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Posts Tagged ‘Helpful Hints

Helpful Hints – Apple Movie Trailers download using Firefox, Greasemonkey, and User Agent hack

You can't stop us Apple!

You can't stop us Apple!

Only a few days ago I was disappointed to find that Apple had once again broken movie trailer downloads for non-iTunes users.  Thanks to the input of a few commentators on this blog, I think I’ve found a new workaround for Firefox/Greasemonkey users.

The workaround uses a combination of the most excellent Apple Trailer Download script by zatic (not my modified version — I’ll get to this in just a bit), and a modification to the User Agent string that Firefox uses to identify itself to websites.

Setting up HeaderControl

First of all, you’ll need to download this great experimental Firefox addon, HeaderControl (Disclaimer: always use caution with beta/experimental software.  I’m not responsible for any harm you may cause your computer).  What we’ll be using HeaderControl for is to enable a modified User Agent string for only the Apple trailer download site.  Some of you may have the popular User Agent Switcher extension installed, which could work as well, but I chose HeaderControl for this workaround because it allows per-domain user-agent switching.  The “per-domain” bit means I don’t have to keep switching the Firefox user agent for the trailers site, and back again.

Now, once you’ve installed HeaderControl, reboot Firefox and bring up the preferences dialog for HeaderControl.

HeaderControl Options dialog.

HeaderControl Options dialog.

Clicking the “Add” button, go ahead and create a new per-domain configuration for the domain, movies.apple.com, and specify the custom user agent string “Quicktime/7.6.2“.  Note that you’ll only need to choose the “Mangle HTTP ‘UserAgent'” option.  You can leave alone the Referer and Language tabs.

Make sure the suffix is "movies.apple.com" and that you have the user agent correct.

Make sure the suffix is "movies.apple.com" and that you have the user agent correct.

Press “OK” to commit the new per-domain filter, and you’ll be good to go.

Downloading Trailers

For those of you who do not care to download the trailers but  just want to watch the trailers in your browser, you should be good to go.  Go ahead, hit up the trailers site and watch something special.

For those of you who want to download the trailers but don’t know how, you can refer to my original instructions, which should now work again.

Finally, if you’re amongst those who followed the steps in my previous post on the issue of Apple trailer download breakage by installing my modified Apple trailer download Greasemonkey script, then you have one more step to complete:  disable my script and go back to using the original Apple Trailer Download script by zatic.

Disable my "fixed" script.  It's no longer required.

Disable my "fixed" script. It's no longer required.

Once you’ve done this you should find yourself able to download movie trailers from Apple’s site once again.

Written by Sohail Mirza

October 9, 2009 at 12:08 am