How to download videos and Live using youtube-dl

Please check the terms of use of each site before using it

What is youtube-dl

youtube-dl is a command line program to download videos and live from YouTube and other sites.

Official site: youtube-dl

Supported Sites

List of supported video sharing sites: Supported sites |
Right now, you can see that niconico, Instagram and Twitter are also supported.

You can also check the supported sites by running the following command

youtube-dl --extractor-descriptions


GitHub Repository: youtube-dl | GitHub
A list and description of the command Option can also be found here.


Install each tool in each environment, such as macOS and Windows.

How to check youtube-dl version

youtube-dl --version

How to download YouTube videos

Example: Simple example

Enter the URL of the video or Live in the section below and run it.

youtube-dl <URL>

Example: Download the best available mp4 format or download the best other format

Here’s an example from GitHub’s

youtube-dl <URL> -f 'bestvideo[ext=mp4]+bestaudio[ext=m4a]/best[ext=mp4]/best'

Example: Converting downloaded video to mp4 format

youtube-dl <URL>
ffmpeg -i <youtube-dl download file name> <output file name>.mp4

How to download playlist videos in bulk

youtube-dl -i <URL of the playlist>

By using -i, --ignore-errors, the
If some of the videos in the playlist fail to play and you get an error, continue downloading.

How to download multiple videos at once using file.

youtube-dl -a <FILE>


First, save a plain text file with one URL per line.
Then, specify the path to the file (above, as shown in the above list) in the section.
Then you can download the file in batches.

How to download audio as mp3

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


-x part is an Option to convert a video file to an audio file. Abbreviated form of --extract-audio.
You can download audio files with -x alone.

--audio-format mp3 is an Option to specify the format of the audio file.
For the mp3 part, you can specify a different Format.

How to download videos from niconico.

Here’s an example to run in PowerShell

1..10 | % { youtube-dl <niconico URL> }


When you try to download the video in niconico,
It is possible that the download will stop with an error in the middle.
So, as a workaround, I run youtube-dl 10 times.

To be specific, I get the following error.

ERROR: unable to download video data: HTTP Error 403: Forbidden

GitHub Issues

If you do it repeatedly, you can download 100% even if you do it manually.

Please check the terms of use for each site.