This used to be a simple question to answer.

Click on the arrow that points down at the far bottom right of the Quicktime movie window. This will display a number of options - one of which is to 'Save As'. Select it and ta da - you have a local copy of your favourite Quicktime movie.

Unfortunately, this answer doesn't work for all Quicktime movies anymore.

Recently, Apple introduced a new 'feature' into the Quicktime format which allowed producers to disable the 'Save As' option or to even remove the entire 'down arrow' button. For what reason is beyond me. Stop people making unauthorised copies? To force people to visit their website to view the trailer? To count the number of views? Whatever. All I know is that I get damn sick of waiting for a movie trailer to download again if I decide that I want to watch it a second/third/fourth time!

So, if you encounter a Quicktime movie which has had the 'Save As' feature disabled, here is how you can still make a local copy:

  • View the Quicktime movie
  • Find out where your internet cache is stored (in Netscape it is referred to as cache, in IE it is referred to as 'Temporary Internet Files'). You can find out the location by looking under the Options menu in your browser.
  • Search in that folder for files with the .mov extension
  • Copy the required file out of the cache to a normal folder
Ta da - you now have your own local copy of the Quicktime movie and you can watch it as many times as you like without chewing up your bandwidth or wasting your time while it downloads!

Note: Some of the Quicktime movies can be quite large in size (30+ Mbyte). If the size of your cache is smaller than the Quicktime movie, the movie file will not be stored in the cache which will of course prevent you from grabbing a copy. In this case, increase the size of your cache to say 50 Mbyte and you will be fine (unless the movie is bigger than 50 Mbyte :)

Further suggestions:
This from Eraser - use wget (there are Windows and *nix versions) to get the file. View the source, piece together the full URL, and then grab it with that!

Another way of saving Quicktime movies to a local machine is through examing the HTML source:

  • Display the source HTML code of the page you are viewing:

    Careful: Sometimes authors uses frames to format HTML pages. This means that using the menu items above may only display the source of the frameset, or another frame, rather than the frame of the page containing the movie itself. To overcome this, right-click the frame that contains the movie, then choose View Source or View Frame Source.

  • Within the source code, search for the phrase .mov or .qt. (Internet Explorer and Opera spawns Notepad which allows search. Mozilla spawns its own source browser, which allows search. Certain versions of Netscape spawns its own source browser, but does not allow search.)
  • If the search is good, then you should land yourself in the middle of an embed tag:
    <embed src="" ...>
    This gives you the URL of the movie file. If it is a relative URL, just prepend the URL of the frame (which can be found by right-clicking the frame and choosing Properties or View Frame Properties).
  • Use wget to download the move.

Usually this would mean downloading the movie twice: (1) to display the page and (2) to download the movie to the local machine. However, for those nimble amongst us, this can be sped up by clicking the Stop button just before (1) finishes. You only need the HTML source, not the images or movies.

Using the Mozilla browser, click on the page containing the embedded object (may it be a Quicktime movie, Flash animation, or anything else) using the right mouse button. Select "View Page Info" from the context menu. Click on the "Media" tab. Select the embeded object in the list and click on the "Save as" button.

Unfortunately, evil corporations never stop in their quest to control their media files, our software, our computers, us and our firstborns. Now Apple sometimes uses another trick, intended to stop saving of their precious trailers. I can't understand why, because downloading it again wastes THEIR bandwidth as well...

Here is what they do. The page displays somethings that looks like picture. It has words, saying something like "Click here to view the trailer". Clicking on it replaces the picture with the video. The problem is that this picture is not actually an image, but a Quicktime media file. But it is not the video, it's just a few kilobytes in size. This means that you are unable to find the URL to the video in the page source. And Quicktime is smart enough not to keep a copy of the video file in the cache. Now there are two possibilities:

  1. You are lucky. Usually after clicking on such picture you can open the next Quicktime file (the latest *.qt or *.mov file in your cache directory) in a text editor and find the http:// links in the beginning of the file. You can now copy these links and download the files.
  2. You are unlucky. But sometimes viewing the small Quicktime file from the cache in a text editor doesn't reveal any links &emdash; they are not always stored as plain text. The solution: Use something that keeps the track of all HTTP connections, like AtGuard! firewall. The instructions below are for AtGuard! 3.2.
    1. If you watched the video file already, close Quicktime, clear browser cache, and close the browser.
    2. Restart the browser
    3. Open the trailer page
    4. Click on the AtGuard! icon in the system tray and select Event Log from the menu.
    5. Open Web History tab.
    6. Select Clear Tab from the Log menu.
    7. Return to the browser and "click to view the trailer".
    8. Return to Event Log. You will see several new records.
    9. One of them is the Quicktime video file. Copy the URL from the bottom part of the screen and download using the browser, wget or anything else.

Note: There is a useful program called StreamBox VCR. It is now discontinued, but you still can find it online. It allows you to save streaming media (Real, Windows Media, etc.). It can also be used to automatically follow links embedded in the media files. I am not sure if it allows to save streaming Quicktime video, since I don't find such files as often as I find streaming Real or WM files, but most probably, it does.

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