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I use Linux KNOPPIX (distro 7.0.2, ver 3.3.7).

I download videos of TV programs from the 60s and 70s (mainly from YouTube). I copy the YouTube URL then paste it into to download it (usually .mp4 format).

Having now got dozens of such video files (and growing) on my hard drive, I'd like to organise them. What I'd like to do is:

  • Say I find a new video, and I'm about to download it. It's possible that I've watched it before but have forgotten.

  • I'd like to be able to check whether I've already watched the video that I'm about to download.

At the moment, once I've watched a video on my hard drive, I move the file to another directory called "Watched". But this of course doesn't alert me in the immediate way that I want.

It would crudely suffice, if I knew after I've downloaded the vid, if I've already watched it (i.e. if the file already exists in my "Watched" directory, or perhaps in a "watched" list).

I sometimes alter the filename of the original video file on hard drive, so this might spoil a filename comparison.

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Hi Dave! The community doesn't really like questions asking for software recommendations, even though there's a specific problem to solve and it's unlikely there exists a readymade solution. Please don't always assume there's "a software" to do any task you imagine — I've rewritten your question to just ask for your real problem and reopened it. This way, it's up to those answering to figure out a way to solve it. – slhck Nov 5 '12 at 23:06
You can create a text file in WATCHED dir containing the youtube links and the associated name of the video. Next time, just check against any new URL against this file. And remember COMPUTERS ARE NOT AN ALTERNATIVE TO GOOD MEMORY. Want a TV SHOW RECOMMENDATION? DECEPTION WITH KEITH BARRY will be good to prove my point – Fasih Khatib Nov 6 '12 at 4:26

There is no good way. Here's why:

  • If you've altered the filename, there's no easy way to compare that against what's on the website. this leaves you with only the video content to compare

  • You can't compare the video content without downloading it to check, and even if you did, it'll trigger false negatives because videos can be of the same topic but have diffrent file hashes due to compression used, run time etc.

i.e: If you have a 1 minute video of a kid riding a bike, and 59 second video of the same kid riding the same bike, and one is more compressed than the other, the only thing you could use to compare it is the filename, and you've changed that.

Also, there's likely some clever video comparison maths boffin work you could employ, but that'll still need downloading the video again to compare it.

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I’m not sure I understand what you are trying to do.

Are you looking for a script which, given a file video.mp4 and a directory Watched, tells you whether there is a file in the directory Watched having the exact same content as video.mp4?

If that’s the only thing you are trying to do, that’s not difficult. You can keep a file containing md5 hashes of every file in Watched and grepping the hash of video.mp4. And you can easily write a wrapper which will move your video to Watched, add its hash to the file and launch vlc on it.

Anything more is basically impossible, as explained by Sirex.

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