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Man Pages

Manual Reference Pages  -  SCRAPPY (3)

.ds Aq ’


Scrappy - The All Powerful Web Spidering, Scraping, Creeping Crawling Framework



version 0.94112090


    use Scrappy;

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
            /recent => {
                #cpansearch li a => sub {
                    print $_[1]->{href}, "\n";

And now manually, ... without crawl, the above is similar to the following ...

    use Scrappy;

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        if ($scraper->get($url)->page_loaded) {
            $scraper->select(#cpansearch li a)->each(sub{
                print shift->{href}, "\n";


Scrappy is an easy (and hopefully fun) way of scraping, spidering, and/or harvesting information from web pages, web services, and more. Scrappy is a feature rich, flexible, intelligent web automation tool.

Scrappy (pronounced Scrap+Pee) == ’Scraper Happy’ or ’Happy Scraper’; If you like you may call it Scrapy (pronounced Scrape+Pee) although Python has a web scraping framework by that name and this module is not a port of that one.


Scrappy provides a framework containing all the tools neccessary to create a simple yet powerful web scraper. At its core, Scrappy loads an array of features for access control, event logging, session handling, url matching, web request and response handling, proxy management, web scraping, and downloading.

Futhermore, Scrappy provides a simple Moose-based plugin system that allows Scrappy to be easily extended.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        $scraper->control;      # Scrappy::Scraper::Control (access control)
        $scraper->parser;       # Scrappy::Scraper::Parser (web scraper)
        $scraper->user_agent;   # Scrappy::Scraper::UserAgent (user-agent tools)
        $scraper->logger;       # Scrappy::Logger (event logger)
        $scraper->queue;        # Scrappy::Queue (flow control for loops)
        $scraper->session;      # Scrappy::Session (session management)

Please see the METHODS section for a more in-depth look at all Scrappy functionality.


The following is a list of object attributes available with every Scrappy instance, attributes always return an instance of the class they represent.


The content attribute holds the HTTP::Response object of the current request. Returns undef if no page has been successfully fetched.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The control attribute holds the Scrappy::Scraper::Control object which is used the provide access conrtol to the scraper.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        ... $scraper->control->restrict(;
        ... $scraper->control->allow(;
        ... if $scraper->control->is_allowed($url);


The debug attribute holds a boolean which controls whether event logs are captured.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The logger attribute holds the Scrappy::Logger object which is used to provide event logging capabilities to the scraper.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The parser attribute holds the Scrappy::Scraper::Parser object which is used to scrape html data from the specified source material.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The plugins attribute holds the Scrappy::Plugin object which is an interface used to load plugins.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The queue attribute holds the Scrappy::Queue object which is used to provide flow-control for the standard loop approach to crawling.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The session attribute holds the Scrappy::Session object which is used to provide session support and persistent data across executions.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The user_agent attribute holds the Scrappy::Scraper::UserAgent object which is used to set and manipulate the user-agent header of the scraper.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The worker attribute holds the WWW::Mechanize object which is used navigate web pages and provide request and response header information.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;



The back method is the equivalent of hitting the back button in a browser, it returns the previous page (response) and returns that URL, it will not backtrack beyond the first request.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        my $last_url = $scraper->back;


The cookies method returns an HTTP::Cookie object. Note! Cookies can be made persistent by enabling session-support. Session-support is enable by simply specifying a file to be used.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        $scraper->session->write(session.yml); # enable session support
    my  $cookies = $scraper->cookies;


The crawl method is very useful when it is desired to crawl an entire website or at-least partially, it automates the tasks of creating a queue, fetching and parsing html pages, and establishing simple flow-control. See the SYNOPSIS for a simplified example, ... the following is a more complex example.

