How to record streaming video for free

We are living in a world of live streams, live news and live plays. It’s not surprising that in a world of such live content at our fingertips, we may find some quite eye-catching stream and wish to record it for the future.

Netizens may want to record a streaming video for:

  • Referencing to it in the future.
  • Doing further research and studies on the recorded stream.
  • Enjoying their favourite stream once again.
  • Preserving the recorded live stream so that it does not get lost in the void of the internet.

In this article, we will be looking at many such ways of recording a streaming video. The cherry on the cake? All these ways are completely free and won’t make you spend a penny from your pockets.

A gentle reminder before you proceed:

Monetizing or marketing a live stream without the knowledge or permission from its producers might lead to copyright allegations. Hence, please avoid it.

Now, let’s get started without further ado.

Recording a streaming video using Screen Capture

About: Ever wanted to record your screen or live streams by downloading absolutely NOTHING? That’s exactly what Screen Capture does.

Screen Capture is a free online tool to record and download live streams without installing any third-party software. It is supported in the following browsers: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Opera.

How to:

  • Head on to Screen Capture on your PC.
  • Click on the icons(Microphone/Sound/Webcam) that you want to record along with the video.
  • Generally, for recording a live stream, you should only Sound. But if you want to capture your reactions too, you can enable the Microphone and Webcam too.
  • By default, the free version contains a watermark in the recorded video.
  • Once you have selected the things that you want to record, click on Start Recording.

    Screen Capture website

  • On the Share your screen dialogue box that appears, select ‘Your Entire Screen’ and check the ‘Share Audio’ checkbox and click on Share.

    Clicking on Share

  • Finally, click on Allow to grant permissions for using the camera and microphone.
  • Your recording has now started. Go on to your live stream and watch it or just keep it playing on the screen. Just remember not to close the Screen Capture tab or else you will lose your recording.
  • Click on Stop Recording to stop the recording.

    Clicking on Stop Recording

  • Once the recording stops, you can download your recording by clicking on the Download button.

    Clicking on Download

Recording a streaming video using an Online Screen Recorder

Apowersoft is another online screen recorder to get the job done. Although it requires downloading a very small launcher file, it compensates for it by providing watermark-free recordings.

About: Apowersoft is a smart screen recorder that is web-based, meaning you don’t have to download any screencast software to your computer to do the recording. Instead, you just open this free online screen recorder on your web and start your recording. Although, you need to download a very small launcher file if you are using it for the first time.

How to:

  • Head on to and click on Start Recording.

    Clicking on Start Recording inn Apowersoft

  • If you are using it for the first time, it will ask you to download a small launcher file. Once you are done with the downloading and installation of the launcher file, you will see a new interface open up.

    Apowersoft screen recording interface

  • Click on the red recording button if you want to record your entire screen. However, it is advised to click on the Region button and select a region encapsulating your live stream.
  • Once you have properly selected the region of the video that you want to record and you are all set, click on the red recording button to start the recording.

    Recording has started

  • You can also pause your recording in between by clicking on the pause button and resume later again.
  • When you are done with your recording click on the red square to stop the recording.
  • As soon as you stop the recording, a new window will open up containing a video of your recording.
  • To save it, click on the Save icon near the bottom-right corner.

    Downloading the recording by clicking on the Save icon

  • Choose Save as Video file to save your recording.
  • Your recording is now saved without any watermarks in your local machine, to see the location where it is saved, click on Open folder.

    Clicking on Open folder

Recording a streaming video using third-party software

About: One can also record streaming videos using offline software. Here, we will have a look at MovaviScreenRecorder.

MovaviScreenRecorder is free software to record and capture the screen. However, the free version of the software contains a watermark. To remove the watermark, a paid subscription needs to be purchased.

How to:

  • Download the MovaviScreenRecorder from here
  • Click on the video icon located in the side taskbar.

    Movavi Screen recording toolbar

  • Drag and select the window size of the portion that you want to record.

    Selecting the portion to record

  • Make sure that the system audio icon is highlighted in green to record the audio along with the call. You can also highlight the webcam and microphone to record your video and audio too.

    Starting the recording

  • Click on the recording icon to start recording. You can also alternatively press F10 on your keyboard.
  • Click on the stop(white square) icon to stop recording. You can also alternatively press F10 on your keyboard for the same.

    Clicking on white square to stop the recording

  • The video can now be viewed with a watermark in the MovaviScreenRecorder software. Click on Export to save the video.

    Clicking on Export to download the recording

  • Browse to the directory where you want to save and hit Save.
  • Your recording is now successfully saved.

Recording a streaming video using an Offline Screen Recorder

Another option for Windows users and an option for Linux users to record live streams is to use an offline screen recorder. An offline screen recorder brings more power through faster editing and sharing options.

About: ScreenRec is a 100% free screen recorder with no watermarks or recording limits. It can capture screenshots and videos with a single hotkey and can also share screencasts fast via a private link.

