Catch up TV on Raspberry Pi Raspbmc – BBC iPlayer

A fair few Raspberry Pi’s are now out in the wild and a lot of people want to use them as a media center.

I’ve tried to make this as complete as possible for a step by step guide on how to enable BBC iPlayer, 4od, 5ive player and itv player on your Raspberry Pi.

  1. Download and install Raspbmc
  2. Click on System then System Information
  3. Once that is up and running goto the Network tab in System and make a note of the IP address
  4. From another PC connected to the same network use a program like
    putty ssh to the Pi
  5. Username – Pi / Password – raspberry
  6. Type the following commands to download the plugins (please note you should get the most recent URL from the links at the bottom of this post
    • wget
    • wget
    • wget
  7. Back on the system tab, click settings
  8. Click on Add-ons
  9. Install from zip file
  10. Select the home folder
  11. Install the 3 plugins you downloaded using wget, by clicking on them
  12. Goto Programs
  13. Click Repositories Installer
  14. Install Mossy’s repo for 4OD
  15. Install Nibor’s repo for 5ive
  16. Go back to the home screen click Videos and Add-ons
  17. Click Get More, the screenshot shows after they have been installed
  18. Install 4OD first on the list
  19. Scroll down the list to demand 5
  20. You should now be able to go back to Videos and Add-Ons and enjoy your catch up tv

Link for latest 4OD –
Link for latest iPlayer –
Link for latest ITV player –
Link for latest 5ive player – (from repo)

Feel free to comment if i’ve missed anything important!

*Heads up, affiliate URL

Also thought this would be a good place to recomend the keyboard i use for my Pi the Rii Wireless Mini PC Keyboard & Touchpad, its great for sitting back on the Sofa and controlling XBMC or a fully fledged desktop.

40 thoughts on “Catch up TV on Raspberry Pi Raspbmc – BBC iPlayer

  1. Totally RSUM

    This is so useful – only just realised you could do with with the R-PI. Thanks!

  2. KiDdoh

    Fantastic info – was trawling forums for simple way to install iplayer and found it here.

    4OD link installs a simple repository downloader so you can choose other repositorys and hence plug-ins too.

    Thanks a million.

  3. talisman

    Thanks for this. Do you know if there is an addon for a calendar or something that links with hotmail calender and appointments. Thanks

  4. Will

    Just a small note to say there is a typo on the username for SSH’ing in to the Pi, it should be “pi” in lowercase.

  5. stiggy

    Fantastic guide and now have the power of iPlayer and various streams on my Pi/desktop TV next to my gaming rig.

    Many thanks


  6. rmc

    repo installer now at ttp://

  7. Tony Millin

    Thanks for the instruction, all seems to work very well apart from the itv player, which leaves the “loading stream info” window on screen for the duration of the programme. Any one else had this or know of a fix?

  8. Richard

    Tony Millin, I had the same problem with ITV player. Fortunately I had grabbed an image of the SD card from a couple of weeks earlier. The first time I flashed the image back on to the card it downloaded the latest update of XBMC and the problem came back. So I flashed it a second time, and with the Internet connection removed from my router I went in to /scripts/upd_sys and edited all the files ending in .sh so that they had “exit 0” (without the quotes). I reconnected the Internet and all is fine now. It seems to be a problem in the latest version of XBMC.

  9. Richard

    Has any one seen an issue with 4OD? For some programs it works fine, but for some it says it cannot find the MP4 file. Does anyone know what causes it and how to fix it?

  10. Richard

    TIP: If you want to get at the Linux code behind XBMC, go to the shutdown menu, but choose Exit rather than Power Off or one of the other options. After a few second a screen appears saying something like “Relax. XBMC will restart shortly”. Hit Esc at this point and a login prompt appears. Login to “pi” (without the quotes) – default password “raspberry” (I changed mine to a password of “pi”), and you are in the Linux system. Log out to return to XBMC.

  11. Mike

    Great idea! Up to now I’ve just been using my RPI for movies and not so much for streams. Also, I’d recommend using the very lightweight Quartz skin over Confluence.

  12. Jason F

    This is a great guide, thanks, but I’m having the same problem as Tony Millin with the ITV Player. Unfortunately I don’t have an old xbmc image to go back to, so does anyone have any other ideas?

  13. james m

    I’m having problems, can anyone help? The install from zip seems to work fine so the iplayer etc works. However, I can’t get 4od or 5 demand to install. After the addon downloads I get a message that a restart is required. I click ok, and nothing happens. Restarting by pulling the plug doesn’t help either. I’ve tried using a 4GB and a 32GB card with the same result.


  14. Nik R

    Hi, Having the same issue as James m, Get though most steps but then it hangs after the re-boot message with another downloading box at 96%. left for several hours still the same.

  15. Matt Fletcher

    Hi there, I’ve downloaded the add-ons using wget as per the instructions, and they show up in the settings menu, but when I click them to install it just takes me back a screen and doesn’t install anything. Have I missed something obvious?

