Time for the next milestone release for Kodi 21 “Omega”. Slightly delayed this time around compared to what we were striving for, however we are happy to announce the arrival of Alpha 3.

This is a major release, so, as you’d expect, it comes with many new features. However, with a core change to FFmpeg 6.0, there is a very good chance that some regressions may occur. As such, please be aware that installing this will most likely break things, and we’d really like your help at that point to identify the problems and get them fixed. Please raise Github issues with full debug logs to help us resolve any issues you wonderful testers come across.

A further 176 Pull Requests have been merged since Alpha 2 – fixing issues, adding features, and improving Kodi.

So… what’s actually changed?


  • A change to Estuary to add “more…” to size-limited lists has been made by @ksooo. The effect of this can be seen in homescreen widgets that have more than 15 items.
  • A number of changes to support video information for Movie Sets and TV Seasons has been made.


  • @popcornmix has made several fixes to our FFmpeg library usage. This has gone through several iterations now, and has affected seeking and playback to various degrees. Hopefully, the last of these regressions has now been squashed, but please do let us know if you experience any further regressions around playback using FFmpeg.


  • @thexai has changed the chunk size of data requests for local media, increasing it 64kb to improve data throughput.


  • @garbear continues to improve the gaming interface of Kodi. Changes around player management/assignment have been made in https://github.com/xbmc/xbmc/pull/23548. Have a read of that PR for more details/info.


  • @ksooo has continued his whack-a-mole approach with issues regarding menu usage across the Kodi codebase. A fix for no information dialog for music videos, “Local art” missing for the art selection dialog, and further art dialog selection issues are amongst some of the latest fixes.
  • TV Shows/Seasons/Movie sets/Recording folders now expose their ‘in progress’ state via LISTITEM_IS_RESUMABLE.
  • The content of the refresh progress dialog has been improved a bit to be more informative for the user – for example, to display the current season and episode being refreshed.
  • @repojohnray has had a (lingering) PR merged that fixes a memory leak in context menus.
  • Some improvements and optimisations have been made by @neo1973 . This affects several areas (database and curl usage), and every performance fix is greatly appreciated.
  • @rmrector has been digging into the image usage of Kodi (caching, allow remote viewing of images without having been displayed in Kodi, preloading of images and general streamlining of the API), and has made several improvements leading to more hotly-anticipated changes to come in the future.

Platform Specifics

  • Android:

    • @quietvoid has had a PR merged that enables the ability to convert some Dolby Vision media types to more common types to allow playback. A forum thread has been around for testing that can explain the benefits a little better than this blog editor, so head there for some info and any feedback/support around the feature: https://forum.kodi.tv/showthread.php?tid=371557.
    • @fritsch has once again delved into our Audio Engine to fix a regression for Amazon FireTV 4K users: https://github.com/xbmc/xbmc/pull/23687.
    • @joseluismarti has further updated some Android dependencies and fixed/modernised areas of our Android API usage.
  • Linux:

    • Support for cpu_thermal hwmon has been added. This enables devices like the Raspberry Pi to report CPU temperatures without the use of external scripts (as have been common in projects like LibreELEC).
    • @smp79 submitted a fix for VAAPI VP9 Profile 2 playback.
  • macOS:

    • @kambala-decapitator has fixed a crash in the SDL versions of Kodi when pressing the Caps-Lock key. This did not affect the “native windowing” version of Kodi we have migrated to for v21 nightlies, however if you are building for x86_64 intel Macs then this should make using that key less troublesome.
    • @enen92 continues his work on improving Kodi for macOS. Network System info has been tackled to improve its speed, and more accurately represent network information like DNS servers used.
    • macOS temperature information is currently not supported on Apple Silicon devices due to our usage of a library that does not support them. @enen92 has made a change to report N/A instead of 0.0 for CPU/GPU temperatures.
    • Media keys are now supported on macOS.
    • Some improvements for moving the Kodi app window from high-DPI screens with differing refresh rates.
    • macOS releases are now defaulting to the “native windowing” system.
  • webOS

    • @sundermann has continued with further improvements to the webOS port, most notably around passthrough and video decoding.
  • Windows:

    • A PR intended to fix an issue around the Windows platform regularly losing track of the audio output device has been merged by @thexai. This hopefully makes Windows audio outputs more robust to situations where driver updates may change naming.
    • @CrystalP has been contributing a number of fixes/improvements particularly aimed at Windows. These include a fix for refresh rate switching for Intel and Nvidia graphics cards that was accidentally broken by a fix aimed at AMD cards.
    • More improvements to the recently add Video Super Resolution implementation have been made.


  • A first time contributor @ivanllc has had a PR merged to add a “2 minute” option to the padding timer for PVR recordings.
  • @ksooo continues to improve the Kodi PVR system. A number of changes were made, including fixes and tidy ups from static analysis tools (cppcheck and clang-tidy).
  • Fixed a long-standing bug with subtitle selection not being preserved upon channel playback restart.


  • Changes made to support building Kodi when using Python 3.12.
  • Python invoker now passes sys.argv arguments in a logical order to Python addons thanks to @scott967.



  • Support for .ttc font collections has been added.


  • TV show groups (seasons, movie sets, PVR recording folders) with at least one started element (episodes, movies, recordings) but no completely watched ones are now considered as ‘in progress’ and they, for example, now appear in the respective “In progress” GUI elements like widgets and video windows.
  • Fixed play counts (watched state) and last played date of episodes and movies not being preserved on internet update.
  • Default select action for videos fixed.


