware control 99% of it.

      • C May 09, 2015 

        You should read up a bit more on Bitcoin, because your statement is false.

    • Chad May 28, 2015 

      You do realize that coin base takes 1%, right?…

      • C Jun 03, 2015 

        I believe they use bitpay and they charge 0%.

  • FuN_KeY May 08, 2015 

    Really excited about the UPNP integration. This in combination with the headless kodi could open new fun opportunities!

  • Peter May 08, 2015 

    Everything sounds awesome.

    I’m curious about the room correction. I wonder if it’s going to be an an Audyssey replacement or something more powerful like DIRAC?

    • Nathan Betzen May 08, 2015 

      I don’t think I’m familiar with DIRAC.

    • wisler May 12, 2015 

      You’re right, but maybe in V10 we will have a powerful room correction system. ;)

  • forcedalias May 08, 2015 

    Definitely looking forward to UPnP library integration but not as much as server/client features.

    Server being a Linux box that hosts the library (both the database and the video/audio files) with clients being able to view the original stream or have it transcoded by the server (if not powerful enough to view original stream).

  • sdsnyr94 May 08, 2015 

    Nathan – Great Video. Quick couple of questions on the UPnP bit. When you perform the ‘import’ scan, does Kodi re-download the images from the scrapers, or is it pulling from the source’s files? Will it cache the images locally? For devices with smaller storage, could you choose not to cache? If it’s from the source, could different devices have different fanart for the same video (that may go hand in hand with profiles work).

    Great update, looking forward to Kodi J,K,L when these concepts come to light!

  • BORIStheBLADE May 08, 2015 

    Wow !!! looking forward to some of these features, good job guys!

    One question in regards to the Nvidia Game Stream. Will this be for Windows versions only or might we see it in the Linux builds?

    • Nathan Betzen May 15, 2015 

      The client should be compatible with all platforms. The NVIDIA server, which we aren’t touching, is Windows only, I think. But for example, the video that I first noticed about Limelight was running a client on the Raspberry Pi.

  • Alex R. May 09, 2015 

    I’ve been using XBMC/Kodi for many years and I must say, you guys simply rock! I’m really impressed with the amount of work you’ve put in and how well the software has evolved over the years. With this post update, it seems like Kodi will become inevitably the best HTPC solution ever! :D HTPC on steroids!

    Keep ‘em coming! From a guy who’s been coding a few very famous video games, I know how muc time this require and this translate into amazement from my part. You are definitely on top of your game! :D

  • southeastattic May 09, 2015 

    I’m feeling pretty stoked about both an improved profile experience as well as the improved library integration. For profiles, I specifically look forward to having a convenient way of limiting my child’s access to content. For integration, it’ll be sweet to just update one library. Thanks, team!

  • J.O. May 10, 2015 

    Oh man, just can’t wait for the room correction!
    On multiple occasions over the past few years I caught myself thinking of a feature that would be cool to have in XBMC/Kodi and here we go again, fifth time in a row, someone makes it happen (after things like 3D subtitles, audio upmixing/downmixing (speaker setup), audio transcoding, HW acceleration, etc). Thank you.

    • Renegaid May 13, 2015 

      I get transcoding with Kodi. All you need to do is install the Emby kodi plugin that syncs your emby library to Kodi. It works perfect and nothing like Plexbmc.

  • J876 May 10, 2015 

    Thanks to the Kodi team, all the add-on developers and the PVR backend developers for making a great software project.

  • All Hunt May 11, 2015 

    Muito obrigado a todos que contribuem para essa ferramenta.
    Sou um grande fã do projeto e fico feliz em ver tamanha dedicação.

    Thank you to all that contribute to this tool.
    I’m a big fan of the project and I’m happy to see such dedication.

  • Aaron May 12, 2015 

    Looks like Silicon Dust hit their goal to bring the HD DVR software to Kodi, $174k at the present time with 8 days to go.

  • renegaid May 13, 2015 

    A DVR would be great

  • BlueScreenJunky May 14, 2015 

    Glad to see the 4 GsoC projects are aiming at improving the multimedia capability of Kodi ! stuff like emulator and GUI are nice, but they really shouldn’t be the focus IMHO.

    • BlueScreenJunky May 14, 2015 

      *2 of the 4, obviously.

  • Chris May 14, 2015 

    I want to cut the cord….I’m trying to convince my wife to get rid of cable TV, she refuses because of how convenient it is to pickup the remote and channel surf. Is there a way to get that same convenience through Kodi in the USA. Where I can setup a TV guide and live channels for her to surf through. All feedback in appreciated

    • Scott May 14, 2015 

      My cord is cut. No more cable ever. Here’s the pieces I used:

      Kodi PVR backend – http://www.nextpvr.com/
      Antenna – Antennas Direct C2-V-CJM (got that sitting in my attic, there’s a bigger one as well if you need more range). I ran some coax through the wall and down to where my HTPC sits.
      USB TV Tuner – I forget which one i bought, it was cheap though works fine, don’t need a $80 tuner
      Remote – http://flirc.tv/product/flirc/ + your favorite universal remote
      TV Guide – mc2xml for grabbing the TV Guide and writing it to an XML file for nextpvr to use. I have .bat script run mc2xml every morning to update the guide

      Get all that configured and then you can use your remote to access Live TV in Kodi and channel surf.

