Downloading streaming video feeds

by on July 15, 2009

Q: Where do the movies I watch in Google Chrome get downloaded to? If they get saved to my computer is there any way I could extract it from that location and save it so I can watch them again later without having to download them?

A: Websites often stream audio and video so that users do not have to wait for the entire file to download before they can start watching or listening to it. The side effect is that the file is usually not actually stored on the computer at all. The computer just stores pieces of it in memory.

There are two methods that you can use to store the files on your computer.

The first is to install an add-on program to your Internet browser. The Google Chrome community calls such add-on programs extensions. According to my research, Chrome has only basic extension capabilities at this time. Better extension capabilities are planned for future Chrome releases. If you are willing to use Firefox instead of Chrome then there is an excellent add-on called Video DownloadHelper, which also does audio and pictures. The DownloadHelper add-on will only work in the Firefox Internet browser.

Your second option is to paste the address of the content that you want to download into a special website, such as Media Convert (use the “Conversion from URL” tab on that website). This method is sometimes difficult because websites often try to hide the true addresses of their audio/video content. You should be able to use your Internet browser of your choice with the web based options though.

It should be noted that it may be illegal in your area to download some audio/video from the Internet. This answer is specifically to be used with downloading streaming files that you have the rights to.

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