The Problem

Livestream.com is a popular host for, you guessed it, live streaming content. Unlike a lot of other services, it’s geared mostly toward production level video. While it has many redeeming qualities, they intentionally make it difficult to get your content off of their platform once it’s been saved.

It’s quite easy to download a single archived video, but if you’re trying to download hundreds of videos that you’ve streamed over the course of years, it’s a whole different ballgame. They do not offer a single way to do this, not even through support requests.

But I had a client that needed it done. I had the option of either spending months manually downloading each individual video or finding another way. You can guess which of those options I chose.

The Solution

There is a command line utility called YouTube-dl that is incredibly powerful. Despite it’s name, it can handle video downloads from almost any site. The downside is it requires terminal use and most users will not be comfortable using it.

If you are comfortable using YouTube-dl, then by all means, go for it. The following directions are not meant for you.

Instead, I recommend a free app called ViDL for Mac. It actually makes use of the aforementioned YouTube-dl, but packages it in an easy-to-use User Interface.

ViDL for Mac

Once you’ve installed the app, navigate to almost any page on the internet with video(s). From there, you can trigger the app via a menu bar icon (or manually by opening the app) and initiate the downloads.

Specifically for livestream.com, navigate to any page that shows your archived videos. You may need to scroll down on the page to make livestream.com load in your older videos (they use infinite scrolling where older videos don’t load on the page until you scroll down to them). Trigger ViDL and watch the magic happen.

Using this method, I downloaded multiple hundreds of videos (all over 1 hour in length) in a matter of just a few hours in the background. Obviously, a nice high speed internet connection helps with that as well.

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