youtube-dl is a command-line program that lets you easily download videos and audio from more than a thousand websites. See the list of supported sites.
There are also various graphical frontends to youtube-dl and/or yt-dlp, such as AUR and yt-dlg ( AUR). You can also install AUR which provides a fake
/usr/bin/youtube-dl executable (that just redirects to yt-dlp) for outdated programs that still look for a youtube-dl executable.
The system-wide configuration file is
/etc/yt-dlp.conf and the user-specific configuration file is
~/.config/yt-dlp/config. The syntax is simply one command-line option per line. Example configuration:
--ignore-errors # --no-playlist # Save in ~/Videos -o ~/Videos/%(title)s.%(ext)s # Prefer 1080p or lower resolutions -f bestvideo[ext=mp4][width<2000][height<=1200]+bestaudio[ext=m4a]/bestvideo[ext=webm][width<2000][height<=1200]+bestaudio[ext=webm]/bestvideo[width<2000][height<=1200]+bestaudio/best[width<2000][height<=1200]/best
See  for more information.
Seefor the manual.
$ yt-dlp [OPTIONS] URL
URLcan be substituted with the video ID.
When multiple formats of a video are available, youtube-dl will download the best ones by default.
To select a specific one to download:
$ yt-dlp -f format URL
To get a list of the available formats:
$ yt-dlp -F URL
-x for audio-only downloads (requires FFmpeg):
$ yt-dlp -x -f bestaudio URL
Depending on the available source streams, this will often correct the audio-only container. If an audio-only stream is not available, exclude
-f bestaudio from the example above. This will download the video and copy its audio as post process. By default this will remove the downloaded video, include
-k to keep it.
To also include album art (requires):
$ yt-dlp -x -f bestaudio[ext=m4a] --add-metadata --embed-thumbnail URL
To see which languages are available:
$ yt-dlp --list-subs URL
To download a video with selected subtitles (comma separated):
$ yt-dlp --write-sub --sub-lang LANG URL
For auto-generated subtitles:
$ yt-dlp --write-auto-sub --sub-lang LANG URL
--skip-download to get only subtitles.
Tips and tricks
Some websites throttle transfer speeds. You can often get around this by choosing non DASH streams or by using aria2, an external downloader which supports multi-connection downloads. For example:
$ yt-dlp --external-downloader aria2c --external-downloader-args '-c -j 3 -x 3 -s 3 -k 1M' URL
Using youtube-dl for a playlist usually boils down to the following options:
$ yt-dlp --ignore-errors --continue --no-overwrites --download-archive progress.txt usual options URL
This set of options allow for the download to effectively continue even after interruption. If you are archiving, add the usual
--embed-xxx options you may have.
Trim (partial download)
Parts of videos can be downloaded by using the output of
yt-dlp -g -f format URL as ffmpeg input with the
-ss (for input),
-c copy options.
URL from clipboard
- GitHub repository for documentation.