A geek’s way to download YouTube videos in Linux!


There are a lot of websites, plugins, browser extensions and standalone applications available to download youtube videos onto your local storage. But, they are all unreliable, full of advertisements, download speeds are slow and consume a lot of time. Ever wished that there could be an easier way to do this? Now there is.

This method is applicable only to Linux users.

Step -1: If you are running Ubuntu or an Ubuntu derivative, go to terminal and enter:

sudo apt-get install youtube-dl

If you are on any other linux distribution like Fedora, Arch etc., download the script from here and copy it to “/usr/local/bin/”. Make sure you have python installed as this is a python script.

Step-2: Now go to the youtube video you want to download and copy the entire URL.

Step-3: Now, launch a terminal and enter the following command without the qoutes.

youtube-dl “youtube video url”

For example,

youtube-dl https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GuqB1BQVr4

That’s it, now the video will be downloaded and saved to the “/home/” directory.


Tip 1: The linux version of  “youtube-dl” also involves an excellent manual inbuilt. In the terminal you can type,

man youtube-dl

to learn about all the options that can be used.

For example,

youtube-dl -o great-video.flv https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=somevid

will download and save to great-video.flv instead of unique file id.

Tip-2: After copying the URL, you can either use ” CTRL+SHIFT+V” or “RightClick – Paste” to paste the url in the terminal.

Tip-3: Videos will be downloaded in the best possible quality, so use ” -f ” flag instead of  “-o” in the above example to download worst quality and save bandwidth as well as space.




About Author

An ordinary Indian student with an extraordinary sense of technology and it's impact.

1 Comment

Leave A Reply