While XBMC is a versatile piece of software there are always a lot of things that advanced users wish they could configure, but the developers can’t possible cram it all into the XBMC interface. That’s where the advancedsettings.xml file comes into play. This file will let you adjust a dizzying number of settings that are not configurable any other way, and gives you even more control over your XBMC experience.

You’ll find the advancedsettings.xml file in your profile folder:

  • Mac: ~/Library/Application Support/XBMC/userdata/
  • Windows: %appdata%\XBMC\userdata\

Once in your profile directory find and open up the advancedsettings.xml file, or create the file if it doesn’t already exist. After you’ve got the file open you can start changing some of the hundreds of settings that are available.

What settings have I changed? I’ve covered a few in past guides including setting up a media library that is shared amongst multiple machines, and I’ve even provided configuration tips to help resolve buffering issues. I have a few other tweaks that I haven’t mentioned yet…

Video Library:

There are several settings that I change related to the video libraries:


Here is what each of them mean:

  • flattentvshows (2): Shows all episodes for a TV show at the same level rather than sorting them by season.
  • hideemptyseries (true): Hides TV shows that don’t have any episodes in them. This is especially useful if you delete shows after you watch them.
  • recentlyaddeditems (50): Increases the number of items that are displayed in the recently added list.

Splash Screen:

This is a simple setting that disables the splash screen when XBMC is starting up. It’s something a lot of people probably won’t care about changing, but since it is available I thought it wouldn’t hurt to turn it off:


Debug Log:

I don’t always use this, but if I’m trying to troubleshoot a problem it can be useful. This will let you adjust how much info gets logged:

<loglevel hide="false">1</loglevel>

These are what the various values are used for:

  • -1: All logging is OFF
  • 0: Normal logging, only logging errors (Default)
  • 1: Debug logging
  • 2: Debug logging with free memory, frames-per-second and CPU usage shown on screen
  • 3: Debug logging with free memory, frames-per-second and CPU usage shown on screen; Plus full SMB logging

CyberNet’s XBMC Guides: