How do I Save YouTube Videos to Disk?

by Stephanie Ellen

The video-sharing website YouTube uses the Flash FLV format to stream user-generated videos, movie clips and music videos. While you can't save YouTube videos directly to your computer from the YouTube website, you can use a third-party website or program to download Youtube videos to your computer. Once you have the YouTube videos saved to disk, you can view them using your computer's media player or transfer them to a portable media device.

Step 1

Navigate to KeepVid (see Resources) and type or paste the URL for the YouTube video into the "URL" text box. Click the "Download" button and allow the program to run on your computer. In addition to YouTube, KeepVid also allows you to download videos from other popular video sites like Google Video and Dailymotion.

Step 2

Open the SaveVid website (see Resources) and type or paste the YouTube video's URL into the "Paste the address of the video you want to download" text box. Click the "Download" button, then select a format for the downloaded YouTube video. SaveVid also allows you to download from several other video websites, including Metacafe and Google Videos.

Use YouTube Downloader to save YouTube videos to disk (see Resources). Click the "Download Now" button, then install the program on your computer. Launch YouTube Downloader, specify a default download vacation, paste the URL for the YouTube video into the text box and click "Download." This program allows you to keep all of your downloaded YouTube videos in one place, which can be convenient if you download a lot of videos.


  • Respect copyright law when downloading online videos.


  • Downloaded YouTube videos have the same quality as they do on the website, which may not be very high. If you want a high-quality video, send a message to the YouTube user who created the video and ask him if he would consider sending you a higher-quality video.


About the Author

Stephanie Ellen teaches mathematics and statistics at the university and college level. She coauthored a statistics textbook published by Houghton-Mifflin. She has been writing professionally since 2008. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Science in health science from State University New York, a master's degree in math education from Jacksonville University and a Master of Arts in creative writing from National University.

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