Worried about the privacy of your recordings?

ScreenRec is built on top of the StreamingVideoProvider business video platform. Your videos and screenshots are encrypted with the 128-bit AES algorithm which means that only you or people you gave the sharing link to can view them. The developers at ScreenRec don’t have access to your content.

How to:

  1. _sudo wget -qO - sudo apt-key add -_
  2. sudo add-apt-repository ‘deb stable main’
  3. sudo apt update
  4. sudo apt install screenrec
  • Once ScreenRec is successfully installed, you will see a screen recording toolbar appear to the right side of your screen.

    ScreenRec toolbar

  • Click on the Settings icon and the following window should open:

    ScreenRec Settings

  • As seen, ScreenRec will record the audio from the microphone along with the screen by default. To record the system audio too, toggle on the switch that says Record system audio.
  • Click on the green microphone icon to uncheck it if you don’t want your audio to be recorded during the live stream.
  • To start recording, either click the video icon from the recording toolbar on the right side of your screen or press Alt+S.
  • Click and drag to take a screenshot or record the screen.
  • Make sure that the window you created by clicking and dragging completely encapsulates the portion of the live stream.
  • Click the video icon to start the recording. By default, you will have a five-minute recording limit but it can easily be removed by creating a free account or signing in using Google or Facebook.
  • To stop the recording, hit Alt+S again or press the white square.
  • You can view your saved recordings by clicking on the gallery icon of the recording toolbar.
  • To save the recording to your local machine, hover over to your recording and click on Preview.

    ScreenRec Gallery

  • Click on the download icon to save the video locally.

    Clicking on download icon in ScreenRec Gallery

Recording a streaming video using Screenshot Toolbar in Mac

About: The Screenshot Toolbar comes built-in with macOS. To view the Screenshot Toolbar, press these three keys together: Shift+Command+5. You will see on-screen controls for recording the entire screen, recording a selected portion of the screen.

You can either record your entire screen or a selected portion of your screen using the Screenshot Toolbar.

ScreenShot Toolbar

Picture Credits: Apple

How to record your entire screen:

  • Click on Options in the toolbar and toggle off the Microphone if not already off.
  • Although if you wish to record your audio along with the stream, you can toggle it back on.
  • Click on Full screen recording icon icon present in the Screenshot Toolbar.
  • Click any screen to start recording that screen, or click Record in the onscreen controls.
  • If you wish to stop the recording, hit Command+Control+Esc.

How to record a selected portion of your screen with audio:

  • Click on Options in the toolbar and toggle off the Microphone if not already off.
  • Click on Recording icon icon in the onscreen controls.
  • Drag to select an area of the screen to record.

    Make sure that the window you created properly encapsulates the portion of the screen you want to record.

  • Click on Record in the Screenshot Toolbar to start the recording.
  • If you wish to stop the recording, hit Command+Control+Esc.

    Thumbnail of recording

    Picture Credits: Apple

After the recording is stopped, a thumbnail of the recorded video will appear momentarily on the bottom right corner of the screen. Taking no action or swiping the thumbnail to the right will automatically save it. You can also click on the thumbnail to trim or share it.

Recording a streaming video using the Xbox Game Bar in Windows 10

For those of all who didn’t know, Windows 10 comes with its default screen recorder which is mostly intended to be used for recording gameplays. However, its usage is not only restricted to games and you can record almost anything using the default screen recorder including live streams.

Note: You can’t screen record the Files Explorer app or your Desktop using the in-built screen recorder of Xbox Game Bar after the latest update.

About: The screen recorder is a part of the Xbox Game Bar app that comes pre-installed in Windows 10. Xbox Game Bar makes it simple to take control of all your favourite gaming activities while playing on your Windows 10 device. It also recently received some major updates to make it more useful, so you can now take screenshots and even make memes.

How to:

  • Since Xbox Game Bar comes pre-installed, you can open it by hitting Windows key + G.
  • In case you deleted the Xbox Game Bar app previously, you can always download it again from Get Xbox Game Bar
  • If you get a prompt asking you if you want to open the Game bar, check on the “Yes, this is a game” checkbox to open the Game bar.

    Yes this is a game bar

    Even if you aren’t recording a game, you can check this checkbox without any worries.

  • Once the Game bar opens, click on the capture icon to open the screen capture toolbar.

    Screen Capture toolbar

  • Click on the recording icon(white circle) on the screen capture toolbar to start the recording. You can alternatively press Win+Alt+R to start the recording as well.

    Clicking on white circle to start the recording

  • Once the recording begins, you can see a new toolbar of recording appear on your screen which shows the time elapsed since you started the recording.

    Recording duration bar

At this point, you can close the previous Game Bar toolbars if they are coming in your way, although they won’t be recorded.

