Kodi 17: cross-platform media center updated

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 6, 2017
Music and Video

Kodi 17 is the latest version of the popular cross-platform media center software that enables you to play media on all devices that it supports.

Kodi's main features are the ability to play media streams from local and network storage, or from the Internet, adding information from various sources to media collections that you add to the program, and an add-on system to extend the program's core functionality.

Kodi 17 ships with a new skin that replaces the original skin that Kodi used since 2009. The new skin has been optimized for touch, and to utilize all the new features that the team introduced in Kodi in past years.

This includes a revamped home screen that features a smart playlist implementation that highlights videos that you may be interested the most.

Kodi 17

Good news though for Kodi users who prefer the old skin over the new one: you find the Confluence skin is still available from the official repository.

You can download and install it with a click on Settings > Interface > Skin. There you find a large selection of available skins, and one of them is the previous default skin Confluence.

If you have used previous versions of Kodi you may notice that the Settings section has been revamped.  The development team notes that it has improved text and descriptions of items in the settings, and changed how items are grouped together in the settings to make it easier for users to find what they need in there.

The PVR functionality has seen improvements as well in Kodi 17. It is now easier to get PVR up and running in Kodi 17, as you are done once you have enabled and configured the PVR add-on that you are using for that.

Certain operations, switching channels, using the electronic program guide, or setting and changing recording timers have been improved in the new release.

Kodi 17 is the first release that warns users when they are about to install an add-on that comes from an unknown source. These add-ons may still be installed, but users see a notification when they install an unofficial add-on that they need to accept before they can install the add-on on their device. This is a one-time notification that pops only on the first installation, and not on subsequent installations of other add-ons from unknown sources.

There is also a new handy recently updated add-ons listing that informs you which add-ons have been updated recently on Kodi 17.

As far as other changes are concerned, there are quite a few not mentioned yet. Here is a short list of the most important changes that have not been mentioned yet:

  1. Music Library improvements in handling of music and artists, support for mood (next to genre). Kodi 17 will scan your music library again once you have updated.
  2. Video player has been picked apart and put together again in a new modernized way. While users may not noticed much of a change, it sets Kodi up for things to come. New features include selecting a video stream if multiple are provided. Also, input stream add-ons are now supported including DASH which is used by YouTube and other sites on the Internet.
  3. Android 5.0 is now the minimum version that Kodi 17 requires. Kodi 16 can still be used on older Android devices.
  4. The latest Android version of Kodi comes with improved audio support.
  5. Kodi 17 is also available through Windows Store, as the team used Microsoft's Desktop Bride UWP app to make Kodi available through Windows Store.
  6. Game Controllers can be added and used with just a click now. No more XML file editing required.
  7. New default web interface called Chorus 2.

You can check out the full release notes here.

Closing Words

Kodi 17 is a massive new release of the popular media center software. While it changes things around quite a bit, it is not cutting ties with previous versions completely as you can go back to using the old skin for instance if you prefer that over the new one.

Now You: Do you use a media center program?

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  1. Anonymous said on August 1, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Why not make use of the mplayer.conf?

  2. Mike J said on August 1, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    Huh, I have never even seen this “font cache” pane; videos play at once for me, using VLC & XP SP3.

    1. Martin said on August 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm

      Mike, in theory this should have only been displayed once to you, at the very first video that you played with VLC. The time this window is displayed depends largely on the number of fonts in your font directory.

      1. Mike J said on August 2, 2010 at 2:30 pm

        huh, I lucked out for a change?? Amazing!!
        Apparently VLC keeps this info through version updates, but I didn’t see this message after a fresh OS install about 8 weeks ago, & a new VLC.

  3. myo said on August 1, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    yes, yes, i have the same problem. sometimes, VLC crashes when it is playing .mov file.

  4. Kishore said on August 13, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    Buidling font Cache pop-up


    Open VLC player.

    On Menu Bar:


    (at bottom – left side)
    Show settings — ALL

    Open: Video
    Click: Subtitles/OSD (This is now highlited, not opened)
    Text rendering module – change this to “Dummy font renderer function”


    Re-open – done.
    Progam will no longer look outside self for fonts

    Source – WorthyTricks.co.cc

    1. Martin said on August 13, 2010 at 3:10 pm

      Great tip, thanks a lot Kishore.

  5. javier said on August 14, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    @Kishore, I’ll try your tips, but does this mean it will no longer show subtitles either?
    I do use subtitles, but the fontcache dialog box pops up (almost) everytime I play a file.

    Could this be related to the fonts I have installed? Or if I add/remove fonts to my system?

    I’ll try to do a fresh install also, if your tips does no work. I’ll post back here later…


  6. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,

  7. Kishore said on August 15, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    @ Javier, The trick i posted will show up subtitles too. If not,Dont worry, VLC is currently sorting out this issue and the next version will be out soon.

    No probs @ Martin !! Its my pleasure

  8. Ted said on October 22, 2010 at 3:57 am

    Try running LC with administrator privileges. That seemed to fix it for me

  9. Evan said on December 8, 2013 at 1:48 am

    I am using SMplayer 0.8.6 (64-bit) (Portable Edition) on Windows 7 x64. Even with the -nofontconfig parameter in place SMplayer still scans the fonts. Also, I have enabled normal subtitles and it is still scanning fonts before playing a video. Also, it does this every time the player opens a video after a system restart (only the fist video played).

  10. Mike Williams said on September 6, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    Does that mean that only instrumental versions of songs will be available for non-paying users?

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