      Also here’s the wiki for Kodi Live TV: http://kodi.wiki/view/PVR

  • coolvibe May 14, 2015 

    Hopefully these new Library Kodi Improvements will be released for HD Android Tv Boxes too, I am surely not a Kodi expert, but have been using Win PCs 12+ years, and HD streamers, tablets etc, a few years,.
    Personally I think KODI has the most and best options overall, but after weeks of Unsuccesfully trying to set up, and also configure KODI to be able to link/sync my Win 7 Pro PC library Video playlists with my Android Kitkat 4.4 Tv Box , still would not work fully as I would like, finally had to try PLEX Media, and was able to do in a few hours. Just so much easier to set up in Plex, but Plex is too limited in options, & so far could not get the PLEXBMC plugin to work, but would love to go back to Kodi, when it is a lot more user friendly, as I hope this will be. Cheers!

  • Thesticks00 May 15, 2015 

    So stupid question. The first image Posted By: Nathan Betzen on May 06, 2015. What is that interface? It seems to track episodes and how many are unwatched. I have not seen that in my version of kodi. Am I missing something?

    • Nathan Betzen May 16, 2015 

      Nope, that’s the Kore remote interface in action.

  • gibxxi May 17, 2015 

    @Nate: With regards uPnP library sharing, the only way this would replace MySQL for me is if the content that is being shared (i.e: from my main media centre to other devices/PCs) doesn’t require sharing host be on at all times. I’ve not checked out Montellese’s mod, but if this shares the source “location” of that media unmodified, so in my case from my NAS, not some arbitrary uPnP link, then this would work for me, as the library would simply be getting the “source” folder from the host, rather than it going NAS -> uPnP Host -> Client Device. Can you confirm (or deny) that this is the case?

    The Downside to MySQL on NASes, and NAS-like devices isn’t only the network-incurred latency when accessing the DB, but also the amount of load it places on the NAS itself, both in network transfer speed of both the DB traffic, but also streaming the content back to the client system at the same time, AND whatever OTHER add-ons are running on the NAS that affect performance, but don’t have anything to do with Kodi directly.

    If uPnP Library sharing just passes unmodified links to the content between PCs/Devices as well as the scraped data & watched status, this would be a big time saver, and both do away with the need for MySQL and the need to have a uPnP host on 24/7 to share said library. Library updates generally take a fraction of the time than full library imports do, but those of us who regularly wipe our installs for varying reasons would welcome something that eases library transfer between machines which doesn’t rely on XML exports, but at the same time is not dependant on the sharing device being on 24/7.

    However, interesting times ahead. Looking foward to Kodi 15.

  • larry smith May 18, 2015 

    I feel like a first grader reading a doctorate thesis. You guys are soooo above my brain. Hats off to you all for your knowledge.
    My stupid question is: I have windows 7 on an acer laptop. will XMMC work on this or do I need other hardware and configurations.

  • ابو نايف May 18, 2015 

    Hopefully these new Library Kodi Improvements will be released for HD Android Tv Boxes too, I am surely not a Kodi expert, but have been using Win PCs 12+ years, and HD streamers, tablets etc, a few years,.
    Personally I think KODI has the most and best options overall, but after weeks of Unsuccesfully trying to set up, and also configure KODI to be able to link/sync my Win 7 Pro PC library Video playlists with my Android Kitkat 4.4 Tv Box , still would not work fully as I would like, finally had to try PLEX Media, and was able to do in a few hours. Just so much easier to set up in Plex, but Plex is too limited in options, & so far could not get the PLEXBMC plugin to work, but would love to go back to Kodi, when it is a lot more user friendly, as I hope this will be. Cheers!

    • Vidman Jun 15, 2015 

      Check out emby a great alternative to plex and intergrates much better with kodi

  • Brandon Golway May 22, 2015 

    I know it’s going to be a while but I’m looking forward to the client-server implementation. I’m currently torn between Plex and Kodi: I use Plex to share my libraries with friends, and to what my stuff when I’m at my parent’s house, but I use Kodi at my house on two machines because it looks a hell of a lot better and has far more plug-ins.

    • Vidman Jun 15, 2015 

      As above. ..check out emby server for the best of both worlds

  • mohamed Selim May 25, 2015 

    Thanks for the great work, realy amazed, operating system for media as i define it
    Three requests:
    1- Youtube channel about new features and how to use it and how to organize media etc to facilitate adoption for newcomers
    2-please add rmvb thumbnail extraction features as most of videos in Asian and African countries are in this format, i have to make .tbn file manually everytime i add a video in this format
    3-please add script for precaching of thumbnail images of home videos and pictures
    Thanks alot

  • uomiarz May 29, 2015 

    Headless media server with on-the-fly transcoding, GO TEAM !!!

  • wmq May 31, 2015 

    Sorry for being noob, but from which app/website comes the interface shown in the first image of this post?

    • dealer666 Jun 08, 2015 

      Google play store

  • Dedi Jun 08, 2015 

    I wonder if with the transcode project, it would be possible to also integrate a motion interpolation (like svp-team.com) that works cross-platform.
    At least this was the most anticipated feature I’m looking forward to.

  • Delia Jun 11, 2015 

    My kodi or xbmc Iis not working, wont dowload streams

  • John Jul 01, 2015 

    Just heard about Kodi at work today. Trying to figure out what this actually is? Can I watch sporting events through my computer? If I did download your program would it take up a lot of space? I know it sounds dumb but just not sure so trying to figure it out. Any comments would help. Thanks

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.