How to install XBMC/Kodi on an Amazon Fire TV Stick

The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a $39, pocket-sized device that you can plug into the HDMI port of your TV to stream music, movies, TV shows, and other media from the internet. It supports a handful of popular media streaming services including Netflix, YouTube, and of course Amazon Instant Video and Amazon Music, and you can also use it to play games.

But there’s something else you can do with the Fire TV Stick: sideload Android apps that don’t come from the Amazon Appstore.

And that includes popular media center app XBMC (soon to be renamed Kodi).

ftv xbmc_01

Theoretically you could use Kodi to stream local videos from a shared network drive, but I haven’t had much luck getting the system to recognize shared drives. I have been able to do is install add-ons for streaming media from the Internet Archive, NPR, Geek & Sundry, and YouTube (in case you don’t like the official YouTube app for the Fire TV). This makes it easy to stream music or videos from a number of services that might not otherwise be available for the Amazon Fire TV Stick.

XBMC launches quickly and runs smoothly on the Fire TV Stick and it works well with the Fire TV Stick remote control,  although you have to jump through a few hoops to install the app… and then jump through a few more hoops to actually run it.

Keep reading for step-by-step instructions.

How to sideload apps on the Fire TV Stick (or Fire TV)

Just like the original, $99 Amazon Fire TV, the $39 Fire TV Stick runs an operating system based on Google Android. It doesn’t look much like Android, but if an app can run on Android, it can probably run on a Fire TV (or Fire tablet).

Note that you won’t be able to install the Google Play Store or other apps that rely on the Google Services Framework unless you root your device, and even then there’s no guarantee everything will work perfectly.

Fortunately XBMC isn’t one of those apps, so let’s talk about how you would load an app like XBMC/Kodi.

1. Navigate to the Settings screen.

2. Scroll over to the System option and then scroll down until you see “Developer Options” and hit the select button.

ftv dev options_02

3. Now flip the toggles to turn on ADB debugging and Apps from Unkown Sources.

ftv dev options

4. Hit the back arrow on your remote to return to the System settings.

5. Scroll up until you find “About,” hit select, and then scroll down to “Network” and make note of the IP address. You cannot connect a Fire TV Stick to a PC with a USB cable, so we’ll have to connect over WiFi, and that’s where that IP adress come in handy.

6. Now we need to connect the Fire TV to a computer — there are two ways to do this.

6a. If you already have the Android SDK on your computer, just open a command prompt, navigate to the folder where adb is located, and type the following:

adb kill-server

adb start-server

adb connect [ipaddress]

Note that where it says [ipaddress] you’d type the actual ip address.

ftv adb connect

You can check to see if your Fire TV stick is connected by typing “adb devices” without the quotes. Note that if you’re using a Mac or Linux computer you may have to put a ./ in front of the adb command.

6b. Don’t have the Android SDK and/or adb installed and don’t want to have to learn to use it or type anything into a command prompt? There’s an app for that.

Actually there are several, but we’re going to take a look at adbFire, a cross-platform tool for Windows, OS X, and Linux.

ftv adbfire

To use adbFire, just download and unzip the package, start the adbFire executable, type your IP address in the window where it says Device address, and click “Connect.”

7. Alright, now it’s time to install your app. Download the latest version of XBMC or Kodi from the Kodi website (or locate any other Android APK you want to try installing).

8a. If you’re using adbFire, choose the “Install APK” option, select your APK file, and click “yes” on the following screen. A progress bar at the bottom of the screen will let you know that the file is being sent.

ftv adb install

8b. If you’re using a command prompt, just type “adb install name.of.your.APK” without the quotes and wait until you see the word “Success.”

How to run XBMC (or other sideloaded apps) on the Fire TV Stick

Now you app should be loaded on your Fire TV Stick… but you won’t see it on the home screen. Here’s how you can find and launch it.

1. Scroll down to the Settings menu.

ftv settings

2. Navigate to the Applications option and hit the select button.

3. Scroll down and select the entry that says “Manage All Installed Applications.”

4. Scroll down until you find the app you want to launch. Select it, and choose the option for “Launch application.”

ftv xbmc app

That’s it… it’s a bit of a hassle, but it’s the simplest way to launch sideloaded apps without rooting your device or trying to replace the official Amazon app launcher.

