Kodi Troubleshooting Guide – Here’s How to Resolve Common Kodi Issues Quickly, Safely & Effectively!

We get it – there’s nothing more frustrating than seeing an error message when trying to use Kodi. However, there’s nothing to worry about as fixing issues with this home theater software is typically easy to do. Still, to avoid spending plenty of time trying out different solutions, you need a trustworthy guide. That’s precisely why TechNadu is here to help.

First of all, you should know that our editorial team has been using Kodi for several years now. Considering that we like to dive deep into this application and tests its limits, we’ve encountered a fair share of problems. In other words, you can be sure that we know the best solutions to the most common Kodi issues.

Further Reading: Beginner’s Guide to Kodi / The Ultimate Kodi Guide

So, no matter if your Kodi refuses to play media files, if it’s crashing on startup, or having any other performance or technical issue – we have done our best to provide a fix. With this said, you’ll want to check the following table of contents and select the problem you’re experiencing.

Without any further ado, let’s jump to what truly want to know. Here’s how to fix the most common Kodi-related technical problems.

1. Kodi Won’t Start (Crashes on Startup)

We’ve prepared two solutions to this problem, which luckily doesn’t happen too often. Here’s what to do when Kodi crashes on startup and refuses to launch.

Fix #1: Download the Latest Visual C++ Redistributable

If you’ve recently bought a new Windows PC, or if you’ve recently installed a fresh copy of Windows, Kodi can sometimes fail to launch. The application crashes on startup, without showing you an exact error message. Here’s an easy fix for this problem.

In many cases, installing the latest Visual C++ redistributable solves this issue. It’s interesting to note that Kodi should check for any missing files on your system during the installation – but this doesn’t always happen. So, go to Microsoft’s website and download the latest update from there.

Fix #2: Update Kodi to The Latest Available Version

With each new update, Kodi receives plenty of bug fixes, meaning there’s always a chance that the bug you’re encountering has been fixed in the meantime.

So, here’s how to update Kodi to the latest available version.

Downloading Kodi From Official Website
  • Visit the download section on Kodi’s official website. Scroll down and then select your operating system under the ‘Select Your Weapon’ section. At this moment, a pop-up should appear on your screen.
  • Select the ‘Recommended’ tab and download Kodi’s installation file. In some cases, if you fail to fix the issue, you can try via the ‘Pre Release’ tab, where you can download a beta Kodi version.
  • Now, reinstall Kodi on your device. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t remove the existing Kodi installation if you want to keep your media library intact. Simply reinstall Kodi, and it will automatically patch any applicable files.

Tip

Updating Kodi requires you to reinstall the application. It means that you need to repeat the same steps you took when installing the application. To see our detailed guides for all kinds of platforms, we have a dedicated article on how to update Kodi.

2. Kodi Is Freezing, Pausing, or Crashing Frequently

There are several possible reasons why Kodi might be misbehaving. So, here’s what to do when Kodi keeps freezing when launched or constantly crashes.

Fix #1: Clear Kodi’s Cache Files

Kodi’s cached data can include everything from files, scripts, images, up to other media stored on your device. These are typically the files you access quite often, which helps the application improve its performance. However, if there’s a problem with cache, this will force Kodi to crash.

What you need to do in this case is to clear Kodi’s cache files. Click on the provided link to learn how that’s done by using a third-party addon called Indigo. This is a hugely powerful maintenance addon that has the potential to resolve numerous issues, and we highly recommend using it.

Fix #2: Disable Hardware Acceleration

This problem is more present on Android devices, which is why we recommend you disable hardware acceleration if you have any kind of Android-based device, including a range of TV set-top boxes. So, make sure to go through the following steps.

Kodi Settings Hardware Acceleration
  • Launch Kodi on your device.
  • Go to Settings by clicking on the cogwheel-shaped icon (top-left corner). Then, click on the ‘Player’ button on the left side of the screen. If you have an older Kodi version, this option should be named ‘Player Settings.’
  • Click on the gear icon (bottom-left corner) until it says ‘Expert.’ On the right side of the screen, you’ll see an option that says: ‘Allow Hardware Acceleration.’
  • Make sure to disable hardware acceleration by clicking on the ON/OFF switch on the right. To apply this change, you’ll need to restart Kodi.

