How to fix Kodi Buffering with 3 easy methods and stream seamlessly

By | April 11, 2018

Buffering is the most annoying thing while watching our favorite movies or TV shows. You may come across buffering while watching the videos on youtube and other platforms. Just like youtube, buffering also occurs while streaming on Kodi. But Kodi buffering is not a big issue as you think. Kodi buffering can be fixed using some simple methods.

What is buffering?

Understanding the basic concept of buffering, will help you fix it. The term “buffering” refers to preloading of data in a reserved memory (buffer memory). This allows the user to watch the content continuously. If there is any time delay in the transmission, the preloaded content will play. Buffering is one of the mandatory processes, to stream audio or video files continuously without any delay. This reserved memory is called as the buffer memory. If your internet connection is fast enough and can cope up with the playback, buffering won’t be necessary.

But that’s not the case, in internet streaming. When the data packet is transferred from source to destination, it has to cross various nodes before reaching the destination. This process takes time depending on the transfer speed and number of nodes connected. These flaws are covered by buffering process. When your media player is playing the content, this will happen in the background. The size of the buffer memory plays a vital role in this process. If the size is high, the size of pre-loaded data will be high. These data will be transferred to the RAM before playing. So the buffer memory will be free and the preloading process starts in the background. This process continues until the video or audio is fully played.

Hope you have got a basic idea about buffering. Now let us proceed the actual method of fixing Kodi buffering.

How to fix Kodi buffering?

As you know the basic of buffering, the simple way to fix Kodi buffering error is to increase the size of the buffer memory! Yes, you heard me right. This is the prime method available to fix Kodi buffering error. Whatever method we follow, the core is same. There are 3 simple ways in which we can increase the buffer memory.

1. Fix Kodi buffering by clearing the cache memory

If you are using Kodi on firestick or on Android TV Box, the possibility of updating to new hardware is pretty low. Because they have a pre-defined configuration. So we can’t extend the available buffer memory. We have to make use of the buffer memory to the fullest extent. Since buffer memory is used for playing audio or video files, it has some residues. These files are called cache. They include thumbnails, log files, and other such files. These files occupy some space in the buffer memory.We must clear this cache file to use the buffer to the fullest extent. To clear kodi cache you use any of the following methods.

1.1 Using Indigo Kodi addon

Indigo Kodi addon is a maintenance addon. It helps the user to perform the complex task with a simple user interface. In simple terms, we have to run code/script to perform each and every task. This is so annoying for the end user. This addon act as the user interface between Kodi and user. If the user clicks on a particular task, then indigo will run the script in the background. These maintenance add-ons are huge time savers. Follow the steps to clear the cache using Indigo Kodi add-on,

  1. Go to settings > File manager > Add source.
  2. Click on NONE, and enter the URL as “http://fusion.tvaddons.co“.
  3. Give any name to the source and click OK.
  4. Select Add-ons from the home screen.
  5. Select package installer icon at the top left corner and Select install from zip file.
  6. Select the TV ADDONS source > Kodi Repo > XBMCHUB repository file.
  7. Select install from repository > TV ADDONS REPO > video addons > Indigo > Install.
  8. Open Indigo Kodi addon, and select Maintenance tool > Clear Cache.
  9. Also Clear Thumbnail, packages, logs, textures.

These are the steps to clear the cache using indigo Kodi addon. Indigo has a lot of additional features. Moreover, It was developed by TV ADDONS. So we can expect a regular update from them.  So this method is highly recommended. And it will work on all devices. This is one of the best possible fix for Kodi buffering. Once you have done it, try streaming some content on Kodi. If it’s still facing the issue then try out the following methods.

1.2 Using supreme build wizard

There are lots of maintenance tool, one such tool is supreme build. In case, if TV ADDONS is down, you can use this method. In the normal addon installation process, if a file is not available it will show dependence error. But when we use a wizard, it will download and install all the missing files. So here we are going to install supreme build Kodi wizard to clear cache.

  1. Select settings from your Kodi home screen > File manager > add source > None.
  2. Enter repo URL as “http://repo.supremebuilds.com/” and give any name. Click Ok.
  3. Go to home screen and select add-ons > Package installer icon > install from zip file.
  4. Select the source you named > repository zip file.
  5. Select install from repository > Supreme build repo > program addons > supreme build wizard > install.
  6. Select supreme build wizard from the home screen > maintenance > cleaning tool > total clean up > clear all and reboot your Kodi.

This is yet another method to clear cache. The supreme build has all the tools in its settings menu. You can also directly try installing the build from the wizard. But being a build, it’s not updated frequently. Since developers develop build as a hobby, we can’t expect a regular update from them. This is one of the drawbacks using the build. Builds also got its own advantage. To install add-ons, you need to install repository. Since the working of addons depends on the repository, if any repository is down, we can use the respective add-ons associated with the repository. But Builds are a standalone installer. It has all the required files. Downtime of repository won’t affect the build. So you can enjoy unlimited streaming using the build.

