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I use the fantastic GNU wget tool to fetch data from remote web and ftp servers all the time, but it seems that the FTP fetch won't fetch filenames beginning with dot unless they are named explicitly. This means that the --mirror option won't really mirror a web site over FTP because the .htaccess and other "hidden" files won't be picked up. This is very annoying and I find it hard to believe that I'm the first to run into this.

I have modified wget-1.8.2 (and -1.9.1) to allow -. or --dotfiles command-line options (and the dotfiles keyword in the .wgetrc) to enumerate all files when doing a recursive fetch. This is done by sending the LIST -a command to the remote FTP server instead of the default LIST command.

I submitted this patch to the wget maintainers, but it was not accepted. Instead, as of (at least) wget 1.11, LIST -a is tried first automatically, falling back to LIST on failure. This is probably a better solution anyway.


These instructions will download the latest source, apply the patches, and install the whole thing.

# cd /source
# wget
# wget
# gtar -xzvf wget-1.8.2.tar.gz
# cd wget-1.8.2
# patch -b -p0 < ../wget-patch.txt
# ./configure
# make
# make install

Modified files in the wget build are:


The patch files are on this web server: