You are able to play Youtube videos in VLC media player by going to Media > Open Network Stream and pasting in the Youtube video URL in the "Please enter a network URL:" box and pressing Play.

For example, pasting the Youtube URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R-_sxP5kCk in this box, and pressing Play starts the video in VLC media player.

But if you try to paste a Vimeo URL: http://vimeo.com/11510254 in this box, then click Play, the VLC window just kind of flashes, and nothing really seems to happen, the video doesn't play.

Is there a way to play Vimeo videos in VLC media player like Youtube videos? I couldn't find anything really through my own research on this. Seems like a natural thing for VLC to support this behavior for Vimeo, since it's a pretty popular and well known video site.

I'm on Windows 7 home premium 64 bit, using VLC 2.1.3

  • 1
    The "Open Network Stream" is mainly for opening regular HTTP, RTSP, etc streams. If you can get the URL of the Vimeo video, you can play it in there. There are many ways to do this, including use Firebug for Firefox, but it's tedious. I didn't even know it worked for YouTube just by pasting the video page URL.
    – sudo
    Jul 13, 2014 at 20:14
  • @9000 When i watch the video on Vimeo the address bar just says: vimeo.com/6318824 in my browser, but when i past copy and paste that address into a form here on this site it automatically adds http:// to the front of it, to get http://vimeo.com/6318824. This behavior also happens in the "Please enter a network URL:" box in VLC. When i take away the http:// i get an error message when trying to play. Is the web address not the URL? Jul 13, 2014 at 20:26
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    You need the URL of the video itself, not the page that has the video on it. The answer from TeknoVenus works.
    – sudo
    Jul 13, 2014 at 21:46

3 Answers 3


The easiest way to get the URL of the video to paste into VLC that I found was in Firefox.

Go to the video using FF. Right click -> Page Info. Go to the Media tab and find the video URL. The type will be Video, and the URL should be av.vimeo.com/foobar. Right click -> Copy the URL. Paste into VLC and off you go

Page Info Window

  • In trying to find the av.vimeo.com/foobar URL in google chrome, i tried right clicking on both the video and the white background of the webpage and clicking View page source , then doing a CTRL + F for "av." finds 0 results. Is there an addon or a way maybe to do it in google chrome? Jul 13, 2014 at 20:38
  • 2
    It's not in the source for Chrome. Try this. Right click -> Inspect Element. Choose the resources tab. Expand the Frames folder, then whatever subfolder is in it. Expand XHR. Then right click on the .mp4 file and Copy Link Address
    – TeknoVenus
    Jul 13, 2014 at 20:45
  • Hmmm.. sometimes that doesn't work. Whilst FF always shows the video, Chrome doesn't always list in the resources. I note sometimes it has a pdl.vimeocdn.com/foobar URL. It also helps if you scroll down the page a bit to trigger the "Loading More Stuff". Wait for that "stuff" to load, and look again
    – TeknoVenus
    Jul 13, 2014 at 20:50
  • Safari 6 has a similar web inspector that doesn't always show the video URL. Same in Chrome. Safari 5 had a resources list similar to the one in Firefox that always worked, but Apple got rid of it for some reason :(
    – sudo
    Jul 13, 2014 at 21:45
  • 2
    @TeknoVenus , Thats the ticket for Chrome it seems. Right click > Inspect Element > Resources > Frames > (#######) > XHR Right click > #####.mp4 > Copy link address. Then paste that URL into VLC. That made the video start playing for me. Seems to work on all the videos ive tried so far. Jul 14, 2014 at 2:29

I have found a simpler solution than the ones put forward by @TeknoVenus for Firefox and Chrome. They didn't work for me when I tried them, which could just be that two years have made a difference in terms of how Vimeo lays out their website.

My suggestion will work for any browser. Let your mouse hover over the video so that the sharing options appear in the top right corner. Click on the 'Share' button (which looks like a paper plane). You now have two options to get the right URL:

  1. Click on the 'Get embed code' button (which looks like '< />'). Copy the content it provides. Select 'Open Network Stream' in VLC. Paste the URL, but delete everything except the src field of the iframe (without quotes). It should look something like https://player.vimeo.com/video/xxxxxxxx. Press play, convert, whatever!

  2. Or just copy the link address (via right-clicking, for example) from the Share view. (If you are viewing the video on the actual vimeo.com website, you can just copy the URL directly.) You should get something like https://vimeo.com/xxxxxxxx. Paste that into VLC, but add in the player. and video/ sections to get the same form as was produced in the first option.


  • Doesn't work on vimeo. Tried 10-30-17
    – Radmation
    Oct 30, 2017 at 20:37
  • @Radmation, hmm, that's too bad. It still is working for me. It is possible that they have a newer mechanism for some videos that doesn't work with my suggestions. Can you share an example that you couldn't get to work?
    – pattivacek
    Oct 31, 2017 at 9:17
  • 1
    I think this trick will not work for the videos where share is not available.
    – PSR
    Feb 4, 2018 at 10:08

Not sure how long this method will continue working but as of 12/14/2018 it works for me. I only tested with a few videos so it may not work with everything.

  1. Take the url of the video you want to play https://vimeo.com/xxxxxxxx and change it to https://player.vimeo.com/video/xxxxxxxx this will be the URL of the player itself.

  2. Inside the source of that page will be a line var config = {...}

  3. Within the Curly Braces is JSON Data that contains the actual video URLs for the various qualitys. Look for urls ending with .mp4 and the qualites associated with them.

for example within the json data from https://player.vimeo.com/video/304859830 you can see the entry for 720p with the url associated with it


And you can just take that url and paste it straight into the stream section of VLC

  • That is the only recipe that worked for me (tried the proposed solutions for Firefox and Chrome above, but they didn't work). The only detail: now the original links for vimeo pages look like vimeo.com/xxxxxxxxx/yyyyyyyyyyy The correct link to proceed is obtained by ignoring the hexadecimal yyyyyyyyyy part: player.vimeo.com/video/xxxxxxxxx You can also see it in the Chrome -> View page source --> "og:video:url" value (without "?autoplay=1" part).
    – mathreader
    May 7, 2019 at 15:27
  • This is probably the most current method I've seen that still works, not just on vimeo but several video hosts (though some seem to have adopted even further obfuscation). Another observation I've seen: sometimes, you need to remove escape characters (e.g., ...com\/xxxxx\/yyyyy, remove the "\"'s), and sometimes the url is listed without the file extension (search terms like "play", "video", "url" instead and manually go through blocks in their vicinity).
    – Arctiic
    Jul 21, 2019 at 8:32
  • Still works as of March '22, although the "url" is a little bit further hidden. Just Ctrl+F in the source for '.mp4' and you get it. Thanks @Quitehatty
    – danny
    Mar 8, 2022 at 12:59

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