Regardless of other link-following facilities, it is often useful to
place the restriction of what files to retrieve based on the directories
those files are placed in. There can be many reasons for this—the
home pages may be organized in a reasonable directory structure; or some
directories may contain useless information, e.g.
Wget offers three different options to deal with this requirement. Each
option description lists a short name, a long name, and the equivalent
include_directories = list’
-I’ option accepts a comma-separated list of directories included
in the retrieval. Any other directories will simply be ignored. The
directories are absolute paths.
So, if you wish to download from ‘
following only links to bozo’s colleagues in the
directory and the bogus scripts in
/cgi-bin, you can specify:
wget -I /people,/cgi-bin http://host/people/bozo/
exclude_directories = list’
-X’ option is exactly the reverse of ‘
-I’—this is a list of
directories excluded from the download. E.g. if you do not want
Wget to download things from
/cgi-bin directory, specify ‘
-X /cgi-bin’ on the command line.
The same as with ‘
-R’, these two options can be combined
to get a better fine-tuning of downloading subdirectories. E.g. if you
want to load all the files from
/pub hierarchy except for
/pub/worthless, specify ‘
no_parent = on’
The simplest, and often very useful way of limiting directories is disallowing retrieval of the links that refer to the hierarchy above than the beginning directory, i.e. disallowing ascent to the parent directory/directories.
--no-parent’ option (short ‘
-np’) is useful in this case.
Using it guarantees that you will never leave the existing hierarchy.
Supposing you issue Wget with:
wget -r --no-parent http://somehost/~luzer/my-archive/
You may rest assured that none of the references to
/~luzer/all-my-mpegs/ will be
followed. Only the archive you are interested in will be downloaded.
--no-parent’ is similar to
-I/~luzer/my-archive’, only it handles redirections in a more
Note that, for HTTP (and HTTPS), the trailing slash is very
important to ‘
--no-parent’. HTTP has no concept of a “directory”—Wget
relies on you to indicate what’s a directory and what isn’t. In
http://foo/bar/’, Wget will consider ‘
bar’ to be a
directory, while in ‘
http://foo/bar’ (no trailing slash),
bar’ will be considered a filename (so ‘
--no-parent’ would be
meaningless, as its parent is ‘