This guide will show you how to download video and audio files directly from many sites using a little command line app called Youtube-dl. It's very easy to use, and is perfect for offline viewing of all sorts of media.

Despite it's name, it allows you to download from much more than just Youtube. You can download media directly from sites such as Vimeo, Twitch, Twitter, Tumblr, Vine, Instagram, Soundcloud, Bandcamp and more.

In fact Youtube-DL supports over 700 different sites.


- Youtube link
- mirror
- Torrent
- Keybase mirror


Step 1. First you need to go to the Youtube-DL site,, then follow the instructions to download and install it. It's available on Windows, Mac and Linux systems, with slightly different instructions for each.


Step 2. In this example we're going to download a youtube video to the desktop, so the next thing to do is go to youtube and copy the full URL of the video you want to save.

Step 3. Open up the terminal. By default youtube-dl downloads the files to whatever your current directory is, so let's change it to the desktop:

cd ~/Desktop

Step 4. You now simply type youtube-dl then paste the youtube link from step 1. If you're using a site other than youtube, just replace the URL.


Step 5. Now press enter, and you'll see the app kick into motion and start downloading. If anything goes wrong, an error message will pop up, otherwise you can assume it was successful.

Step 6. Now check your desktop, and if everything went well, you'll find your video. Its' worth noting that by default, youtube-dl tries to find and download the highest resolution file available.


Pretty simple isn't it? There are also lots of other options in the man page. You can name the file, change the resolution, export audio, and more. Just type in man youtube-dl and press enter.