The Manage All apps menu is also where you’d find the option to uninstall apps — so if you try sideloading an Android app or two only to find it doesn’t run well on the Fire TV Stick, you can just uninstall the app from here.


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This is How to Install Kodi onto Windows PC Windows Device I’ve put together a detailed video that will walk you through how to install Kodi on Windows 8 step-by-step, but you can also follow along with the article below if you prefer a little more detail.

Click here to download kodi for windows


There are a few system requirements for being able to run Kodi on Windows.

First, you’ll need at least Windows Vista, although Windows 7,8,10 is recommended for hardware video decoding. If you’re one of the holdouts still running Windows XP, it’s time to make the switch.Most newer graphics cards are supported. These include the ATI Radeon R420, and the NVIDIA GeForce 6-series. Although the team at Kodi recommends at least an ATI Radeon R700 or a GeForce 8 series card.


Downloading Kodi is going to be the same for any system. There is a download page for Kodi here  which lists every available Kodi versions, grouped by the system it runs on.

Install Kodi onto Windows PC Windows Device

As you can see from the picture above, you’ll be looking for the blue Windows icon on the left hand side of the screen.

Underneath the file is a link to the installation file that you’ll click on to download the file. The Windows file is just under 70MB, so it may take a few minutes to download, depending on your Internet connection.


Once the file is downloaded, navigate to your download directory. By default this will be the “Downloads” folder. If you open up a File Explorer window (which should be pinned to your taskbar in both Windows 7 and Windows 8), you’ll see an icon for the Downloads folder there.

Once you find the file, double-click on the installation to begin.

Install Kodi onto Windows PC Windows Device

From there the Kodi Setup Wizard will take you through the installation. There are a couple different components you can choose to install, such as adding Audio Encoder Add-Ons, PVR Add-ons and some different Skin Add-ons. If this is your first Kodi installation, I recommend keeping the default components.

Finally, you’ll be able to choose your installation path. The default path is C:Program Files (x86)Kodi, but you can change that if you prefer to install your programs some place other than your boot drive, like I do.

After those few choices, you’ll choose whether to add a shortcut and Start Menu program group. Then the set up process will take you through the remainder of the installation. The entire process should take 1-2 minutes to complete, depending on the speed of your PC.


Once the installation is finished, click on the new Kodi icon in the Start Menu. If you’re running Windows 8, you may want to pin Kodi to the task bar so you have easy access. To do this, right click on a Kodi icon and select “Pin to Task bar.”

Once you start the program, you should see the Kodi home screen pictured below.

Install Kodi onto Windows PC Windows Device


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Best Music Addons Kodi

As I already have a list for the best live TV addons for Kodi, I thought I would add a best music addons list. I will be adding to this as I try out more music addons.

TuneIn Radio – Like the TuneIn app that you will prbably have used on your iOS/Android device. This lets you access radio stations from all over the world.

MP3 Streams – This addon allows you to quickly find and browse songs and albums. It is arranged into various categories allowing you to easily find something you’ll like.

Jango Music – A music add-on based on the Jango Free Internet Radio website

Music Box – A great add-on for streaming your favourite music

GDrive – If you store your music files on Google Drive you can easily play them using this addon.

Bin@ural – With this addon you can easily browse and stream your favourite songs, albums, and videos.

Concert Archive – With this addon you can watch a wide selection of concerts.

Last.FM – This addon allows you to scrobble tracks you listen to on Kodi / XBMC to your Last.FM account.

YouTube Music – This addon pulls charts loists from various sources and when you select tracks you want to play it takes them from YouTube allowing you to listen to all the music you want.

Vevo Music – This addon plays HD videos from the Vevo site (GEO restricted)

Google Music – This addon allows you to listen to music from your Google Play Music account.

SoundCloud – Play music from SoundCloud. Sign in with your SoundCloud account to view your playlists and stream.


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Kodi Buffering Problems FIXED!!

The lights are down low. You’ve made some fresh popcorn. You’ve just sat down for your movie “date night” when….



Be honest: How many movie nights have ended because of that one little word?

What about this one?

“Cache Full: Cache filled before reaching required amount for continuous playback”

Kodi has a lot of options available in the settings screen, but there’s no way currently to change the cache size. So, are we just going to have to live with stuttering videos and buffering issues?


Nope. That would make for a pretty short article. :)

So, stick around and I’ll tell you about the advancedsettings.xml file and how to modify the Kodi cache.

What is cache?

Even if you’ve never heard the term “cache” before, that’s OK. You’re probably using it every day without even knowing it. Cache is any temporary data that is stored on a device so that it can get the data faster than you, the end user, can consume it. That way any interruptions in transmission quality or network speed won’t bring your video to a screeching halt.

Think of it like this. Have you ever been at a sports bar watching the same game on two TV’s, but one of the TV’s is slightly ahead of the other? Imagine one TV is “storing” a few extra seconds of the game, just in case there’s a problem with the signal.

Just for the record, that’s not why the TV’s are out of sync, but it makes it for a good analogy.

Types of Kodi Cache

There are several different types of cache memory that KodiXBMC uses during playback:

Video Cache

Video cache is exactly what it sounds like: cache used for playing back videos streaming from the Internet or somewhere else on your local network. Kodi will use system RAM in order to store a few seconds of the file. Since system RAM is the fastest type of storage available on just about any computer system, this is going to be your best performance option.

Since Kodi is designed for systems with as little RAM as 1GB, it doesn’t use much RAM for video cache by default – usually about 60MB. This cache is used, as needed, and then cleared after each use.

This is the type of cache that I’ll be showing you how to configure later in this article. If you have network speed issues, or a troublesome Wi-Fi connection, this will be your best bet for improving Kodi video playback problems.

Add-On Cache

Unlike video cache, which is a part of the base video playback code, some Kodi add-ons will have their own cache. Some may use this to supplement the video cache while other add-ons may ignore the video cache  completely and use their own.

The trouble with this form of cache is that the add-on has to do a good job of keeping track of it and cleaning it up. If it doesn’t, then those temporary files will sit on your device, taking up valuable space. To delete add-on cache, you’ll need to navigate to each individual add-on folder and delete files manually.

The addon data folder will be in a subfolder in your userdata directory. Where these folders are located will depend on your system’s operating system:

Android Android/data/org.xbmc.kodi/files/.kodi/userdata/
iOS /private/var/mobile/Library/Preferences/Kodi/userdata/
Linux ~/.kodi/userdata/
Mac /Users/<your_user_name>/Library/Application Support/Kodi/userdata/
OpenELEC /storage/.kodi/userdata/
Windows Start – type %APPDATA%kodiuserdata – press <Enter>

Remember that older versions of Kodi (before version 14) were called XBMC. If you’re still running one of the older versions and can’t upgrade, replace Kodi with XBMC where you see it in the chart above.

Android Application Cache

How to clear Kodi Android app cacheI’m sure I don’t have to tell you that pretty much every Android application has it’s own cache.

This will usually be the easiest to clear, because it’s the one that we’re most familiar with.

To clear the Kodi Android application cache, or any other Android app cache, go to your Settings menu and select “Apps”. Scroll down to find the app you’re looking for and click on it. There will almost always be a button that says “Clear Cache” in it’s settings screen.

Unlike a lot of other Android apps, you won’t need to use this method very often. In reality, you should only ever have to manually clear the Kodi cache through the Android Settings screen when Kodi crashes unexpectedly. If it’s not able to remove cache files automatically or a file gets corrupted, this should be one of your first steps to troubleshoot.

This won’t lose any settings that you’ve entered, but it will give you another chance to see those “Kodi is running for the first time” screens that we all know and love.

Click here to find out about Kore: The official Kodi Remote App!

Image Cache

Have you ever looked at how much space is taken up by your image thumbnails? When you think about how small an image is, it doesn’t seem like much. Most images are anywhere from 500Kb to 5MB in size, depending on the resolution. Occasionally you’ll come across uncompressed images which are larger than 5MB, but they’re rare. So what’s the big deal?

Well, when you’ve got a collection of music and movies that you’ve been accumulating for years, those little files can add up. For example, I’ve ripped every single CD I’ve ever owned to my NAS (Network Attached Storage) – over 1100 CD’s! If each one has a 1MB image attached to it, that’s over 1GB! Imagine finding space for another 2 movies on your device, simply by managing your Kodi image cache better.

