HOW-TO:Script addon

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Home icon grey.png   ▶ Development ▶ Add-on development ▶ HOW-TO:Script addon

This page will outline the basics of creating your first Python script for Kodi. It assumes you're at least familiar with the basics of Python (or at least, programming in general). If not, we recommend visiting the Python tutorial first, and then returning here.

While a python script can do many things, this tutorial is aimed at creating a window in Kodi.

1 Before we get started

The first step to making an add-on is to put the basic structure in place. Make sure your directory is properly named, e.g. Once these are done, you can get started writing the actual code for your add-on!

The structure of our addon will look like this:

File:Script testwindow.jpg

2 The addon.xml file

In the addon.xml file you define the (unique) id of your addon and the name of the addon. It will also tell Kodi what type of addon it is. Since we're going to create a script type addon, we need to set our extension point to 'xbmc.python.script'. Also define your python file in the 'library' field. This is the file Kodi will execute when you run your script.

This is what your addon.xml will need to look like (the bare minimum):

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" standalone="yes"?>
<addon id="script.testwindow" name="test window" version="0.0.1" provider-name="me">
		<import addon="xbmc.python" version="2.25.0"/>
	<extension point="xbmc.python.script" library="">
	<extension point="xbmc.addon.metadata">
		<summary lang="en_GB">window demo script</summary>
		<description lang="en_GB">a demo script to create a window</description>

3 Your file

See also: kodi python api

Your python code will look like this, please see the in-line comments for a full explanation of what each line does.

# import the kodi python modules we are going to use
# see the kodi api docs to find out what functionality each module provides
import xbmc
import xbmcgui
import xbmcaddon

# create a class for your addon, we need this to get info about your addon
ADDON = xbmcaddon.Addon()
# get the full path to your addon, decode it to unicode to handle special (non-ascii) characters in the path
CWD = ADDON.getAddonInfo('path').decode('utf-8')

# add a class to create your xml based window
class GUI(xbmcgui.WindowXML):
    def onInit(self):
        listitems = []
        listitem1 = xbmcgui.ListItem('my first item')
        listitem2 = xbmcgui.ListItem('my second item')

# this is the entry point of your addon
if (__name__ == '__main__'):
    # define your xml window:
    # 1 'the name of the xml file for this window', 
    # 2 'the path to your addon',
    # 3 'the name of the folder that contains the skin',
    # 4 'the name of the folder that contains the xml files'
    # 5 'set to True for a media window (a window that will list music / videos / pictures), set to False otherwise
    ui = GUI('script-testwindow.xml', CWD, 'default', '1080p', True)
    # open your window
    # cleanup: delete your window before the script exits
    del ui

# the end!

4 Your script-testwindow.xml file

This is the xml code for the window your script will open. Basically all you need to define is a container (list) which your script will fill with listitems.
If you are using images in your xml file, put the inside the 'media' folder of your addon.

The subject of skinning is outside of the scope of this tutorial, so please refer for the kodi skinning manual for details.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
		<control type="list" id="50">
			<viewtype label="535">list</viewtype>
			<itemlayout height="100" width="1000">
				<control type="label">
			<focusedlayout height="100" width="1000">
				<control type="image">
				<control type="label">