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Posts Tagged ‘Kodi’

Kodi – Your One Stop Entertainment Solution On Linux

March 29th, 2017 No comments

Linux – The open-source OS we’ve all come to use and love and then use some more. I’ve been using Linux since 2009 at least and I have got to say, it’s capabilities have always managed to one-up my expectations. This is one operating system where I learn something new every other day. Across the years I’ve used various builds of Red Hat, Fedora, Ubuntu, Xubuntu, Mint, Debian and many more and I’m still not through. In fact, my love for Linux gets stronger with each day.

“It’s Not Meant For Entertainment”

Or so they say. Keeping Linux’s technical superiority aside, one of the most common criticisms directed towards Linux is its lack of compatibility with third party software. The general belief of an average user like me that is Linux is an absolute fit for developers and programmers but lacks that entertainment aspect for a normal user.

If it were 2012 when I was still struggling with it, I would have agreed. Not today though. The criticism is not really applicable anymore because today, Linux also supports one of the best free and open-source media player, Kodi.

“So, What is Kodi?”

Kodi is an impressive free multi platform media player that has also emerged as a great resource to watch films and TV for free. Kodi was introduced on Xbox as the Xbox Media Center (or XBMC), but that didn’t last for much long and now, the software exists in more than 65 languages, over a great number of platforms, and blending the work of hundreds of programmers.

Kodi as a free open-source media player plays all sorts of digital media comprising of TV (live and recorded), films, other videos, music, podcasts, photos, and slideshows. It’s also highly regarded for watching free ‘pirated’ copyrighted content.

“Is It Compatible With Linux?”

The Kodi application is available on multiple operating systems and hardware platforms such as Linux, OS X, Windows, iOS, and Android, 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.

How to install Kodi on Linux

Installing Kodi on Linux is a piece of cake. Just add the PPA to your system, update the local repository index and install the Kodi package:

  • $ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:team-xbmc/ppa
  • $ sudo apt-get update
  • $ sudo apt-get install kodi

Or, use the below command to install audio codecs and other addons as well:

  • $ sudo apt-get install –install-suggests kodi

Optional, to remove kodi, do:

  • $ sudo apt-get remove kodi*

These installation instructions support Ubuntu 16.10 Yakkety Yak, Ubuntu 16.04 Xenial Xerus, Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Tahr, Linux Mint 18.x, Linux Mint 17.x, Elementary OS 0.3 Freya and other Ubuntu derivative systems.

Moreover Kodi permits you to install third-party plugins that may grant access to free content available on the official content provider website. Team Kodi does not endorse the usage of illegal or pirated content which would otherwise need to be paid.

“One More Thing”

Since listening and watching pirated content can constitute trouble for the user it is recommended to employ a VPN which would hide your activities from the concerned authorities. Your online freedom is important. Stay out of the radar of data snoopers and online spies with the best VPN for Kodi. You are as vulnerable in the digital world as you are in the real world. Use a VPN to stay secure & safe online.

Despite the piracy linked criticisms, Kodi media player has established itself as a very popular application. Version 17 of Kodi has been released recently and is now available to be installed on Linux computers.

Brad is a tech blogger fascinated by technology, gadgets, latest developments the geek culture. Much as he loves writing about technological innovations and IoT, when he’s not, he can found playing games on his Xbox or hanging out with his beloved pets.

Categories: Brad H, Linux Tags:

Sudo apt-get install basic-linux-pt2 –Testing-&-VMs

February 17th, 2017 No comments

With the hardware sorted (bar some jiggery-pokery to get the ODD to SSD bay converter to fit properly), I set about deciding what I want this box to do.

The list I came up with looks like this:

  • Media serving to my Kodi devices (2 Raspberry Pi systems, my android tablet, and a new Ubuntu PC I’m putting together for retro gaming with my kids)
  • FTP – I like to use my NAS like my own personal cloud. My tablet can mount an FTP in its file browser just like any other folder. No sFTP support, though, unfortunately (and I don’t like any of the file browsers I tried which do).
  • Transmission (or Deluge) – the main reason for swapping the 4GB of RAM out for 16GB
  • SSH (obviously!)
  • Dropbox and Google Drive – for when various apps and things integrate well with these mobile apps.
  • Backup – the WD My Cloud EX4’s backup options are very poor.
  • General file sharing with Windows and Ubuntu – Samba & NFS, naturally.
  • Hosting & tinkering with other bits I might want to try & learn about – a website (for practise, not for public viewing), a git… who knows.

Being basically completely unfamiliar with most of this stuff, I was undecided between Ubuntu Desktop or Server for quite a while. Desktop obviously just has so much of this stuff already ready to go, it mounts things automatically, I can use the GUI as a fallback if something isn’t right, its just more like what I’m accustomed to. On the other hand, having the GUI running all the time will just use up unnecessary RAM  – granted I probably don’t have a shortage of that, but still…

In the end I installed both onto VMs on my Windows machine, made copies (so I had a clean version always ready to go without having to reinstall again), and started playing.

First up I wanted to sort how I was going to deal with my media backend. On my current setup I use the Kodi client on one of my PCs to manage a central SQL database. While it works, its a bit slow and rather inneficient, so I went looking for either a headless Kodi backend, or just a way to run it without the GUI. I found all sorts of ideas, builds and code , none of which I understand or feel like I could implement. After a discussion with a linux guru (one of my Uni lecturers) it was clear that my plan was probably not going to work; he had pointed out that he just runs his on DLNA, and that Plex seems to be quite good too. More research, and a question in /r/Kodi later, I had been pointed in the direction of Emby, a backend for Kodi without many of the limitations of Plex and DLNA. Installation was simple enough, but accessing the Web UI wasn’t. When I had setup the VMs I had just left their network settings as NAT; this, it turns out, makes accessing the network from the VM possible, but not accessing the VM from elsewhere on the network (includingother VMs on the same system). I did try to just change the settings in the VM to add a bridged adapter, but it didn’t work. Not knowing enough about networking on linux to fix this, I just went ahead and reinstalled, this time setting up the VM with two network adapters – one NAT and another bridged. This worked a treat, and after adding a few media files and installing Kodi on the Desktop VM, I was able to play videos no problem.

Next, for no particular reason, was getting NFS working. I found guides, forums, blogs etc (my Google-fu is pretty strong) and set about trying. I was sure it should be working, I’d installed nfs-kernel-server, added the entry into /etc/exports, setup the permissions, but I just couldn’t mount it in the Desktop VM – even though I could watch them through Kodi. I ended up having to ask Reddit’s linux4noobs sub. Simple answer… sudo /etc/init.d/nfs-kernel-server start … and instantly it mounted no problem. Turns out that Kodi was actually watching a transcoded stream from Emby, until I had NFS working. Thankfully Samba took less time and hassle to get working (surprisingly), and pretty soon I could access files across both linux and Windows. And there was much rejoycing.

At this point I was getting impatient (plus this microserver is taking up a chunk of space on my desk where I really ought to be doing uni work), so I quickly checked I knew how to setup a static IP, and turned my attention to the real thing.

Next Up:

Booting up The Box
Installing, reinstalling and shenanigans

This post was originally published on Nathanael’s site here.