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Startup File

Once you know how to change default settings of Wget through command line arguments, you may wish to make some of those settings permanent. You can do that in a convenient way by creating the Wget startup file---`.wgetrc'.

Besides `.wgetrc' is the "main" initialization file, it is convenient to have a special facility for storing passwords. Thus Wget reads and interprets the contents of `$HOME/.netrc', if it finds it. You can find `.netrc' format in your system manuals.

Wget reads `.wgetrc' upon startup, recognizing a limited set of commands.

Wgetrc Location

When initializing, Wget will look for a global startup file, `/usr/local/etc/wgetrc' by default (or some prefix other than `/usr/local', if Wget was not installed there) and read commands from there, if it exists.

Then it will look for the user's file. If the environmental variable WGETRC is set, Wget will try to load that file. Failing that, no further attempts will be made.

If WGETRC is not set, Wget will try to load `$HOME/.wgetrc'.

The fact that user's settings are loaded after the system-wide ones means that in case of collision user's wgetrc overrides the system-wide wgetrc (in `/usr/local/etc/wgetrc' by default). Fascist admins, away!

Wgetrc Syntax

The syntax of a wgetrc command is simple:

variable = value

The variable will also be called command. Valid values are different for different commands.

The commands are case-insensitive and underscore-insensitive. Thus `DIr__PrefiX' is the same as `dirprefix'. Empty lines, lines beginning with `#' and lines containing white-space only are discarded.

Commands that expect a comma-separated list will clear the list on an empty command. So, if you wish to reset the rejection list specified in global `wgetrc', you can do it with:

reject =

Wgetrc Commands

The complete set of commands is listed below. Legal values are listed after the `='. Simple Boolean values can be set or unset using `on' and `off' or `1' and `0'. A fancier kind of Boolean allowed in some cases is the lockable Boolean, which may be set to `on', `off', `always', or `never'. If an option is set to `always' or `never', that value will be locked in for the duration of the Wget invocation--commandline options will not override.

Some commands take pseudo-arbitrary values. address values can be hostnames or dotted-quad IP addresses. n can be any positive integer, or `inf' for infinity, where appropriate. string values can be any non-empty string.

Most of these commands have commandline equivalents (see section Invoking), though some of the more obscure or rarely used ones do not.