Temp Files

Temp files – the bane of my existence. Well, at least as far as my PC goes.

I’ll bet that you’ve got at least one or two ‘Temp’ directories on your PC just overflowing with useless files that some program should have uninstalled, but didn’t. Kodi has the same problem sometimes. Whether its the leftovers from a Zip file installation or remnants of some add-on that wouldn’t leave – you can recover some space by cleaning them out.

Why bother?

It’s simple, really. The more space you have, the more you can set aside for buffering videos, and isn’t that why you’re reading this article?

Now that you know what cache is, let’s fix those pesky “Kodi cache full” messages. To do this, we’ll create an advancedsettings.xml file.

What is advancedsettings.xml?

Advancedsettings.xml is a file that stores all of the user-created settings for your Kodi installation.

Remember, Kodi is an open-source project that started out as a media center that would only work on a modified Xbox. Tweaking has been part of KodiXBMC’s DNA since the very beginning.

Does that mean that this is going to be hard? Not at all.

I’ve created a sample advancedsettings.xml file that you can drop in your Kodi folder. You can either download it from the link below, or, if you’re more “hands on”, I’ll show you how you can create your own.

Framework (and a brief description of XMLHTML tags)

The basic framework of the advancedsettings.xml file looks like this:


If this looks complicated, don’t worry. It’s not that bad. Besides, if you don’t want to stress about it, skip ahead to the download section and use my pre-made file.

Any XML (or HTML) file will always have an opening and closing tag for everything. Think of those tags as “framing” the important stuff – just like a picture frame. If you leave off one side of a picture frame, then the important stuff (the picture) winds up on the floor next to your cat. Its the same with XMLHTML tags, only without the cat. They usually don’t like programming.

If you look at the file from the top and bottom at the same time, you’ll see what I mean. The opening tag is the first <advancedsettings>. The closing tag will look almost identical, except for the forward slash in front: </advancedsettings>

On the inside, each setting will have its own opening and closing tags: <setting> and </setting>. The actual value is there in between the two.

You’ll replace the word “setting” with the actual name of the setting you want to change.

I’ll show you what I mean.

Settings you can change

Let me be clear up front, this is a brief look at the settings you can change in the advancedsettings.xml file. There are dozens of settings you can change to tweak your Kodi experience. We’re only looking at a few which are directly related to Kodi buffering problems. If you want the complete list, please check out theKodi Wiki page devoted to the advancedsettings.xml file.

Once you get started tweaking settings, you may find a number of other things that you could improve to really make your setup the best it can be. It can be fun!


Not really a setting, but a “family” of settings. All three of the settings listed below will fall under the Network grouping. So we’ll have to include an opening <network> tag and a closing </network> tag.

Buffermode – The “what”

The first Kodi cache setting we’re going to look at is the Buffermode. Buffermode controls how Kodi uses the cache during playback. More specifically, it controls which files get buffered. This is the “what files” will get buffered.

It can have four settings:

0 This is the default value. This buffers all internet filesystems (http, ftp, webdav, etc.)
1 This buffers all filesystems, both Internet and Local
2 Only buffers true Internet file systems (http, etc.)
3 No buffer

On most devices that you’re going to find on this site, I recommend using Setting 1. This means you’ll be buffering streaming files and local files, including those on your network. If you’ve got your media store on an external hard drive or NAS, then this will buffer those files during playback.

Our first settings line will look like this:

<buffermode> 1 </buffermode>

Readbufferfactor – The “speed”

Readbufferfactor is the setting that controls how quickly Kodi will fill the cache. By default, it is set to “1”, which means that Kodi will only look ahead slightly to store what’s coming next. Think of this setting as the “speed” in which Kodi fills the buffer.

If your network is unreliable, slow or you have a fair amount of interference in your home, you’ll want to increase this value.

The setting value is a multiplier of the default limit. Kodi looks at the average speed that the video will play at. Higher resolutionbitrate videos will stream at a higher speed.

The default setting is usually pretty good. I recommend only a slight increase to 1.5.

