How to Install Kodi on Raspberry Pi: A Comprehensive Guide

The following guide will teach you how to install Kodi on a Raspberry Pi.

But what makes Raspberry Pi so special? Generally, they are beloved because they are affordable and extremely extensible. 

While they may not be as cheap as they used to be, you can still find second-hand units at an affordable price. 

Nevertheless, Raspberry Pi is still the most trustworthy brand in single-board computing.

Students and engineers aren’t the only ones who can use it. 

You can use it as a console, mini-computer, or media player.

As the following guide will demonstrate, it’s not that difficult either.

Table of Contents

What is Kodi?

Kodi has been around since 2002. It’s open-source media software.

Since Kodi has existed for so many years, it has widespread support from the open-source community.

As such, there are a large variety of ports and variants. 

Nevertheless, vanilla Kodi allows you to stream from services and channels such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify, YouTube, etc. 

Additionally, you can stream live TV.

This is due to its inclusion of the digital video recorder (DVR) and electronic program guide (electronic program guide) codecs. 

Kodi also features a large library of addons. You can use them to extend their capabilities. 

Kodi’s codebase is available to the public through its official GitHub repository.

As such, you can potentially fork or clone it. This would allow you to create custom addons or your very own variant of Kodi. 

Despite this fact, not all hardware can support Kodi.

So, it stands to reason that not all Raspberry Pi models are compatible. But which ones are?

What Raspberry Pi Models are Compatible with Kodi?

Close-up of Raspberry Pi

Close-up of Raspberry Pi

Kodi supports a long list of devices and platforms. You can find this information by scanning through its official wiki.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t specify which exact Raspberry Pi models it supports. 

We can categorize the Raspberry Pi as a Linux device since The Raspberry PI OS is Debian-derived.

While Kodi recommends devices with at least 1GB of RAM, you can install Kodi on every Raspberry Pi model.

From the Raspberry Pi Zero to the Raspberry Pi 400. 

Ultimately, there are a few ways to install Kodi. Not every method may support your device.

Nevertheless, this guide uses the universal method. 

How to Install Kodi on Your Raspberry Pi

The easiest way to install Kodi on your Raspberry Pi is by using a Kodi-centric Linux distribution.

The three most popular are: 

We’ve chosen OSMC because it’s fast, easy to install, free, and supports nearly every (if not all) Raspberry Pi model. 

OSMC provides you with two ways to install its Kodi-based OS.

You can either use their installer or manually download and install the image on your device. Let’s start with the former:

Automatically Installing OSMC Kodi Distribution

This tutorial requires you to have the following:

  • Raspberry PI
  • SD Card with at least 1024MB of free space
  • A Windows (XP SP2 +)/MacOS (12.6+)/Linux (AMD 64-bit) based Computer with a stable internet connection
  • SD/Memory card reader/writer for your PC (internal or external) 

Once you’ve ensured you have the required equipment, you can install OSMC:

Insert your SD Card into your PC’s SD card reader. 

Download the OSMC installer for your platform. Supported platforms include Windows, Linux, and MacOS.
*Note: The images and examples in this guide are taken from the Windows installation.

Run the installation files. The OSMC installer will take a few moments to load and startup.

Please ensure that you have stable internet connectivity.

Select your language and the device (Raspberry Pi model) you want to install Kodi on before clicking on the next button:

Next, the installer will ask you to select the version. Select the latest version from the drop-down menu and click on the next button:

Next, pick which channel you’d like to use to install the OS on your Raspberry Pi (MicroSD Card).

Choose your internet connection (Wireless for Wi-Fi or Wired for direct fiber, DSL, etc.) and click the next button.

Alternatively, you can manually configure the network settings.

OSMC must download the appropriate image for your device. It will use the information you provide to optimize the download and installation.

Select your SD Card from the list of media devices. If you can’t find it, try physically removing and reinserting your SD card before clicking the refresh button.

Click on the next button once you’ve found and selected your SD card from the list:

Accept the End User License Agreement once you’ve read it:

The OSMC installer then downloads the appropriate files and automatically flashes them onto your SD Card.

The installer may display a warning or confirmation dialog before each download and installation phase commences.

Please confirm when you asked to do so.

Once the installation is complete, you can close the installer and remove your SD Card.

The installer will display a Congratulations message and OSMC’s social media information. 

Remove your SD Card from your PC and insert it into your Raspberry Pi.

Follow the prompts, and OSMC should be installed on your device. 

Manually Installing OSMC on Your Raspberry Pi

You do not need to rely on OSMC’s installer – at least not fully.

Users with firewall or internet stability issues may find it easier to flash the OSMC image files manually.

In these cases, you can use Etcher or select the ‘Use local build from my computer’ option from the OSMC installer.

Here’s how to download the image file: 

  1. Navigate to the OSMC download page. Click on Disk Images:
  2. A new section should appear. Select the latest version of the OSMC image under the appropriate model:

Once you’ve downloaded the OSMC image on your local computer, you can flash it on your SD card using one of the previously mentioned methods.

You can then use it to boot your Raspberry Pi. 

But what if you prefer your current Raspberry Pi operating system or distribution and only want to install the Kodi application? 

How to Install The Kodi Application on Your Raspberry Pi

The following steps will require that your Raspberry Pi is connected to the internet.

This can be Wi-Fi or LAN, depending on your model.  

  1. You must use the Linux terminal (ctrl+alt+T) or SSH to install Kodi on your Raspberry Pi. Once the terminal is open, type in the following commands:
    sudo apt update
    sudo apt full-upgrade
  2. The above commands will update the Linux package lists and upgrade the version of your distribution/OS. Once these processes are complete, run the following command:
    Sudo apt install kodi

Your Raspberry Pi’s OS will take a few moments to download and install Kodi on your Pi.

How long it takes will depend on your internet connection and microSD card speed.

You’ll be able to access it from your list of applications once Kodi’s installation is complete.


The above guide explores how to install Kodi on Raspberry Pi. Because it’s open source, Kodi gives you flexible installation options. 

You can use a Raspberry Pi-compatible Linux distribution with a Kodi front-end or install the application separately.

Operating systems and distributions such as Retropie come with Kodi pre-installed. 

However, this may not be ideal for users looking for a lightweight distribution.

You may not be willing to replace your current operating system/ROM.

Nevertheless, as with most things, the choice is in your hands.