How to Install Kodi on Debian 12, 11 or 10

Learning how to install Kodi on Debian 12 Bookworm, Debian 11 Bullseye, or Debian 10 Buster is essential for enthusiasts exploring robust media center solutions. Kodi, an open-source application, has significantly transformed how users access and organize multimedia content, offering a versatile platform for managing movies, music, TV shows, and photos.

Key Features of Kodi on Debian:

  • Versatile Media Management: Beyond being a media player, Kodi is a comprehensive media management system allowing seamless organization and multimedia content access.
  • Customizable Interface: With many skins and themes available, Kodi offers a highly customizable interface, enabling users to personalize their media center’s appearance.
  • Extensive Plugin Support: Kodi supports many plugins and add-ons, expanding its functionality to meet diverse user needs and enhancing the Debian media experience.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: Designed for various platforms, Kodi is a versatile option for Debian users, especially those utilizing multiple operating systems.

Installation Options on Debian:

  • Debian Default APT: This method offers seamless integration with the Debian system, providing a straightforward installation process.
  • Deb-Multimedia PPA: This alternative repository often hosts updated versions of multimedia software, including Kodi, tailored explicitly for Debian systems.
  • Flatpak via Flathub: For users desiring the latest Kodi version, the Flathub repository provides access to recent releases, keeping Debian users updated with the newest features and improvements.

With its rich features and flexible installation options, Kodi remains a top choice for multimedia enthusiasts within the Debian community, enhancing the management and playback of various multimedia formats.

Install Kodi on Debian 12, 11, or 10 via APT

Method 1: Install Kodi via the Debian APT Repository

Step 1: Update the Debian System

Before installing software, ensure your Debian system is updated as standard practice. Updating all existing packages to their latest versions provides a stable environment for new installations:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

Step 2: Install Kodi via Command

The official Debian APT repository provides many software packages tailored explicitly for Debian systems, including a version of Kodi that the Debian team has tested and approved. Although this version offers stability and compatibility, it may not feature the latest Kodi updates.

To install this version of Kodi via the official Debian APT repository, run the following command:

sudo apt install kodi

After installation, you can verify its version to ensure the process was successful:

kodi --version

Method 2: Install Kodi on Debian via DEB-Multimedia

Step 1: Import GPG Key for DEB-Multimedia on Debian

Before installing Kodi via Deb-Multimedia PPA, verify the authenticity and security of the packages you intend to install by importing the GPG key associated with the DEB-Multimedia repository. GPG, or GNU Privacy Guard, is a technology that encrypts data and communications to safeguard them. It plays a crucial role in confirming the integrity and origin of digital content.

To import the necessary GPG key, execute the command below:

sudo gpg --no-default-keyring --keyring /usr/share/keyrings/deb-multimedia.gpg --keyserver --recv-keys 5C808C2B65558117

Upon successful execution, you should observe an output resembling the following:

gpg: keybox '/usr/share/keyrings/deb-multimedia.gpg' created
gpg: key 5C808C2B65558117: public key "Christian Marillat <>" imported
gpg: Total number processed: 1
gpg:               imported: 1

If you face challenges during the key importation, especially if it’s your first time importing a GPG key from the Ubuntu keyserver, you can utilize the following command to set up the necessary directories:

sudo gpg --list-keys

Step 2: Import DEB-Multimedia APT Repository on Debian

With the GPG key securely in place, the subsequent step is to add the DEB-Multimedia repository to your system. Ensure you select the repository version that corresponds with your Debian distribution, be it Trixie, Bookworm, Bullseye, or Buster:

echo "deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/deb-multimedia.gpg] \ $(lsb_release -sc) main non-free" \
    | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/deb-multimedia.list

Should the previously mentioned import command not execute successfully, you might lack certain crucial packages. To install them, use:

sudo apt install dirmngr software-properties-common apt-transport-https curl lsb-release ca-certificates -y

Once installed, try running the import command once more.

Step 3: Setup PPA-Pinning for Kodi Only

To ensure that your Debian system prioritizes the Kodi packages from the repository, you need to set up APT pinning. Here’s how you can do it:

Create a Pinning Configuration File:

Open your terminal and type the following command to create a new pinning configuration file:

sudo nano /etc/apt/preferences.d/deb-multimedia-pin

Use the same pin for deb-multimedia in case you want to prioritize additional packages from this resource, as if you make multiple pins it will cause issues in the future.

Add the Pinning Rules:

In the opened file, add the following content:

Package: kodi* libcec6 libcdio19 libcrossguid0 libiso9660-11 libp8-platform2
Pin: origin
Pin-Priority: 900

Package: *
Pin: origin
Pin-Priority: 1

Here’s what this configuration does:

  • The first block assigns a high priority (900) to all packages related to Kodi, including libcec4, from the repository.
  • The second block assigns a low priority (1) to all other packages from the repository.

Save the file and exit the text editor with CTRL+O and CTRL+X.

Step 4: Refresh APT Cache After PPA Import

With the repository added, refresh your APT packages list:

sudo apt update

And upgrade any necessary dependencies:

sudo apt upgrade

Step 4: Install Kodi on Debian 12, 11, or 10 via APT Command

Now, you can install Kodi:

sudo apt install kodi

Method 3: Install Kodi via Flatpak and Flathub on Debian Linux

Flatpak offers an alternative method for installing software, including Kodi, on Debian Linux systems. It’s worth noting that Debian distributions don’t come with Flatpak pre-installed. However, Flatpak is readily available in the Debian repositories for those who wish to use it.