  • If you wish to record your microphone’s audio along with the recording, toggle on the microphone by clicking the slashed microphone icon in the screen recording toolbar.
  • To stop the recording, click on the stop icon(white square inside a green circle) in the screen recording toolbar.
  • Your screen recording can be found under the Captures folder inside Videos in your File Explorer.

Recording a streaming video using Screen Recorder on Android:

If you are using an Android phone running Android 10 or higher, you will probably have an inbuilt screen recorder that can be used to record the live streams.

in-built screen recording in Android

To record your screen along with your audio using the inbuilt screen recorder:

  • Pull down the Control Panel from the top of your screen.
  • Search for “Screen recorder” if not already available in the Control Panel.
  • Allow the screen recorder to capture the video.
  • Select “Media sounds” and hit on Start recording.
  • If you wish to record your audio along with the stream, select “Media sounds and mic” instead of “Media sounds”.

However, if you are using earlier versions of Android and don’t find an inbuilt screen recorder then you can simply download one from the plenty of options available in the Google Play Store. Here, we shall be using a simple yet powerful app called “Screen Recorder” as an example.

About: Screen Recorder is an app that helps you easily Record the Screen along with the audio. It even has options to change the bitrate of the video and also trim it. Other advanced features include changing audio sample rate, audio source, audio encoding and much more. In a nutshell, it is the perfect choice to record a live stream.

How to:

  • Download the Screen Recorder app from Screen Recorder – Apps on Google Play
  • Open the app and allow the permission it asks for.

    Granting permission to the app

  • Click on the blue video icon on the bottom right corner of the screen.

    Tapping the blue video icon

  • It is advised that you switch on the Do Not Disturb on your Android phone to prevent unexpected notifications from blocking the screen while the recording is on. You can generally find the Do Not Disturb button in the Notification Panel of your smartphone.
  • You will see a recording bar appear on your screen, click on the red video icon to start the recording.
  • Tap on the microphone icon to cut it if you don’t want to record your audio along with the stream.

    tapping the red video icon

  • The screen recorder will give you a notification that it will record everything on the screen. If you agree to this, tap on Start now to continue.

    Tapping on start now

  • A three-second timer will appear on your screen after which the recording will start.
  • To stop the recording, you can either open the app and click on the blue cross.

    Tapping the red cross

  • Or stop it from the Notification Panel.
  • The recorded video can be found in the app itself from where it can be trimmed or shared.

Recording a streaming video using Screen Recording on iOS

If you happen to have an iPhone, you can directly use the inbuilt screen recording to record your screen along with the live video and save them on your iPhone.

How to:

  • Go to the Settings app on your iPhone.
  • Search for Control Centre in the topmost search box.

    Searching for Control Centre

  • If not already in “INCLUDED CONTROLS”, tap the green plus icon next to Screen Recording to add it to the Control Centre.

    Adding Screen Recording to the Control Centre

  • Now, head back to the screen that you want to record and pull up the Control Centre from the bottom of the screen.
  • Tap on the Do Not Disturb icon (like a half-moon) so that your video recording won’t be interrupted by other notifications or calls.
  • Tap on the Screen Recording icon.

    Tapping the Screen Recording icon

  • Your recording of the screen will start after a countdown of three seconds.
  • To stop the recording, simply pull up the Control Centre from the bottom of the screen again and tap again on the recording icon which should now be flashing red.
  • Once the recording is stopped, you can find your recording in the Photos app of the iPhone.

In case you wish to use a dedicated app for recording live streams on iOS, then there is a simple app on the App Store that will do the work for you.

Here, we will be looking at a very efficient app called “Record it! :: Screen Recorder

About: Record it! :: Screen Recorder is an app that allows you to record your favourite games and apps for tutorials, games walk-through, video demos and training videos on your iPhone and iPad. After recording your screen, you can add video and face cam reactions with audio commentary to further enhance your recording!

How to:

  • Download the Record it! :: Screen Recorder app from visiting the following link ‎Record it! :: Screen Recorder on the App Store
  • Tap on the red circle to start the recording.

    Tapping the red circle

  • You can also adjust the resolution, bitrate and framerate of your recording from the toolbar on the upper side of the screen. However, going higher than a resolution of 480p will require you to upgrade to the pro version of the app.
  • It is advised that you switch on the Do Not Disturb mode from your Control Centre to prevent unexpected notifications.
  • Tap on Start Broadcast and your recording will start.

    Tapping Start Broadcast

  • Head over to your live stream and let it be played on the screen so that the screen recorder can capture it.
  • To stop the recording, head back to the app and click on Stop Recording.

    Tapping on Stop Recording

  • You can alternatively tap the red bar on the top of the screen and stop the recording.
  • Your recordings can be found under My Recordings inside the app itself.
  • Tap on your recording to share it or add face cam reactions and much more.

    Sharing or adding reactions to the recording

In conclusion, these were the various ways of recording a live stream. Since all of these ways make use of screen recording to record the stream, the stream to be recorded must be been played on the screen of the device on which you wish to record it.

Hope you try them out.