Code Examples

Now let’s take a look at some examples. As always, we’ll start with “Hello, World!”.

“Hello, World!” example

The simplest code which will display a window with “Hello, World!” header looks like this:

# Import PyXBMCt module.
import pyxbmct

# Create a window instance.
window = pyxbmct.AddonDialogWindow('Hello, World!')
# Set window width, height and grid resolution.
window.setGeometry(400, 400, 1, 1)
# Show the created window.
# Delete the window instance when it is no longer used.
del window

If you’ve done everything correctly, you should see a window like the one shown below:


“Hello World!” example

The window Grid has 1 row and 1 column. We haven’t placed any controls on it, but setGeometry method takes at least 4 arguments, so we have provided it dummy values. Also for simplicity’s sake we haven’t used OOP in this example.

Now let’s analyze a more complex example.

Example with interactive controls

First, we need to draft the layout or our UI. You can use a pen and paper or imagine the layout in your head, it does not matter. The following table showsh the draft of the UI layout for our example addon:

Rows\Columns 0 1
0 Image
3 Name Label Name Edit
4 “Close” button “Hello” button

As you can see, our example UI will have 4 rows, 2 columns and 5 controls placed in grid cells. Let’s see how it looks in Python code:

# Import necessary modules
import xbmc
import pyxbmct

# Create a class for our UI
class MyAddon(pyxbmct.AddonDialogWindow):

    def __init__(self, title=''):
        """Class constructor"""
        # Call the base class' constructor.
        super(MyAddon, self).__init__(title)
        # Set width, height and the grid parameters
        self.setGeometry(300, 280, 5, 2)
        # Call set controls method
        # Call set navigation method.
        # Connect Backspace button to close our addon.
        self.connect(pyxbmct.ACTION_NAV_BACK, self.close)

    def set_controls(self):
        """Set up UI controls"""
        # Image control
        image = pyxbmct.Image('')
        self.placeControl(image, 0, 0, rowspan=3, columnspan=2)
        # Text label
        label = pyxbmct.Label('Your name:')
        self.placeControl(label, 3, 0)
        # Text edit control
        self.name_field = pyxbmct.Edit('')
        self.placeControl(self.name_field, 3, 1)
        # Close button
        self.close_button = pyxbmct.Button('Close')
        self.placeControl(self.close_button, 4, 0)
        # Connect close button
        self.connect(self.close_button, self.close)
        # Hello button.
        self.hello_buton = pyxbmct.Button('Hello')
        self.placeControl(self.hello_buton, 4, 1)
        # Connect Hello button.
        self.connect(self.hello_buton, lambda:
            xbmc.executebuiltin('Notification(Hello {0}!, Welcome to PyXBMCt.)'.format(

    def set_navigation(self):
        """Set up keyboard/remote navigation between controls."""
        # Note there is a new feature:
        # if you instead write self.autoNavigation() PyXBMCT will set up
        # the navigation between the controls for you automatically!
        self.hello_buton.setNavigation(self.name_field, self.name_field, self.close_button, self.close_button)
        # Set initial focus.

if __name__ == '__main__':
    myaddon = MyAddon('PyXBMCt Example')
    del myaddon

This code should display the following window:


Our example UI

If you enter your name (or any words for that matter) and click “Hello” button, the addon will display a pop-up notification:


The pop-up notification

Two remarks about the code:

  • In my example I have used an online URL for the Image control. Paths to image files stored on your local disks can be used as well.
  • Note the usage of lambda to connect a function (xbmc.executebuiltin() in this case) with an argument.

Despite being rather simple, this example illustrates main steps of initializing PyXBMCt-based addon UI:

  • Set up the geometry and grid of the main window.
  • Place UI controls on the grid.
  • Connect interactive controls and key actions to functions/methods.
  • Set up keyboard/remote navigation between controls.
  • Set initial focus on a control (necessary for navigation to work).

PyXBMCt demo addon provides more comprehensive example on how to use all PyXBMCt Controls.

Xbox BIOS config editor for XBMC a more complex real-world example that showcases creating custom controls.