If you’re unfamiliar with setting up Flatpak on Debian, we have a comprehensive guide on how to install Flatpak on Debian Linux to assist you.

Step 1: Enabling Flathub on Your Debian System For Kodi

Flathub is the primary repository for hosting applications available through Flatpak. To integrate Flathub with your Flatpak setup, execute the following command:

sudo flatpak remote-add --if-not-exists flathub

This command directs your system to add Flathub as a remote repository for Flatpak. The --if-not-exists flag ensures that Flathub is added only if not set up previously, preventing potential redundancy.

Step 2: Install Kodi on Debian 12, 11, or 10 via Flatpak Command

With Flathub now integrated, you can proceed to install Kodi. Use the command below to initiate the installation process:

flatpak install flathub tv.kodi.Kodi -y

This command fetches Kodi from the Flathub repository and installs it on your Debian system. The identifier tv.kodi.Kodi uniquely represents Kodi within the Flathub repository.

Initiating Kodi on Debian 12, 11 or 10

After successfully installing Kodi on your Debian Linux system, you may want to launch it. You have two primary options to initiate Kodi: one for command-line enthusiasts and another for those who prefer graphical interfaces.

CLI Commands Method to Launch Kodi on Debian

The terminal provides a direct and efficient way to start applications, including Kodi.

If you’ve installed Kodi using the Debian APT or DEB-Multimedia repositories, the command to initiate Kodi is straightforward. Enter the following into your terminal:


Conversely, the command differs slightly if your installation route was via Flatpak. For this method, input:

flatpak run tv.kodi.Kodi

GUI Command Method to Launch Kodi on Debian

Users who prefer a more visual interaction with their Debian system can initiate Kodi through the desktop environment. Follow this simple pathway:

Navigate to Activities, proceed to Show Applications, and then select Kodi.

Screenshot of the Debian Linux application menu with Kodi's icon highlighted.
We are initiating Kodi via the ‘Show Applications’ search menu on Debian.

Tips for First-Time Users of Kodi on Debian 12, 11 or 10

Transitioning to Kodi on Debian Linux rewards you, especially with proper knowledge. Follow these expert tips to maximize your Kodi experience on Debian Linux.

Kodi's main interface displayed on a Debian Linux desktop.
Kodi’s user interface post successful installation on Debian with application launched example settings menu in Kodi.

General Kodi Tips with Debian

  • Stay Updated: Regularly check for Kodi updates. Updating your software ensures you have the latest features, security patches, and performance improvements.
  • Backup Regularly: Before making significant changes or updates, backing up your Kodi configuration is a good practice. This way, you can always revert to a known working state if needed.
  • Explore Add-ons: Kodi’s true power lies in its vast array of add-ons. Dive into the official Kodi repository to discover many extensions to enhance your media experience.

Kodi Customization Tips with Debian

  • Skins and Themes: Personalize your Kodi interface by exploring different skins and themes. They can drastically change the look and feel of your media center.
  • Custom Libraries: Organize your media content by setting up custom libraries. This not only helps in better organization but also quicker access.
  • Adjust Playback Settings: Depending on your hardware, you might want to tweak playback settings to optimize performance. This includes adjusting cache settings or selecting hardware-accelerated decoding.

Other Kodi Tips with Debian

  • Secure Your Kodi: If you plan to access your Kodi setup remotely, ensure you’ve set up proper security measures. This includes setting up strong passwords and considering VPNs for encrypted connections.
  • Keyboard Shortcuts: Familiarize yourself with Kodi’s keyboard shortcuts. They can significantly speed up navigation and provide quick access to common features.
  • Logs for Troubleshooting: If you ever encounter issues with Kodi, remember that the application maintains logs. These can be invaluable for troubleshooting. Access them via the Settings > System > Logging menu.
  • Community Support: The Kodi community is vast and active. Engage with forums, discussion boards, and user groups to seek help, share knowledge, or discuss best practices.
Kodi's system information tab detailing Debian Linux specifications.
We are delving into Kodi’s system insights on a Debian platform.

Additional Kodi Commands with Debian 12, 11 or 10

Installing Kodi on your Debian Linux system offers a robust media experience. However, you may need to uninstall or manage this software at some point. This section gives a comprehensive guide for efficiently uninstalling Kodi, leaving no residual files behind.

Remove Kodi From Debian 12, 11, or 10

To ensure a clean removal of Kodi and its associated files, follow these steps:

APT Remove Method For Kodi Installations on Debian

Begin by removing the main Kodi packages. Kodi installation might have added various dependencies. To remove these as well, use the autoremove command. Enter the following command in your terminal:

sudo apt remove kodi
sudo apt autoremove

This sequence not only uninstalls Kodi but also cleans up any lingering dependencies installed alongside it.

Flatpak Remove Method For Kodi Installations on Debian

If you’ve chosen the Flatpak route for your Kodi installation, the uninstallation process is slightly different. To remove the Kodi installation facilitated through Flatpak, utilize the command below:

flatpak uninstall tv.kodi.Kodi

This command completely removes the Kodi Flatpak installation from your Debian system.


In conclusion, Kodi is a versatile and powerful media player, particularly for Debian Linux users. This guide has walked you through various installation methods for Kodi on Debian versions 12, 11, and 10. Whether you choose the Debian APT repository, DEB-Multimedia, or Flatpak, each method holds distinct merits. Selecting the installation method that best aligns with your technical proficiency and system requirements. If you are new to Kodi, consider starting with the Debian official repository before exploring third-party options.

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