Well one of these days it should happen… My Open Source Media Center pc had an hardware problem, so I’ve seized the moment also for a software update. So I’ve noticed that my preferred Open Source Home Theatre Software has changed name: my beloved XBMC become my new best friend Kodi. They use Lord of the Rings names, so I’m perfectly fine with em!


I really like to install Ubuntu from the server edition wich has only what I really need: bash and ssh. But if you’re scared of the CLI, you can always install the Desktop version and click around with your mouse! Installing Ubuntu is a charm: use an usb key with Universal USB Installer it will take care of downloading the ISO and set a bootable device on you usb stick. Plug it into the HTPC and enjoy the wizard. Setting up Kodi on a fresh Ubuntu server 15.10 install is really simple. Just run

sudo apt-get install kodi

and you’re done!

Start Kodi at boot

For make Kodi start when the htpc is booted up we need a simple systemctl script. Run

sudo nano /etc/systemd/system/kodi.service

and use shift-ins to paste this inside the buffer:

Description = Kodi Media Center

# if you don't need the MySQL DB backend, this should be sufficient

After = systemd-user-sessions.service network.target sound.target

# if you need the MySQL DB backend, use this block instead of the previous

# After = systemd-user-sessions.service network.target sound.target mysql.service

# Wants = mysql.service

User = myuser
Group = myuser
Type = simple
#PAMName = login # you might want to try this one, did not work on all systems
ExecStart = /usr/bin/xinit /usr/bin/kodi-standalone -- -nocursor :0
Restart = on-abort
RestartSec = 5

WantedBy = multi-user.target

change ‘myuser’ with the name the user you inserted while installing Ubuntu and press ctrl+x to quit and y to save. Systemctl will also take care of restarting the process in case of failures\crashes. Nice to have. To start Kodi you will have to run:

systemctl start kodi


How to fix “X: user not authorized to run the X server, aborting.”

If you run startx by root everything works just fine, but when you try to use systemctl nothing happens. The output of

systemctl status kodi

looks like this:

● kodi.service - Kodi Media Center
Loaded: loaded (/etc/systemd/system/kodi.service; enabled; vendor preset: enabled)
Active: active (running) since sab 2015-11-14 19:42:24 CET; 6s ago
Main PID: 3098 (xinit)
CGroup: /system.slice/kodi.service
└─3098 /usr/bin/xinit /usr/bin/kodi-standalone -- -nocursor :0

nov 14 19:42:24 IlMedia systemd\[1\]: Started Kodi Media Center.
nov 14 19:42:24 IlMedia xinit\[3098\]: X: user not authorized to run the X server, aborting.

Well this is caused by a security configuration for X server. Just choose ‘Anybody’ when prompted by this command:

sudo dpkg-reconfigure x11-common

How to fix “ERROR: Unable to load libcurl.so.4”

On the first run Kodi was rebooting without any explanation. A quick look to the logfile, in my case /home/setola/kodi_crashlog-20151114_183523.log, revealed the true reason:

**ERROR: Unable to load libcurl.so.4, reason: libcurl.so.4: cannot open shared object file: No such file or

While waiting for the developers to find a way to correct the library name we can fix easily by running

sudo ln -s /usr/lib/x86\_64-linux-gnu/libcurl-gnutls.so.4 /usr/lib/x86\_64-linux-gnu/libcurl.so.4