One of the most popular uses for a Raspberry Pi is as a media PC. Easily the best media center on any operating system right now is Kodi. So how exactly do you get Kodi running on a Pi? Actually, it’s very simple.
You can either install Kodi on your Raspberry Pi that’s already running Linux, or you can install a media center operating system designed around Kodi. Either way, you can easily get Kodi on your Pi and start enjoying your favorite media content.
If you’re running Raspbian (the default Pi OS), you can install Kodi easily through Raspbian’s software repositories. Open up a terminal and run the following command:
sudo apt install kodi
The Apt package manager will pull and install Kodi for you. You’ll be able to run Kodi from your applications launcher.
If you want your Raspberry Pi to just be a media center, you can use an operating system designed specifically for that purpose. LibreELEC is an excellent choice. It was made specifically to run on systems like the Raspberry Pi, so it’s not a resource hog, and it’ll stay out of your way to let you enjoy your media.
It’s also a little-to-no-maintenance option. You can install it on your Raspberry Pi and set it to update itself.
Download the Installer
LibreELEC is a super convenient image burning utility for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It streamlines the process of getting the right image and writing it to the correct SD card.
1. Go to LibreELEC’s download page, and download the right installer for your operating system. If you’re on Linux, make sure to make the “.bin” file executable and run it with
Create Your SD Card
The utility itself has a few basic steps. First, select the platform that you need an image for. In this case it’s probably the Raspberry Pi 2/3 image. It will automatically populate the latest image in the adjacent field, but you can change it if you need to.
Next, select the “Download” option to automatically download your image. Then, select the SD card that you want to write to. When everything is correct, press “Write” to begin the process.
Insert your SD card into your Raspberry Pi and power it on. LibreELEC will start setting itself up. The process will take a couple of minutes.
Eventually, it’ll ask you a few questions for configuration. You can name your Pi on your network and connect it to your WiFi, if needed. The setup process is relatively short and simple. Afterwards, LibreELEC will display the default Kodi interface.
From there you can use Kodi like you normally would. LibreELEC is Linux, so you can use any devices that are compatible with most Linux distributions to control it. There are plenty of remotes and Bluetooth devices available. With LibreELEC on your Pi, you have a simple low cost media PC always ready to go.
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