Fix #3: Reset Kodi to Factory Settings

Restoring Kodi to default settings is done via an addon called Indigo. This is a maintenance addon that you can use to resolve all kinds of Kodi-related issues. We strongly recommend you to keep Indigo installed on your system, as it will most definitely come in handy.

Tip

Keep in mind that resetting Kodi to its factory settings will delete any custom content you have, including videos, photos, and music. In other words, you will need to import your media library once again.

Here’s how to reset Kodi to its factory settings by using Indigo:

  • First, make sure to install Indigo. You can check how that’s done by clicking on the link we’ve provided above. Once you install the addon, continue reading this article.
  • On the home screen, you’ll see an option named ‘Factory Restore.’ Click on it.
  • You’ll be asked whether you want to perform this operation, so go ahead with ‘Yes.’
  • Once everything’s done, restart Kodi and import your media library once again.

Fix #4: Update the ‘URL Resolver’ Addon

In many cases, faulty add-ons cause Kodi to reboot continuously. First, we suggest that you disconnect from the Internet. Then, open Kodi and delete any recently installed addons.

You can also try to update Web scrapers (while online, of course), and here’s how that is done:

  • Launch Kodi and go to Settings. Then, click on the ‘System’ button.
  • Scroll down to the ‘Add-ons’ tab and click on ‘Manage Dependencies.’
  • You will see an entry named ‘URL Resolver.’ Select it and then select ‘Update.’
  • Make sure to restart Kodi.

Tip

This solution typically applies to Kodi users who rely on unofficial (third-party) addons. Many of those rely on URL Resolver to scrape content from the Web.

3. Kodi Shows The ‘Failed to Install a Dependency’ Error

In essence, you need to understand the cause of this problem first. Kodi addons rely on different types of dependencies to work. For example, we have Web scrapers searching the Internet for media streaming links. If the scraper doesn’t work, the addon won’t work either.

Now, let’s talk about how to resolve this. You’ll find all you need to know in our article on resolving Kodi’s dependency-related issues. More precisely, we’ve decided to show you the three most effective solutions to this error, so make sure to click on the provided link.

4. Kodi Shows The ‘Unable to Create Application’ Error

In some cases, updating your Kodi to the latest available version can cause certain issues. The most common one is the ‘Unable to Create Application’ error, preventing Kodi from launching. This most frequently happens on Windows PCs, so here’s the solution.

Kodi Proflies XML File
  • Go to My Computer on your Windows PC.
  • Now, make sure that you can see hidden files. This is done (on Windows 10) by clicking on the ‘View’ tab and then select ‘Hidden Items.’
  • Now go to C: > Users > Your Username > App Data > Roaming.
  • Next, go to Kodi > Userdata.
  • This is where you’ll find a file named profiles.xml. Delete the file.
  • Now, restart your PC and launch Kodi. The application will create a new ‘profiles.xml’ file, and it should start successfully.

Tip

You can also access the ‘profiles.xml’ via Kodi, by going to Settings > File Manager > Profile Directory. Right-click on the file and delete it from there.

5. Kodi Fails to Connect to a Source

Every time you want to add an external source (when trying to install an addon, for example), you will need to add a URL. If Kodi fails to open/find that URL, you will see a notification saying that it can’t connect to the source. So, here’s what to do.

  • First, make sure that you’ve entered the URL correctly.
  • Check if the URL you’re trying to use begins with ‘HTTP’ or ‘HTTPS’ and check for any uppercase or lowercase letters.
  • If you’re 100% sure that you’ve entered the URL correctly, the repository might be offline. In that case, try installing some other addon from a different source.

6. Kodi Addons Fail to Play (Stream) a Video

In case you can’t access video streams after installing an addon, we suggest two options. First, update your addon to the latest version. If that doesn’t help, try using a VPN.

Fix #1: Update Your Kodi Addons

Once you launch Kodi, the application will try to search for new versions of addons. If there are pending updates, you’ll find them in the ‘Add-ons’ section – under Kodi’s logo. You’ll recognize this icon as a circular arrow. Click on it to perform manual updates.

Sometimes, you’ll also want to update addons manually. More precisely, you’ll want to force it to check for a new version and then update.

So, here’s what you need to do.

Uninstalling Kodi Addons
  1. Open Kodi and navigate to the Add-ons section.
  2. Now go to Video Add-ons, where you’ll find the add-on you are looking for.
  3. Once you find it, right-click on its icon and pick ‘Information.’
  4. Finally, click on the ‘Update’ button to manually check for a newer version.

