0Constant Kodi Irritations

A few years back I migrated from Win­dows Media Centre to Kodi (thanks to Microsoft for end­ing sup­port and devel­op­ment of MC). Kodi is widely used and very ver­sat­ile, how­ever it has nev­er worked quite flaw­lessly and I con­tin­ue to come across a range of annoy­ing issues. Where I have found a solu­tion I will doc­u­ment it below

1. Kodi doesn’t work with madvr as standard. [WORKAROUND]

One option is to use Kodi-dsplay­er but this doesn’t seem to work with liv­eTV which is one of the main uses for my kodi sys­tem. The only altern­at­ive is to set up the use of extern­al play­ers in kodi which gen­er­ally does work ok, but liv­etv is still played with the intern­al play­er

2. Setting a universal default view is difficult or impossible

I can’t find a way to set a “default view” for my emby media lib­rary with the aeon nox skin. It isn’t clear to me where this option should be — is it a skin respons­ib­il­ity? an emby respons­ib­il­ity? or a core app respons­ib­lity? But this should *always* be avail­able some­where — it seems like pretty basic stuff to me

3. None of the weather providers work reliably. [FIXED]

I’ve tried sev­er­al, some don’t work at all, some work for a few days and then stop. I even­tu­ally got the MET office plu­gin to work by regis­ter­ing for my own API key. Set­ting the loc­a­tions is a bit fiddly but once done it seems to work.

4. Photo info on slideshows [FIXED]

Dis­play­ing info about pho­tos on slideshows requires all sorts of manu­al cod­ing which is in danger of being wiped out with every update. I have writ­ten a post on how to modi­fy the slideshow screensaver, but not the actu­al slideshow.
To edit the reg­u­lar slideshow depends on the theme. I use Aeon Nox Sil­vo. For this edit the file %AppData%\Kodi\addons\skin.aeon.nox.silvo\16x9\SlideShow.xml
Mine looks like this

5. The log system is horrible [FIXED]

Why would I want to prat about load­ing a plu­gin to view logs. Just give the logs sens­ible names and stick them all in a log folder some­where where people can open them with whatever view­er they wish to use!
On win­dows logs can be found in %AppData%\Roaming\kodi

6. The emby addon for Kodi stops working with beta versions [FIXED]

Browse to %appdata%\kodi\userdata\Database and look for a file called myvideos###.db Make a note of the ver­sion (cur­rently for me 112). Then edit the file %AppData%\Kodi\addons\plugin.video.emby\resources\lib\database.py and make sure the num­ber matches (for me thi is on line 29) — it should say '18': 112 # Leia

7. Customising menus in Aeon Nox to point to emby folders [FIXED]

When cre­at­ing cus­tom menus in Aeon Nox there are a couple of routes to point to emby folders. One route pre­vents you from select­ing the final sub­folder (e.g. going dir­ectly into the movies folder) whilst the oth­er option does nav­ig­ate the whole way but forces the type of folder to be music not videos. Cre­ate the menu this second way and then change it manu­ally (cus­tom option) and change the word “Music” for “Videos” at the start of the com­mand line.

8. Displaying UK BBFC ratings in Aeon Nox Silvo [FIXED]

The icons for BBFC rat­ings are included and are sup­posed to work if you have col­oured icons turned on and have your region set­tings cor­rect. How­ever, the sys­tem is only com­pat­ible with 1 par­tic­u­lar way of stor­ing the metadata for the rat­ings, where my metadata man­agers use a slightly dif­fer­ent sys­tem. I fixed this by edit­ing %AppData%\Kodi\addons\skin.aeon.nox.silvo\16x9\variables.xml and edit­ing the lines that start with UK:

9. Kodi + Emby + External players [FIXED]

Extern­al play­ers don’t work with emby if it is in “addon mode” as the files are played via HTTP rather than by SMB. Of course there is no clear doc­u­ment­a­tion that explains this, nor is there an option to force SMB whilst in addon mode. Switch emby to nat­ive mode and then clear the kodi data­base and let it rebuild.

10. Using external players [FIXED]

The examples for win­dows users are hor­rible, for example with paths using the wrong slashes (unix / instead of win­dows \). Below is the one I cur­rently use which works as I would expect. A couple of things to note — I have included set­tings for VLC even though I don’t use it as an extern­al play­er. Simple change the names for the rules in the bot­tom sec­tion from MPC-HC to VLC if you want to use VLC. Also note my rule for file­names with the word Pho­tos — this is because videos from my digit­al cam­er­as are stored with my pho­tos, and when in slideshow I want the videos played with the intern­al play­er, not with an extern­al play­er.

11. Live TV is a little jerky [FIXED]

The use of “full­screen win­dow” mode seems to cause jud­dery play­back for some reas­on. I don’t know why it is enabled by default, but turn it off!

12. Player controls inconsistent position [FIXED]

In Aeon Nox Sil­vo the play­er con­trols (e.g. start, stop etc.) appear at the bot­tom of the screen when in liv­eTV but the top of the screen when play­ing music. To move the liv­eTV ones to the top edit the file %AppData%\Kodi\addons\skin.aeon.nox.silvo\16x9\VideoOSD.xml

13. Horrible micro-stutter since Kodi 18 beta 1 [FIXED]

Kodi 18 beta-1 intro­duces a smooth motion fea­ture that cur­rently can’t be turned off. For me (and for oth­er users on the kodi for­ums) this has caused the intro­duc­tion of micro stut­ter on pan­ning scenes on some videos.
I have fixed this, but only because my pro­ject­or can dis­play 25Hz and because I play all non-TV videos in an extern­al play­er. The issue is caused by play­ing 25fps con­tent at 50Hz with the smooth­mo­tion set­tings caus­ing some hor­rible jud­der. The same prob­lem occurs in mad­vr with 24p con­tent at 48Hz which is why I turn off smooth-motion in mad­vr. To fix it I set my dis­play to 60Hz (looks best and forces kodi to switch), enabled the refresh-rate switch­ing set­ting in kodi, and whitel­is­ted all of the 1080p options except 50Hz. Now when I play liv­eTV and recor­dedTV with the intern­al play­er the dis­play switches to 25Hz and the videos play without jud­der. This should be fixed before the final release.

14. LiveTV timeshift glitchy with DVBLink [FIXED]

In fair­ness to kodi it seems this was at least par­tially the fault of DVBLink. Earli­er ver­sions (5, 5.5) worked bet­ter with the liv­eTV buf­fer on my RAID array, but I found by mov­ing it back off my RAID array I was able to avoid the glitch­ing that has been occur­ring. My guess is that the buf­fer file wasn’t play­ing nicely with the RAM-based cache on the hard­ware RAID card.

15. Kodi loses window focus when run on startup [FIXED]

I have always had prob­lems with Kodi los­ing win­dow focus on star­tup. There are vari­ous unsat­is­fact­ory solu­tions to this that are offered e.g. load­ing Kodi instead of win­dows explorer on boot up, effect­ively as the shell. Many people sug­gest using “Launcher4Kodi” but I have found this is itself full of prob­lems. After much explor­a­tion I dis­covered that my issue was caused by the Sam­sung Magi­cian soft­ware that sup­ports my Sam­sung SSD. I had already found some issues with Magi­cian (e.g. RAPID mode caus­ing prob­lems with remov­able drives and USB devices) so I unin­stalled it. Since remov­ing it I have had no prob­lems with win­dow focus in Kodi.

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