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How to Download Website Content

Updated on December 27, 2017
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Alfred is a long-time teacher and computer enthusiast who works with and troubleshoots a wide range of computing devices.

Internet users still find a reason to download online content for offline reading. Typical explanations for offline browsing can be attributed to:

  • Lack of internet connection. Whereas most of the developed countries boast extensive internet coverage, many other parts still have ground to cover.
  • Wanting to secure your own content just in case. For content writers and collectors, there is information out there that only feel safe right inside the local drive. Whereas website owners install multiple servers around the globe for data integrity, there is no telling when a file will get deleted intentionally or unintentionally, or when crucial servers decide to go belly for some reason.

Some applications and add-ons are designed to work better to accomplish complete website download, while others work better when downloading individual pages. Below are four basic utilities that can let you download website content for offline viewing.

  • HTTrack Website Copier
  • Scrapbook for Mozilla Firefox
  • IDM Site Grabber
  • Evernote Web Clipper

HTTrack Website Copier

This tool is the perfect choice for anyone wishing to capture entire website content to the disk drive. It is lightweight and plain but capable of a great job. HTTrack is also open source.

It is available for all Microsoft Windows versions, Linux and Android operating systems.

Keep in mind that downloading the whole of Wikipedia website will make no sense, in addition to gobbling up lots of disk drive space and internet data.

If you only want to capture a small website with a handful of associated pages, then HTTrack is for you.

How to use HTTrack

  • Download the software from HTTrack page. For Windows 7 and above, HTTrack should download as a zip file, requiring that you extract it.
  • Scroll through the extracted httrack folder and open the executable WinHTTrack.exe file.

  • In the new HTTrack window, a workaround wizard should get you going.
  • Click Next.
  • In the next window, type in your project: basically what you want to name the website to be downloaded.
  • By default, your work will be saved to C:\My Web Sites, though you can save itelsewhere.
  • In the next window, simply paste the website url you want to download.

  • If you are knowledgeable in what you are doing, the Set Options tab leads you to the preferences section where you can tweak a few things. Under the Experts Only tab for example, you can select what aspect of the website to download and what not to.
  • If you are unsure about the settings and have plenty of free gigabytes of storage, just select the default actions.
  • Click Next and then Finish to start downloading your web content.
  • You may actually use approximately 500 megabytes of space to download about a hundred web pages.

And just in case you canceled a project you had started earlier on, this application lets you resume the download.

Do you still download web content?

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Scrapbook for Mozilla Firefox

Scrapbook is an add-on for Mozilla Firefox. This extension is unlike HTTrack above which must be downloaded first to the disk drive.

Scrapbook add-on lets you download customized or entire website content, just like HTTrack. It can as well let you download only one website page.

How to use Scrapbook

  • Download scrapbook add-on.
  • Install and restart Firefox when prompted.
  • You may also want to turn on the menu bar feature in Firefox if it is not. It is here that you will access Scrapbook easily. To do this, open Firefox and Press F10 on your keyboard. Under View>Toolbars, click on the Menu Bar item to enable it: make sure it has a tick preceding it.

  • Scrapbook should now be visible within the menu bar.
  • Enter the url of the website to be downloaded onto the search bar.
  • Once the page is open, click on the Scrapbook from the menu bar and select Save or Save As depending on your download plan.
  • The Save option lets you to save the current webpage only – it is as one off capture of a single page and is saved on a folder you specify in the Firefox add-ons Manager.
  • Save As gives you options to save multiple pages of a website. It lets you download an entire website.
  • When you select Save As, you will be shown a window that lets you change the title name of your project and other download options.

  • In order to save multiple pages, select In-depth Save at the bottom of the open window.
  • Under the Depth to follow links, toggle between the available page numbers depending on how many of them you wish to download.
  • Click on the greater than (»)symbols to customize even more page numbers.
  • Click Save and the download(s) will begin.
  • As your pages download, you will be shown other options to Pause and Abort download, or Skip to skip individual pages.

IDM Site Grabber

Internet Download Manager (IDM) is a popular download utility that can be used to download different types of files from the internet.

Besides the traditional download functionality it is known for, IDM uses a utility called Site Grabber to download website content to local computer disk drive.

How To use IDM site Grabber

  • Download a shareware copy of IDM.
  • Open IDM after installation.
  • Under Tasks in the menu bar, scroll down to Run site grabber.
  • Click on it and you will be shown a new window.
  • Type in your Grabber Project Name and paste your URL into the provide space under Startpage/address
  • The Project template drop-down list lets you select the nature of content to be downloaded. You can choose to download pictures, audio, video, or entire website files.
  • Next, you will select and edit your download folder and other tweaks before you can start downloading.

Evernote Web Clipper

Evernote Web Clipper is a Chrome extension that allows you to capture webpages.

Evernote cannot clip multiple pages like HTTrack, Scrapbook and IDM. It clips webpages while preserving their originality and links.

Better still Evernote syncs your clips automatically across all your devices.

How to use Evernote Web Clipper

Web Clipper from Evernote is designed to run as an extension.

  • For Chrome users, find Evernote Web Clipper at the Web store. Once installed, It should appear beside other extensions in Chrome browser.
  • Navigate to the webpage you intend to download and click on the Evernote Web Clipper extension.
  • Select the clip you wish to capture and this tool will come to life.
  • Evernote Web Clipper will capture;

An article: article with illustrations
Simplified article: article without illustrations for easy reading
Full page: static capture of entire webpage
Bookmark: clips the summary and webpage link
Screenshot: allows you to select areas for static image capture.

© 2014 Alfred Amuno

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