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Script for grabbing daily Packt Free Learning ebooks

Project description

Free Learning Packt Publishing script

packt-cli is a Python script that allows to automatically grab and download a daily Free Learning Packt ebook from You can also use it to download already claimed ebooks from your Packt account.

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To install current version of script simply run

pip3 install packt --upgrade

You may want to install it inside new virtualenv.


The packt-cli script might be executed with several optional arguments.

  • Option -g [--grab] - claims (grabs) a daily eBook into your account
packt-cli -g
  • Option -gd [--grabd] - claims (grabs) a daily ebook and downloads the title afterwards to the location specified under [download_folder_path] field (configFile.cfg file)
packt-cli -gd
  • Option -da [--dall] - downloads all ebooks from your account
packt-cli -da
  • Option -sgd [--sgd] - claims and uploads a book to [gdFolderName] folder onto Google Drive (more about that in Google Drive API Setup section)
packt-cli -sgd
  • Option -m [--mail] - claims and sends an email with the newest book in PDF format (and MOBI if is also downloaded; see mail options confguration under [MAIL] path in configFile.cfg)
packt-cli -m
  • SubOption -sm [--status_mail] - sends fail report email whether script execution was successful
packt-cli -gd -sm
  • SubOption -f [--folder] - downloads an ebook into a created folder, named as ebook's title
packt-cli -gd -f
  • SubOption -c [--cfgpath] - selects folder where config file can be found (default: cwd)
packt-cli -gd -c /home/usr/


Download all ebooks in all available formats (pdf, epub, mobi) with zipped source code file from your Packt account.

To download all ebooks in all available formats from your Packt account, you have to prepare your config file as shown below:

password: yourpassword

download_folder_path: C:\Users\me\Desktop\myEbooksFromPackt
download_formats: pdf, epub, mobi, code

gd_app_name: GoogleDriveManager
gd_folder_name: PACKT_EBOOKS


  packt-cli -da

Scheduled script execution setup


On Debian (and any Debian-based Linux distribution) you may use cron job to schedule script execution. To do this run crontab -e and add the following line to crontab file.

0 12 * * * path/to/virtualenv/bin/packt-cli -gd > path/to/log/file 2>&1

Adjust execution time and paths according to your setup. To verify if cron executes the script as expected, run

$ sudo grep CRON /var/log/syslog


schtasks.exe setup (more info: :

To create the task that will be called at 12:00 everyday, run the following command in cmd (modify all paths according to your setup):

schtasks /create /sc DAILY /tn "grabEbookFromPacktTask" /tr "C:\Users\me\Desktop\GrabPacktFreeBook\grabEbookFromPacktTask.bat" /st 12:00

To check if the "grabEbookFromPacktTask" has been added to all scheduled tasks on your computer:

schtasks /query

To run the task manually:

schtasks /run /tn "grabEbookFromPacktTask"

To delete the task:

schtasks /delete /tn "grabEbookFromPacktTask"

If you want to log all downloads add -l switch to grabEbookFromPacktTask i.e.

schtasks /create /sc DAILY /tn "grabEbookFromPacktTask" /tr "C:\Users\me\Desktop\GrabPacktFreeBook\grabEbookFromPacktTask.bat -l" /st 12:00

If you want to additionaly make command line windows stay open after download add -p switch i.e.

schtasks /create /sc DAILY /tn "grabEbookFromPacktTask" /tr "C:\Users\me\Desktop\GrabPacktFreeBook\grabEbookFromPacktTask.bat -l -p" /st 12:00

Google Drive API Setup

Full info about the Google Drive Python API can be found here.

  1. Turn on the Google Drive API
  • Use this wizard to create or select a project in the Google Developers Console and automatically turn on the API. Click Continue, then Go to credentials.
  • On the Add credentials to your project page, click the Cancel button.
  • At the top of the page, select the OAuth consent screen tab. Select an email address, enter a product name if not already set, and click the Save button.
  • Select the Credentials tab, click the Create credentials button and select OAuth client ID.
  • Select the application type Other, enter the name GoogleDriveManager, and click the Create button.
  • Click OK to dismiss the resulting dialog.
  • Click the file_download (Download JSON) button to the right of the client ID.
  • Move this file next to the config file and rename it to client_secret.json.
  1. Create credentials folder:
  • Simply, just fire up the script with -sgd argument; During first launch you will see a prompt in your browser asking for permissions, click then allow
packt-cli -sgd
  • Or if you're unable to launch browser locally (e.g. you're connecting through SSH without X11 forwarding) use this command once, follow instructions and give permission and later you can use normal command (without --noauth_local_webserver).
packt-cli -c /path/to/config/file.cfg -sgd --noauth_local_webserver

The command parameters number and their order is important!

  1. Already done!
  • Run the same command as above to claim and upload the eBook to Google Drive.

In case of any questions feel free to ask, happy grabbing!

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