About the new Ant Video Downloader 3.0

So, we recently released the new AVD 3.0 for the new browser Mozilla Firefox 57.

After that we begin receiving comments from users, and often there are complains that AVD works differently, or requires something else to install, or does not download something, etc.

The first thing that should be stated is: Firefox is different now. And thus AVD is different extension now as well. It is built using new technology and has nothing in common with the old AVD.

For now, it has not all features that previous AVD had, but we will bring everything back with time.

The second thing is that previous Firefox had been providing a lot of possibilities to extension by means of XPCOM API. Extensions could launch external applications, read, create and write files on disk. Add-ons built with WebExtensions technology have limited power. They are running in strictly sandboxed mode.

Previous AVD could directly call video converter ffmpeg to process downloaded video segments into a single video file. The new AVD cannot directly call external programs, because simply there is no such WebExtensions API available.

On the other hand WebExtensions-based add-on can ask web browser to communicate with some external program. Such external program should be specially designed for that purpose.

That's why we introduced new component of AVD called native messaging host application, or simply native application.

For the sake of security, WebExtension add-ons cannot install any additional software. There is no such API and will never be. You have to explicitly download and install native application.

Native application that we created has low level privileges, it is installed only locally into AppData\Roaming folder of your account. It does not have access to system files, machine-wide registry hives, other users' files, etc. So you can be sure about it.

Video converter ffmpeg that was used by previous version of AVD existed long before AVD ever appeared. Volunteer developers all over the globe managed to create versions of ffmpeg for Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and other operating systems. That's why you could use AVD for Firefox on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.

We will also need to create native application for Linux and Mac OS X, because there are a lot of users of AVD who use those operating systems. And thus will be.

We hope that some things made clear for now.

Check https://www.ant.com/video-downloader for new versions and do not hesitate for contact support.ant.com for additional questions.

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9 Comments

  • 0
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    Cheryl Jackson

    This was extremely helpful.  I appreciate all the hard work you guys are putting in behind the scenes. Thanks AVD.

    Edited by Cheryl Jackson
  • 0
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    Felix Orth

    Don't listen to haters, or ungrateful unpatient brats - keep up the great work and take all the time you need to bring ANT back :)!

     
  • 0
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    Copacetic

    Waiting impatiently :-) for the Mac OS version (Firefox 57)!!

    Edited by Copacetic
  • 0
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    Jason Emery

    I have been using ANT fior a while now.

    Just a different way of working from the old one.

    Could be worse. You might have to pay for one.

     

     

  • 1
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    James Hozier

    It's a bit different now, but functionally ANT is the best because it works for all websites (that I use), like it did before. I've tested all the top video downloaders on the official Firefox website Extensions list with at least 100k users, and all of them in one way or another break for certain websites and are unable to download the videos.

    The old features from the previous generation of Firefox I do miss:

    1) I don't like the new tab to manage downloading the files; I liked the old one-click-to-download button in my Firefox toolbar -- which leads me to:

    2) When downloading direct videos, ANT now brings up the pop-up dialog asking me which folder I want to save to, and it's annoying sometimes when I just want it to download to the default folder immediately without asking me.

    3) The old naming convention doesn't work anymore for direct video downloads; i.e. it uses the exact source filename from the video server as opposed to the browser tab title. e.g. Sometimes the source video file names are like ghh398324g59u3g922.mp4, when that video title on the front-facing website is embedded as like MyVideoTitle.mp4. The old ANT used to save the file as "MyVideoTitle.mp4" but now it saves as "ghh398324g59u3g922.mp4" by default instead.

    4) The stream converter now puts the video container in .mkv which is actually technically better I guess, but I miss the .mp4 container because of the thumbnail previews in my Windows folders (Windows doesn't have the codecs to natively display .mkv thumbnails in the Explorer).

  • 0
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    geo-hawk: Brown

    been using the download tool for awhile now and never had any troubles until tonight with this video here https://vitalanimal.lpages.co/nr-workshop-2017-video-2/ I cannot get that to download no matter what I do......

    Keeps showing error, I've already tried repairing the install...going to uninstall and re-install and see if that works?

  • 0
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    Rexbarker

    So, if I am reading the above correctly, if you are using Mac OS X (as I am), you need to wait till the Native Application is created before we can download and start using AVD 3.0? Good things are worth waiting for I guess!

  • 0
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    Ant R

    Native application for the Mac OS X is under development but unfortunately there are no estimates at the moment.

    You can download only scoring (placed as one file) video if new AVD 3.0 add-on installed without native application.

    Either you can downgrade your browser to use old AVD version.

  • 0
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    Rich Salim

    I realize that I am computer-stupid, but I have read the above article and don't understand.  Is the downloader no longer usable for regular people?  All I know is that every time I try to download something I get a new window with some crap about "native applications" or something.  I don't understand that either.  From what I could get out of this article, it seems that this program doesn't work.  Why don't you just wait until you have something that does?  I understand that this is a free program, and I appreciate a practical joke as much as the next guy, but this seems like the wrong time for it.  Will you eventually have something that works?

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