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Download files from the command line with INetGet

25 March 2017, Mike Williams

INetGetINetGet is an open-source Windows tool which enables downloading files from the command line.

The program uses the standard WinINet API to do its work, keeping it ultra-lightweight. The download is a mere 345KB, but that still gets you both 32 and 64-bit builds, and both run without installation on anything from XP up.

Despite that, using the standard Windows API means you get access to plenty of features. INetGet works with FTP, HTTP and HTTPS files, has full support for IPv6, and integration with the Windows certificate store means HTTPS connections work just as you’d expect.

Downloading an individual file requires specifying the URL and the destination, like this.



Status information is displayed for every step of the download process

You must specify the protocol – http://, https:// or whatever – or the download will fail.

It can be difficult to diagnose problems with command line downloaders, but INetGet displays helpful status information every step of the way. When we ran a test it told us the IP address of the remote server, that it had sent a response, received an OK HTTP status reply, gave us the content type and file size, and kept us up-to-date as the download proceeded, even including a download speed estimate.

If you need more power, INetGet has options to choose another HTTP method, resolve host names locally, set a user name and password, specify a custom user agent or referrer, set connection timeouts and more.

You could even get creative by piping the content of a web page to some other process for further analysis. Even if you’ve never heard of piping before, we’ll bet you can guess what this is trying to do.

inetget – | findstr “Trump”

That’s not the best example as findstr is searching HTML code rather than the plain text of stories, but it gives you an idea of how flexible the program can be.

INetGet is an open-source tool for Windows XP and later.

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