  • @alanswanson has provided a change to use the FFmpeg software deinterlacer from yadiff to bwdif. This is said to have fairly significant performance improvements over the old interlacing method.

There are a lot more changes not mentioned, but we are grateful for all contributors that help make Kodi better.

If you love to live on the bleeding edge of new, you can get Alpha 3 from here. Select your platform of choice, and look in the “Prerelease” section. Again, though, please: expect some breakage, don’t use this as your daily installation unless you know how to get things working again, and please share your experiences back with us so we can really get going on those bugs.

As usual – we are an open source project – you can see what’s changed between v21 and v20 here.
For a more targeted look at the changes made since v21 Alpha 2, you can see those changes here.

Source link

Power BI is known as a tool that allows easy data visualizations. In the print world, pagination is used to divide documents into pages. This is usually done for numbering or easy navigation. Reports can either be shared, printed, or used accordingly if they are paginated.

Paginated reports, as it implies, are reports that are formatted to fit on a page. They are also referred to as pixel-perfect. This is because you can precisely control their report page layout. Their purpose is mainly for printing or sharing. These reports will contain all the data in a table no matter how many pages they originally were, as opposed to other regular reports in Power BI.

Why Use Paginated Reports?

There are three major reasons why paginated reports are used. They are used:

1. For printing: Paginated reports are usually used or optimized for printing. With paginated reports, the pages are categorized easily and you can easily navigate them.

2. For PDF generation: When you want to generate a PDF, you can use Power BI paginated reports to make it easier. With paginated reports, you can easily create a PDF that can be shared among team members or used accordingly. This also allows easy access to your data.

3. For sharing: Paginated reports using the EPC Group Power BI Report Builder can be used to make sharing of files easier. They can be customized in different page layouts as you wish, to produce highly formatted, pixel-perfect layouts.

When To Use Paginated Reports?

When you are sure that your report will be printed or shared, then you should use paginated reports. They will help you to create files that can be easily navigated with the option to use any page layout you need. Instead of the regular reports in Power BI that cannot resize to show all the data and will require using the scroll bars, paginated reports make it easier to access your data at go.

You can also use paginated reports when you need to create PDF documents. They can help to make files easily shared offering the option to use any design, page layout, or colors as you wish.

More so, when you require a specific formatting style or layout, you should consider using paginated reports. This may be because you need to adhere to a particular report structure or style. Paginated reports offer you what you need to customize headers and control page breaks or other necessities that are used for professional reports that will be published.

A Step-By-Step Process For Creating Paginated Reports

  1. Create a new report: Pick a reporting tool in your  EPC Group Power BI Report Builder to build a new report. Select the options that suit what you need.
  2. Connect to a data source: After you have created your report, you need to connect to a data source. It is important to do this to have the data that will be in your report.
  3. Create a dataset: The collection of data to be analyzed in your report should also be created.
  4. Add visuals to your report: Select from the data source that was previously attached the graphs or tables that will form the foundation of your report. This will make it easier to effectively communicate your precise message.
  5. Format your report: Format your reports with customizations. You are free to use any typefaces, report layouts, or colors you choose.
  6. Save and publish your report: Once you are comfortable that your report has been properly written and formatted, you can save your work. You can preview your report before submitting it to ensure your satisfaction.

Tips for creating effective paginated reports

● Use a consistent design: To make your report easy to understand and appropriately organized, use a similar design throughout. If you employ several, misaligned styles or patterns in your report, it could seem ugly and be challenging to understand.

● Use clear and concise text: Be careful to utilize straightforward text. Your reports will look more professional as a result, and when they are shared, they may be understood without leading to misunderstandings.

● Use appropriate visuals: Make sure the graphic you use corresponds to the message you wish to convey.

● Test your report: Before it is officially published, make sure to test your paginated report after it has been created.

Final Thoughts

A comparison of paginated reports and other types of Power BI reports, such as interactive reports and dashboards. There are additional kinds of Power BI reports besides paginated reports. Dashboards help get a glance into a company’s everyday operations. They provide real-time updated information and are interactive as well. They offer an understanding and summary while being ideal for a detailed examination of particular datasets.

You must utilize the scroll bars in place of a table or matrix in a Power BI report because it cannot dynamically resize to show all data. It is possible to see all the information at once with paginated reports.

Most Popular Free Streaming Services

In today’s digital age, streaming services have become increasingly popular, providing a wide range of TV shows, movies, IPTV, and other video content to users. While some streaming platforms require paid subscriptions, several popular free streaming services offer great entertainment without the need for a credit card or email sign-up. Let’s explore the most popular free streaming services available and discover their unique features.

Crackle: Free Streaming with No Sign-up Hassles

Crackle is a legal and free streaming app that provides a diverse range of TV shows, movies, and video content. The app operates on an ad-supported model, ensuring that users can enjoy their favorite content without any subscription fees. One of the significant advantages of Crackle is that it doesn’t require users to enter their credit card information or sign up with their email. However, if users do choose to sign up, they can save their progress in movies and shows, as well as curate a personalized Watch Later list for future viewing.

Freevee (formerly IMDb): A Vast Library of Free Entertainment

Formerly known as IMDb TV, Freevee is a free and legal streaming service that offers access to a wide variety of television shows and movies. The service is available as an app on popular platforms like Android TV, Roku, Fire TV, and iOS devices. Additionally, users can access the free catalog through web-based platforms, including Amazon. With its extensive content library, Freevee ensures that viewers can enjoy high-quality entertainment without subscription costs.

