OSMC and hostapd

Tue 19 May 2015 by pj Tagged as kodi linux raspi wifi

I recently hooked up a Raspberry Pi running Kodi to my Living Room television, and it was a hit with the kids (their favorite shows and moving more easily accessible than by swapping DVDs) and the wife (easy to run via a remote app on her phone).

Separately, trips with the kids in the car where they'd like to watch a video are currently a bit annoying because it means keeping a DVD library in the car.

Clearly, Something Must Be Done.

My solution: Install OSMC on a Raspberry Pi and then hack it to 1) be a wireless AP and 2) use a GPIO to signal an Adafruit PowerBoost 500C that it's time to shut down in an orderly fashion so as not to trash the filesystem.


OpenELEC is my usually-preferred distro for a dedicated raspi box, but... it's not very easily hackable. OSMC used to be raspbmc, which was based on raspbian, so it's a nice familiar debian base with scads of software in the standard repos. OSMC it is.

To get hostapd to work:

  • systemctl disable connman.service - disable connman, which OSMC uses for some reason
  • apt-get install ifupdown hostapd dnsmasq wireless-tools dhcpcd5 ... - I lost track of all the network tools I had to install, but that's a good start.
  • configure /etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf
  • configure /etc/network/interfaces
  • configure /etc/dnsmasq.conf to serve dhcp and some minimal amount of DNS
  • For some reason I had to blacklist the bluetooth module for my zd1211 driver to come up without a soft rfkill flag set

...with the result being a box that boots up to be both a wireless AP and a Kodi machine.