    my  $scrappy = Scrappy->new;
            /recent => {
                #cpansearch li a => sub {
                    my ($self, $item) = @_;
                    # follow all recent modules from
            /~:author/:name-:version/ => {
                body => sub {
                    my ($self, $item, $args) = @_;
                    my $reviews = $self
                    ->select(.box table tr)->focus(3)->select(td.cell small a)
                    $reviews = $reviews =~ /\d+ Reviews/ ?
                        $reviews : 0 reviews;
                    print "found $args->{name} version $args->{version} ".
                        "[$reviews] by $args->{author}\n";


The domain method returns the domain host of the current page. Local pages, e.g. file:///this/that/the_other will return undef.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        print $scraper->domain; # print


The download method is passed a URL, a Download Directory Path and a optionally a File Path, then it will follow the link and store the response contents into the specified file without leaving the current page. Basically it downloads the contents of the request (especially when the request pushes a file download). If a File Path is not specified, Scrappy will attempt to name the file automatically resorting to a random 6-charater string only if all else fails, then returns to the originating page.

    my  $scaper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $requested_url = ...;
        $scraper->download($requested_url, /tmp);
        # supply your own file name
        $scraper->download($requested_url, /tmp, somefile.txt);


The dumper method is a convenience feature that passes the passed-in objects to Data::Dumper which in turn returns a stringified representation of that object/data-structure.

    my  $scaper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $requested_url = ...;
    my  $data = $scraper->select(//a[@href])->data;
    # print out the scraped data
    print $scraper->dumper($data);


The form method is used to submit a form on the current page.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        $scraper->form(fields => {
            username => mrmagoo,
            password => foobarbaz
        # or more specifically, for pages with multiple forms
        $scraper->form(form_name => login_form, fields => {
            username => mrmagoo,
            password => foobarbaz
        $scraper->form(form_number => 1, fields => {
            username => mrmagoo,
            password => foobarbaz


The get method takes a URL or URI object, fetches a web page and returns the Scrappy object.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    if ($scraper->get($new_url)->page_loaded) {
    # $self->content has the HTTP::Response object


The log method logs an event with the event logger.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        $scraper->debug(1); # unneccessary, on by default
        $scraper->logger->verbose(1); # more detailed log
        $scraper->log(error, Somthing bad happened);
        $scraper->log(info, Somthing happened);
        $scraper->log(warn, Somthing strange happened);
        $scraper->log(coolness, Somthing cool happened);

Note! Event logs are always recorded but never automatically written to a file unless explicitly told to do so using the following:



The page_content_type method returns the content_type of the current page.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        print $scraper->page_content_type; # prints text/html


The page_data method returns the HTML content of the current page, additionally this method when passed a string with HTML markup, updates the content of the current page with that data and returns the modified content.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $html = $scraper->page_data;


The page_ishtml method returns true/false based on whether our content is HTML, according to the HTTP headers.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        if ($scraper->is_html) {


The page_loaded method returns true/false based on whether the last request was successful.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        if ($scraper->page_loaded) {


The page_match method checks the passed-in URL (or URL of the current page if left empty) against the URL pattern (route) defined. If URL is a match, it will return the parameters of that match much in the same way a modern web application framework processes URL routes.

    my $url =;
    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    # match against the current page
    my $this = $scraper->page_match(/tags/:tag);
    if ($this) {
        print $this->{tag};
        # ... prints awesomeness
    .. or ..
    # match against a passed url
    my $this = $scraper->page_match(/tags/:tag, $url, {
        host =>
    if ($this) {
        print "This is the ", $this->{tag}, " page";
        # ... prints this is the awesomeness page


The page_reload method acts like the refresh button in a browser, it simply repeats the current request.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The page_status method returns the 3-digit HTTP status code of the response.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        if ($scraper->page_status == 200) {


The page_text method returns a text representation of the last page having all HTML markup stripped.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $text = $scraper->page_text;


The page_title method returns the content of the title tag if the current page is HTML, otherwise returns undef.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $title = $scraper->page_title;
        print $title; # print Google


This method sets breaks between your requests in an attempt to simulate human interaction.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;

Given the above example, there will be a 20 sencond break between each request made, get, post, request, etc., You can also specify a range to have the pause method select from at random...

