YouTube is intended for streaming videos over the Internet, however once in a while you run into a YouTube video that you really like and want to save your own copy of it on your computer (in case the video on YouTube gets deleted). In other cases, you may have a slow Internet connection and want to download from YouTube so the videos will play without getting stuck. There are various methods you can use to save a movie from YouTube onto your own computer.
Method 1 of 3: Downloading Through Websites
Use a website that allows you to download videos from YouTube using the following method.
- Go to the webpage where the video is located on YouTube.
- Copy the URL (the web address at the top of your browser that starts with ““). http://www.youtube.com”). You can right-click on the URL and select “Copy” to copy it.
- Open the website that you want to use to download the video and paste the URL in the URL field. You can paste the URL by right-clicking in the proper field and selecting “Paste.”
- Press the button to download the video. Usually the button will say “Download” or “Get Video.”
Try out the following websites to see which one you like best for downloading videos.
- IDesktop: a limited number of free downloads are available through iDesktop after which you need to purchase a monthly download plan. However, 1 advantage that iDesktop has over many of the other websites that it can convert the files that are being downloaded into various formats including AVI, MOV, MP3 and WMV.
- SaveTube: this website has a very basic design but can be difficult to use because of heavy advertising.
- VideoGetting: the VideoGetting website has a plain design but also has plentiful advertisements. It can be used to download from YouTube and convert the files to be played on iPod, iPhone, PSP or iTouch.
Method 2 of 3: Software for Windows
Install software on your Windows computer if you don’t want to download through websites. This is sometimes a better option for someone who downloads frequently and does not want to keep going to the same website or put up with web-based advertising. Step-by-step instructions differ for each software but after you download and install the software you can use its help menu or the support pages on its website to learn how to use it. Here are some Windows applications that you can try out.
- Orbit Downloader: compatible with Windows 7 and can be used to download a YouTube video and also save a movie from Pandora or MySpace.
- Moyea YouTube FLV Downloader: this Windows-based program has a free version that lets you download a video on YouTube in FLV format. However, paying to upgrade the software may be worthwhile if you want to convert the videos to other more common formats such MPG, MOV, AVI, MP3 or WAV.
- VDownloader: you can search for YouTube videos directly through the VDownloader software and save them on your computer. The program can convert the downloaded files to MP4 (used for iPod and iPhone) as well as other formats.
Method 3 of 3: Software for OS X
Download videos on YouTube onto your Mac computer using programs that support the Mac OS X operating system. Here are some programs for you to consider.
- TubeSock: play and download YouTube movies using TubeSock. The software is designed for iPod, iPhone and PlayStation users, which is why it converts to formats such as MP4 and H.264 that are compatible with such devices. However, a $15 purchase is necessary if you want to convert videos that are longer than 30 seconds.
- TubeTV: a free alternative to TubeSock, the TubeTV software can play and download videos available on YouTube but can not convert to as many formats. Nevertheless, it is still free to use even when downloading videos of long duration.
- YouTube’s terms of service clearly mention that you should not download the videos submitted by its users unless the permission has been granted by YouTube or the user. Legally speaking, you should only download from YouTube if the video or the page that is displayed on mention that you are allowed to do so.
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