  16. dobieg

    Excellent article
    two thiings;
    As pointed out previosly – logon is ‘pi’ not ‘Pi’

    Initially set up using a class 4 SD card, which worked, but was a bit jittery, used a class 10 card and made a huge difference (believe you really ought to be using class 6 or above)

    Now what would make this *exceptional* would be if I could fit a wireless card as well!

  17. Dan L

    I had the same issue as Nik R and James M, I rebooted then went to Videos –> Add-ons (i.e. the next step in the process above) and they were there.

  18. Nig

    Hi, I have got iplayer etc running on my Pi, but I cannot get any sound. Is there something I have missed?


  19. Chippy476

    Raspmbc RC4 now includes wifi support 🙂

    Going to try these link out tomorrow… Looks great.

    Happy RPi’ing

  20. Grahame Horner

    Great Info, as a noob on RaspBMC I would never have been able to do this without your help 🙂 Keep up the good work.

    BTW, I now have a waterproof tv using the raspberry pi and raspBMC near our hot tub 😀 happy days.

  21. Rob Tompkins

    ORAC is alive!.
    Using the above link to the RASPBMC windows installer it worked 3rd go on a new 8Gb class10 transend SD card. What might have made the difference 3rd time was that I used the “Restore device for formatting” button before “Install” button to create the SD image. (Maybe required for a new card?).
    I also found I needed to check the box for “install raspbmc to a USB drive” so the zipfiles of the players (addons) are on a recognized path in the USB transfer stick. The addon players were right-click-saved directly to the transfer USB. (The setup stalled, showing the raspbmc logo, after 15 mins – & plugging the usb in allowed the install to complete, launching 15mins later into the blue”confluence”theme ). Lovely. Then just needed to run the addins. The iplayer, itv & demand5 all work. 4od said “dependancies not met” until I realised I needed to addin mossy’s socksipy (frodo) script before the 4od addin.

    Excellent fun- I’ve not done this sort of stuff since I stopped messing about with win3x machine 20yrs ago. This leap means I don’t have to learn to program the Betamax anymore.

    PS My logitech K400 wireless keyboard works fine.

  22. Harry

    Hi Guys wondering if any of you could help me out. I have managed to install 4OD but when i go to play any program it reads “Script Failed!”. I have had the same problem when trying to run spotimc and still have found no solution. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks 🙂

  23. David Cramp

    Great tutorial, thanks. Is anyone else having issues getting demand 5 to work ? It appears to have installed correctly but when I select a program, I select the watch option (rather than download) and I get the Working symbol but then nothing happens – anyone else experience this ?

  24. Mark G

    David – they have changed the encoding so Demand5 and 4OD won’t work anymore i’m afraid. I’m currently hoping Android 4 sorts a good port over to the Pi finally, or midori on raspbian – flashplayer works so maybe, just maybe…

  25. Suryabrata

    Thanks for this tutorial. I would also like to point out – for those who are not comfortable with ssh, use an USB drive. Download the zip file in your computer ->transfer in a USB stick,–>put the USB stick in your rpi –>navigate to system –>settings –> Add-ons –>Install from zip file –> scroll down to your USB drive (remember the size of your USB drive) –> select the repository and install. Then go back to the menu where you selected ‘Install from zip file’ and now select ‘Get Add-ons’. You should find your repository there. Select it and install your channel.

  26. David Cramp

    Mark G – thanks for getting back to me, I’ll just have to wait. Still a good tutorial though.

  27. Matt B

    Many thanks – very useful.

    All OK up to step 11, though it’s worth pointing out that nothing much seems to happen when you select the zip files to install.

    There was no repositories installer option, so I skipped steps 13-15.

    IIRC, iplayer etc were already in video add-ons at this point, so I didn’t need to do anything else.

    Anyway, shortly after installing raspbmc on the SD card, I was watching catch-up TV on the raspberry pi! 🙂

    Thanks again.

  28. Stu

    Great guide, however, I would like some one to tell me I am right, so far, I stalled RaspBMC on 8GB class 4, SD card, during setup I kept loosing the wired internet connection, Pi LEDs off, so bought an 8GB class 10 card, quicker installation, but as I work through the setup menus RaspBMC freezes.
    Is it now a power supply problem?
    Mouse and Keyboard in Pi USB sockets
    Power supply is a Nokia 5.3v, 500 mA (as stated on unit).

    Thanks in advance

  29. Martin

    Yes, that PSU is not powerful enough for RaspMC.

    I have a 3 Raspberry Pis running on 1.5A PSUs and have no problems.

    I think a 1A (1000mA) is the minimum you should consider.

  30. Gareth

    Thanks for the link about your wireless keyboard.
    You’ve just saved me £12 – I had ordered the Logitech K400 (£30!) just cancelled it in time.

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