I am trying to download following video:


by combining 'youtube-dl' and 'axel'. I am trying to download this video in such a way that I want these two softwares (youtube-dl and axel) to not only save this video as "interview.mp4" but also limit download speed to 200KB. For this purpose, I used following command:

youtube-dl -f 22 -c -i --external-downloader /usr/bin/axel -o 'interview.mp4' -s 200000 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQWj2Fgxdrc

Here I am using following options:

-f 22 for video format

-c for resume download

-i for ignore errors

-o for output file name

-s 200000 for limit download speed to 200KB

However, instead of downloading the video at 200KB and saving it as "interview.mp4", it is giving following error:

ERROR: fixed output name but more than one file to download

I have also tried following variation of command:

youtube-dl -f 22 -c -i --external-downloader /usr/bin/axel -s 200000 -o 'interview.mp4'  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQWj2Fgxdrc


youtube-dl -f 22 -c -i --external-downloader /usr/bin/axel -o 'interview.mp4' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQWj2Fgxdrc -s 200000


youtube-dl -f 22 -c -i -o 'interview.mp4' --external-downloader /usr/bin/axel -s 200000 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQWj2Fgxdrc

But still same error is appearing. However, if I remove the option (-s 200000), the error disappear and the video starts to download. But I want to use (-s 200000) option so that it should not eat all the bandwidth. What mistake I am doing here?

  • Instead of -o 'interview.mp4' -s 200000, can you try --external-downloader-args '-o interview.mp4 -s 200000' ? If it works, I'll add it as a proper answer with some references.
    – Haxiel
    Feb 18 '19 at 15:19

The problem is solved. The following command worked for me:

youtube-dl -f 22 -c -i \
    --external-downloader-args '-s 200000' \
    --external-downloader /usr/bin/axel \
    -o 'interview.mp4' \

Thanks to 'snowpine' at linuxquestions.org.

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