If you make the other changes and still have issues, you can change this value to as high as 4. If you have a high amount of RAM in your device, you could go even higher than that.

Basically, you can increase this value as much as you want. Kodi won’t crash, but it may end up using all of the bandwidth you have in the device. At that point, you won’t see any improvement in increasing the number. You’ll also not be able to do anything else on your device while you’re watching a video.

This settings line will look like this:

<readbufferfactor> 1.5 </readbufferfactor>

Cachemembuffersize – The “How much”

Here is the important one. Cachemembuffersize is the “how much cache should Kodi use” setting.

This value is stored in bytes – not MB or even KB. Plain, old minuscule bytes of memory. That means the number in this setting is going to be very large. 

Also, the way the cache works, Kodi will actually use three times the amount of RAM that you enter in the setting. So if you only have 1 or 2 GB of RAM on your device, you’ll want to be careful with this setting.

Since there are a lot of options with this setting, I’ll illustrate some of the more common ones here:

If you have a low power device, like a Raspberry pi, set this number to 50MB (which uses 150MB of RAM):

<cachemembuffersize> 52428800 </cachemembuffersize>

If you have a device with a lot of memory, you’ll be at the other end of the spectrum. You can set this number to 150MB (which uses 400MB of RAM):

<cachemembuffersize> 157286400 </cachemembuffersize>

For most users, the folllowing setting should work just fine. Here, we’ll set this number to 100MB (which uses 300MB of RAM):

<cachemembuffersize> 104857600 </cachemembuffersize>

A word of warning: Kodi Zero Cache

Alternately, you could use “0” as your setting in cachemembuffersize. You’ll see a lot of articles about “Kodi zero cache” add-ons and tweaks. I don’t recommend 0 cache for most users – especially those of us that use Android boxes or HTPC’s with flash storage.

What zero cache does is write the entire file to disk for speedy viewing. What’s wrong with that, you ask? As I’ve detailed in this article, the flash storage, including Solid State Drives (SSD), has a finite amount of read-writes that it can perform before the drive just plain dies. No clicking like normal hard drives….just dead.

If you write the entire file of every song and movie you play to your internal storage you’ll burn through the life of that storage fairly quickly.

 Putting it all together…

Now that you’ve got a basic understanding of the advancedsettings.xml file and an idea of what settings would work for you, it’s time to put them all together into one file.

Using the settings I recommended above, we come up with this:
<buffermode> 1 </buffermode>
<readbufferfactor> 1.5 </readbufferfactor>
<cachemembuffersize> 104857600 </cachemembuffersize>

These settings should work for the majority of HTPCAndroid TV box users out there, but feel free to modify them if you feel you need to.

Creating (or downloading) the advancedsettings.xml file

Now that you have the settings you want, you have to get them into a file.

Create a new text file using notepad, Jota or any other text editor you choose. Then copy the settings above into that file and save the file at “advancedsettings.xml”.

Be sure that the file is saved exactly as above. A common error is that the file is saved as “advancedsettings.xml.txt” – that won’t do you, or Kodi, any good. Pick the right file extension!

Alternately, you can choose to download my pre-made advancedsettings.xml file here. Just remember to manually change the file extension from “.txt” to “.xml”: advancedsettings

How to install the advancedsettings.xml file

Now that you’ve got the file (with the correct extension), you’ll need to place it in your Kodi userdata folderon your device.

If you remember from the Add-on cache section at the top of this article, that will vary depending on your operating system. You can use that chart to navigate to your userdata folder with ES File Explorer, Windows Explorer or whatever file management application you prefer.

Wrapping it up

Hopefully this give you a better idea of what the advancedsettings.xml file is and how it can help you with Kodi cache problems.


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10 MOST POPUPLAR Kodi movies addons?

                                          1.  Genesis

Kodi movies addons GenesisFound within the Lambda repository, this addon is one of the best Kodi movie addons. Tons of links to content, curated and categorized, organized by year, genre, most popular movies, and even the movies that have won Oscar prizes, Genesis makes it easier to find what you’re looking for, offering a search function as well. Every streaming option includes lots of links for you to get to the content, and most of them work on a regular basis. You can read our guide to install Genesis addon if you want to get it on your Kodi HTPC.

