Porteus Kiosk

The Porteus Kiosk is free software, with the option to pay for automatic updates, based on Linux and other open source components that turns a PC into a kiosk that boots straight into a browser. The official website of Porteus Kiosk can be found here. The software can be run from a USB thumb drive but we advise to use the install option and use that to install the software on an internal SSD.

Porteus Kiosk can only be used on a "regular" computer (for instance an Intel NUC). You cannot put it on a USB flash drive and run it on a TV directly, an Android device or a Chromebox. It can also not be used on Raspberry Pis or other ARM based devices.

The steps that are needed to get Porteus Kiosk running on your device are as follows:

  1. Download the Porteus Kiosk software
  2. put it on a USB thumb drive
  3. run the software, after you choose options from a wizard, the software is installed on your device
  4. remove the USB thumb drive and restart the device The player will now show the code that enables you to register the device, see these instuctions. After that your channel will start to play automatically.

For this you need, apart from the device/player that you want to use to playback Bizplay content and a connected TV screen:

  • One USB thumb drive of at least 4GB size, from which the data can be erased
  • A mouse and keyboard that you can connect to the player device
  • A computer that you use to download the Porteus Kiosk software and put that on the USB thumb drive

Creating the Porteus Kiosk thumb drive

To create thumb drive with the Porteus Kiosk software on it that can be used to install the software on your device follow these steps:

  1. Use your computer to download the Porteus Kiosk software image from this page. Use the button named Porteus Kiosk with the current version number.
  2. To put the downloaded image on a USB thumb drive:
    • Windows and MacOS users should download, install and use Win32DiskImager
    • Linux users can use the command line tool dd but should first convert the downloaded image file to ISO-hybrid by using isohybrid (install syslinux and syslinux-tools for that). The commands are:
      $ isohybrid -u ./Porteus-Kiosk-<version>.iso
      $ dd if=Porteus-Kiosk-<version>.iso of=/dev/sdX
      with "sdX" being the USB thumbdrive.

Installing the software on the player

We describe two ways to install the Porteus Kiosk software on your player. The first (fastest) way uses a standard configuration that we have prepared and is downloaded during the process. The second way takes longer but allows you to fully control all the options that Porteus Kiosk offers. In most cases the first approach is the best in the sense that it will result in a working player in the least time.

Fastest way to install the software on the player

To install the Porteus Kiosk software on the player you need to connect the player to the TV screen and connect the mouse and keyboard to the player. Then follow these steps:

  1. Put the USB thumb drive in one of the USB ports of the player and turn it on
  2. On the first screen of the start up wizard choose the type of network connection the player will use. We strongly advise to use a wired network connection. If that is not yet present you should invest in making a wired connection available for the player.
  3. On the next screen choose Configure connection using DHCP (unless the player needs to have a static address)
  4. If you chose a WiFi connection you will presented with a selection of available networks, you need to supply the encryption type and passwords if necessary
  5. On the next screen you can configure proxy settings, it is most likely that you can press the Next button on this screen (proxies are usually only used in enterprise environments)
  6. Choose the browser you want to use, we advise the use of Chrome, if you do you are presented with the Google Chrome EULA. Read it and press Ok if you agree with the EULA.
  7. On the confirmation screen click Next
  8. Now the selected browser (and possibly additional components) will be downloaded, this will take a little time
  9. On the next screen choose the Point kiosk to remote management configuration option
  10. In the entry field enter the URL: https://playr.biz/porteus_kiosk_config, if you use an Intel NUC as player you should add '?device=NUC' to the url (so it becomes; https://playr.biz/porteus_kiosk_config?device=NUC). Click the Test config button. You should see a window with some lines of configuration text and click the Ok button (if no configuration text is shown check the URL you entered). On the window where you entered the URL click Ok.
  11. On the next screen you see a list of choices that you made, click Next
  12. On the next screen you can opt for a paid subscription to automatically keep the Kiosk software up to date. Please note: this subscription is paid to and fulfilled by the Porteus company. Click Next
  13. On the next screen (System installation) select the internal SSD(/HDD) of the player and click Install system
  14. If the message is shown that the the software has been installed successfully you can remove the USB thumb drive and the player will reboot automatically.

