Have an old PC lying around that you don’t use much anymore? You might be able to connect it to a TV and turn it into a media center. There are a lot of ways to do that, but one interesting method is to install OpenELEC.

It’s a Linux-based operating system that’s built around the popular Kodi media center. It’s lightweight, so it can run on older or cheaper devices. And it support Intel, AMD, or ARM chips.

Today the developers released OpenELEC 7.0, which is based on Kodi 16 and which adds a few key new features.

Here are some of the changes and additions:

  • There’s support for Bluetooth audio devices (such as headphones or speakers)
  • There’s a build for WeTek Core Android TV boxes, which is good news if you already own one… but less good news if you’re hoping to buy, since they are no longer for sale.
  • OpenVPN support has been reincluded
  • Updated wireless and graphics drivers

Of course, at the same time that OpenELEC is releasing a new operating system based on Kodi 16, the developers of Kodi are forging ahead on version 17.

The first release candidate of Kodi 17 was also released today. The upcoming version includes new default skins for desktop and mobile devices, streamlined settings, and improved DVR support, among other things.

via DistroWatch

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7 replies on “OpenELEC 7.0 is a Linux-based operating system built around Kodi media center”

  1. I have a chromebox that I started out with OE installed on. Later I switched to ubuntu with kodi installed and I’m not sure why anyone would ever use OE instead. Ubuntu is light enough to run on just about anything you would run OE on and you get all the perks of having everything Ubuntu offers, which is a lot (I now use the chromebox as my home server, its connected to a usb 3.0 2 TB drive.

  2. This sounds like something that might work well on stick PC. While I love breathing new life into old PCs, I feel like the media focus would work well with a very small footprint.

  3. Is it just me; or has all of Kodi.tv been offline for many hours now… (Y16Dec29 6:45 PM USA EastCoast) “..This page (https://kodi.tv/download/) is currently offline…” – sems more than just expected RC traffic issues .. anyone know whats going on ?

  4. My Kodi front-end is also my home server (odroid c2), so using regular ubuntu works very well for me. I just keep copies of my configuration files that I have modified. I have bluetooth audio and the same features as openelec/libreelec. There was a time when less was more, but not anymore.

  5. Anybody familiar with Kodi-based distros will know that by now many of the OE devs changed to LibreELEC due to internal differences. So be aware that the development cycles will be even longer in the future. Given that today the Kodi 17 RC1 was released, OE7/Kodi16 is already quite a bit behind.

    1. I disagree and believe that Kodi 16 is a classic that will outlast 17. Plus, OE 7 should be able to last a long time, if you can find a decent build with built in wireless network.

      1. Don’t know if ironic but there’s plenty of reasons to update. The most prominent being inputstream based add-ons which allows for Amazon VOD or Sky to work out of the box in kodi. The new default skins are also a welcome modernization although I prefer the more subtle Arctic:Zephyr anyway. You could argue with “Never change a running system” but I’d like to see what’s in store there for me.

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