Saturday, April 29, 2006
HOWTO: Save Videos from YouTube Updated
I first wrote about how to save Flash format videos from YouTube was in November of 2005. Since then, many things have changed. One thing was the way YouTube identify their videos.
The original eleven digits of both upper and lower cased alpha-numeric video identification code is still used to watch videos via YouTube’s website or embed them to other websites.
To download the videos via KeepVid or similar sites, the eleven digit video identification code is still useful, but in case of KeepVid crashes, user has to “kick it old school style” by reading YouTube video’s page source.
Using the F-16 Crash video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4Knsa7kBPE) as an example, here is how to save videos from YouTube “old school style”.
In Firefox browser, open “View Page Source” and do a text search for
For this example video, its public video identification code is b4Knsa7kBPE, but the internal prolonged video identification code is
Keep in mind that the code between “&t=” and “&s=” may be session-sensitive and changed every time the video is accessed.
To save the video, the URL path format is
By paste the above URL into browser would not download the video. The best way is to paste it into an email and send it to oneself.
The default file extension assigned by email clients (Gmail, Thunderbird, Outlook) when saving the video is html (hypertext markup language), change it to flv (flash video).
Media players like VLC can play flv files stand alone. To convert flv video to other formats like Quicktime or Windows Media, use CinemaForge.
Update: April 30, 2006 - Javi Moya has created an extension called VideoDownloader 1.0 for Firefox which would download embedded videos and media files directly from Youtube, Google, Metacafe, iFilm, and other 60+ video sites. (more)
Update: May 10, 2006 – Browser Opera caches Flash video (.flv) files from YouTube in its cache directory. Typically in Windows, Opera’s cache directory is located: