PeerTube – A Libre, Decentralized YouTube Alternative

PeertTube is a P2P (BitTorrent) federated (ActivityPub) video streaming platform that allows users to watch videos directly in their browser using WebTorrent and Angular. 

Fancifully referred to as a “Homemade YouTube“, PeerTube is built with the aim of allowing people to create a network of several small interconnected video hosting providers that value transparency, ethics, and freedom.

PeerTube relies on existing open technologies like BitTorrent for its streaming transport layer and it offers users a WebTorrent-compatible torrent daemon which reduces the load on the server, thus making it slightly more scalable.

Like other federated communities, PeerTube is oriented towards a Twitter-like fashion of social interaction and users can interact using an ActivityPub and follow updates by subscribing to ActivitiyStreams and RSS/Atom/JSON-feed feeds.

Features in PeerTube

  • Free and open-source software.
  • Beautiful and customizable user interface.
  • Videos are hosted and shared on decentralized private servers.
  • WebTorrent-compatible daemon.
  • Comprehensive documentation and FAQ page.
  • Supports RSS/Atom/JSON feeds.
  • No data mining or user tracking.
  • Embed videos in other websites.

PeerTube has been created with different reasons in mind. It can be useful to you if want a sense of community-driven content creation with content that gets more attention ‘naturally‘ instead of through some algorithm that is, for the most part, advertisement driven.

It might appeal to you if you want a platform that is transparent about its revenue allocation; or because you don’t like the fact that your activities are being tracked on other platforms. PeerTube might also appeal to you if you want a video sharing platform that is built on the GNU philosophy with support for the best video formats.

PeerTube hopes to continue technologies for its users as well as creating support for other platforms. For example, the developers plan to federate PeerTube instances with those of MediaGoblin, thus expanding the total federation.

Install PeerTube on Linux

PeerTube devs recommend that you install the software on high-end hardware as opposed to low-end alternatives like a Raspberry Pi with an ADSL connection, for example, as this will have a ricochet effect and slow down all federations.

There is a comprehensive guide on setup requirements and how to install PeerTube on any operating system including GNU/Linux which you can find on its official website here. And if you need help with installing your instance, there is a support forum that you can visit here.

Would you like to be part of a network of many small federated, interoperable video hosting providers? Whether you’re a video content creator or a happy subscriber, PeerTube is free, community-driven, and offers no vendor lock-in. Check it out and share your thoughts with us in the section below.

Divine Okoi is a cybersecurity postgrad with a passion for the open-source community. With 700+ articles covering different topics in IT, you can always trust him to inform you about the coolest tech.

Each tutorial at GeeksMint is created by a team of experienced writers so that it meets our high-quality writing standards.

2 thoughts on “PeerTube – A Libre, Decentralized YouTube Alternative”

  1. Peertube v4 and higher is awesome. Great p2p tech. Like you said Divine, there’s no ads either.

    Fyi, regarding monetization, there’s a free plugin for Peertube server now that’s called “Hive-Tube”. Any video or podcast etc that you post, or import from Youtube (and other sites) can be auto-monetized, providing you (and even your viewers/listeners if desired) with passive income.

    See for details.


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