What is OpenELEC?
Open Embedded Linux Entertainment Center, or OpenELEC for short, is a Free Open source small Linux distribution built from scratch as a platform to turn your computer into a complete XBMC media center. OpenELEC is designed to make your system boot as fast as possible and the install is so easy that anyone can turn a blank PC into a media machine in less than 15 minutes.
OpenELEC is an embedded operating system built specifically to run XBMC, the open source entertainment media hub. The idea behind OpenELEC is to allow people to use their Home Theatre PC (HTPC) like any other device you might have attached to your TV, like a DVD player or Sky box. Instead of having to manage a full operating system, configure it and install the packages required to turn it into a hybrid media center, OpenELEC is designed to be simple to install, manage and use, making it more like running a set-top box than a full-blown computer
OpenELEC is tiny, at 85-115MB, and for RaspberryPi it comes in at only 70MB, which comprises the whole OS including XBMC, Python, and all services/tools needed to run XBMC. This means that at the moment, it’s the smallest distro for Raspberry Pi that we’ve seen.
Imagine having OpenELEC on a device that is as low in price, you could even give it to your friendly neighbour for washing your car! It is happening with the support for RaspBerry Pi’s board which costs around USD35.- for model B (plus shipping/local taxes)*. Put any casing around it and you’ll having a great box with the best digital media experience from OpenELEC, playing your movies at a stunning 1080p
Watch current version in action: Youtube.com