XBian Keep Your Raspberry Pi XBMC Fast and Remote Accessible [Guide]

Raspberry Pi has been out over a year now, the buzz around this amazing tiny computer isn’t as hype as before. With that said, if you are one of those people who got a Raspberry Pi with a sole purpose of turning it to a XBMC (HTPC, home theater PC), then this will be a guide you must not miss. Chances are, many of you might find the hype around how amazing this little machine was overrated. It’s not as quick as you’d like to be, and it’s not as easy to set up as you’d think would be. I’ve had this device for over a year now, as a geek, but I am still feeling that finding a better and optional solution to get things done is always one of my priorities, when it comes to configure XBMC on Raspberry Pi.

XBian

It was some times ago, I wrote about the best way to setup XBMC on your Raspberry Pi, but since then the development of those projects (distributions) has gone separate ways. Among many distributions for XBMC, I recommend using XBian for two reasons: fast and easy to setup. XBian is one of the popular XBMC based Raspberry Pi distributions. It has come a long way since it’s in Alpha period, currently still in Beta.  It is one of the best Raspberry Pi images out there.

Fine Tune Your Raspberry Pi For Faster Performance With XBian

If you are using other distributions of Raspberry Pi XBMC, you should give XBian a try and see how different in terms of performance is compare to your current setup. It only takes 10 minutes to setup, it’s the fastest XBMC of any Raspberry Pi. There is no other myth to optmize the speed of Raspberry if taking apart from the speed of SD card. Given a class 10 SD card, XBian is the quickest among others. To keep it this way, all you need to do is keep the system up to date, you can do so within XBian’s XBMC custom setting, which allows you to upgrade linux kernel level packages.

Remote Control XBMC From Anywhere With Any Device

There are many ways you can access XBMC, if you are on a computer, you can remotely control via XBMC’s web interface. The default skin looks like a car’s dashboard, but you get the idea.

To ensure this is turned on, go to “Settings” > “Services” > “Remote Control” enable options. To allow programs on this and other systems to control XBMC. Now go back to System > Settings > SystemInfo, find out the current XBMC’s IP. Add port 8080 at the end, will load the default remote control web interface. If you don’t like this remote control option, there are other skins available you can download and install as a Web Interface add-on.

XBMC Web Remote

You can also remote control XBMC via your smartphone. XBMC has remote control for all major smartphones including Windows Phone support, go here to download Windows Phone XBMC remote control.

Windows Phone XBMC Remote

Of course if you have iOS or Android devices, there are other respective Remote control available as well. Give XBian a try, you might enjoy it! For me I have one of many first batch of Raspberry Pi comes with 256MB ram, it runs XBian just as smooth as my Ouya running XBMC. XBian has a simple get started guide, be sure to check it out!

Jonathan Hu

Programming by day, Web Development, Canucks & Movies for spare time!
Co-founder of Next of Windows and a cool geek 🙂

Last updated: 08/04/2014

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