[ubuntu-uk] Anyway of downloading Iplayer?

Andrew Oakley andrew at aoakley.com
Thu Feb 7 11:00:22 GMT 2008

Javad Ayaz wrote:
> Does anyone know how to download files from the iplayer?

The main problem is the RTMP protocol used for streaming FLV data to the 
Flash player. RTMP isn't currently supported by any stable Linux 
application other than the closed-source Adobe Flash Player.

There is discussion on the development of an open-source RTMP handler on 
this forum (Linux on the XBox):


So far they have written a script to extract an RTMP URL given a BBC 
iPlayer web page URL:


It looks like RTMP will shortly be included in the Gnash open-source 
Flash player, and in the PHP CURL module. From there it will be little 
effort to take this code and insert it into, say, mplayer and then use 
-dumpstream to rip the stream down to a file.

So the answer is: wait a couple of months and then download the latest 
versions of Gnash, CURL and/or your favourite media player.

In the mean time, the only method that works right now is 
screen-grabbing your browser window with something like Record My Desktop.

A higher quality option would be to buy a cheap Freeview Playback box 
and replace the fixed hard drive with a hard drive caddy. Record the 
programmes then mount the hard drive on your local machine, then rip the 
MPEG2 stream file to whatever you fancy.

Andrew Oakley

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