The #1 best way to avoid, and fix broken links on Kodi is to update your addons. Most Kodi addons are “scrapers” that depend on various websites and servers for content– that’s why even minor alterations to streaming content sites can cause addons to break overnight. To address these problems when they occur, addon developers hustle to release patches that fix broken links and allow their users to regain access to their favorite feeds.
Aside from keeping your addons current, another thing you can do to avoid clicking through pages of annoying dead feeds is turn on “autoplay” mode. If you’re seeing long lists of links every time you use popular addons like Castaway, Exodus or SportsDevil to watch video streams that means that you’re probably in directory mode. But if you switch to autoplay, Kodi will automatically cycle through lists of links until it finds one that works.
Scroll down to get more details on the tips listed above, or just click one of the links on the table of contents below to quickly find the information you need.
- 1 Why do Kodi addons break?
- 2 Fix #1: Update your Kodi addons
- 3 Fix #2: Turn on autoplay mode
- 4 How do you avoid broken links on Kodi?
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Why do Kodi addons break?
In order to understand the exact reason why Kodi video addons often break, it’s necessary to first understand the nature of the Kodi addon developer community. Most Kodi addon makers are hobbyists. They create and maintain their addons for fun, or to connect with like-minded people online. Because anyone can create an addon, some are better maintained than others.
It takes a tight-knit team of dedicated addon makers to create and maintain a quality video addon. Video addons like Exodus and S.A.L.T.S. need constant updates because they depend on outside sources for content. They grab streams from various video hosting sites around the web and route them straight into devices equipped with Kodi software. If the source sites go down or change, so do the links inside the addon.
Addon developers and streaming video webmasters have conflicting interests
Kodi fans love the independent addon developers that create streaming video addon software— but most free streaming websites despise them. The reason for the animosity between the two groups boils down to money. Kodi automatically removes the ads that content sites rely on to generate revenue when it imports video streams.
The site animetoon.org is a perfect example of a content site that makes money by displaying ads to its visitors. If you visit that site to view the latest episode of your favorite Japanese cartoon, you’ll get bombarded with banner ads and popups.
But if you use a Kodi addon like Bobby’s Cartoons to access animetoon.tv content instead of a web browser, you don’t have to look at any ads at all.
Some content providers don’t care that Kodi users scrape their sites for streaming videos, but others do– so they intentionally try to make little changes to their sites that cause Kodi addons to fail.
Fortunately, addon makers are good at playing the cat-and-mouse game with streaming content sites. But staying up-to-date is crucial if you want to keep up with the constant changes.
Fix #1: Update your Kodi addons
If you have an addon that has suddenly stopped working, the first thing you should do is check and see if there’s an update for it.
1. See if there is an upgrade available
Navigate to system → settings→ my addons→ all to bring up a full list of all your addons. The column on the right indicates whether or not an update is available.
By default, Kodi addons are set to automatically download and install any updates that are available. However, SportsDevil is a bit different because it’s a “forked” addon. In other words, the SportsDevil creator stopped updating the addon shortly after its initial release and other addon developers took over where SportsDevil’s creator left off.
Because several addon developers are hosting SportsDevil now, updates are available on Echo, Hallow and The Unofficial SportsDevil Repository. I have all 3 repos installed, which is why Kodi didn’t proceed with an automatic update. It is waiting for me to decide which repo I want to use for the upgrade.
It looks like the first two repositories are hosting identical versions, so my guess is that Echo coding is probably mirroring SportsDevil. The Halow Repository also has a SportsDevil update, but it’s not the newest version.
2. Make sure your repositories are current
Like Kodi addons, Kodi repositories are totally free– so there’s really no reason to not subscribe to a bunch of them. If your Kodi installation has good repositories, you’ll be less likely to run into bugs, dead links and other common Kodi problems.
The situation with SportsDevil that I provided above illustrates the importance of installing quality repos. If the only repo on my Kodi was Halow, I’d be stuck using the September version of SportsDevil. But because I’ve subscribed to several well-maintained Kodi repositories, I have access to the latest and greatest versions of SportsDevil.
Be sure to check out the November 2016 edition of our repository guide to make sure you have all the best and most frequently updated Kodi repos.
Fix #2: Turn on autoplay mode
Most streaming video addons bring up a long list of sources when you click on an individual TV show or movie. Power users like the control that list mode offers, but most people hate manually clicking links until they find one that works. For a more streamlined Kodi experience, you can opt to hide link lists by switching to autoplay mode.
In autoplay mode, a streaming addon will run through each video link automatically until it reaches a live one. To switch from directory mode to auto play, just select the video addon you want to change and right click or press “c” on your keyboard (or the guide button on your MCE remote) to bring up Kodi’s contextual menu.
From the contextual menu, navigate to addon settings. If the addon you selected has an autoplay option, you’ll find it there. SportsDevil’s addon selection menu can be found right on its main settings tab.
Sometimes you have to hunt around a bit to find the autoplay setting. On Exodus, go to the playback tab of the settings screen to get to the autoplay menu.
If you have any tips for fixing broken feeds that we didn’t cover, drop us a line in the comment section and we’ll add it to the next edition of this article.