Using Wget for recursive downloads

I discovered the VimCasts website recently and have been watching a few of their videos. Due to my unreliable internet connection, I prefer to download whole video files and then watch them (this also allows watching them on portable devices).

VimCasts allow directory listing on their storage server, which I believe is permission to bulk download their content. The only issue is that each episode is stored in its own subdirectory and in two formats. I don’t want the folder structure and I only want one of the formats.

At first I tried using a couple of different browser extensions that are supposed to automate this, before I realised that Linux command line tools must be able to do this.

The first attempt just used the recursive feature of wget:

wget -r

Unfortunately that also traverses up the directory structure and gets out of control, but that’s fixed with:

wget -r --no-parent

This is better, and we end up with a clone of the subdirectories and their contents. I only want the ogv files, though, which is also possible with wget:

wget -r --no-parent --accept ogv

Finally, I don’t particularly want the folder structure, just the files. That can also be covered with wget’s options, so the final command that does exactly what I want is:

wget -r --no-parent --accept ogv -nd

That goes off and downloads all OGV files in subdirectories, flattening the folder structure and giving very readable output as it does it.

wget recursive download output

Another joy of using Linux.

Tech mentioned