openELEC: everything you need to know about this multimedia center


OpenELEC It is one of the best known GNU / Linux distributions focused on implementing a complete multimedia center. It was specially designed for HTPCs (Home Theater Personal Computer), that is, for miniPCs aimed at multimedia entertainment in your living room.

Furthermore, OpenELEC, like other similar systems, can also be installed on the SD for SBCs such as Raspberry Pi, having a cheap media center and with everything you need on the TV in your living room ... So if you didn't know about it, now you can add OpenELEC to the list of operating systems for Raspberry Pi.

What is a multimedia center?

Media center, multimedia center

Un multimedia center, or media-center, is basically an implementation in which you can enjoy all kinds of multimedia content. That implies playing music, movies, displaying images from galleries, accessing the Internet, and even using other functions through the extension with add-ons (TV channels, radio,…).

These multimedia centers are basically complete operating systems with software to be able to carry out all these tasks, in addition to the necessary drivers and codecs.

Microsoft Windows Media Center It was one of the first systems of this type to become popular, and although it was not widely accepted at the time, it would lay the foundations for current systems, especially the implementations that exist today in video consoles, as well as projects of the stature of Kodi, LibreELEC, OSMC, or OpenELEC itself ...

About OpenELEC


OpenELEC is a Linux-based embedded operating system for digital entertainment. Its acronym comes from Open Embedded Linux Entertainment Center. In addition, this small distro follows the JeOS (Just Enough Operating System) principle, that is, a minimalist operating system that has only what is just and necessary for the purpose for which it was created.

This platform is not based on another, but has been created from scratch and with the famous Integrated Kodi, something that is common to many other platforms similar to OpenELEC. And not for that it is less than others, in fact it was awarded for its benefits ...

If you wonder about what you can do OpenLEC, the truth is that the following functions stand out:

  • Has a video player and organizer for the reproductions and movies that you have in the media that you can access. In addition, it allows you to choose subtitles, display video information, and make other basic settings.
  • It also has a manager for TV, so that you can always keep your favorite episodes within reach, see their descriptions, genre, actors, and other information that is obtained online.
  • Image browser integrated with which to see the images that you have stored and catalog them in libraries as you prefer. It has functions to view one by one, for slide mode, zoom, rotation, etc.
  • Of course admits play audio files, with managers for your favorite songs, audio books, etc. They can be cataloged by album, artist, etc.
  • If you need, it can show TV channels and also record video to store your favorite shows and watch them whenever you want.
  • More: OpenELEC also has an advanced system to expand its capabilities by installing addons. With them you can add channels, home automation functions, tools for a multitude of tasks, new skins or themes, etc.

More information - OpenELEC Official Website

Install on your Raspberry Pi

Raspberry Pi 4

If you would like to install OpenELEC on your Raspberry Pi (and other devices), the process to do it is quite simple. You just have to follow a few simple steps:

  1. First you must download the image to install OpenELEC. You have to do it from the official website, in the download area.
  2. Once there you can choose between the .tar files that have updates to go from one version to another if you already have OpenELEC, or .img files that are the complete image to install it for the first time. Select the platform you want to download the image for, such as Raspberry Pi, Freescale i.MX or Generic (for x86-64 PC), and download the .img.tar from the latest stable version. To do this, just click on the Disk Image button that appears and wait for it to complete.
  3. Now, from the computer that you downloaded it, you will have to generate the medium OpenELEC installation program, such as a USB stick, or SD card, of at least 256MB or higher. To do so you can use the program Etcher.
  4. Once you have flashed the SD card, you can insert it into the slot of your Raspberry Pi and perform the first boot. In it, it will ask you to configure some parameters such as language, time, etc. Once you finish with the wizard, you will be able to enjoy OpenELEC in its fullness.
Remember that if you are going to install it on a PC, then you must select the option in the Boot section in your BIOS / UEFI so that it boots from the medium you have created, in this case the USB ...

Now you can enjoy of all the multimedia content you want with OpenELEC ...

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