State of the addons

Posted By: Team XBMC on Apr 27, 2010 in Site News

It’s been a while since we’ve updated our readers on the status of things, so I wanted to give a quick preview of how the addons are shaping up. Many nightly users are itching for new builds, and those that have compiled their own have been greeted by broken plugins, scrapers, etc. This is by design, as the entire framework has changed to make it easier for users to acquire addons and stay up to date. Here’s a quick preview of the current state of things:

Current state of the Addons Manager

Right away you’ll notice that scrapers are now addons, which initially may seem strange. The reasoning behind the change is that scrapers change often, yet we only do roughly two stable releases of XBMC each year.  With a full-fledged addon manager in place (think firefox), you’ll be able to stay up to date without ever touching a keyboard. Obviously plugins, scripts, and skins will work the same way.

We have introduced an official XBMC repository where addons will be hosted. These will be tested for stability and should allow us to keep an eye out for broken or outdated addons. We are fortunate to be able to take advantage of the new mirror system, so the experience will be blazing fast and redundant. And for those who wish to venture outside of the official repository, you will be able to add 3rd party repos as well. In fact, repos themselves are just addons. How cool is that?

For now the XBMC repo is in private testing so don’t expect to see the functionality of the above screenshot just yet. There is still quite a bit of work to be done, but it’s nice to be able to show off as things take form. To answer a popular (and valid) question: for the most part old addons will continue to work, but they will need to be accompanied by a new description file. We have not released the schema details yet because they are still in flux, but rest assured that the info is coming soon.

We’ll make an announcement when the bits have been committed that will allow bleeding-edge users to begin testing the new features.

Discussion - 25 Comments

  • Joshua S. Apr 27, 2010 

    Very exciting! Can’t wait for the release, are we still looking at a 2-week timeframe? Also, it has been mentioned that the Add-ons will be able to use any language. Possibly a sily question, but is PHP included? Oftentimes “any” really means “quite a few” or sometimes “a couple”. I would love to be able to contribute to the community by creating some add=ons with my mad PHP skills!

  • salva Apr 27, 2010 

    Marvelous!!!! This is a GREAT improvement to XBMC. You rock guys!!!!

  • Greg B. Apr 27, 2010 

    Awesome. Can’t wait!

  • Maksim Apr 27, 2010 

    Eh…and what about PVR client?

  • OwlBoy Apr 27, 2010 

    @JoshuaS. I am not sure the context of you reading about the language, but I would assume they mean for localization. Though I could be wrong. I think it would be too good to be true to have other languages available :)

  • HwyXingFrog Apr 27, 2010 

    I had the exact reaction XBMC expected when they mention scrapers as addons, but it makes complete sense. Especially since I heard is doing some updates.

    I can’t wait for the new version. 9.11 has been the best experience since I started using XBOX media center, everything works so smoothly, especially with XBMC Live 9.11 on my Zotac IONITX box.

  • sebak Apr 27, 2010 

    @Joshua – It’s like OwlBoy says, languages = localization languages. It’s impossible to support all programming languages.
    Maybe a good time to learn python

  • Joe Papps Apr 27, 2010 

    Your making it very hard to be patient ;)
    Love the work your doing and how this is shaping up.

  • Brice Apr 27, 2010 

    Yes we want to bleed on the edge :P
    XBMC still rocking the machines at home :)
    thx for the update

  • sdsnyr94 Apr 27, 2010 

    Looking great… are you still on track for a 10.05 release… or are we looking more toward a 10.06?

    Also, reading conflicting reports in the forum about PVR… will it make the next stable release? If not, will it just be a plugin that can be added later from the repo, or will we need to wait till the 10.11+ release?

    Great work, and as always Thanks to everyone who contributes!

  • ecco Apr 27, 2010 

    Just wanted to send out a huge “thank you” to the XBMC team. I love XBMC and am anxiously awaiting the new version!

  • Joshua S. Apr 27, 2010 

    well poo. I do a lot of AGI scripting for Asterisk systems, where they use STDIN/STDOUT so literally anything can be used… got my hopes up for nothing :( Still excited for the next release though!

  • zag Apr 28, 2010 

    Hey, I run the MeediOS repository, let me know if you need any help with the schema or design for the xbmc one. I’ve got lots of experience with plugins and scraper distribution ;)

  • Fernando Apr 28, 2010 

    Very nice to see XBMC become a little more “keyboard-free.” This is going to be a great feature.

  • EricV Apr 28, 2010 


    You can test the pvr-testing2 branch in the mean time. Works for me.

  • hikaricore Apr 28, 2010 

    Honestly from my experience svn has been pretty stable since shortly after the merge was announced. There were a couple times where the addons section stopped working for a day or two, but otherwise it’s been pretty smooth sailing. Now I don’t use a lot of plugins/scripts and such so there may have been issues that I didn’t encounter, but just for general use all has been well more often than not. :)

  • Trav Apr 28, 2010 

    I’m very much looking forward to this, it will make things so much easier. Thanks to the XBMC team for all their hard work, you guys have made something very special. I love this software!

  • Maksim Apr 29, 2010 

    Hm…where can I find it and install?

  • Jezz_X Apr 29, 2010 

    Maksim :
    Hm…where can I find it and install?

    You can’t yet

  • Horst Ewan Apr 29, 2010 

    This really turns me on!!! Thanks!

  • koop Apr 29, 2010 

    cant wait for the release a decent addon manager is what ive always been missing in xbmc!!
    Thx for this amazing software

  • hikaricore Apr 29, 2010 

    I retract my comment from the other day as skins are now addons and are a pain in the ass to get working.
    Rolling back 2 days on git to see if I found the commit that ruined everything. :p

  • hikaricore Apr 29, 2010 

    Anyone wishing to avoid the skins as addons nightmare stay at commit 0407444770383972184b592abb33a1c6dc499418 which i believe is r29543 unless isn’t working atm. :p

  • forcedalias2 May 08, 2010 

    That’s awesome news! The scraper sources keep changing and it’s getting a little troublesome cleaning up “half-fetched” information.

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