Pluto TV Kodi addon

Pluto TV: A Vast Array of Free Channels

Pluto TV is a 100% free and legal internet television service owned by Paramount Streaming. With over 250 channels, including TV shows and movies, Pluto TV offers a wide range of entertainment options. What sets Pluto TV apart is its dedicated channels for favorite and classic television shows, such as the Classic Doctor Who channel, Survivor channel, Star Trek channel, CBS News channel, and Hell’s Kitchen channel. By catering to specific interests, Pluto TV ensures that viewers can indulge in their preferred content genres.

Peacock: Free Streaming with Exclusive Offerings

Peacock, also known as Peacock TV, is a streaming service from NBC that offers multiple viewing tiers, including a free tier. While viewers need to provide an email address and sign in to access the free streaming content, Peacock provides a remarkable collection of over 40,000 hours of free movies, TV shows, and other engaging content. Moreover, Peacock offers more than 50 channels, making it a comprehensive entertainment platform that caters to diverse interests.

Plex: Free Streaming with an Extensive Catalog

Plex is a free and legal streaming app with an impressive catalog of over 50,000 on-demand titles. In addition to on-demand content, Plex also offers live programming to enhance the streaming experience. Users only need to provide an email address to enjoy the free services. However, Plex also offers paid subscription services, such as Plex Pass, which provides exclusive benefits like early access to new features, partner discounts, DVR options, and more! Just like KODI but with a free library!

Popcornflix: Free Streaming for Cult Comedies and Horror Flicks

Popcornflix is a 100% free and legal internet-based streaming service that offers viewers access to a wide selection of movies without requiring a credit card or email address. While the content offerings may not be as extensive as some other streaming platforms, Popcornflix excels in providing a fantastic collection of cult comedies and horror flicks. Fans of these genres will be pleasantly surprised by the diverse range of options available on Popcornflix.

Kanopy: Free Streaming with Library Access

Like the Internet Archive, Kanopy is a free streaming service that provides access to classic movies, independent films, documentaries, foreign films, children’s programming, and more. To utilize Kanopy’s services, users need either a library card or a university email address. This unique feature makes Kanopy an excellent choice for individuals who have access to these resources and wish to explore a diverse range of captivating content.

Sling Free: Free Streaming with Email Registration

Sling Free is a free and legal streaming option offered by Sling TV. To access the service, users need to provide an email address but are not required to provide credit card information. Sling Free provides access to thousands of movies, TV shows, and some live news, ensuring that viewers have ample content to enjoy without any subscription fees.

The Internet Archive: A Digital Library of Public Domain Resources

The Internet Archive, functioning as a non-profit organization and digital library, offers access to an extensive collection of public domain resources and content. It houses tens of millions of digital books, music, audio files, websites, videos, and more. Additionally, the Internet Archive’s Open Library feature allows users to digitally check out modern books that are not in the public domain. With its vast array of resources, the Internet Archive serves as a valuable platform for exploring and discovering a wealth of knowledge and entertainment.

The Roku Channel: Roku’s Free Streaming Service

The Roku Channel is a free and legal streaming service provided by Roku. Offering a diverse range of ad-supported sports, news, TV shows, movies, and live content, The Roku Channel is accessible to anyone with a Roku account. Notably, the service is not limited to Roku devices but can be enjoyed on almost any streaming device, expanding its reach to a broader audience.

Tubi TV: Ad-Supported Streaming on Various Platforms

Tubi TV is an ad-supported, free television, and movie streaming service available on multiple platforms, including Android and iOS devices, Roku devices, game consoles, and smart TVs. One of the key advantages of Tubi TV is that it doesn’t require users to provide a credit card or an email address to access the vast array of content it offers. With its user-friendly interface and wide compatibility, Tubi TV is a popular choice for free streaming enthusiasts.

Youtube popular streaming services

YouTube: A Versatile Platform for Free Streaming

YouTube is a widely recognized platform that offers various free options for streaming content. Users can find an abundance of how-to videos, free movies, and even access a free audio library on YouTube. Additionally, YouTube provides paid membership options for those seeking a larger selection of content. Depending on the chosen membership type, users can enjoy features like live sports, ad-free music, and video streaming, access to Fox, ABC News, and other news channels, PBS, and more.

For users interested in accessing channels or content that are typically available only through paid subscriptions, YouTube TV offers a free trial period. To sign up for the trial, users are required to provide a credit card. However, if they decide not to continue with the paid service, it’s important to cancel the subscription before the trial ends to avoid any charges.

And since you are on the YouTube platform, don’t forget to subscribe to our complete free channels: Tech Is My Passion and Dimitrology for the best content regarding streaming services and not only!

Most Popular Free Streaming Services Conclusion

In conclusion, the world of streaming services offers a plethora of options for users seeking free and legal entertainment. From Crackle’s hassle-free sign-up process to the diverse catalogs of Freevee, Kanopy, and Peacock, there are numerous platforms that provide high-quality content without any subscription fees. Additionally, services like Plex, Pluto TV, and Popcornflix offer unique features and specialized genres to cater to specific preferences. The Internet Archive serves as a treasure trove of public domain resources, while The Roku Channel and Tubi TV ensure compatibility and accessibility across various devices. Lastly, YouTube remains a versatile platform with both free and paid options for users to explore an extensive range of content. With these popular free streaming services, viewers can indulge in their favorite shows, movies, and more, without breaking the bank.

As is always inevitable in software, we are back with a new release of Kodi “Nexus”.

An assortment of bug fixes, some backports, no real new features. Full changelog since 20.1 on Github, as usual.

Release notes


  • An assortment of E-AC3 related fixes were backported.


