OpenELEC 4.0, an embedded operating system built specifically to run XBMC, the open source entertainment media hub, is now officially available for download.The OpenELEC developers didn't wait around and they released their operating system right after the XBMC 13.0 “Gotham” was also made available. As you all know, OpenELEC is based on the latest version of XBMC, which means that its developers are constantly implementing all the bleeding edge features and changes from that software.
“The team has made a huge effort to make this one of our best releases yet. Since the OpenELEC 3.0 and 3.2.x releases, we have worked hard to improve OpenELEC in a number of areas. Some of these are visible changes, others are backend changes that aren’t as visible to every user but are certainly worth mentioning. OpenELEC-4.0 is now the next stable release, which is a feature release and the successor of OpenELEC-3.2 and older.”
“Since OpenELEC 3.2, the underlying OS and the build system have been completely reworked. One aspect of the builds that isn’t visible to most users is the buildsystem; it is one of the most fundamental building blocks for OpenELEC. It provides us the flexibility to support many different build platforms, to be responsive in updating specific packages and to add new features easily,” reads the official announcement.
According to the changelog, the cross-compiling toolchain has been updated and uses newer versions of gcc-4.9.0, eglibc-2.19, binutils-2.23.2, and llvm-3.4, booting on UEFI hardware is now supported, the Linux kernel has been updated to version 3.14, and most of the component packages have been updated to the latest version.
Also, updates have been made to non-kernel wireless device drivers, newer chipsets have been added, Bluez has been revised for better Bluetooth support, NVIDIA 331.67 drivers have been added, 4k support has been implemented, the developer has switched from the FGLRX (XVBA) driver to the new open source driver (7.3.0) based on VDPAU, and much more.
XBMC 13.0 “Gotham,” the distribution that is being used as a base, comes with Android hardware decoding, various Raspberry Pi and Android speed improvements, stereoscopic 3D Rendering, better touchscreen support, improved UPnP capabilities, lots of audio engine improvements, better subtitle searches, extended Python and JSON-RPC API for developers, FFmpeg 1.2, and much more.
Check out the official announcement for a complete list of changes and improvements. You can download the latest OpenELEC 4.0 right now from Softpedia.