Tip

Don’t forget to remove any add-ons you no longer use. In some cases, they can cause certain technical problems with Kodi, especially if they get automatically updated. Here’s how to uninstall Kodi addons.

Fix #2: Use a VPN to Unblock Geo-Restricted Content

In many cases, fixes for Kodi-related problems might be out of your reach. That’s because Kodi is often associated with piracy, which forces certain ISPs (Internet Service Providers) to block or throttle Kodi-related traffic. This usually produces problems with buffering, which makes streaming video files close to impossible.

The most reliable way to fix this issue is by using a VPN application. These are quite technical yet easy-to-use solutions that encrypt your Web traffic. By being encrypted, your traffic can’t be throttled by anyone, including your ISP. And also, you’ll get to use Kodi addons that are not available in your country due to geo-restrictions.

Tip

In case you’ve never used a VPN before, it’s advisable to learn about the basics of this type of software. Therefore, read more about VPN applications, and then read about how VPN apps work. Once you’re ready to make your pick and start using it, you’ll want to check our guide on how to install a VPN for Kodi.

Since VPNs are subscription-based, you need to do your research before deciding on which one to use. A good place to start is our in-depth overview of the best VPN for Kodi. That’s where you’ll see that we strongly recommend subscribing to ExpressVPN – which is truly the best VPN right now, suitable for the majority of Kodi users.

7. Kodi Addons Fail to Search Files

Kodi won’t be able to search for files if the date and time of the application/device aren’t set correctly. This causes issues with individual addons, especially those that list entries based on dates.

Therefore, to resolve this problem, you need to check your device. This can be a computer, a media streaming device, or a TV set-top box. Double-check if the date and time are set properly.

Tip

If you’ve just upgraded to a major new Kodi version, there might be a chance that you’re using not-yet-updated Kodi addons. It might take a few months until developers update their addons and make them compatible with (major) new Kodi versions.

8. Kodi Fails/Refuses to Uninstall an Addon

In some cases, Kodi will present a series of errors that prevent you from uninstalling individual addons. So, here’s what you need to do.

Fix #1: Delete Kodi Addons – The Right Way!

At times, faulty add-ons can force your Kodi to crash. When that happens, you need to remove recently installed addons. There are different ways to do this, with the easiest one being from Kodi’s interface.

For more information on how to do this procedure properly, make sure to check our article on how to delete Kodi addons.

Fix #2: Delete Kodi’s ‘Addons27.db’ Database File

If you’re experiencing problems related to Kodi’s black screen or blank screen issues – you can resolve these by deleting a file named ‘Addons27.db.’ It’s also important to note that this issue usually happens when updating Kodi to a major new version.

The solution is to delete a file called ‘Addons27.db,’ which contains cached data about your installed addons. You won’t remove any addons this way, as the file will be automatically generated the next time you launch Kodi.

So, here’s how to find and delete this file.

Kodi Addons27db Folder
  • Windows: Paste the following path to your Windows Explorer’s navigation path: %AppData%KodiuserdataDatabase.
  • MacOS: Go to Users > Your Username > Library > Application Support > Kodi > Userdata > Database.
  • Linux: Go to ~ > Kodi > Userdata > Database.
  • Android: Navigate using a File Manager to Android > data > orgkodi > files > kodi > userdata > Database.
  • iOS: Go to private > var > mobile > Library > Preferences > Kodi > Userdata > Database.
  • OpenElec/LibreElec: Navigate to storage > kodi > userdata > Database.

Once you open the ‘Database’ folder, delete the ‘Addons27.db’ file. There’s no need to restart your device, just open Kodi. The file will be created from scratch, potentially resolving Kodi-related blank screen issues.

9. Kodi Repository Not Working

You need to know that Kodi addons rely on remote servers. Even though they’re installed locally, they need an Internet connection to work. If something happens to those servers, the addon will stop working.

In general, Kodi addons can be quite unreliable, especially unofficial ones. They depend on their developers who spend quite a lot of time maintaining their addons. So, when you find a non-working addon or repository, we suggest you simply move to a new one. There are hundreds of addons on the Web, and we’re sure you’ll find an alternative.

Further Reading: Best Kodi Addons / Best Kodi Repositories

10. Kodi Video Files Take Too Long to Buffer

Here’s what to do if you’re experiencing playback issues with your Kodi. We’ve prepared several handy solutions for you.

