UMPlayer: MPlayer frontend


While I had been a die-hard fan of SMPlayer since its early days, I was quite oblivious that there is another clone of SMPlayer that has all the features of it – UMPlayer. The options and GUI are strikingly similar which lead me to believe that UMPlayer is a clone of SMPlayer. What I loved about it is that it comes in a much smaller package and the performance seemed better than SMPlayer even when using 4 threads to decode high-def video. The UI is skinnable and I loved the skin Black which is damn smart lookwise. You can also directly play, download or record videos from YouTube. Audio quality is extremely good (with normalization and software amplification at 130%) and I am using the gl driver for rendering video. It is multiplatform as well. I am so fascinated with this new MPlayer frontend that I removed SMPlayer, which I had been using for years now, from my system.

To install on Ubuntu:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:webupd8team/umplayer
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install umplayer

Webpage: UMPlayer

xVideoServiceThief: download videos

If you download videos from multiple sites every now and then, open source application xVideoServiceThief should be your preferred tool. It supports as many as 93 video hosting sites as of today. You can download in multiple formats as per your choice. Multiplatform (Linux, Windows and Mac).

If YouTube is the only site you download videos from, try SMTube.

You have to download the package from the official website.

Webpage: xVideoServiceThief

SMTube: YouTube on Linux

If you use YouTube frequently then SMTube might become one of your favourite softwares on Linux. It is actually multiplatform but I was looking for a good app specifically for browsing and playing YouTube videos on Ubuntu. It uses the powerful SMPlayer to play the videos and hence is not dependent on flash. As a result the video quality is pretty good specially in case of high resolution videos. You can browse, watch and download videos with the ability to choose the video quality yourself. During my trials I found the video browsing pretty fast.

To install on Ubuntu:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:rvm/smplayer
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install smtube

Download YouTube videos (no JAVA)

mediaIf you download YouTube videos often but do not want to install JAVA or any additional browser extensions on your system, try The online tool takes a bit of time to process and convert the videos (just like any other online site of its kind) but it worth the time. You can select or fine-tune you preferred quality as well. You can also download only the audio stream in preferred quality.

Download video or audio from YouTube streams without having to install a bulky package like JAVA.

Other options

  • To download only audio from a YouTube video, try YouTube mp3 or VidTomp3 or FullRip
  • SaveVideo
  • Use SMTube to avoid the browser as well!
  • cclive on Linux
  • xVideoServiceThief
  • NomNom: Graphical video streaming and download tool for YouTube and 40+ similar sites.
  • ClipGrab: free downloader and converter for YouTube, Vimeo, Metacafe, Dailymotion and many other online video sites.
  • mps-youtube (aka mpsyt) can search, stream and download music and video from Youtube. Features:
    > Search and play audio/video from YouTube
    > Search tracks of albums by album title
    > Search and import YouTube playlists
    > Create and save local playlists
    > Download audio/video
    > View video comments
    > Works with Python 2.7+ and 3.x
    > Works with Windows, Linux and Mac OS X
    > Requires mplayer or mpv
  • YouTube-DL is a python script that helps you customize and download video from many popular video hosting sites using the cmdline. Along with this, you also find metacafe-dl and nicovideo-dl in synaptic.To see all available formats of a video:
    $ youtube-dl -F
    [youtube] Setting language
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Downloading video webpage
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Downloading video info webpage
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Extracting video information
    Available formats:
    34 : flv [360x640]
    18 : mp4 [360x640]
    43 : webm [360x640]
    5 : flv [240x400]
    17 : mp4 [144x176]

    To download the webm format listed above:

    $ youtube-dl -f 43
    [youtube] Setting language
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Downloading video webpage
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Downloading video info webpage
    [youtube] kRg1WbFvXqo: Extracting video information
    [download] Destination: kRg1WbFvXqo.webm
    [download]  18.9% of 73.60M at   58.62k/s ETA 17:22
  • KeepTube
  • NetVideoHunter

To extract audio from the downloaded file locally check this post which explains how to do that using ffmpeg.

If you want YouTube to play videos using HTML5 change the setting here.