Troubleshooting KODI add-ons (on Linux)

  • Posted on: 14 May 2018
  • By: charm
KODI event log

If you've already checked out our KODI setup page you already know that we mainly use KODI to organize our existing media collection. We don't use a lot of add-ons and we tend to steer clear of third party add-ons not found on the kodi.tv web site. But sometimes even the add-ons found on the kodi.tv web site don't work. Troubleshooting them can be a bit puzzling since the add-ons refer you to the kodi log file. When locally stored television shows and movies are scraped and not found they generate a log entry. This not-found entry can be seen by clicking the gear in the top left of the KODI interface, then clicking the Event log menu option. This event log is great for figuring out which shows/movies are not being correctly scraped, but it doesn't tell us anything about add-on errors. To troubleshoot add-on errors you'll have to look at:

~/.kodi/temp/kodi.log

The tilde (~) refers to your home directory/folder. Note the dot (.) before kodi. Folders that begin with a dot are normally hidden if you use a graphical file browser. Typically hidden folders within your home folder are used to store configuration and temporary data for programs you use. You can use the less or more pager to display the contents of the kodi.log file by typing:

less ~/.kodi/temp/kodi.log

As an example, if my username is charles, the ~ acts as a replacement for /home/charles. If you wanted to do this the long way you'd type:

less /home/charles/.kodi/temp/kodi.log

Here's a practical example. You've just finished installing KODI. Now add the It's a Pixel Thing add-on from the Video add-ons section. If you try to access any content from It's a Pixel Thing on a fresh install it will error out and refer you to check the kodi log file. Looking closely at the kodi.log file we can see several errors. The error that caught my eye was:

ERROR: EXCEPTION: Unknown addon id 'plugin.video.youtube'.

The It's a Pixel Thing add-on won't tell you, but you need to install the Youtube add-on before It's a Pixel Thing will work properly. Once the Youtube add-on is installed and configured the It's a Pixel Thing add-on works just fine.

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