accept/reject = string
Same as `-A'/`-R' (see section Types of Files).
add_hostdir = on/off
Enable/disable host-prefixed file names. `-nH' disables it.
continue = on/off
If set to on, force continuation of preexistent partially retrieved files. See `-c' before setting it.
background = on/off
Enable/disable going to background--the same as `-b' (which enables it).
backup_converted = on/off
Enable/disable saving pre-converted files with the suffix `.orig'---the same as `-K' (which enables it).
base = string
Consider relative URLs in URL input files forced to be interpreted as HTML as being relative to string---the same as `-B'.
bind_address = address
Bind to address, like the `--bind-address' option.
cache = on/off
When set to off, disallow server-caching. See the `-C' option.
convert links = on/off
Convert non-relative links locally. The same as `-k'.
cookies = on/off
When set to off, disallow cookies. See the `--cookies' option.
load_cookies = file
Load cookies from file. See `--load-cookies'.
save_cookies = file
Save cookies to file. See `--save-cookies'.
cut_dirs = n
Ignore n remote directory components.
debug = on/off
Debug mode, same as `-d'.
delete_after = on/off
Delete after download--the same as `--delete-after'.
dir_prefix = string
Top of directory tree--the same as `-P'.
dirstruct = on/off
Turning dirstruct on or off--the same as `-x' or `-nd', respectively.
domains = string
Same as `-D' (see section Spanning Hosts).
dot_bytes = n
Specify the number of bytes "contained" in a dot, as seen throughout the retrieval (1024 by default). You can postfix the value with `k' or `m', representing kilobytes and megabytes, respectively. With dot settings you can tailor the dot retrieval to suit your needs, or you can use the predefined styles (see section Download Options).
dots_in_line = n
Specify the number of dots that will be printed in each line throughout the retrieval (50 by default).
dot_spacing = n
Specify the number of dots in a single cluster (10 by default).
exclude_directories = string
Specify a comma-separated list of directories you wish to exclude from download--the same as `-X' (see section Directory-Based Limits).
exclude_domains = string
Same as `--exclude-domains' (see section Spanning Hosts).
follow_ftp = on/off
Follow FTP links from HTML documents--the same as `--follow-ftp'.
follow_tags = string
Only follow certain HTML tags when doing a recursive retrieval, just like `--follow-tags'.
force_html = on/off
If set to on, force the input filename to be regarded as an HTML document--the same as `-F'.
ftp_proxy = string
Use string as FTP proxy, instead of the one specified in environment.
glob = on/off
Turn globbing on/off--the same as `-g'.
header = string
Define an additional header, like `--header'.
html_extension = on/off
Add a `.html' extension to `text/html' files without it, like `-E'.
http_passwd = string
Set HTTP password.
http_proxy = string
Use string as HTTP proxy, instead of the one specified in environment.
http_user = string
Set HTTP user to string.
ignore_length = on/off
When set to on, ignore Content-Length header; the same as `--ignore-length'.
ignore_tags = string
Ignore certain HTML tags when doing a recursive retrieval, just like `-G' / `--ignore-tags'.
include_directories = string
Specify a comma-separated list of directories you wish to follow when downloading--the same as `-I'.
input = string
Read the URLs from string, like `-i'.
kill_longer = on/off
Consider data longer than specified in content-length header as invalid (and retry getting it). The default behaviour is to save as much data as there is, provided there is more than or equal to the value in Content-Length.
logfile = string
Set logfile--the same as `-o'.
login = string
Your user name on the remote machine, for FTP. Defaults to `anonymous'.
mirror = on/off
Turn mirroring on/off. The same as `-m'.
netrc = on/off
Turn reading netrc on or off.
noclobber = on/off
Same as `-nc'.
no_parent = on/off
Disallow retrieving outside the directory hierarchy, like `--no-parent' (see section Directory-Based Limits).
no_proxy = string
Use string as the comma-separated list of domains to avoid in proxy loading, instead of the one specified in environment.
output_document = string
Set the output filename--the same as `-O'.
page_requisites = on/off
Download all ancillary documents necessary for a single HTML page to display properly--the same as `-p'.
passive_ftp = on/off/always/never
Set passive FTP---the same as `--passive-ftp'. Some scripts and `.pm' (Perl module) files download files using `wget --passive-ftp'. If your firewall does not allow this, you can set `passive_ftp = never' to override the commandline.
passwd = string
Set your FTP password to password. Without this setting, the password defaults to `username@hostname.domainname'.
progress = string
Set the type of the progress indicator. Legal types are "dot" and "bar".
proxy_user = string
Set proxy authentication user name to string, like `--proxy-user'.
proxy_passwd = string
Set proxy authentication password to string, like `--proxy-passwd'.
referer = string
Set HTTP `Referer:' header just like `--referer'. (Note it was the folks who wrote the HTTP spec who got the spelling of "referrer" wrong.)
quiet = on/off
Quiet mode--the same as `-q'.
quota = quota
Specify the download quota, which is useful to put in the global `wgetrc'. When download quota is specified, Wget will stop retrieving after the download sum has become greater than quota. The quota can be specified in bytes (default), kbytes `k' appended) or mbytes (`m' appended). Thus `quota = 5m' will set the quota to 5 mbytes. Note that the user's startup file overrides system settings.
reclevel = n
Recursion level--the same as `-l'.
recursive = on/off
Recursive on/off--the same as `-r'.
relative_only = on/off
Follow only relative links--the same as `-L' (see section Relative Links).
remove_listing = on/off
If set to on, remove FTP listings downloaded by Wget. Setting it to off is the same as `-nr'.
retr_symlinks = on/off
When set to on, retrieve symbolic links as if they were plain files; the same as `--retr-symlinks'.
robots = on/off
Use (or not) `/robots.txt' file (see section Robots). Be sure to know what you are doing before changing the default (which is `on').
server_response = on/off
Choose whether or not to print the HTTP and FTP server responses--the same as `-S'.
span_hosts = on/off
Same as `-H'.
timeout = n
Set timeout value--the same as `-T'.
timestamping = on/off
Turn timestamping on/off. The same as `-N' (see section Time-Stamping).
tries = n
Set number of retries per URL---the same as `-t'.
use_proxy = on/off
Turn proxy support on/off. The same as `-Y'.
verbose = on/off
Turn verbose on/off--the same as `-v'/`-nv'.
wait = n
Wait n seconds between retrievals--the same as `-w'.
waitretry = n
Wait up to n seconds between retries of failed retrievals only--the same as `--waitretry'. Note that this is turned on by default in the global `wgetrc'.
randomwait = on/off
Turn random between-request wait times on or off. The same as `--random-wait'.

