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Old 11-17-2008, 09:57 AM
Lucas Nussbaum
 
Default Bug#505968: ITP: urlwatch -- email notifications of changes to URLs

On 17/11/08 at 04:51 -0600, Ron Johnson wrote:
> On 11/17/08 03:23, Francois Marier wrote:
>> Package: wnpp
>> Severity: wishlist
>> Owner: Francois Marier <francois@debian.org>
>>
>> * Package name : urlwatch
>> Version : 1.4
>> Upstream Author : Thomas Perl <thp@thpinfo.com>
>> * URL : http://thpinfo.com/2008/urlwatch/
>> * License : BSD
>> Programming Lang: Python
>> Description : email notifications of changes to URLs
>>
>> This script is intended to help you watch URLs and get notified (via e-mail) of any
>> changes. The change notification will include the URL that has changed and a unified
>> diff of what's changed. The script works out of a single directory, so no need to
>> install anything. State files are kept in the same folder. The script supports
>> stripping always-changing parts of a page through the use of a filter hook function.

websec provides very similar functionality. Is urlwatch better than
websec?
--
| Lucas Nussbaum
| lucas@lucas-nussbaum.net http://www.lucas-nussbaum.net/ |
| jabber: lucas@nussbaum.fr GPG: 1024D/023B3F4F |


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Old 11-24-2008, 01:21 AM
Francois Marier
 
Default Bug#505968: ITP: urlwatch -- email notifications of changes to URLs

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for the CC by the way, I'm not subscribed to debian-devel@l.d.o

On 2008-11-17 at 11:57:44, Lucas Nussbaum wrote:
> websec provides very similar functionality. Is urlwatch better than
> websec?

Good question. Here's what the author of urlwatch has to say about it:

---
urlwatch has an easier configuration (urls.txt is just a text file with
one URL per line), websec has a more sophisticated (read: complicated)
way of setting up things.

urlwatch can look for non-existent pages (i.e. you enter a URL and as
soon as it becomes available, e.g. non-404, you get notified).

urlwatch is written in Python, so newcomers and advanced users familiar
with Python have an easier time customizing the hooks.py file and the
program itself.

urlwatch always sends you plaintext mail, no HTML (a _good_ thing!)

In my opinion, urlwatch has an easier way of getting rid of
always-changing content via the hooks.py file. It also allows things
like watching ical files for changes without having to understand the
ical format (by transforming ical to plaintext, see the examples).

For web pages (HTML), urlwatch supports cleaning up bad HTML to have
easier-to-read diffs via utidylib.
---

Cheers,
Francois


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Old 11-24-2008, 01:35 AM
Francois Marier
 
Default Bug#505968: ITP: urlwatch -- email notifications of changes to URLs

> On Mon, Nov 17, 2008 at 10:23:28PM +1300, Francois Marier wrote:
> > The script works out of a single directory, so no need to install
> > anything. State files are kept in the same folder.
>
> ...except you are packaging it, so you'll need to install the .deb,
> right? I don't think this sentence belongs in the package description.

You're right, it won't be part of the package description

> Also, where do you intend for the urls.txt and state information to be
> saved? the upstream script does
>
> os.chdir(os.path.dirname(os.path.abspath(sys.argv[0])))
>
> and then writes stuff in the CWD, which would not be appropriate for a
> package (since you'd have the script in /usr/bin).

The latest version of the upstream tarball has per-user config variables, so
every user will be able to have their own "watch file".

Cheers,
Francois


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