  • A fix to the Music Viz screen has been made by @enen92 in an endeavour to chase that elusive target of perfection
  • Fixes to the seekbar timer when seeking.


  • A fix to a crash by memory exhaustion when some emulators are used.


  • A whole assortment of fixes were made to fix building Kodi with GCC13.

Platform Specific

  • Android

    • A fix for a crash that occurred when >100 jobs where scheduled for the Android TV recommendation channels.
    • For some old Android devices that had both MediaTek and Google decoders for some media, a preference to using the Google decoder was put in as the MediaTek decoders fail to play back audio in encrypted streams.
  • Linux

    • A PR was reverted that fixes some Linux setups to use the more generic library (GL) rather than the specific GLX library.
  • macOS/iOS

  • Windows

    • Fixes to HDR playback when windows was already in HDR mode.
    • A backported fix for a potential deadlock for Xbox users when using pixel shaders and SW decoding.



  • @garbear has backported a fix for setting Picture and Game info via infotags.
  • GameInfo has been added to the Player class to allow get/set GameInfoTag data.
  • A fix was backported that mainly affected Linux platforms: the path used when searching for modules was appending Kodi script paths at the end of the list, and therefore could potentially find system Python scripts/modules instead of Kodi-specific scripts/modules


Thanks, as always, to everyone who has helped us track down and fix any issues. We endeavour to minimise the issues everyone experiences, but with such a large project, and the fact everyone contributing to Kodi is a volunteer, issues and bugs are a part of life. if you happen to experience any bugs/issues, don’t hesitate to reach out on the forums, or raise an issue on Github.

As this is a point release, there are no major changes since the previous version, and you should be fine to install this straight over the top of any existing Kodi 20.x installation – indeed, this will happen automatically on many platforms. However, as for all software installations, back up your userdata beforehand if you’ve any doubts or have anything you can’t afford to lose (and definitely do this if you’re going for a major version upgrade).

A list of all changes for this version can be found at GitHub. If you want to read back on the full history of v20 itself, or of previous versions, you can find the corresponding articles in the relevant blog posts.

Application deployment on different platforms (notably the Microsoft Store) can vary considerably due to circumstances outside of our control, so just be patient, and the update will inevitably find its way through.

Android Deployment

We always do what’s known as a “staged” deployment roll out for Android. So if you don’t receive the update immediately, be patient, as it will come through over the next week.

Source link


Law enforcement agencies of Italy (Guardia di Finanza) have focused their efforts on 13 specific individuals through various regions in Italy and Germany. As part of this operation, a substantial sum totaling €620,000 in cash and cryptocurrency has been apprehended.

The Investigation

The recent crackdown on pirate IPTV services has yielded a momentous breakthrough for law enforcement agencies. A meticulous scrutiny was undertaken to identify and apprehend those involved in the illicit dissemination of copyrighted content through IPTV platforms. The authorities zeroed in on 13 suspects who were considered pivotal figures within this pirate network. The network sold pirated IPTV subscriptions for 10 euros a month or 90 for a whole year.

The investigation unfolded over an extended period, with close collaboration between law enforcement agencies to gather evidence and construct a robust case against the suspects. The authorities employed a myriad of sophisticated techniques, including digital forensics, surveillance, and international cooperation, to ensure a successful outcome.

Seizure of Funds

As a result of the operation, the police managed to seize a substantial sum of funds linked to the pirate IPTV network. The confiscated assets comprised a staggering €620,000 in cash and cryptocurrency, thereby shedding light on the lucrative nature of this illegal enterprise. The appropriation of these funds not only disrupts the financial infrastructure sustaining the pirate IPTV network but also serves as a deterrent to others involved in similar illicit activities.

Legal Ramifications

The crackdown on pirate IPTV services sends an unequivocal message regarding the gravity of intellectual property rights infringement. Those implicated in the unauthorized dissemination of copyrighted content face severe legal consequences, including fines and potential imprisonment. The successful outcome of this investigation serves as a stern warning to others who may be tempted to engage in comparable unlawful endeavors.

Video of Guardia di Finanza from SiciliaReport

Impact on the IPTV Industry

The investigation and subsequent dismantling of the pirate IPTV network bear substantial implications for the IPTV industry as a whole. Legitimate IPTV providers who adhere to copyright laws and licensing agreements will benefit from a more equitable playing field. This crackdown fosters an environment that promotes fair competition and safeguards the rights of content creators and copyright holders.


To conclude, the police investigation into pirate IPTV services and the focused targeting of 13 suspects have dealt a significant blow to the unlawful dissemination of copyrighted content. The seizure of €620,000 in cash and cryptocurrency sends a persistent message that such activities will not be tolerated. This successful operation acts as a deterrent to others and underscores the paramount importance of safeguarding intellectual property rights in the digital era.

Time for the next milestone release for Kodi 21 “Omega”. This is our second Alpha release for this cycle.

This is a major release, so, as you’d expect, it comes with many new features. However, with a core change to FFmpeg 6.0, there is a very good chance that some regressions may occur. As such, please be aware that installing this will most likely break things, and we’d really like your help at that point to identify the problems and get them fixed. Please raise Github issues with full debug logs to help us resolve any issues you wonderful testers come across.

Over the last couple of months we’ve merged 120 pull requests – fixing issues, adding features, and improving Kodi.

So… what’s actually changed?