Sample Wgetrc

This is the sample initialization file, as given in the distribution. It is divided in two section--one for global usage (suitable for global startup file), and one for local usage (suitable for `$HOME/.wgetrc'). Be careful about the things you change.

Note that almost all the lines are commented out. For a command to have any effect, you must remove the `#' character at the beginning of its line.

### Sample Wget initialization file .wgetrc

## You can use this file to change the default behaviour of wget or to
## avoid having to type many many command-line options. This file does
## not contain a comprehensive list of commands -- look at the manual
## to find out what you can put into this file.
## Wget initialization file can reside in /usr/local/etc/wgetrc
## (global, for all users) or $HOME/.wgetrc (for a single user).
## To use the settings in this file, you will have to uncomment them,
## as well as change them, in most cases, as the values on the
## commented-out lines are the default values (e.g. "off").

## Global settings (useful for setting up in /usr/local/etc/wgetrc).
## Think well before you change them, since they may reduce wget's
## functionality, and make it behave contrary to the documentation:

# You can set retrieve quota for beginners by specifying a value
# optionally followed by 'K' (kilobytes) or 'M' (megabytes).  The
# default quota is unlimited.
#quota = inf

# You can lower (or raise) the default number of retries when
# downloading a file (default is 20).
#tries = 20

# Lowering the maximum depth of the recursive retrieval is handy to
# prevent newbies from going too "deep" when they unwittingly start
# the recursive retrieval.  The default is 5.
#reclevel = 5

# Many sites are behind firewalls that do not allow initiation of
# connections from the outside.  On these sites you have to use the
# `passive' feature of FTP.  If you are behind such a firewall, you
# can turn this on to make Wget use passive FTP by default.
#passive_ftp = off

# The "wait" command below makes Wget wait between every connection.
# If, instead, you want Wget to wait only between retries of failed
# downloads, set waitretry to maximum number of seconds to wait (Wget
# will use "linear backoff", waiting 1 second after the first failure
# on a file, 2 seconds after the second failure, etc. up to this max).
waitretry = 10

## Local settings (for a user to set in his $HOME/.wgetrc).  It is
## *highly* undesirable to put these settings in the global file, since
## they are potentially dangerous to "normal" users.
## Even when setting up your own ~/.wgetrc, you should know what you
## are doing before doing so.

# Set this to on to use timestamping by default:
#timestamping = off

# It is a good idea to make Wget send your email address in a `From:'
# header with your request (so that server administrators can contact
# you in case of errors).  Wget does *not* send `From:' by default.
#header = From: Your Name <username@site.domain>

# You can set up other headers, like Accept-Language.  Accept-Language
# is *not* sent by default.
#header = Accept-Language: en

# You can set the default proxies for Wget to use for http and ftp.
# They will override the value in the environment.
#http_proxy = http://proxy.yoyodyne.com:18023/
#ftp_proxy = http://proxy.yoyodyne.com:18023/

# If you do not want to use proxy at all, set this to off.
#use_proxy = on

# You can customize the retrieval outlook.  Valid options are default,
# binary, mega and micro.
#dot_style = default

# Setting this to off makes Wget not download /robots.txt.  Be sure to
# know *exactly* what /robots.txt is and how it is used before changing
# the default!
#robots = on

# It can be useful to make Wget wait between connections.  Set this to
# the number of seconds you want Wget to wait.
#wait = 0

# You can force creating directory structure, even if a single is being
# retrieved, by setting this to on.
#dirstruct = off

# You can turn on recursive retrieving by default (don't do this if
# you are not sure you know what it means) by setting this to on.
#recursive = off

# To always back up file X as X.orig before converting its links (due
# to -k / --convert-links / convert_links = on having been specified),
# set this variable to on:
#backup_converted = off

# To have Wget follow FTP links from HTML files by default, set this
# to on:
#follow_ftp = off

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