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This is a new topic for me. I would like to connect my Pi 3 to the TV, and be able to watch shows through it. From what I've read OSMC must be installed. Is it correct that OSMC is an operating system and therefore would replace Raspbian? If this is correct should I simply follow the backup steps to save the current state of my Pi?

Must OSMC be installed and why exactly is it needed? I plan on installing Kodi but any other suggestions are appreciated. I'm not sure if it's the correct use of the word, but would this setup be considered a media server?

  • OSMC is an image of Raspbian with the hard work of installing Kodi done for you ... libreelec (and openelec) is just enough OS for Kodi - it's a very much pared back Raspbian, with basically a read only operating system and Kodi - in my experience, LibreElec/OpenElec are far superior to OSMC, which is just one persons (flawed) idea of how Kodi should be installed on Rasbian – Jaromanda X Dec 2 '18 at 23:20
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Quoting from the Kodi documentation you referenced as 'read':

Select LibreELEC or OSMC and press the Install button.

You'll be prompted to confirm. This will delete any data on the SD card, so if you previously had Raspbian on it be sure to back up your files first.

These sentences answer two of your questions:

  1. Must OSMC be installed and why exactly is it needed?

A: No - you can install either OSMC or LibreELEC. They are Operating Systems, and you must have one of them to play the media you want.

  1. Is it correct that OSMC is an operating system and therefore would replace Raspbian?

A: The documentation says it's an OS - and it is an OS. And yes, it will replace Raspbian - following the instructions will overwrite whatever is on the SD card.

  1. If this is correct should I simply follow the backup steps to save the current state of my Pi?

Yes, the SE question you've referenced may be used to create a backup image file that you can later restore to your SD card if you tire of Kodi, and wish to resume using Raspbian. I would only add that for the cost of a small SD card, you can have both OS's, and simply swap SD cards depending on what you wish to do at that time.

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    A: No - you can install either OSMC or LibreELEC. They are Operating Systems, and you must have one of them to play the media you want. You don't need either. You can install Kodi on Raspbian. – Dirk Dec 1 '18 at 23:04
  • @Dirk here is a better phrasing of the question: if Kodi is just an app that can be installed on Raspberrian, what's the point of OSMC and LibreELEC? – HoisZyrian Dec 2 '18 at 1:22
  • @Dirk: Not disagreeing with you, BUT that's not what the referenced documentation says. – Seamus Dec 2 '18 at 18:36
  • According to the RPF github repo that documentation is 3 years old. Kodi v17.1 is in the Raspbian repo and v17.6 is in the RPF repo. – Dirk Dec 2 '18 at 19:39

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