  • Apple platforms are now all built using newer version of Xcode (14.2) and the relevant SDKs. Thanks to a combination of a new M1 Mac mini hardware donation from long time supporter of the project, MacMiniVault.com, and also the Kodi foundation purchasing a second M1 Mac mini, we have been able to decommission our ageing Intel Mac mini’s that have been in use for a long time.
  • Building on Windows now uses the system curl executable instead of our formerly bundled (ancient) wget executable.
  • Improvements to dependency building have been made by @lrusak to make the downloading/hash checking more robust.


  • Improvements to the seek window timeouts have been made to more correctly disappear after appropriate timeouts.
  • Fix visibility of ‘next recording’ label in PVRTimers was made by @ksooo.


  • One of our newer team members, @neo1973 , has made some cleanups and fixed some crashes in our ffmpeg side data usage, as well as other improvements with our ffmpeg API usage.


  • Improvements made to handling of movement keys (e.g. PageUp, Down, Home, End) in certain lists such as Settings.
  • @rmrector has been endeavouring to improve image cache handling for GUI items. We look forward to the further work he has in the pipeline to improve the cache handling.
  • Extraart configurations in advancedsettings.xml for Kodi 18 will no longer be migrated to the new GUI settings when upgrading. If you had meaningful configuration there, check that the artwork settings in the GUI match your preferences.
  • @CrystalP extended the navigation history to track the line number of the selected item so that it can be restored when the item disappears from the list, instead of resetting the selection to the top of the list (usually the ..) after the end of playback or changing the watched status of an item.
  • The generation of thumbnails was fixed for pictures in portrait orientation. The existing thumbnails in KODI_HOME/userdata/Thumbnails/* must be deleted in order to have new correct ones recreated.


Platform Specifics

  • Android:

    • @joseluismarti has continued with more cleanups and improvements to the Android codebase. Each improvement makes things easier to manage, and is greatly appreciated.
    • @fritsch has been able to make further improvements to AudioTrack to handle hardware that has sinks that get “stuck”. Its always a fine line making changes in the Android world, as the multitude of hardware vendors have widely varying implementation qualities of the standard Android APIs.
  • Linux:

    • @lrusak has added the ability for users to select the audio backend with a command line switch when starting Kodi. This also allows seeing with which enabled audio backends Kodi was built. For more information check out the following PR.
  • macOS:

    • The minimum OS required for Kodi on macOS is now Mojave (10.14). This was done to allow the project to continue using more modern C++ 17 features. macOS Mojave was released on 24th September 2018 and hardware supported can be seen at Apple.com.
    • @enen92 has continued to further improve what is known as “Native windowing” for our macOS codebase that will eventually lead to a formal Apple Silicon version. Improvements to window resizing, menu’s, window blanking, improved multiple monitor handling and more.
    • For developers, Kodi can also now more easily be run from Xcode without having to alter schemes.
    • @ksooo has now correctly added Speechrecognition entitlements for Apple platforms (including iOS/tvOS) which fixes a crash when microphone usage was triggered.
    • Support for HiDPI resolutions, such as those marketed as Retina displays, has been introduced in the native windowing version. This enhancement allows Kodi’s graphical user interface (GUI) to showcase higher pixel densities, resulting in a sleek and polished appearance on modern Macs.
  • webOS

    • @sundermann and @craigcarnell have made further improvements to the new webOS platform. Screensaver support has been added, along with audio sink improvements and updates to codec hardware support.
  • Windows:

    • Minimum Windows supported version has been raised to Windows 8.1.
    • @CrystalP and @thexai have made a number of improvements to windows HDR/SDR/HLG display including tonemapping and hardware DXVA support for a number of combinations of those media types.
    • @thexai implemented support for “Video Super Resolution” for Nvidia (RTX ) and Intel (ARC) compatible hardware. Please note, we obviously cant test all combinations of hardware, so don’t expect this to work for every combination under the sun. Give it a try and report any issues WITH debug logs.
    • Bump to libdav1d to version 1.20 should improve AV1 playback support for windows platforms.


  • A fix for a regression was made by @lrusak that puts addon paths at the front of the system paths. This fixes addons using system modules instead of potentially customised Kodi modules of the same name. This mostly affects Linux based systems.

If you love to live on the bleeding edge of new, you can get Alpha 2 from here. Select your platform of choice, and look in the “Prerelease” section. Again, though, please: expect some breakage, don’t use this as your daily installation unless you know how to get things working again, and please share your experiences back with us so we can really get going on those bugs.

As usual – well, it is open source – you can see what’s changed between v21 and v20 here.

For a more targeted look at the changes made since v21 Alpha 1, you can see those changes here.

Source link

Streaming piracy services have gained significant popularity in recent years, with millions of people turning to them for their entertainment needs. In this article, we will explore the reasons why individuals choose to use these services instead of opting for legal streaming platforms. From convenience and accessibility to cost and affordability, several factors contribute to the appeal of streaming piracy services.


In today’s digital age, streaming piracy services have become a widespread phenomenon. These services provide users with access to a vast library of movies, TV shows, music, and other copyrighted content without the need for a subscription or payment. While piracy is illegal and unethical, it continues to attract a large number of individuals due to various reasons.

Convenience and Accessibility

One of the primary reasons why people turn to streaming piracy services is the convenience and accessibility they offer. With just a few clicks, users can access a wide range of content from the comfort of their homes. Unlike legal streaming platforms that require subscriptions and often have complex user interfaces, piracy services provide a straightforward and user-friendly experience.

Moreover, streaming piracy services offer content that may not be readily available on legal platforms. This includes the latest movies, TV shows, live events, sports, and music albums that may be exclusive to certain platforms or not yet released in specific regions. Users who want instant access to such content find piracy services appealing.

