How to Watch U2 at Glastonbury

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U2 is due to go on stage at 10:00 pm local time Friday in Pilton, England, for what will be the band's first appearance at the legendary Glastonbury Festival. Needless to say, U2 fans worldwide are anxious to watch it happen.

Although there are various rumors of feeds and such circulating online, right now it seems that there are only a few options for fans to watch U2 on the Pyramid Stage. And, if you live outside the UK/Ireland, those few options are not easy to access.

Below is our best attempt at listing the various options you'll have for watching U2's Glastonbury set. But there are a few disclaimers we have to share:

  • This list may not be complete.
  • Programming schedules are always subject to change.
  • Festival performance times may also change.
  • At least one option below may be illegal in some locations.

In other words, if something doesn't work, don't shoot the messenger. We're just trying to help. And if you have info that we're missing and that could help other fans, please contact us.

Television

United Kingdom: BBC will air Glastonbury coverage live, but U2's set will switch from channel to channel due to news programming.

BBC UK

U2 Part 1: BBC 2, 9:45 pm to 10:30 pm
U2 Part 2: BBC 4, 10:30 pm to 11:05 pm
U2 Part 3: BBC 2, 11:05 pm to 2:00 am (this will include other acts besides U2)

BBC HD (Sky 169) - continuous coverage

Ireland: Setanta will air U2's set in its entirety. We believe this is the same feed as the BBC.

10:00 - Setanta (Sky 423)

Radio

BBC 6 appears to be the primary source of Glastonbury radio coverage. The station's Friday schedule includes a 10:00 pm listing that promises to take listeners "around the stages at Glastonbury for live music from the headliners."

That doesn't sound like full coverage of U2's set, but no doubt it will include at least some of the band's show. BBC 6 streams online, and the Glastonbury Festival website says it'll be available outside the UK.

Online

We don't know/have the link right now, but at some point it will become clear where the festival is being streamed online (likely the BBC feed; we'll update this story when there's a link). If it's the BBC coverage, that will only be offered to UK Internet users.

UPDATE: Here's the BBC Glastonbury online stream page. It's been accessible worldwide so far today, but you may need to use the Firefox web browser to see/hear it. We've added more links at the end of this article, too.

To get around the geography problem, you'll need to know how to use a proxy server. Here's a simple tutorial that's a bit out of date, but still helpful. In a nutshell, using a proxy server is using some other computer to mask your Internet connection. In this case, since the Glastonbury signal will be restricted to UK computer users, you'll want to connect to a UK-based proxy server to make it seem like you're also based in the UK.

That's the thing we mentioned above that may be illegal depending on your location.

To find a UK-based proxy server, you have a couple of options:

  • Paid proxy servers: These are the most reliable and can often be paid for at a clip of about $$10 per month. StrongVPN.com, SimplyExpats.net and many other services offer paid proxy access. Using these is not a legal risk.
  • Free proxy servers: These are less reliable and can potentially be illegal. There are many sites that offer lists of free proxy servers, including HideMyAss.com, FreeWebProxyList.com, and so forth. Do a search for "UK proxy list" if you need more.

If you go to the HideMyAss.com link above, use the search options to look for United Kingdom proxy servers. The site will give you a list of IP addresses to choose from, and port numbers you can/should use with each one. Important: Be sure to scroll down below the list of proxies and look for the part of the page that says "Proxy instructions and notes." That's where you'll find instructions to use the proxy with your web browser. (This link listed above also has browser instructions, but for older browsers. Still, the steps should be similar today.)

Insert the proxy's IP address into your browser settings and then refresh the web page/URL that has the live stream and, if all goes well, you'll be able to access the content as if you're a UK resident.

In all likelihood, the first IP address/proxy you try won't work, so keep trying. And trying. And trying. And, to be frank, don't be surprised if it doesn't work at all. But at least give yourself credit for trying.

We'll update this article with any more info between now and Friday's performance.

UPDATES:

This forum thread, recommended to us by one of our Twitter followers, has Windows-based instructions for accessing BBC television online. There's a download involved, so use at your own risk.

FRIDAY, 1:00 PM PST: THIS SEEMS TO BE THE BEST OPTION -->This Justin.tv channel is advertising plans to carry the first day of Glastonbury. It says "2010" but the bands listed on the page are all performing Friday.

EVEN BETTER: Same thing, but in HD/HQ audio and video.

Here are direct links to BBC livestreams for each channel: BBC 2 / BBC 4

The BBC Glastonbury website has also been streaming today, and so far has been accessible worldwide. It's no longer accessible as it was before.

If you use Firefox, try this: Go into the "Add-Ons Manager" and search for one called "Stealthy." Follow the install instructions and set it up to indicate that you're browsing from inside Great Britain. (Note: This didn't work for me, but users in our forum are having success with it.)

(c) @U2, 2011.

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