After the player reboots it will install additional packages caused by the configuration that was loaded. This only happens after this first reboot.

The player should now show the page with the Bizplay registration code. If you see the wizard screen you will probably were too late removing the USB thumb drive. No problem; just turn off the player, remove the USB thumb drive and turn the player back on. When you see the registration code please register the player as is described here.

Manually installing the software on the player

To install the Porteus Kiosk software on the player you need to connect the player to the TV screen and connect the mouse and keyboard to the player. Then follow these steps:

  1. Put the USB thumb drive in one of the USB ports of the player and turn it on
  2. On the first screen of the start up wizard choose the type of network connection the player will use. We strongly advise to use a wired network connection. If that is not yet present you should invest in making a wired connection available for the player.
  3. On the next screen choose Configure connection using DHCP (unless the player needs to have a static address)
  4. If you chose a WiFi connection you will presented with a selection of available networks, you need to supply the encryption type and passwords if necessary
  5. On the next screen you can configure proxy settings, it is most likely that you can press the Next button on this screen (proxies are usually only used in enterprise environments)
  6. Choose the browser you want to use, we advise the use of Chrome, if you do you are presented with the Google Chrome EULA. Read it and press Ok if you agree with the EULA.
  7. On the confirmation screen click Next
  8. Now the selected browser (and possibly additional components) will be downloaded, this will take a little time
  9. On the next screen choose the Launch the Kiosk Wizard to create new configuration option
  10. In this screen change the following settings:
    • Choose Enable under Homepage and on the next page
      • Specify the home page: https://play.playr.biz
      • Choose MAC address on; Append string to the homepage
      • Choose Yes on; Homepage availability check during boot
      • Click OK Custom home page
    • Choose Disable under Private Mode
    • Choose Disable under Disable zoom controls
    • If you chose the Firefox browser choose Disable under Address bar
    • Choose Disable under Navigation bar
    • Choose Full under Persistence level
    • Choose Disable under input devices
    • If you want sound (for video or streaming audio) choose Enable under Default system sound card and on the next page:
      • Choose a sound device, usually the first HDMI device is correct when you connect the player to your TV using a HDMI cable
      • If you want to verify your choice click Test selected card
      • After a browser window appears it will play an audible sound
      • Close the browser with the x button on the tab at the top
      • If no sound was audible (make sure the volume of the TV is not set too low) choose a different card and click Test selected card again
      • Otherwise click OK
    • Under ADDITIONAL COMPONENTS choose Enable under Additional fonts
      Click Next. If you have questions about the options not mentioned here please contact us
  11. The next screen sums up the settings that were configured on the previous pages, click Next
  12. On the next screen you can opt for a paid subscription to automatically keep the Kiosk software up to date. Please note: this subscription is paid to and fulfilled by the Porteus company. Click Next
  13. On the next screen (System installation) select the internal SSD(/HDD) of the player and click Install system
  14. If the message is shown that the the software has been installed successfully you can remove the USB thumb drive and the player will reboot automatically.

The player should now show the page with the Bizplay registration code. If you see the wizard screen you will probably were too late removing the USB thumb drive. No problem; just turn off the player, remove the USB thumb drive and turn the player back on. When you see the registration code please register the player as is described here.

Running from a USB thumb drive

It is possible to create a USB thumb drive that you can use to run Porteus Kiosk from. This means that you do not need to install an SSD in the player. Since the price of small SSDs has come down so much in the past few years we strongly advise you to use an internal SSD instead of a USB thumb drive attached to a USB port. USB thumb drives are much more sensitive to power outages and long term use; the chance that a USB thumb drive will survive multiple years in use is very small. The time you spend fixing a broken USB thumb drive by buying a new one and reinstalling Porteus Kiosk on it is likely going to be more costly than the extra money you will spend on a small SSD (8GB or more is enough, the cheapest SSD you can find will probably have more than 16GB capacity).

If you decide/need to run from a USB thumb drive you should follow the steps as described above except in step 13 you choose the USB thumb drive. The installer will then overwrite the USB thumb drive with a fully configured version of the Porteus Kiosk software and reboot. The player will then start up the Bizplay registration screen and you continue from there.