Cost and Affordability

The high cost of legal streaming services is another significant factor that drives people toward piracy. Many popular streaming platforms require monthly or yearly subscriptions, and the cumulative costs can be a burden for individuals with limited financial resources. Piracy services, on the other hand, offer content for free, eliminating the need for multiple, expensive subscriptions. As of May 2023 in the USA there are more than 20 streaming services: Netflix,  Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Disney+, DirecTV, HBO Max, Apple TV+, Dazn, Peacock, Paramount+, YouTube TV, Sling TV, and FuboTV just to mention a few.

Additionally, some users simply cannot afford to pay for legal streaming services, especially in developing countries where disposable income is limited. Piracy services provide them with an opportunity to enjoy their favorite movies and TV shows without financial strain.

Content Exclusivity

Exclusive content available only on certain streaming platforms is another reason why people turn to piracy services. Major streaming services compete for exclusive rights to popular TV shows and movies, making it challenging for users to access all their desired content in one place. This exclusivity drives users to piracy services, where they can find a vast collection of content from various sources.

The desire to have a single platform that offers all the desired content is a significant factor that motivates individuals to opt for piracy. They seek a comprehensive library of entertainment options without the need to juggle multiple subscriptions and platforms.

Geographical Restrictions

Geographical restrictions imposed by legal streaming services are another frustration for users, leading them to turn to piracy services. Many streaming platforms have limitations on the availability of their content in certain regions. This can be due to licensing agreements or other legal constraints.

Users who are unable to access their favorite movies or TV shows due to geographical restrictions feel left out and disadvantaged. In such cases, piracy services provide a way to bypass these restrictions and access the desired content without any limitations.

Delayed Releases

Another reason why people resort to streaming piracy services is the time gap between international releases. Movies and TV shows are often released in different countries at different times, causing delays for viewers who are eager to watch them. This delay can be frustrating, especially in today’s era of instant gratification.

Piracy services offer a solution by making content available as soon as it is released in any part of the world. This allows users to stay up to date with the latest releases without having to wait for official distribution in their region.

User Experience

User experience plays a crucial role in the choice between legal streaming platforms and piracy services. While legal platforms invest in providing a seamless streaming experience, some users may encounter technical issues such as buffering, playback errors, or poor video quality. These problems can hinder the enjoyment of content and lead users to seek alternative options.

Piracy services, on the other hand, often prioritize a smooth and uninterrupted streaming experience. They optimize their platforms for efficient streaming, ensuring that users can watch their favorite content without any interruptions or technical glitches. This superior user experience can be a significant factor in attracting users to piracy services.

Lack of Legal Alternatives

In certain countries or regions, there may be a lack of legal streaming services altogether. While global streaming giants have expanded their reach to many countries, some nations still do not have access to these platforms. Users in such areas are left with limited options to legally stream content, pushing them towards piracy services as an alternative.

Furthermore, even in countries where legal streaming services are available, niche content or lesser-known movies and TV shows may not be readily accessible. Piracy services often provide a broader range of content, including niche genres and international releases that may not be available on legal platforms. This attracts users who have specific tastes or preferences and cannot find their desired content through legal means.

Social Influence

The influence of friends, family, and online communities also plays a significant role in the popularity of streaming piracy services. Recommendations and word-of-mouth can sway individuals to try out piracy services based on the positive experiences and convenience shared by others. The acceptance and normalization of piracy in certain circles further contribute to its popularity.

When users see their peers accessing and discussing pirated content without facing any immediate consequences, they may be more inclined to follow suit. The social influence and collective acceptance of piracy services create a sense of community and validation, making it a tempting option for many.

Privacy and Anonymity

Privacy concerns and the desire for anonymity are additional factors that drive people towards piracy services. Legal streaming platforms often require users to create accounts and provide personal information, which some individuals may find intrusive or risky. They may be concerned about their data being collected or their online activities being monitored.

Piracy services, on the other hand, allow users to access content without the need for personal information or account creation. This anonymity provides a sense of security and peace of mind for individuals who prioritize their privacy online. They can enjoy their favorite content without worrying about their personal data being compromised or shared with third parties.


While streaming piracy services are illegal and unethical, there are several reasons why people turn to them. The convenience, accessibility, and affordability they offer, coupled with the superior user experience and the availability of exclusive and unrestricted content, make them appealing to many individuals. Factors such as geographical restrictions, delayed releases, and the lack of legal alternatives also contribute to the prevalence of streaming piracy services.

It is important to note that engaging in piracy is illegal and has negative consequences for content creators, artists, and the entertainment industry as a whole. Piracy deprives them of rightful revenue and undermines their ability to produce high-quality content. It is crucial to support legal streaming platforms and respect copyright laws to ensure the sustainability and growth of the entertainment industry.

However, to effectively combat piracy, it is necessary to address the underlying reasons that drive people to piracy services. By focusing on improving the accessibility, affordability, and user experience of legal streaming platforms, content creators and distributors can reduce the appeal of piracy services and encourage users to choose legal alternatives.

Ultimately, the fight against piracy requires a combination of legal enforcement, industry collaboration, and consumer education. By raising awareness about the negative impact of piracy and providing economic legal alternatives, we can work towards a future where creators are fairly compensated for their work and consumers can enjoy a wide range of content through legitimate means.

Current Status – Last Updated, Monday 01 May 2023

  • Forum, Wiki and Paste sites are now all active.
  • Systems have been rebuilt from scratch with new images, software and patches.
  • All users will need to reset their passwords before they can log in.
  • Forum registration is now open for new users.

