Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:38 pm
Location: San Diego

Starting out..... XBMC, raspbmc, external HD, power, SD

Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:54 pm

I first must say I'm sorry if these topics have been covered prior. I still have to learn how to navigate the board. I'm a true beginner. Know computers and the programs that run on them but to program them? HA.. I learned back when we punched cards and fed them into a machine.

So a few quick questions will set me on my path and I'm sure help others that are a bit intimidated by the first steps.

If I have a preprogramed 4GB SD card and install the program can I then swap out and use a 16GB card? or does the card have to have something on it? (told you I was a beginner)

I have a 3TB external drive with lots of movies on it... with a powered USB hub can I just hook it up and play them to my TV via the raspberry pi?.

What is the difference between XBMC and raspbmc? will they both do the same thing?

My goal first started out to have my 3TB drive sit next to my TV and have access to the movies without having to access them through my computer and network. But this little device has got me interested in much more.

I know nothing... zero about programming and the language is very foreign but I'm more then willing to try.

so any advice... assistance... help... direction... is very much appreciated.... I'll be looking

Thanks in advance!

Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Apr 04, 2013 6:48 am

Re: Starting out..... XBMC, raspbmc, external HD, power, S

Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:20 am

First, I want to say enjoy the process - the goal may take a while. People may ignore this particular post, as really your question is much too broad, and as you suspected, each of the pieces have been answered before. But in hopes of accumulating some good karma, I will attempt an answer.

I am equally new to the Rpi but not to programming or teaching, so I will give you some general advice. You should play and discover the specific details for yourself. That is the fun of the Rpi.

1. This forum is not your only source of information. If you looked up Raspbmc you would find that it is XBMC - just XBMC specifically for the Rpi. So Raspbmc is what you want. See

2. You must crawl before you can walk. Your first job is going to be to download Raspbmc onto your SD card. Don't ask how to do that - the answer is on these forums and in many other places. Your first, first, job is going to be a lot of reading and searching the internet. When you get your SD card loaded, celebrate. This is a really good first step.

3. Your second job is going to be hooking up your Rpi to the TV (with a keyboard and mouse I think - I can't help here as I am running Raspbian and have never set up Raspbmc) and seeing it run for the first time. Again, congratulations for getting this far. After that, you are going to want to know how to add a remote control to the Rpi and how to connect your hard drive. Search for each of those topics separately and do them one at a time.

Enjoy the process, take your time, and have fun! Good luck!
Last edited by starbits on Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 50
Joined: Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:38 pm
Location: San Diego

Re: Starting out..... XBMC, raspbmc, external HD, power, S

Thu Apr 04, 2013 7:23 pm

Thanks for your reply... I'm sure to many they just roll their eyes and try to remember when they were at this stage..

Just to let you know I installed Raspbmc to the card... got it all working... added skins... told it where my external USB powered HD was and can see all the movies.... I have a lot on there and don't see the posters or any of the artwork... is there a trick to that?.. the Movies are stored in different formats MP4 or other... so I wonder if I need to buy that addon that will decode all..

To me it is like opening a door to a whole new world... so much out there just for the time and effort to understand... I hope they start to teach this in Jr. High and build on it..

Thanks again.. .the Karma Gods are smiling !

Posts: 4
Joined: Sat Apr 06, 2013 2:44 pm

Re: Starting out..... XBMC, raspbmc, external HD, power, S

Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:03 pm


This is XBMC, it is a little bit of a struggle when you first start out, but you need to lookup scrappers on the XBMC website, these index the movies and provided the file name is in the correct format and you tell XBMC what it should expect to find in each directory, it should, just do it all for you.

Sorry to say it is a lot of reading again, but keeps the mind active.

All the best

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