Website Downloader – Download Entire Wayback Machine Site Archives

This definitely seems like a very useful capability, but as the article states, the service is presently swamped with requests for downloads. So it might be a good idea to wait until the newness of the service wears off before trying it out yourself.

Website Downloader is a relatively new service that enables you to download individual pages or entire archives of websites on the Wayback Machine site. The Wayback Machine, part of the Internet Archive, is a very useful service. It enables you to browse website snapshots recorded by the site’s crawler.

You may use it to check out past versions of a page on the Internet, or access pages that are permanently or temporarily not available. It is also a great option to recover web pages as a webmaster that are not accessible anymore (maybe because your hosting company terminated the account, or because of data corruption and lack of backups).

Several browser extensions, Wayback Fox for Firefox or Wayback Machine for Chrome and Firefox make use of the Wayback Machine’s archive to provide users with copies of pages that are not accessible.

Website Downloader

website downloader

While you can download any page on the Wayback Machine website using your web browser’s “Save Page” functionality, doing so for an entire website may not be feasible depending on its size. Not a problem if a site has just a few pages, but if it has thousands of them, you’d spend entire weeks downloading those pages manually.

Enter Website Downloader: the free service lets you download a website’s entire archive to the local system.

All you have to do is type the URL that you want to download on the Website Downloader site, and select whether you want to download the homepage only, or the entire website.

Note: It may take minutes or longer for the site to be processed by Website Downloader.

Here is a short video that demonstrates the functionality:

The process itself is straightforward. The service grabs each HTML file of the site (or just one if you select to download a single URL), and clones it to the local hard drive of the computer. Links are converted automatically so that they can be used off-line, and images, PDF documents, CSS and JavaScript files are downloaded and referenced correctly as well.

You may download the copy of the site as a zip file to your local system after the background process completes, or use the service to get a quote and get the copy converted to a WordPress site.

Closing Words

Website Downloader is an interesting service. It was swarmed with requests at the time of the review, and you may also experience that the generation of website downloads, even of single pages, takes longer than it should because of that.

There is also the chance that some people will abuse the service by downloading entire websites, and publishing them again on the Internet.

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