How To Get The New YouTube Homepage Right Now

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 20, 2011
Updated • Nov 22, 2011
Internet, Music and Video, Youtube

If you are following the chatter on social networking sites such as Google+, Facebook or Twitter, you may have noticed that YouTube is currently testing a new homepage design. Clever folks found out a way to enable the new design right now with a cookie. The advantage of this method is that you can clear the cookie to return to the old YouTube interface, no harm done.

Please note that this is being tested right now by Google. This new test homepage may or may not become the new YouTube homepage in the future. For now, YouTube visitors can enable it in the following way:

  • Open the YouTube website.
  • In Chrome, press Ctrl-Shift-j to open the Developer Tools
  • In Firefox, press Ctrl-Shift-k to open the web console
  • Enter document.cookie="VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE=ST1Ti53r4fU"; in the console tab and press Enter.
  • Reload the YouTube page.

google chrome javascript console

It is likely that this is working in other web browsers as well. I could not get it to work in the latest Opera web browser though.

The YouTube homepage looks like this after a reload.

youtube new homepage

YouTube users find their channel information prominently displayed on the left side. Listed here are links to the channel videos, likes, history and watch later groups, subscription information, YouTube specific information like trending or what's popular as well as suggested channels to subscribe to.

The middle column is filled with updates from a user's subscriptions. The right column finally displays recommended videos based on past videos that have been watched and activities on YouTube.

The new design seems to only affect the homepage and no other parts of the site. Several users seem to confuse the new YouTube homepage design with the previously released Cosmic Panda update. They are not the same and can in fact be run at the same time. I would suggest to first enable the new homepage design and then enable Cosmic Panda via the link above.

What I do not like about the new homepage is that it uses a fixed width for the content. If you have a widescreen monitor you end up with lots of whitespace there.

Have you tried the new homepage? If so, what is your opinion? I'm not sure where this all started, but one of the first, if not the first, to point it out was Moritz Tolxdorff on Google+.

And while we are at it. If you want to try out the new YouTube video uploader, you need to open the following web address:

Update: You can remove the new YouTube homepage again by repeating the steps and changing the cookie command to this one: document.cookie="VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE=0";


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Anonymous said on May 29, 2015 at 10:18 am

    i use firefox developer, i followed the instructions but it’s not working. I have succeed in crome. what can i do now?

  2. Blic said on January 23, 2012 at 11:52 am

    Now they are much better the first page of the net before! Excellent post and comments each grade cast!

  3. Marilynn F. said on December 17, 2011 at 2:57 am

    I would LOVE to see the new website and give my comments, but I can’t get on YouTube AT ALL anymore, how do I do that? For months now, no matter what link I follow, I get a “404 website not found.” Is there now a new way of gaining access to the website that I’m not privy to? Has it become restricted? For Members Only? Do I have to take a course or pass a test, advance to a higher level to be given the secret code? Since their redesign, could my computer now be lacking something that only techies & savvy users know about? A download I need, perhaps? I’m still using a (Dell) desktop PC with Windows XP & IE 8, and would be most grateful for your help/advice.

  4. Sunil said on December 8, 2011 at 5:01 am

    Great information, explanations is too good, thanks.

  5. Anonymous said on November 25, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    It Works…

  6. Chuck K. said on November 24, 2011 at 6:41 am

    Now that looks so much more “new google”ish

  7. Abhishek said on November 23, 2011 at 8:52 pm


  8. Predrag said on November 23, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    Opera — Open youtube in opera, then CTRL+SHIFT+I – Dragonfly will open, then click on storage button, then Cookies, then find cookie with name VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE nad change value to ST1Ti53r4fU. And after this reload youtube homepage. And that is that, you will have new youtube homepage.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 23, 2011 at 5:15 pm

      Pedrag, thanks for posting, great tip.

      1. Janeece said on February 15, 2012 at 7:11 pm

        I much prefer informative articles like this to that high brow ltieaurtre.

  9. Anonymous said on November 22, 2011 at 6:03 am

    dose not work for me

  10. Mira said on November 21, 2011 at 11:05 pm

    YouTube leads the world in newspapers at least when it comes to the first page.

  11. Anonymous said on November 21, 2011 at 9:38 am

    This is a terrible update. I still she “Liked” videos from my subscriptions even though I edited all my subscriptions to only subscribe to new videos. Wish I could go back

  12. paul said on November 21, 2011 at 6:15 am

    Would it work on Safari??

    1. Carson J Gallo said on November 28, 2011 at 11:31 pm

      Haven’t been able to figure it out yet. How about u?

  13. paul said on November 21, 2011 at 6:11 am

    I can’t make it work. I am on Google Chrome on a Mac with OS X Lion. Is that the problem??

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 21, 2011 at 10:14 am

      Mac users need to use a different shortcut for the console. You can also open the console via Wrench > Tools > JavaScript Console

  14. TheMerricat said on November 21, 2011 at 6:03 am

    Interesting, but I really hope they get around to coming up with some way of removing things from that middle column without having to drop the subscription. The chaff is burying the wheat, some of my subscriptions I only watch maybe 10% of the videos on.

  15. Gerald said on November 21, 2011 at 3:15 am

    You should add that you have to press enter after inserting document.cookie=”VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE=ST1Ti53r4fU”; into the console tab. Thanks!

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 21, 2011 at 10:15 am

      You are right, added the information.

  16. Neale Duberry said on November 21, 2011 at 2:45 am

    That sounds cool to me!!!!

  17. JFP said on November 21, 2011 at 1:39 am

    wow work great and love it, thank you

  18. Midnight said on November 21, 2011 at 1:38 am

    Works fine in Firefox 8, Martin. Thanks!! :)

  19. Ray Vandagriff said on November 21, 2011 at 12:37 am

    Hey, I tired this and it works in chrome. I actually like the new design. It’s less bulky and also more categorized than ever before. I really hope they go through with this page…. How do you actually remove the code if you don’t like it or just want to be safe?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 21, 2011 at 10:16 am

      You clear the YouTube cookies in your browser.

  20. Paul(us) said on November 20, 2011 at 9:25 pm

    The first thing that came to my mind that there new homepage looks a lot like the myspace page.

  21. Matt said on November 20, 2011 at 9:20 pm

    Hey guys, great find – but how do I change the layout back?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 20, 2011 at 9:31 pm

      Just delete the YouTube cookies.

  22. Lucio Mollinedo said on November 20, 2011 at 8:30 pm

    I had to replace the quotes you used ( ” ) for regular quotes ( ” ) for this to work (I don’t know why the difference between them isn’t shown here, but Chrome gave me a weird error msg when I copy/paste without fixing that).

    Thanks for the tip.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 20, 2011 at 9:00 pm

      Lucio, thanks for pointing that out. It should be correct now.

    2. Lucio Mollinedo said on November 20, 2011 at 8:33 pm

      Hum, it wasn’t you. Apparently it was your CMS. It replaces regular quotes with cursive ones.

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