2. Fix Kodi buffering by configuring advanced settings XML file

In this method, we can fix kodi buffering by manually changing the allocation of cache memory. In addition to that, we can also configure some advanced settings like “NO BUFFER” feature. To run Kodi on any device, you need a base OS like Windows, Linux, Android, etc. This OS has their own programs which need cache memory. So we can’t allocate the entire cache to the Kodi. To customize your Kodi, you have to modify the system settings code. If you are little geeky, you can actually paste the code into the working directory. Or you can modify settings from a User Interface. This process is much efficient when compared to the previous one. Follow the steps below to Configuring advanced settings XML file.

2.1 Using supreme build Kodi wizard

Again we need a maintenance addon, to do them with a single click. Supreme build wizard has most of the feature. If you had not installed supreme build, follow the above steps to install it.

  1. Open supreme build wizard > maintenance > system tweaks/fixes > advanced settings > configure advanced settings.xml.
  2. Change settings depend on your need and click write file.
  3. Reboot your Kodi for the changes to take effort.

fix kodi buffering

These are the advanced settings available in supreme build wizard. Note: Kodi also needs the buffer memory to run itself. Currently, we are reallocating the size of the buffer memory allocated to add-ons. Don’t change the settings to muck, it will lead to the crash of your Kodi. Advanced settings configurator has four different options as listed below.

Video cache size

In simple terms, it’s the size of the buffer memory. You can increase the size to a certain extent. Don’t drag it to the maximum, because it may lead to crash your Kodi. So play it safe. There is also another feature available called “BOOST”. Instead of using ram as a buffer memory, you can also use your disk. This means a part of free space available in the disk will be allocated as the budder memory of Kodi addons. While the Kodi continues to use the buffer in the RAM. This concept is similar to create a virtual Buffer memory.

Read buffer factor

This option refers to the speed at which buffer memory is loaded. Since Kodi preloads the data into the buffer, this option specifies the size of the data to be preloaded. You can increase the Read buffer factor to the maximum value it won’t affect the Kodi.

CURL timeout

As I already said while transferring packets from source to destination, after a certain time, the connection will be terminated. And it will show an error as connection timeout. By increasing the timeout time, we can prevent this error. If you are having low internet speed, increasing the CURL timeout will help you to extend. This will help to load the same amount of cache data without buffering.

Buffer mode

As we know, Kodi is a media player which can streams data from localhost, home servers, and internet. Any streaming method involves the usage of buffer memory. The data present in the buffer memory is transferred to RAM and used for playback. And during the playback, the buffer is preloaded. The buffer mode feature helps you to enable and disable buffer for certain instance. “Only buffer the internet file system” is highly recommended.

Make sure to hit write file, to save the changes and restart your Kodi. By this method, you can change the advanced settings and enjoy streaming without buffering. Before trying this method take a backup in a separate location. Since this method involves some risk, let’s play it safe!

2.2 Using script/code

If you are using Kodi on a PC or laptop, the above methods are not enough for you to fix the Kodi buffering issue. Kodi is just one of the software on your PC. The buffer memory is shared by both system and application software. This will lead to accumulation of lots of temporary files in the buffer. So you have to clean all the temporary files first.

Win+R > temp > open > delete all the files in the folder.

Win+R > %temp% > open > delete all the files in the folder.

This will clear some of the temporary files. And now we are adding a new file to a certain location to clear cached data on the startup of Kodi. So each time you don’t have to manually clear the cache data.

  1. Open notepad and paste the below code.<advancedsettings><network><buffermode> 1 </buffermode><readbufferfactor> 1.5 </readbufferfactor><cachemembuffersize> 104857600 </cachemembuffersize></network></advancedsettings>
  2. Save the file as advancedsettings.xml.
  3. Win+R > type “%APPDATA%\kodi\userdata” (without quotes).
  4. Paste the advancedsettings.xml file in the user data folder.

The location of user data files may vary with the OS (Linux, Mac, Android)

  • Android – Android/data/org.xbmc.kodi/files/.kodi/userdata/
  • iOS – /private/var/mobile/Library/Preferences/Kodi/userdata/
  • Linux – ~/.kodi/userdata/
  • Mac – /Users/<your_user_name>/Library/Application Support/Kodi/userdata/

Use the file manager or search option to find the location. And paste the advancedsettings.xml file. This file will work on all OS. You can also manually edit the value based on your needs. This is the same code generated from using a wizard. You will find a significant drop in buffering timing after this process.

3. Fix Kodi buffering using VPN

Most probably the above methods will resolve the issue. If you are still facing the issue means, your ISP is restricting your access. This process is called throttling. There are many types of throttling. Here your bandwidth is restricted to reach its limit, this is called bandwidth throttling. Since preventing throttling is beyond your scope, you need the help of VPN. VPN is a virtual private network, which will mask everything you transfer. And it will act as a shielded pipeline between your device and remote servers where the streaming content is located. By using VPN like IPVanish, you will become completely anonymous from your ISP and government. The main purpose of VPN is to mask the IP address and stream seamlessly without any errors. VPN is highly recommended when streaming pirated contents in Kodi. This will safeguard the tracks of your online activity and helps you to stay secure.

These are the methods available to eradicate buffering from your Kodi. I hope the tutorial is clear. Follow the step by step procedure as mentioned. If you are still facing Kodi buffering, don’t hesitate to contact us. We would be glad to fix your issue. All suggestions are welcome, do let us know your feedback.

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