        # reset/turn it off
        print "I slept for ", ($scraper->pause), " seconds";

Note! The download method is exempt from any automatic pausing.


The plugin method allow you to load a plugin. Using the appropriate case is recommended but not neccessary. See Scrappy::Plugin for more information.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    $scraper->plugin(foo_bar);    # will load Scrappy::Plugin::FooBar
    $scraper->plugin(foo-bar);    # will load Scrappy::Plugin::Foo::Bar
    $scraper->plugin(Foo::Bar);   # will load Scrappy::Plugin::Foo::Bar
    # more pratically
    $scraper->plugin(whois, spammer_check);
    ... somewhere in code
    my $var = $scraper->plugin_method();

    # example using core plugin Scrappy::Plugin::RandomProxy
    my  $s = Scrappy->new;


The post method takes a URL, a hashref of key/value pairs, and optionally an array of key/value pairs, and posts that data to the specified URL, then returns an HTTP::Response object.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;

    $scraper->post($requested_url, {
        input_a => value_a,
        input_b => value_b
    # w/additional headers
    my %headers = (Content-Type => multipart/form-data);
    $scraper->post($requested_url, {
        input_a => value_a,
        input_b => value_b
    },  %headers);

Note! The most common post headers for content-type are application/x-www-form-urlencoded and multipart/form-data.


The proxy method will set the proxy for the next request to be tunneled through.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    $scraper->proxy(http, ftp,;
    # best practice when using proxies
    use Tiny::Try;
    my $proxie = Scrappy->new;
    try {
    } catch {
        die "Proxy failed\n";

Note! When using a proxy to perform requests, be aware that if they fail your program will die unless you wrap your code in an eval statement or use a try/catch mechanism. In the example above we use Tiny::Try to trap any errors that might occur when using proxy.


The request_denied method is a simple shortcut to determine if the page you requested got loaded or redirected. This method is very useful on systems that require authentication and redirect if not authorized. This function return boolean, 1 if the current page doesn’t match the requested page.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    if ($scraper->request_denied) {
        # do login, again
    else {
        # resume ...


The response method returns the HTTP::Repsonse object of the current page.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    my  $res = $scraper->response;


The select method takes XPATH or CSS selectors and returns a Scrappy::Scraper::Parser object which contains the matching elements.

    my $scraper = Scrappy->new;
    # return a list of links
    my $list = $scraper->select(#profile li a)->data; # see Scrappy::Scraper::Parser
    foreach my $link (@{$list}) {
        print $link->{href}, "\n";
    # Zoom in on specific chunks of html code using the following ...
    my $list = $scraper
    ->select(#container table tr) # select all rows
    ->focus(4) # focus on the 5th row
    ->select(div div)->data;
    # The code above selects the div > div inside of the 5th tr in #container table
    # Access attributes html, text and other attributes as follows...
    $element = $scraper->select(table)->data->[0];
    $element->{html}; # HTML representation of the table
    $element->{text}; # Table stripped of all HTML
    $element->{cellpadding}; # cellpadding
    $element->{height}; # ...


The stash method sets a stash (shared) variable or returns a reference to the entire stash object.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        $scraper->stash(age => 31);
        print stash access works
            if $scraper->stash(age) == $scraper->stash->{age};
    my  @array = (1..20);
        $scraper->stash(integers => [@array]);


The store method stores the contents of the current page into the specified file. If the content-type does not begin with ’text’, the content is saved as binary data.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;


The url method returns the complete URL for the current page.

    my  $scraper = Scrappy->new;
        print $scraper->url; # prints


Al Newkirk <>


This software is copyright (c) 2010 by awncorp.

This is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as the Perl 5 programming language system itself.

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