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How To Download Any Video From Any Website: 6 Practical Ways

In the age of streaming media, downloading videos from websites is still a common need, whether it’s for offline viewing, educational use, or editing purposes.

So is there a way to download any video from any website? Typically, most videos can be downloaded using a dedicated video downloader app, but for some DRM-protected videos such as those on Netflix and Hulu, you may need to subscribe to the video content or screen capture to download them.

This article provides 6 tested ways to download videos from websites and detailed instructions on how to use the representative tools.

Use Browser Developer Tools to Manually Download Videos

Applies to: websites without source code encryption, such as Instagram, TikTok, Rumble, Bitchute, etc.

Pros: utilize the built-in features of your web browser without having to download any program or risk online tools, download embedded videos

Cons: limited website support, can’t select video quality, no batch download

Inspect Element

  1. From your computer, open the video you want to download on any web browser, such as Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge, etc.
  2. Right-click on the page and select “Inspect”, a panel of developer tools appears.
  3. Press Command+F to bring up a search bar and type “mp4” or “video” to quickly find the video source link.
  4. Right-click on the link and open it in a new tab.
  5. As the video plays in a separate tab, right-click on it and choose “Save video as” to download it.

Inspect Network Traffic

If you fail to find a video download link in the Elements tab, you can use the Network tool to try to capture the video stream. 

  1. Use the same way above to access the browser developer tools.
  2. Go to the Network tab > Media, and press Ctrl + R to refresh the page.
  3. Click on a media file in the left side below, and copy its request URL.
  4. Open the copied URL in a new tab and the video you want to download will play.
  5. Now you can download the video by right-clicking and selecting a video save option.

Download Videos from Any Website with Desktop Video Downloader

Applies to: most websites including YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, Twitter, Bilibili, and thousands of  sites.

Pros: download videos from virtually any website safely, support batch download, provide video quality options, display video file size before download

Cons: often need to pay to get the full version

Cisdem Video Converter

Most websites, like YouTube, have applied encryption schemes to prevent unauthorized downloads, and advanced video streaming protocols also add to the difficulty of downloading full videos from a website. In such cases, professional video download software is your best bet that provides more support.

Cisdem Video Converter is one of the most reliable video downloaders available on PC and Mac. It can download videos and music from over 1,000 video-sharing websites without losing quality. Unlike browser-based tools, it can save videos hours long without limits, and download videos in any available resolutions up to 4K/8K. Additionally, it allows you to convert video to any format such as MP4, MKV and MP3, and edit the video based on your preferences.

Instructions:

  1. Download and install Cisdem Video Converter from its official site.
  2. Copy the URL of the video you want to download from the address bar.
  3. Launch Cisdem, click the third tab on the top to access the video downloader window, and paste the copied URL to the provided field.
  4. Click the + button to parse the video link, it will display video information soon.
  5. Choose a desired format and resolution from the Format drop-down list.
  6. Click the Download button at the lower right corner to start downloading videos from any website.

Use Online Video Downloaders

Applies to: various websites without DRM protection

Pros: download videos online easily without any software, available on mobile devices, free to use

Cons: slow download speed, potential playback problems with the downloaded videos

Youtube4kdownloader.com

Despite its name, Youtube4kdownloader is a universal online video downloader that supports dozens of popular sites including YouTube, Twitch, Bilibili, Facebook, and more. It stands out among numerous online tools for reasons, it can save videos longer than 2 hours, and download online videos in 1080p Full HD.

  1. Visit youtube4kdownloader.com on any browser.
  2. Copy a video link and paste it into the field.
  3. Click Download to load video information.
  4. Choose a download option from the list below, and click the green Download button to save the video to your device.

Note: If it doesn’t support the video you want to download, look for a specific online downloader designed for the website you want to rip videos from.

Use Internet Download Manager on Windows

Applies to: various video streaming websites

Pros: integrate with Chrome and other browsers – no need to copy and paste video URLs, download HD videos up to 4K

Cons: not available for Mac OS and other non-Windows systems, need to buy a license after a 30-day free trial

Internet Download Manager is a universal video downloader program that works with its browser extension, so you can download any video in Google Chrome, Firefox, Edge, and other browsers from almost any website.

  1. Download IDM from its official website, and install the .exe file.
  2. Install the IDM extension for Google Chrome or other browsers by following the prompts.
  3. Play the video you want to download in your browser, a “Download this video” button should pop up.
  4. Click on the button to view all video formats and quality levels available for the video, and choose one option to proceed.
  5. As a download file dialog pops up, you can edit the filename and choose a directory to save the video, then start the download progress. You can download several videos at the same time.

Tip: IDM will take over all your downloads once it’s installed, which can be annoying sometimes. You can hold the Alt key to temporarily disable IDM from launching while clicking a download link on a website. You can also set up IDM to download only videos in the “Options > File types” dialog, deleting all file extensions other than video files.

Download Videos from the Web Using Youtube-dl GUI

Applies to: non-premium videos from almost any website

Pros: free, open-source and cross-platform tool

Cons: slower download speed, sometimes no sound or video lag when downloading videos at the best quality

Youtube-dl is a free command-line tool to download videos from YouTube and many more sites like Dailymotion, Vimeo, NBC, etc. However, it doesn’t provide a clickable user interface like the other tools above, and requires a steep learning curve. Then there is GUI (graphical user interface) for youtube-dl, which allows anyone to download videos via youtube-dl much easier, without having to learn complicated command-line skills. Stacher is a user-friendly and cross-platform youtube-dl GUI that I’d like to recommend. You can use it on Mac, Windows, and Linux.

Instructions:

  1. Download and install Stacher on your computer, it will automatically install youtube-dl on startup.
  2. Paste a video URL to the field and click the red Download icon. It will download the video stream in the highest quality by default, you can click the “BEST” to set up another output format.
  3. View the download progress below to see if the video is downloaded successfully.

There are more GUIs for youtube-dl you can try, such as YDL-UI for Windows and MacYTDL for Mac. Note that they just offer different interfaces, the video download feature is basically the same.

Save Undownloadable Videos With Screen Recorders

Applies to: any video from any website that cannot be downloaded by other means

Pros: many free options available for all devices, save DRM-protected videos

Cons: time-consuming

If you come across videos that you want but fail to download with the above methods, you can try to record and save the video using screen recorder software.

Using OBS Studio (PC, Mac, Linux)

OBS is a popular free software for video recording, available on Windows and Mac OS. It allows you to output the recording to various formats. Here is a simple how-to guide:

  1. Visit the video you want to download on any browser.
  2. Launch OBS Studio, at the bottom of the Sources dock, click on the + symbol, and select “Window Capture”.
  3. Select a specific window (e.g. Chrome) that contains the online video in a pop-up dialog.
  4. If needed, navigate to Settings > Output to set up the recording format you want, such as MP4, MOV, MKV, etc.
  5. Click Start Recording on the Controls dock and play the video to begin recording.
  6. Click Stop Recording when the video playback is complete.

Using Screenshot (Mac)

The Screenshot is a built-in tool on Mac that can record your screen and output to a MOV file.

  1. Press Shift+Command+5 on your keyboard to open the Screenshot panel.
  2. Select a recording mode to record the entire screen or record selected portion.
  3. Click on the Record button to start recording the video.
  4. Click the Stop Recording button in the top menu bar.

On Android and iPhone, simply swipe down from the top right of the screen to find the built-in Record button in the Control Center. Tap on the button to start recording the video, and tap the red stop button in the top left corner to stop recording. Then the video should be saved to your photos album. You can trim or crop the video for a better viewing experience.

Conclusion

Downloading videos from websites allows you to enjoy your favorite videos offline and without ads. If you’re still unsure how to download a video you need from a certain website, my advice is to experiment more, starting with the first method. Of course, to save time, the most recommended method is always to use professional video download software, such as Cisdem, which can download videos from almost any website and offers the fastest processing speed. Additionally, please make sure you have the necessary permission to download the video and use the downloaded content responsibly while respecting copyrights.

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