One of things I have been doing lately is rediscovering my music - inspired by talking to the some of the Amarok guys at Akademy this year! So I decided to go on a search for an Open Source Media Center solution and up popped XBMC. Now this project isn’t related to Amarok but that doesn’t stop it being way too cool for school! I’ve being tinkering with it for just a few days and it just works like a dream.

Installation on Kubuntu is simple

  • I just following the Install XBMC on Ubuntu HOWTO

  • In (KDE’s) System Settings -> Autostart, added XBMC Media Center to startup automatically on computer startup

  • From within XBMC itself, went to System -> Settings -> System -> Video Output and set the Resolution to be Windowed (as I usually want to be able to access my KDE desktop at any time)

  • Initially you will have no music library. Instead you will add a directory location containing your music via Add Source. Then you can browse the added location and choose to Scan Item to Library to build up your music library

  • By visiting System -> Settings -> Network -> Services you can Allow control of XBMC via HTTP by setting Port, Username and Password. If you know the IP address of the machine you are running XBMC on then you can simply browse to http://YOUR_MACHINE_IP_ADDRESS:PORT from any web browser enabled device to control your media center (for example Note: XBMC must be running on the machine for this to work

  • Once you have your music library set up, you will notice that you cannot access it through the web interface. To enable this, simply edit ~/.xbmc/userdata/sources.xml by adding the following to the <music> element


Of course, when I don’t need to a complete Media Center solution and just want to rediscover my music I fire up my beloved Amarok :-)