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youtube-dl - YouTube To MP3 Downloader for Linux


youtube-dl - YouTube To MP3 Downloader for Linux.

youtube-dl - YouTube to MP3 downloader or any other format of your choosing, it is the most complete CLI based YouTube downloader, with support for many other sites.

However there is a GUI ( Graphical User Interface ) available now called Youtubedl-gui.

youtube-dl is a command-line program to download videos from YouTube.com and a few more sites. It requires the Python interpreter, version 2.6, 2.7, or 3.2+, and it is not platform specific.

With this advanced CLI-application you can easily download videos from over 270+ sites and amongst these are those listed below.

YouTube, Metacafe, Dailymotion, Instagram, Vine, Vimeo, Tumblr, Trilulilu, Syfy, Slashdot, RottenTomatoes, NBC, NBA, NBCNews, MySpace, MTV, Metacritic, KickStarter, GameSpot, Flickr, Dropbox, Discovery, CollegeHumor, ComedyCentral, CNN, CBS, Bloomberg, and 9gag.

In addition to the above, the 4tube, AddAnime, AppleTrailers, ARD, Bandcamp, BlipTV, Brightcove, Chilloutzone, Cinemassacre, Clipsyndicate, DepositFiles, and FranceInter are also among the supported websites.

You will also be able to download videos from adult-only websites, like YouPorn, XTube, XNXX, Pornjam, Pornotube, XHamster, PornHub, PornHd, RedTube, and Mofosex.

However, if you want to convert the .webm videos to .mp3, you will need FFMpeg installed on your system.

Version: 2021.06.06-1 available in Debian 11 "Bullseye" repository.

The easy way is to install the version from Debians repository, but if you want the latest, you need to read carefully here.

For LMDE5 users, you can use the Software Manager to install the program.

Note: There is also a GUI available as Flatpak for LMDE5 users in Software Manager.

How to install via a Terminal window:

supo apt-get install youtube-dl

Press, Enter. Done !

How to install the latest version:

sudo wget https://yt-dl.org/downloads/latest/youtube-dl -O /usr/local/bin/youtube-dl

Press Enter.

sudo chmod a+rx /usr/local/bin/youtube-dl

Press Enter, done.

Now let's learn how to use it, by examples:

For FULL HD 1080p:

youtube-dl -o file.mp4 -f 37 "URL"

Press Enter.

For 720p:

youtube-dl -o file.mp4 -f 22 "URL"

Press Enter.

Basic command is sometimes best option:

youtube-dl "URL"

Press Enter.

Other options:

-b "Best quality"
-m "Mobile version"
-d "High Definition"
-g "Don’t download, just show the url"
-c "Resume download of a video which was interrupted before."
-w "Don’t overwrite existing file."

To download and convert mp4, webm or any other format the YouTube Video might have, this command will download and convert it into an .mp3 file:

youtube-dl --extract-audio --audio-format mp3 <video URL>

Press Enter when done, wait and if it takes longer than expected, use:


To download a Playlist:

youtube-dl -itcv --yes-playlist https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=

NOTE: This will download mp4, webm, mkv etc formats.

Press Enter, look for the files in your user home directory.

Now if you want to make this list turn into .mp3's do it like this:

youtube-dl -itcv --yes-playlist --extract-audio --audio-format mp3 https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUDOMtEpSH_5kkA0iGd3AyEG7_7W1OVrV

Remember: Just copy the PLUDOMtEpSH_ .....etc after https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list= here it goes !!!!

How to update YouTube-DL software:

sudo youtube-dl -U

Press Enter.

If for some reason youtube-dl doesn't work, do this:

sudo apt-get install python3-pip

Press Enter.

Then to fix the error:

sudo pip install youtube-dl --upgrade

Press Enter, this did it for me, however, there's still one more solution below if this doesn't work for you.

Clear youtube-dl's cache:

youtube-dl --rm-cache-dir

Press Enter, now it should be working.

Note: If your .mp3 is nameless !

Uninstall youtube-dl and update to latest youtube-dl.

If pip doesn't work for you, read this:

However, I did run into some problems later on the version before 2019.06.27, give or take a few months. So here is what I did.

Un-install all of it, yep the whole program and all its dependencies, via "Synaptic".

But first install it all and then uninstall it all, not so complicated but annoying.

Then test a download command from YouTube and if it tells you there is no youtube-dl installed, you are good to go !

Do the following and it should work:

sudo curl -L https://yt-dl.org/downloads/latest/youtube-dl -o /usr/local/bin/youtube-dl

Press Enter.

sudo chmod a+rx /usr/local/bin/youtube-dl

Press Enter and then enter the URL you want to download.

youtube-dl -x --audio-format mp3 <URL>

PS. You need ffmpeg installed with "libmp3lame mp3 codec". This part is advanced and I will show you how to solve it in the ffmpeg article.

Press Enter, done.

Now it works fine for me again...

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