Orbit Downloader: Download Online Videos

by JL Beeken on 8-17-2009

Orbit DownloaderToday’s subject is how to download videos from the Internet.

So far, I don’t recall much need to download videos while searching for ancestors but you never know. It could become a raging concern.

When you’re cruising around in Video Land, you’ve probably noticed that sometimes there’s an obvious way to save a video and sometimes there isn’t. Sometimes there’s a Save button right under the video and sometimes you can right-click and Save As, and sometimes the video just sits there staring at you while you’re twisting and turning trying to figure out how to get it off the screen onto your computer.

I came across a nifty little program called Orbit Downloader. I’ve never read the instructions on this; that might be an idea. I’ve just been hacking my way through. After you have it installed, you’ll see a symbol at the top of any videos on a page that looks like this:

GetIt, Orbit Downloader

If you start playing the video first and then click that button, the Grab++ window should open on your screen with the video listed. Next would be to tick off the thing that’s actually a video (in this case the FLV file) and click Download.  Or switch your options from All to Video and it will sort the list for you. You’re next taken to a screen where you browse to the Destination you want it to download to.

Grab++, Orbit Downloader

Sometimes this happens, sometimes it doesn’t. If you click the Grab++ button and you’re confronted with a blank Grab++ box, then take note of where it says Tips: Please start sniffer BEFORE … etc. The ‘sniffer’ is Grab++. Sometimes you have to refresh your screen, start the video playing again and then click the Grab++ button. Sometimes it won’t co-operate no matter what but mostly it does work.

Videos download in much less time than they take to play all the way through. You can line up several at once by hitting the Play button on all of them. Just turn off your speakers to save your sanity.

GetIt, Orbit Downloader

This has to have Internet access so if it doesn’t work at all, give Orbit Downloader and Grab++ permission to get through your firewall.

Also, see Orbit Downloader: Start Sniffer | Grab++

(Update: If you are unable to get the ‘GetIt’ button to appear at all, search ‘video downloader’ in Firefox Add-ons, You’ll find other choices. Or possibly try an older version of the program.)

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