This article is going to start a series of articles about creating your own Kodi Build and also understanding the differences between the skins available to work with. The first thing we need to understand is all skins are open source and this allows anyone to use the code to modify or build off of to enhance or change. This is very important because later on we will take a look at some of the different modded skins and what they can do. This article is also going to work off of the principals we discussed in Anatomy of a Kodi Build. We are going to take a look at how to install Aeon Nox and also how to set a Main Menu Item. The next installment will work on creating the submenu, background, and taking a look at widgets using the Aeon Nox Skin.
Installing Aeon Nox Skin
First thing we need to do is install the Aeon Nox Skin so we can take a look on how to navigate around it. This will be a walk through from a Fresh Install and I always start fresh when I want to start working on a new build or play around with a new skin. This way you make sure you do not have anything left over that could create a conflict with your set-up.
- Click System
- Click Add-ons
- Click Install from repository
- If this is a Fresh Start click on Look & Feel. If you already have installed a repository previously you will use the Kodi Repository.
- Click Skin
- Click Aeon Nox
- Click Install
- Click Yes on would you like to switch to this skin so we can activate this skin.
Exploring Aeon Nox Skin Settings
Now we have Aeon Nox installed let's take a look at the skin so we can determine if this is going to be the right one for you. I find Aeon Nox is a great skin for new builders because it is quite easy to use and navigate around and setting up the menu items all takes place in the same menu area. I am going to take you through just some of the settings you can change using this skin. Now that we have our skin installed we need to install some add-ons so we can customize this skin. To do this we are going to use Installing Repos article as this will give you all the articles you need. For this example I am going to use Ares Project Repo and will be installing AresTube as there is a ton of content to use.
Once you have your repo's installed using the link above you are going to go to System and click on it to bring up the following menu:
Once we are here we are going to be working in Appearance to set up our menus, sub-menus, backgrounds, widgets, and more. Once you are in the appearance screen you will see the following screen:
This will be referred to as Skin Settings as this is where can make most the changes we need to. Everything is set to default and in later articles we will focus on how to create more themes, colors, and fonts. For now we are going to scroll over to settings so we can take a look at the different menu types.
The first change I like to make is to scroll down to Aeon Nox main menu horizontal position as I personally like my menu bar to be lower on the screen. The default is set at nearly almost half way up the screen. This is a personal preference so I suggest playing around to see how you like it and which works best for you.
Setting a Main Menu Item
Now we are going to navigate up to Setup the Aeon Nox Main Menu.
You are going to see all the main menu options listed vertically on the left side of the screen. For this exercise I am going to use custom1 to create a new main menu option called AresTube. From here let's navigate to Default select action which will help us create a new main menu option where custom1 currently resides. Once you click on this you will see a pop up to select what you want to select for the main menu option.
- Click on Add-on (for this example but if you have the item saved somewhere else please use the appropriate section).
- Click Video Add-on
- Click AresTube (for this example once again but you can use any add-on you would like)
- Click Create Menu Item to here
Congrats now you have officially created your first Main Menu Item and you are on your way to starting to create your first build. You have several more custom menu options you can use to create a build set-up that feels comfortable to you. Also you have the ability replace any menu item that you may not use; for example I personally never use Pictures so I turn this into another menu item immediately.
Creating a Sub-Menu
So as I mentioned we are going to continue to build on AresTube menu section and the next thing I like to do is build out my sub-menu. For this you are going to want to scroll down to Manage Submenu and will be presented with the following screen:
What I did above is used the Add button that sits in the middle common to make four (4) sub-menu items; however, you can make as few or many as you like here by clicking the add button again. When you first open the sub-menu you will see it will default to Common. These are common items in Kodi yet not what we are going to want to look for. Clicking on Type will allow you to scroll through the different options and you want to stop when you get to Add-ons.
Now you will want to highlight the position on the left menu where you want this new sub-menu item to go and then navigate to the right side and select the add-on or sub-section of an add-on you would like to use. When I click on AresTube a pop-up will come up with all the options. The first option will be to create menu item to here and then you will see all of the sub-sections from the add-on. In this example I took AresKidsTube and AresMafia so you could get a look at what the menu would look like.
Once you have created your sub-menu and are happy with the choices you can back out to the main menu. You will see Skin Shortcuts pop-up which will write all your new menus. Once you have finished you can scroll over and see what you have created.
Now you have created a main and sub-menu section and you can see how it looks and play around. This is all for this article but I will be returning with another one soon now how to change color and bold text for your menu and sub-menu and how to create widgets. If you have any questions please visit us at Ares Project Forum for further help. We have a great Builders' Support section and we would be happy to assist you.