Checks the provenance of a URL in the Wayback machine
Give waybackprov a URL and it will summarize which Internet Archive collections have archived the URL. This kind of information can sometimes provide insight about why a particular web resource or set of web resources were archived from the web.
pip install waybackprov
To check a particular URL here's how it works:
% waybackprov https://twitter.com/EPAScottPruitt 364 https://archive.org/details/focused_crawls 306 https://archive.org/details/edgi_monitor 151 https://archive.org/details/www3.epa.gov 60 https://archive.org/details/epa.gov4 47 https://archive.org/details/epa.gov5 ...
The first column contains the number of crawls for a particular URL, and the second column contains the URL for the Internet Archive collection that added it.
By default waybackprov will only look at the current year. If you would like it
to examine a range of years use the
% waybackprov --start 2016 --end 2018 https://twitter.com/EPAScottPruitt
If you would like to look at all URLs at a particular URL prefix you can use the
% waybackprov --prefix https://twitter.com/EPAScottPruitt
This will use the Internet Archive's CDX API to also include URLs that are extensions of the URL you supply, so it would include for example:
But it can also include things you may not want, such as:
To further limit the URLs use the
--match parameter to specify a regular
expression only check particular URLs. Further specifying the URLs you are
interested in is highly recommended since it prevents lots of lookups for CSS,
% waybackprov --prefix --match 'status/\d+$' https://twitter.com/EPAScottPruitt
One thing to remember when interpreting this data is that collections can contain other collections. For example the edgi_monitor collection is a sub-collection of focused_crawls.
If you use the
--collapse option only the most specific collection will be
reported for a given crawl. So if coll1 is part of coll2 which is part of
coll3, only coll1 will be reported instead of coll1, coll2 and coll3.
This does involve collection metadata lookups at the Internet Archive API, so it
does slow performance significantly.
JSON and CSV
If you would rather see the raw data as JSON or CSV use the
When you use either of these formats you will see the metadata for each crawl,
rather than a summary.
If you would like to see detailed information about what waybackprov is doing
--log option to supply the a file path to log to:
% waybackprov --log waybackprov.log https://example.com/
If you would like to test it first install pytest and then:
Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.
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