How to save streaming videos in linux

Written by ashley poland Google
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How to save streaming videos in linux
(Michael Blann/Lifesize/Getty Images)

Everyone loves YouTube videos, but not everyone necessarily loves going to YouTube; and really, don't you want to be able to view that awesome kitten video whenever you want? By downloading YouTube videos to your computer, you can bypass the buffering and slow loading times. If you're a Firefox user, this as simple as installing on of the many video downloading extensions. Other Linux-friendly methods include using the YouTube Downloader extension for Google Chrome, and copying the file from your temporary files.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome Internet Browser

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  1. 1

    Go to the Video Downloader extension page, available under Resources, in your Firefox browser.

  2. 2

    Click the "Download Now" button; this will install the extension and prompt you to reload Firefox. Upon reload you will be directed to a page that informs you that the downloader has correctly installed, and directs you on how to use the extension.

  3. 3

    Visit your favourite video streaming website, and visit the video that you want to download. The extension will place a download button in the bottom right corner of your browser. Click the button to download the streaming video in Flash Live Video (FLV) format.

  1. 1

    Install the YouTube Downloader Chrome Extension in your Chrome browser; the link is available under Resources. The browser will confirm your installation.

  2. 2

    Go to your YouTube video of choice. Below the video by the "Share" and "Save" options you should see a button that says "Download".

  3. 3

    Click the "Download" button. If it displays different options for your downloaded video, select the option that best suites your needs. This will download the video to your computer.

  1. 1

    Start the streaming video that you wish to save in your browser, and allow the video to completely load.

  2. 2

    Navigate to your file system, and find the "tmp" folder. Open the "tmp" folder; you should see an FLV file with random letters and numbers in the file name; this is the video currently playing in your browser.

  3. 3

    Open a new terminal window, and type the command "ln /tmp/tempfilename ~/newfilename.flv" where the "tempfilename" refers to the name of the FLV file in your tmp folder, and "newfilename" is your choice of file name. Hit enter.

  4. 4

    Go to your /home/username folder, where username is your personal username; you should see the saved file newfilename.flv.

Tips and warnings

  • VLC is a popular and free media player that can play back FLV files; the website is available under Resources.
  • There are many different Firefox extensions for downloading streaming video; you can use whichever you prefer, as most function the same.
  • The distribution of copyrighted material over the Internet without express permission of the owner is illegal; use your best judgment when saving and copying video.
  • The Google Chrome extension will only work with YouTube videos.
  • Some video sites delete the FLV from your tmp folder after the video has been stopped, so the third method of saving videos must be done while the video is playing.

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