Known issues

  • Fixed: We identified a login bug in the forum software which we’ve fixed and are reporting to the authors. The resolution may require some users to reset their passwords again.
  • Fixed: There was an initial problem with registration of new accounts on the forum after we re-enabled registrations. This has now been resolved.
  • Open: MyAlerts/Pings were not available because there’s no supported plugin to provide this functionality. We believe that we’ve found a fix, though, so will let you know soon.
  • Open: Some users are having issues with unexpected logouts. Monitoring to understand.
  • No further action: We do not have, nor do we plan on implementing, Tapatalk integration.

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An image of an empty lecture theatre, taken from the back - whiteboards across the front wall, long wooden tables running in rows across the room, seats lined up ready to take students.

As you may have seen on other posts, we’re broadly back on line now, with the forum, Wiki and paste sites all operational. It’s been a huge effort by several key team members – I won’t name names, but you know who you are – and we’re all immensely grateful for their work.

So, without putting on a hair shirt…in the interests of transparency and minimising the chances of anything like this happening again, we’ve really had to dig into this to see what we can learn.

First of all – what happened?

This is probably the most important question, and actually one of the hardest to definitively answer.

We’ve been open about the attack vector being an old administrative account. What we can’t wholly conclude is how this was used to gain access.

  • Access logs from the period in question are not available any more, so we can’t see who accessed what, how, or when.
  • A ‘brute force’ attack on an account is unlikely given that MyBB locks accounts quickly if there are too many login attempts.
  • The version of MyBB we were using didn’t have any publicised security issues that would permit an unauthorised admin login.
  • We’ve had limited background from the owner of the account, but we’ve no reason to believe they were complicit in any way.
  • It’s most likely that login data from another breach was used – depending on how often this person changed their password (and, given they were inactive, it’s likely to be some time ago), this may well have been years ago.
  • It’s possible that their browser was compromised, but we’re not aware of any other credentials being stolen.
  • Similarly, it’s possible that a current session was hijacked, but these should have long-since timed out and disconnected, so there shouldn’t have been an active session to open up.
  • And, finally, some XSS vulnerability in the forum might have been used (these did exist) to hijack the session of an administrator.

All difficult to prove, and it’s very much bolting stable doors after the horse has bolted and long since run away. We will continue to look, though.

So, next up – what have we done?

Given that we can’t categorically say what the cause was, all we can do is take as many actions as possible to eliminate as many likely vectors as possible – which is good practice, anyway. Actions we’ve taken, then, include:

  • The hosting server(s) have all been rebuilt from scratch, with latest OS and application patches and further hardening wherever we thought it appropriate.
  • Server software (MyBB for the forum) has been reinstalled from scratch – again, latest software versions, latest plugin versions.
  • Where we haven’t simply started again, we’ve checked configuration files to ensure there are no obvious unauthorised changes or vulnerabilities.
  • Unmaintained or deprecated forum plugins have been removed (which may impact functionality in some instances, but we’ll have to live with this).
  • Password hashing has been updated, so we’re using a more modern algorithm instead of the older MD5 mechanism.
  • We’ve followed and implemented MyBB’s recommendations and best practices.

In addition, we initially disabled new user registration for a few days to keep things calm and testable. For existing users, we’ve reset all passwords and made sure every active session is logged out – you’ll need to use the “lost password” function to your registered email address to regain access.

We’ve also gone through a host of non-forum actions, including:

  • We’ve reported the security breach to the overseeing information authorities and to the national police in whose jurisdiction the “theft” occurred.
  • We’ve audited admin rights and made sure we’ve no other inactive-but-privileged accounts.
  • We’ve taken the opportunity to reduce the number of privileged accounts wherever we can.
  • We’ve improved our “ageing out” process for inactive members. This is an ongoing challenge given the revolving door nature of open source contributors, but we need to manage this better.
  • We’ve implemented MFA on all admin-level accounts where practical.
  • We’ve shared all affected email addresses with haveibeenpwned.com (interestingly, the majority of addresses were already in their database from previous breaches on other sites – a lesson to all of us to change our passwords regularly).

We think we’re most of the way there, but there will inevitably be further tweaks, adjustments, and general bug-fixes as we get things back to an acceptable standard on the new infrastructure. Please, expect further downtime and hiccoughs in the coming days as we iron out any remaining problems – we’ll open and maintain a pinned post of known issues, so please check this and let us know if you see anything.

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A hand holds a pencil to a blank sheet of paper, mostly because we haven't got a logo for this release yet...

This release is so fresh that we don’t yet even have an image… oops!

It’s been a hectic last couple of months in the world of Kodi, but the wheels keep on turning. Without any further ado, we are happy to announce the first Alpha release for Kodi 21.x “Omega”.

This is a major release, so, as you’d expect, it comes with many new features. However, with a core change to FFmpeg 6.0, there is a very good chance that some regressions may occur. As such, please be aware that installing this will most likely break things, and we’d really like your help at that point to identify the problems and get them fixed. Please raise Github issues with full debug logs to help us resolve any regressions you wonderful testers come across.

So, all that aside… what’s actually changed?


  • Build support for GCC13 has been fixed by some users. This allows Kodi to be built on newer toolchains that refactored some header inclusions.
  • Some general version bumps have been made for an assortment of dependencies for Android/Apple/CI platforms. Thanks @craigcarnell, @fuzzard.
  • @lrusak has endeavoured to improve the way some of the Android/Apple/CI dependency systems work and handle different states.
  • @Rechi has fixed a few cmake deprecations and pkgconfig detection issues.