2. Entertainment Hub

Kodi movies addons Entertainment HubA colorful interface greets you when opening this addon, which is always nice and inviting thing. Lots of links to content, organized and categorized by websites, genres and so on. Entertainment Hub seems to have a wide selection of movies, as well as a helpful search function. As with most movie addons for Kodi, you will be able to browse content in a graphical menu, which shows the name of the movies for Kodi, but also their cover artwork. You can install this addon through the SuperRepo repository.

3. Phoenix

Kodi movies addons PhoenixPhoenix is one of those addons that are good for many things. Not only does it offer TV shows, user-maintained channels and even sports, but also a decent and sizeable selection of movies for Kodi as well. You can install this very useful addon and stream movies for Kodi if you are a user of theSuperRepo addon repository; though, if you like more details about the process, you can take a look at our guide to install Phoenix Kodi addon, to bring all the content from this addon to your HTPC.

4. Movies HD

Kodi movies addons Movies HDMovies HD is one of the addons you need to get if you plan on watching movies on Kodi. You can find this addon on the MetalKettle repository. Basically, it brings you content categorized by genres, views, rating, and even has a couple of special categories, such as “Bollywood”. You can also use its search function to get to the content. At the moment of writing this note, the addon seems to be down; however, it is estimated that an update might come soon for it, so its users may continue to access its impressive content library.

5. Icefilms

Kodi movies addons IcefilmsIf you have read our guide to install Icefilms addon on Kodi, you already know that this addon can be found within the SuperRepo addon repository. This addon is, in my opinion, very useful, not only because it provides a wealth of content and links, but also because these links display ratings for each movie, and groups movies with similar ratings. There are also other categories of content, like music, or even stand up comedy. Be sure to take a look at this addon to improve the selection of content you can access from your living room screen.

6. Yify Movies HD

Kodi movies addons Yify Movies HDThe Lambda repository also brings us this addon, called Yify Movies HD. This addon brings movies for Kodi to your HTPC, and uses a very graphical and attractive interface to do so. Sorting the content by years of release or rating, and offering a search function as most Kodi movies addons, Yify Movies HD brings a decent number of movies to your HTPC. Something this addon does differently is that there’s really no option to choose your stream link or location; the addon seems to choose it on your behalf, which might be an advantage or not, depending on your needs.

7. 1Channel

Kodi movies addons 1channelUsing the SuperRepo addon repository for XBMC/Kodi, you can grab hold of this addon for your HTPC. 1Channel has an alphabetical list of movies for you to browse, as well as some other categories and a search feature. As many of the Kodi movies addons we have mentioned, this one also features a graphical interface, and seems to have a very wide selection of content; there are movies in its alphabetical list that I had never seen in my life, as well as some other very well known ones. Take a look at this addon and see for yourself the movies for Kodi it brings to your HTPC.

8. Navi-X

Kodi movies addons Navi XA very well known addon with a long time of being online, Navi-X offers a huge, yet somewhat unorganized selection of content, thanks to its multiple contributors. The best way to use Navi-X is to refer to the most viewed content from the past 24 hours; in this way, you ensure that the links you’re trying to click will work for you. Navi-X is difficult to navigate otherwise; however, you might find content in this addon that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. This addon can be added if you install SuperRepo addon repository.

9. Movie Night

Kodi movies addons Movie NightFrom the MetalKettle addon repository, this addon was quite a surprise when checking it out. Its interface as soon as you click on it is very simplistic; just a list with some categories like drama, romance, comedy, as it’s usual in all these Kodi movies addons. However, once you click a category, you get your screen divided. On the left you will see a list with the movies and years when they were released, and on the right and background you will see beautiful artwork related to the movie. It’s a nice experience worth checking out if you plan on streaming movies on Kodi.

10. Much Movies HD

Kodi Movies addons Much Movies HDThe Lambda repository also brings us this addon called Much Movies HD. This is an addon that brings you many movies for Kodi, to be watched on your HTPC. Like most of the addons on this list, Much Movies HD is one of the Kodi movies addons that offer a graphical interface you can appreciate from your couch, showing you artwork for the movies as you browse through them. This addon can be installed to your HTPC as well if you use the Fusion Installer, to make it easier for you to stream movies on Kodi.


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