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Youtube-dl is a command line tool that allows downloading videos from YouTube and other similar websites.

Please note that I update youtube-dl from the WebUpd8 PPA a few times a week, so if YouTube or another website make changes that break it, run an update and it's very likely that a new youtube-dl version will be available, which fixes the issues.

Recently, youtube-dl has received support for 17 new websites: hotnewhiphop.com, auengine.com, gamespot.com, RingTV, wat.tv, traileraddict.com, tu.tv, instagram.com, Statigr.am, break.com, tudou.com, Jukebox, Wimp.com, CSpan, 3sat, brightcove.com and archive.org.

Compared to the version available in the Ubuntu repositories (13.04, 12.10 or 12.04), there are many other changes in the latest youtube-dl (version 2013.07.08.1), including:
  • Improved support for encrypted signatures in Youtube;
  • Improved support for videos from ArteTv;
  • Vimeo: allow to download password protected videos;
  • Youtube: A lot of work for downloading VEVO videos;
  • Fixed downloading from Google+ videos;
  • Added support for downloading automatic transcribed subtitles;
  • Added support for downloading subtitles in WebVTT (vtt) format;
  • Improved support for Youtube's crypto signing fields;
  • YouTube subscription feed download support;
  • Dailymotion: fixed the download of the video in the max quality;
  • Fixed bash completion.

Besides the newly added websites, youtube-dl also supports: YouTube (besides single videos it also supports playlists, searches and user videos), metacafe.com, Google Video (including searches), Pinsthotobucket, Dailymotion, DepositFiles, blip.tv, Vimeo, myvideo.de, The Daily Show / Colbert Nation, The Escapist, CollegeHumor, arte.tv, Soundcloud, xvideos, infoq, mixcloud, Stanford Open Content, Youku, MTV, Xnxx, Google Plus and there's also a generic downloader that works with some other sites.

The application comes with many useful features, including options to specify the video quality/format, add the original title to the downloaded video filename, proxy support, automatically extract audio from downloaded videos and more.

Install youtube-dl in Ubuntu

Ubuntu users can install the latest youtube-dl from the main WebUpd8 PPA (note: the PPA contains some other packages so check out the package list before adding it):
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install youtube-dl
You can manually download and install the deb if you don't want to add the PPA.

Other Linux distributions: search for youtube-dl in the repositories or download it from HERE.

To download a video, simply use the following command:
youtube-dl http://VIDEO_URL
where "VIDEO_URL" is the url of the video you want to download.

To see all the available options, type the following commands in a terminal: "man youtube-dl" or "youtube-dl -h".