Kodi 17.1 – why, when and how to upgrade
Kodi 17.1 was released recently by the Kodi Team. This has caused a small storm in a teacup about whether users should upgrade. Allow us to explain…
Kodi gets updated periodically, as with pretty much all software. Version 17 was released a few months ago, and now 17.1 has been released as a small upgrade to fix some known issues.
Here’s a list of what’s been fixed from the official website:
- Update Estuary and Estouchy with some bugfixes and improvements
- Fix EDL skipping
- Fix slow song smartplaylist
- Several PVR fixes
- Update Chorus webinterface
- Fix addons not being marked broken when they are updated with broken flag
- Add limiter on random songs which should prevent large memory usage on big libraries
- Improve keyboard mapping during button mapping
- Improve analog stick handling
- Improve plugin performance when building the content list
- Include RTMP inputstream add-on for Windows
- Don’t close subtitle stream when switching audio
- Fix replaygain for music files
- Fix controllers buttons on Android
- Fix music cleanup hanging on large MySQL music database
- Fix use of SMB on Android on new installs
- Fix possible Kodi upgrade migration hang during add-on update process
- Add check in Windows installer for Service Packs and updates that Kodi needs to operate
- Don’t try to read tags from internet audio streams
- Add setting to disable controller rumble on notifications
Do you need to upgrade?
Obviously, if you’re running version 17 and you like to stay up-to-date with the latest versions, you should definitely upgrade. BUT (here’s where the storm in the teacup comes in), there are lots of popular media channels – websites, YouTube, etc. – which are saying you must upgrade now or streaming addons will stop working. Here’s a quote from TVAddons, one of the more popular addon providers:
More and more streaming sites are moving to HTTPS, and older versions of Kodi do not offer HTTPS support. This means that at this point you really have no choice but to upgrade to Kodi 17.1 Krypton. This isn’t something that’s just going to go away, might as well do it now.
This is only partially true. The HTTPS they are talking about is SSL v2 (secure protocols used by websites to deliver information to you which can’t be viewed by others). Versions of Kodi 17.1 don’t support SSL v2, so that part is true. What’s not so true is the bit that says “you really have no choice but to upgrade.”
The majority of streaming sites (those which the addons access to deliver your content) have not switched to SSL v2 and are unlikely to for some time. Bear in mind that SSL v2 has been around for at least a year and no-one was worried about it throughout the whole of 2016. It seems it might be TVAddons themselves who initially created this storm. They look after Exodus, one of the most popular addons, and they delivered a pop-up message to all users of their configuration addon, Indigo, which included the aforementioned quote. Now, it may be the case that Exodus is being updated to use SSL v2 websites, but that doesn’t mean other addons are following suit.
A different addon, Zen (just as an example), is very similar to Exodus – it lists pretty much the same content but gets it from different sources. The developer of Zen has stated that only around 1% of streaming websites have started using SSL v2 and the majority of sources are unaffected. Users of Zen are currently reporting that it consistently provides more working HD streams than Exodus. As with lots of things when different groups (with their own agendas) are involved this all sounds very political.
When should you upgrade?
So, do you need to upgrade Kodi now? No.
If you don’t want to, just wait until your favourite addon stops being able to supply content. Then try a different addon. If lots of addons you’re using fail to provide sources for the content they are listing, that will be the time to upgrade. It’s entirely up to you. Ignore the scaremongering. There is absolutely no reason to upgrade immediately. However, all that aside, if you want to upgrade…
How do you upgrade?
If you’re upgrading from version 16 or 17 you can just install the new version straight over your existing one – any data migration will be carried over automatically. If you’re upgrading from an earlier version you should make a backup beforehand. Just to be on the safe side, it doesn’t hurt to make a backup anyhow.
Windows & Mac users
Those using Windows or MacOS should download the latest version directly from Kodi here and launch the downloaded file to install.
Those using Linux should open terminal and use the following commands:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:team-xbmc/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
Android & Apple mobile users
Those using Android or Apple mobile devices should go to the App Store and search for Kodi. Download and install the latest version from there.
Amazon Fire TV or Stick users
Amazon device users should follow these instructions:
- Select Settings.
- Select Device.
- Select Developer Options.
- Enable both Apps from Unknown Sources and ADB Debugging.
- Select Turn On in any pop-up warning you receive.
- Go back to the Amazon TV home screen.
- Search for ES File Explorer. Select it, download it and open it.
- When ES File Explorer opens, select Favorite > Add.
- Enter Path as https://kodi.tv/download and Name as Kodi. Click Add.
- Scroll down the left menu and select Kodi.
- On the page that comes up, select Android. Then select ARMV7A (32BIT).
- After the download is complete, select Open, then select Install.
- When the install has finished, select Open.
Users of other devices
Click here and select the device you’re using to get the official instructions on how to upgrade.