  • Some new contributors noted some of our contributing guideline documentation was lacking. A few people have helped contribute to hopefully make them more helpful/informative.
  • @fixthething has updated some of the Ubuntu build documentation to reflect some modern package names used in more recent Ubuntu versions.


  • Use upstream FFmpeg. This is a big achievement and allows easier FFmpeg updates in the future.
  • Update to version 6.0. This puts us inline with the latest FFmpeg release. Compatibility with 5.1.x has been retained for Linux distro support.


  • With the introduction of NFSv4 support, a number of issues were quickly discovered by users. @thexai has fixed a many of these, such as timeouts/chunk size defaults for NFSv4.


  • @repojonray has provided a number of general fixes/improvements to various areas to address e.g. memory leaks and performance improvements.
  • Modernisation of several areas of Kodi have been undertaken by a number of developers. A lot of this work will go unseen by users, however it’s helping to make Kodi’s huge amount of code more maintainable for the future. @lrusak, @neo1973 , @repojohnray, @enen92, @Rechi .
  • Add setting to disable screensaver while playing audio.
  • @DeltaMikeCharlie has contributed some improvements to the UX regarding date format options.


  • Improvements are continually being made to the Retroplayer ecoystem by several devs/users. Thanks to @KOPRajs, @garbear .


  • genre has been added to the Video.Fields.Episodes field.


  • Add support for reading (and writing) M3U8 playlist files. This provides support for non-ASCII characters in the playlist files (UTF-8 character support).

Platform Specifics

  • Android:

    • Improved Dolby Vision detection and compatibility: implemented support of DV in MKV containers, better handling of different DV profiles with fallback to HDR10 when is possible and display is not DV capable. For some devices, we can now also support hardware tone mapping DV profiles 4, 5 to SDR. Supported profiles vary on different Android devices: for example, the 2019 Shield supports profiles 4, 5, 7, 8 in DV and fallback to HDR10 (profiles 7, 8) but not HW tone mapping to SDR. Similarly, the Fire TV Stick doesn’t supports profile 7 although it does support HW tone mapping of profile 5 to SDR (profiles 4, 5, 8 are supported with DV display).
    • Implemented minimise shutdown function in Power Saving settings.
    • Multiple small internal improvements and use of newer Android APIs to replace deprecated ones.
    • @joseluismarti is slowly improving/updating a number of Android-specific features that enable the project to stay up to date with Google Play Store submission requirements.
  • iOS/TVOS:

    • Support for Channel Up/Down keys when using the iPhone Apple TV Remote app connected to an Apple TV has been added.
  • Linux:

    • Pipewire:

      • Fix implementation to work properly with AudioEngine.
      • Add support for passthrough formats. This includes HD audio formats like DTS-HD and TrueHD.
    • GBM:

      • Add support for libdisplay-info to help parse EDID information and determine display capabilities.
  • macOS:

    • @enen92 has been slowly but surely improving lots of the macOS native windowing implementation (mouse, resizing, menu bar, shortcut key handling, etc.) that was introduced in Nexus. The official macOS builds do not use this functionality at this point, but with enen92’s work, we are inching closer to using it as our default for v21.
    • macOS CD/DVD drive handling has been fixed. This also allows M1-based machines to read disks correctly.
  • Windows:

    • Minimum Windows supported version has been raised to Windows 8.1.
    • If they’re available, we will now use displays’ friendly names in settings (e.g. "LG TV #1").
    • Added a setting to use the Windows HDR/SDR brightness balance setting for GUI and subtitles when the display is in HDR PQ mode, and also improved the curve of internal method GUI SDR max peak luminance.
    • Improved read performance over SMB in some special cases, e.g. playing full Blu-ray folders.
    • Improved graphics compatibility and fallback to enable running in some limited VM hardware (Hyper-V) even without video decoding support.
    • Various improvements in DXVA render method to avoid incompatibilities in old hardware or Windows 8, especially in the case of sources with BT.2020 colour space.
    • Implemented support for DXVA2 AV1 hardware video decoding 8-bit and 10-bit.
    • Specific SDK requirements for building UWP packages have been removed to allow the use of newer SDKs from Visual Studio.


  • Fix security issues discovered regarding image EXIF metadata. Further fixes were also backported from the upstream EXIF data parsing library that is in use in Kodi.


  • Add possibility to sort channel groups to your liking.


  • Some fixes to regressions in Settings visibility have been made.


  • The display of MKV files containing text subtitle entries without the duration set on the Matroska block were fixed, retaining Kodi v19 behaviour. This includes the teletext autoconversion to srt done in PVR backends (e.g. tvheadend).
  • Fixed setting of subtitle offset when auto-close video OSD is set.
  • @CastagnaIT has continued to support/fix issues with the new subtitle system as they are reported.


  • Improved compatibility with official smart TV applications when displaying and browsing served UPnP Kodi libraries.
  • Fix artwork when playing/refreshing UPnP items.

As this blog is, let’s say, slightly delayed from when the actual Alpha 1 downloads were available, there are already a number of fixes that have been made to issues found in this release. If you come across any issues, it may be worthwhile testing a newer nightly of your desired platform, otherwise, please do log any issues so we can continue improving for Omega v21.

If you love to live on the bleeding edge of new, you can get Alpha 1 from here. Select your platform of choice, and look in the “Prerelease” section. Again, though, please: expect some breakage, don’t use this as your daily installation unless you know how to get things working again, and please share your experiences back with us so we can really get going on those bugs.

As usual – well, it is open source – you can see what’s changed between v21 and v20 here. Even though its only been 3 months, it’s a long list…

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