Fix #1: Fine-Tune Kodi’s ‘AdvancedSettings’ File

Even though Kodi is a lightweight application, you can allocate more resources to help the application run even better. This is done via an XML file that you need to create and place within your ‘User Data’ folder. We’ll tell you how to create that file, where to place it, and how to make Kodi more powerful.

The first step is to create a new file with the XML extension that needs to be placed in your User Data folder.

Here’s how to locate your User Data on different operating systems:

  • Windows: Open the Run command by pressing the Windows Key + R. Paste the following code: ‘%APPDATA%roamingkodiuserdata.’ Press Enter, and you’ll see the corresponding directory. You can also use the provided navigation path by launching the Start menu in Windows 10 and pasting it.
  • Mac: Go to /Users/<your_user_name>/Library/Application Support/Kodi/userdata/.
  • Linux: Navigate to ~/.kodi/userdata/.
  • Android: Use a File Manager and go to this directory: Android/data/org.xbmc.kodi/files/.kodi/userdata/.
  • iOS: Use a File Manager and open the following directory: /private/var/mobile/Library/Preferences/Kodi/userdata/.

Once you’ve found the directory, create a new file and name it ‘advancedsettings.xml.’ This is done by creating a new text file and making sure you are using the XML extension.

Kodi Troubleshooting - Advanced Settings 2

Using the image placed above, you can see the final look of the Advanced Settings file. Please note that the blue-colored text must be placed as you see in the image. The white text presents variations you can use, depending on your device’s specifications. The green-colored text refers to explanations for what each of the available commands can do.

To help you understand what each of the commands is used for, we’ll take a closer look at every one of them:

  • <memorysize> is a command used to tell Kodi how many bytes to use. In general, you can use up to one-third of your free RAM and dedicate it to Kodi. Make sure to know how much RAM you have, and divide that number by three. However, make sure to calculate that number in bytes. You can use this Online Converter to switch between gigabytes and bytes.
  • <buffermode> is a setting that defines the types of content that are allowed to be buffered. For example, you can instruct Kodi only to buffer locally stored content or to buffer any kind of file. ‘0’ is used to buffer all internet streams, ‘1’ is used to buffer anything compatible with Kodi, while ‘2’ is used to buffer Internet-based filesystems.
  • <readfactor> is how Kodi tries to read a video file. If you have a powerful processor, you can take advantage of that. The default value is 4.0. You can double it if you have a CPU that is above mid-range.

Once you’ve entered the new values, save your file. Once again, make sure the file has the XML extension. That’s all you need to know. Kodi will do the rest.

Tip

Make sure that every symbol is properly entered. Take a close look at the image above and ensure that every command has its start and end. For example: <memorysize> and </memorysize>.

You will see that every command needs to be closed for Kodi to recognize this file. In case you mess something up, you can delete this file, and Kodi will return to its original state.

Fix #2: Take Advantage of Real-Debrid

The truth is that Kodi’s add-ons act as repositories of links to media files. For example, when you start streaming a movie, it isn’t served from a particular addon’s server. Instead, that addon is using a link found on the Web to help you stream the content.

Real-Debrid solves this issue by letting you download and stream media files as fast as your Internet connection allows. Even if a download gets interrupted, you can resume downloading the file at a later time. However, you need to know what add-ons support this service. So, check our article on how to configure Real Debrid on Kodi.

11. Kodi Can’t Play 4K or HD Video Files

Playing 4K files requires you to have a capable machine running Kodi. This is why we recommend you to check whether your device is capable of playing 4K files.

You should also know that Kodi comes preloaded on several custom-made Android TV boxes. We’re talking about Kodi boxes here, which are usually quite affordable. In general, all of those can play HD files (720p or 1080p). However, you’ll see that only a limited selection of Kodi boxes can play/stream 4K titles.

12. Black Screen When Playing Videos in Kodi

We’ve received reports of Kodi users experiencing a black screen when trying to play videos. Upon further investigation, our team has discovered three possible solutions to this problem.

Interestingly enough, we already wrote about those solutions – found in this article. We first recommend removing the ‘Addons27’ file. Then, you can clear Kodi’s cache. And finally, try updating Kodi to the latest version.

And with that said, we’ve reached the end of our Kodi Troubleshooting Guide. In case you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below, and our editorial team will respond as soon as possible.

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