Tag: video

youtube-dl and Video DownloadHelper

Online video streaming is a very common activity for the current availability of the Internet service. Downloading the video from the web service such as YouTube is one of the common activities among the Internet users.

There are two powerful tools I am using for downloading these videos: youtube-dl and Video DownloadHelper.

youtube-dl is a command-line utility which allows to download various formats of the video available on the webpage; Video DownloadHelper offers similar feature as youtube-dl, yet it is a Firefox addon. Both tools support various websites, not only YouTube alone.

In my opinion, youtube-dl though is a command-line utility, it is more powerful than Video DownloadHelper. Firstly, it can download video from YouTube by choosing different combination of video format and audio format, then it will merge the video and audio together as one file. This provides a freedom to decide our own video format. Secondly, youtube-dl is able to use “generic” method to download the video from a website, if the website is not supported. That means, if Video DownloadHelper cannot detect the streaming video, then we can try to use youtube-dl.

VirtualDub and other video editing software (Linux)

I was using VirtualDub. It is the best (for me). I can simply mark the part of the video that I want to remove, or copy, or move, or duplicate. Moreover, with the plugins, I can also add the subtitles, overlay, and other effects on the video. Though there are less wonderful 3D effects like other software, it is very easy and good to use. There are some limitations, such as it can only load the AVI files. However, codecs of the video is based on what we have installed on the Windows. Thus, we can encode to the smaller size AVI with the codec such as Xvid. There is modified version, VirtualDubMod, yet I still prefer VirtualDub. Another problem is that VirtualDub is only available on Windows. Though, we can use Wine to run VirtualDub smoothly. However, we needs to install the codecs that we need to Wine, so that VirtualDub is able to use the codecs. Because I am using Linux, so I am looking an alternative that can work like VirtualDub. I tried some software. The followings are my little comments on the tested software.

Blender (Video Sequence Editor)

It can open almost any video file. Good interface. The concept of marking the start frame and end frame is different from VirtualDub. It is actually cut (split) the video. So that, we can select the segment to move or duplicate the segment.


It has a problem to view the video during editing, because of frame problem, as a result cannot mark the frame easily.


It has the problem to create marks like VirtualDub. But the concept is similar to Blender, that is “cut”. However, we cannot “duplicate” the segment. We need to add another (temporary) track with the same video and split it and move to the target track. Then the temporary track can be removed.


It cannot copy the selection and paste. Copy and paste work on the whole video clip. It is difficult to cut the track like Blender, because it is using the razor tool (cutter?). That means we need to use the mouse to “cut” it precisely.


The marker does not work as start and end. It is using the razor tool like Kdenlive. It works similar to Kdenlive.


Too bad. It has limited video size.


It can copy and cut easily. But it cannot load most of the files produced by FFmpeg (may be the problem of the way I encode with FFmpeg). As a result, almost nothing works. As a conclusion, I personally prefer Blender and Pitivi. Though a lot of people mentioned Avidemux, it does not work like what I expected.

Shotcut (added 2015-06-09)

Recently I found this video editor. I used it for resizing the video file. It works fine. Should take a try.