How can I get XBMC on my Raspberry Pi? I'm not particularly interested in running a specific operating system. My primary desire is to run XBMC on a Raspberry Pi.

According to this official post, at least most of the work has been done by the XBMC team. How can I acquire either a binary or compatible source trunk and set it up with my Raspberry Pi? Bonus, if one OS works better with XBMC or, better, is bundled with it, please let me know.

  • What OS are you using?
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 20:40
  • Any OS would be fine, considering the fact that using XBMC was the primary purpose of me wanting to acquire an RP.
    – RLH
    Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 20:50

7 Answers 7


The images of OpenELEC and Raspbmc I found don't work well yet on my RPI. I have tried them and they either crash or don't boot, etc. If you want to play around, while waiting for those two distribution to become more mature, you can use the following debian image with xbmc precompiled: http://rpi-developers.com/projects/xbmc/

[UPDATE (Dec 2, 2012)]: I gave Raspbmc another shot. It seems to work very well now.

  • 3
    I had OpenELEC working fine.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 21:58
  • @Jivings: did you compile them yourself? I am trying the precompiled image I found on their websites. Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 22:04
  • I used this OpenELEC image kvarley.co.uk/RaspberryPi/OpenELEC and it worked okay. The system stalls at times and I wondered what it was doing, but it eventually caught up.
    – popey
    Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 22:08
  • I think I used a precompiled image from their GitHub repo.
    – Jivings
    Commented Jun 12, 2012 at 22:09
  • 1
    Raspbmc works like a charm for me. Plays 1080p mkv/m2ts without lags. Commented Jun 26, 2012 at 8:28

According to the XBMC Wiki, you can either install OpenELEC or Raspbmc.

Installing XBMC OpenELEC - XBMC-centric linux-based OS install - http://openelec.tv/news/item/241-openelec-meets-raspberry-pi-part-1

Raspbmc - XBMC-centric linux-based OS install - http://www.raspbmc.com/2012/05/raspbmc-is-now-in-beta/

From the OpenELEC "About" Page

OpenELEC is an embedded operating system built specifically to run XBMC, the open source entertainment media hub. The idea behind OpenELEC is to allow people to user their Home Theatre PC (HTPC) like any other device you might have attached to your TV, like a DVD player or Sky box.

From the Raspbmc About Page

Raspbmc is a minimal Linux distribution based on Debian that brings XBMC to your Raspberry Pi.


Raspbmc is a very simple way to get your Raspberry Pi running XBMC.

The installation process is as simple as inserting an SD card into your computer and running the installation script. Once this is done, you simply insert your SD card into your Raspberry Pi and it sets itself up automagically.

I've found the wiki and irc channel (#rasbmc) on Freenode to be excellent sources of information and help.

If you're familiar with UNetbootin, Rasbmc takes a similar approach in easing XBMC installation on your pi.

  • OpenELEC is another implementation of XBMC.
    – earthmeLon
    Commented May 26, 2013 at 3:31
  • Raspberry Pi now offers NOOBS, which eases installation of many different distros. Various XBMC flavours are supported.
    – earthmeLon
    Commented Jul 1, 2013 at 21:13

Start with the debian6-19-04-2012 image.

Get https://github.com/raspberrypi/firmware.

Copy all files in firmware/boot to /boot.

Replace /opt/vc with firmware/opt/vc.

Replace /lib/modules/3.1.9+ with firmware/modules/3.1.9+.

Install dependencies:

sudo apt-get -y install autoconf libboost-dev libass-dev libmpeg2-4-dev libmad0-dev libjpeg-dev libsamplerate0-dev libogg-dev libvorbis-dev libmodplug-dev libcurl4-gnutls-dev libflac-dev libmysqlclient-dev libbz2-dev libtiff4-dev libssl-dev libssh-dev libsmbclient-dev libyajl-dev libfribidi-dev libsqlite3-dev libpng12-dev libpcre3-dev libpcrecpp0 libcdio-dev libiso9660-dev libfreetype6-dev libjasper-dev libmicrohttpd-dev python-dev python-sqlite libplist-dev libavahi-client-dev

Copy arm-bcm2708/linux-x86/arm-bcm2708-linux-gnueabi/sys-root/lib/libstdc++.so.6.0.14


https://github.com/raspberrypi/tools to /usr/lib.


sudo ldconfig

Put the xbmc-bcm directory in /opt, and run with:

sudo LD_LIBRARY_PATH=/opt/xbmc-bcm/xbmc-bin/lib /opt/xbmc-bcm/xbmc-bin/lib/xbmc/xbmc.bin

I am using Xbian 1.0 Alpha 3. Download the image from http://xbian.org/ and mount to your SD card. Working perfect, with my RaspberryPi model B. I can really recommend it.


easiest is XBian

as you can install it into Raspbian as 3rd party application. One can log into X GUI of Raspbian and after logout/login xbian XBMC starts. no reboot needed, nothing.


Xbian installation is the easiest. OpenELEC also comes close. Raspbmc takes the longest to install. I do not want to promote my own post but I compared the three XBMC distros in detail on my blog (you may google "Xbian vs Raspbmc or OpenELEC").

Xbian definiately has more features but I ended up choosing OpenELEC for my applications.

If I am right Raspbmc developed has stopped. Sam has picked up new project LinXBMC but no word on where it stands today.

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