There are lots of ways to download YouTube videos for free. Some of the more popular methods involve video downloader websites and YouTube downloaders that you have install to your computer.
Below are instructions for saving YouTube videos and movies to your computer without needing any YouTube downloading software or video ripping web apps.
All you have to do is trick your web browser into thinking it’s a mobile browser, forcing the video to load differently, which ultimately reveals the video’s download link. As tough as it sounds, it’s actually pretty straightforward.
This is by far the safest way to download #YouTube videos for #free…no software requiredTweet
Important: It’s illegal to download videos that you don’t own. We don’t condone downloading YouTube videos that aren’t owned by you, so stick with public domain videos only or strictly the videos that you own and have uploaded yourself.
YouTube Video Download Directions
Follow the instructions that apply to your web browser. Once you complete the steps, you’ll get the YouTube video as an MP4 file.
Chrome and Opera
Step 1: Open the video you want to download from YouTube.
Step 2: Right-click an empty area on the page and choose Inspect.
Note: If you’re in Opera, look for Inspect element.
Step 3: From the three-dotted menu on the right, go to More tools > Network conditions.
You might also drag the inspect tool window upward to make room for the network conditions window. You can do that by clicking the top of the window and dragging it as high as you want it to go. Just be sure to keep the video visible.
Step 4: From the network conditions screen, remove the check in the box next to Select automatically, and then choose Firefox – iPhone from the drop-down menu.
Step 5: Refresh the YouTube page. You can also exit the network conditions screen by selecting its x off to the right (be sure to keep the inspect window open, which is the higher one on the page).
Step 6: Click the video once to start playing it. Wait a few seconds, and then click it again to pause.
Step 7: Right-click the video and select Inspect (or Inspect element in Opera).
Step 8: Look in the inspect window on the bottom of the screen for a highlighted line of code. You’re looking for a line that starts with src= and then follows with a really long URL.
Here’s an example:
Step 9: Double-click the link so that it becomes a box you can select from. It will be really long, so double-click only once or you might lose track of it.
Step 10: Use the Ctrl+C keyboard shortcut to copy the YouTube video’s download link.
Step 11: Open a new tab in Chrome and use the Ctrl+V shortcut to paste that link. Hit Enter to open it.
Step 12: With the YouTube video now isolated as an MP4 file, use the three-dotted menu on the bottom right of the video player to find the Download link. Click it to download the YouTube video.
The video downloads as the file name videoplayback.mp4, but when you’re asked where to save it, you can rename it whatever you want.
Step 1: Enter about:config into the address bar and then press Enter.
Step 2: Select I accept the risk! if you see that screen.
Step 3: Search for general.useragent.override. If you see it, move on to the next step.
If you don’t see it, right-click an empty space on the page and go to New > String. Name it general.useragent.override and then press OK. When asked for the string value, type this, followed by OK:
Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 8_3 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/600.1.4 (KHTML, like Gecko) FxiOS/1.0 Mobile/12F69 Safari/600.1.4
Step 4: Open YouTube and search for the video you want to download.
The website will redirect to YouTube’s mobile site (which is what you want) because you just told Firefox to treat pages as if you were on an iPhone.
Step 5: Pause the video when it starts playing.
Step 6: Right-click the video player and choose Inspect Element.
Step 7: In the screen that pops up on the bottom of Firefox, locate the highlighted link. It should follow the code called “nodownload” src=”.
When you see it, double-click the link to expand it.
Step 8: Hit Ctrl+C on your keyboard to copy the entire URL to your clipboard.
Step 9: Open a new tab in Firefox and paste the code, which you can do with the right-click menu or the Ctrl+V shortcut.
Step 10: Right-click the video and choose Save Video As. Name it whatever you want and save it to your computer to download the YouTube video.
Step 11: After you’re done download YouTube videos through Firefox, return to Step 3 above to find the general.useragent.override item. Right-click it and choose Reset to make sure Firefox quits loading mobile pages.
Step 1: Change the user agent in Safari. To do that, go to Safari > Preferences. Open the Advanced tab and enable the option on the bottom called Show Develop menu in menu bar.
Then, go to Develop menu, pick User Agent, and then choose the iPad option.
Step 2: Open the YouTube video you want to download through Safari.
Step 3: Click to play it, and then pause it after it’s played a few seconds.
Step 4: Right-click the video and select Inspect Element. If you don’t see it, right-click another part of the video player until it shows up.
Step 5: Double-click the long link that shows up at the bottom of Safari.
Step 6: Right-click the link and choose Open in New Tab.
Step 7: Right-click the video from the new tab and choose Download Video As. Name the video whatever you want, and save it wherever you like.
To reset the user agent in Safari so that YouTube pages stop loading as if they were on an iPad, just close the YouTube tab.