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    Thread: Kodi v18 Leia - Beta 5 - Nov 4 2018

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      Kodi v18 Leia - Beta 5 - Nov 4 2018

      We hereby present you the fifth and last Beta build of Kodi v18 as we are heading towards the final release. Next step will be Release candidates where our focus will be on solving bugs and possible usability problems. So far it has been proven to be quite solid to use as a daily driver for those who were brave enough to try it out. Of course you should still keep in mind it's not a final release yet and that on any upgrade a small glitch could happen as we are still doing rework. Once you decide to give it a try it is highly recommended that you create a backup first.

      Currently included

      From now on all v18 releases will not contain any big new features as we are focused on bug fixing or improvements only.

      Most notable changes to mention in Beta 5:

      Fix repository connection issues on Windows which affected certain CPU types
      Some improvements to Android video playback
      Some improvements to OSX resolution switching
      Support for Radio Data RDS (RDS) if the PVR back-end supports this
      Try to find the best matching resolution automatically for refresh-rate switching if the user has not made a selection in resolution white-list setting
      Update Chorus2 web-interface which contains security and general fixes
      General code improvements and cleanup
      Of course there are several more changes.

      Stability and usability is key

      In general the whole stability has been improved quite a lot. The times you still get glitches or occasional crashes haven been reduced due to just ripping out not so well coded parts and replaced with a more structured design and standard. Not that the old code was bad however over time new insights were gained and having newer code standards just make it better. Untangling all parts or components and make them behave better next to each other has been one of the biggest efforts done so far.

      Current available skins

      Due to changes in how Kodi works skins need to be updated for each release. As of this moment we have the following ones have been update by their developers and are readily available from our repository.

      Adnoic, Aeon Nox 5, Andromeda, Black Glass Nova, Chroma, Confluence, fTV, Grid, Mimic, Nebula, Omni, Rapier, Sio2, Xperience1080

      More will follow at a later point in time when we approach final release.

      Python 2 & 3 compatibility will be enforced

      Currently, Kodi includes the Python 2.7 interpreter to run addons written in Python programming language. However, Python 3 was released almost 10 years ago and the matter of implementing the Python 3 interpreter in Kodi has been brought up on the Kodi forum several times. Now, thanks to a successful GSOC 2017 project, we have a working Python 3.6 interpreter for Kodi, and on the latest DevCon 2017 in Prague Team Kodi decided that it’s time to move on and migrate Python addon subsystem to Python 3. <--break->There are several reasons for that:

      Python 2 End of Life is planned for 2020.

      Python 3 is mature enough and more and more Python libraries either convert their codebase to Python 3-compatible or drop Python 2 support completely (Django is the most notable example).

      Most current Python books, tutorials and courses are focused on Python 3.

      Python 2 is not actively developed. It receives only security patches while Python 3 gets all the cool new features with every minor version.

      However, Python 3 is not backward-compatible with the 2nd version so some transition process is required. Currently the plan is the following:

      Kodi 19 (M*) will be released with Python 3 interpreter for running Python-based addons.

      After the release of Kodi 18 (Leia) only addons that are compatible with both Python 2 and 3 will be accepted to the official addon repository. Also, Python 3-only addons will be accepted to the repositories for Kodi 19 (M*) and above.

      Addon developers are highly encouraged to convert their addons to Python 2/3-compatible so that after the release of Kodi 19 (M*) we will have enough addons that work with the new version.

      Test builds based on Kodi 18 with the Python 3 interpreter will be provided continuously so addon developers can test their addons for compatibility with Python 3. Test builds for Windows are already available for downloading and Ubuntu.

      One the v18 version has been branched off for final release the nightlies will become Python 3 only while the release builds will still be Python 2.

      Writing Python code that is compatible with both 2 and 3 versions is totally possible and the “big” Python world has been doing it for years since the release of Python 3.0. There are a number of tools and best practices developed to simplify this process. Please read this Kodi Wiki article for more information and technical details about the migration process. Also a special Wiki section has been created that will be updated with new information. You can post questions about converting your addon code to Python 3-compatible or share your experience.

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