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I've just upgraded my computer hardware(cpu + motherboard + graphic card + memory + hard disk), so that install a new OS is needed. I tried to download debian-6.0.6-amd64-netinst.iso with wget command but the speed is so slow that I could not bear. 4Kb/s ~ 17 Kb/s, slow like a running turtle, or even more slower if I use Chrome.

I've read the help information of wget, it seems like there are no options could make it more faster.

Is there anyway to make wget faster? Or is it possible to make it multi-threading download?

PS: my bandwidth is 4M. I use this command:

wget -c url
share|improve this question
wget just uses your connection. So if its slow, thats your connection with the server. Maybe you are slow, maybe the server is. btw 4mbit = 0.5mb/s, not to mention loss etc – Dr_Bunsen Nov 7 '12 at 10:03
@Dr_Bunsen thank you for your advice, I tried the command that @Gufran suggested: axel, compared width wget, axel is faster than ever. I think in most situations, the bottleneck of my downloading speed are 1. something occupied the bandwidth(as you said: I'm slow). 2. single-threading. 3. the server is slow. But i have nothing to do with the 1&3 point. – Teifi Nov 8 '12 at 2:39
@Teifi One possibility if axel multi-thread perform better than wget when using the same remote server, latency between your box and the remote server is very high. Check your ping to remote server. – John Siu Jan 8 '13 at 4:20
Have you tried HTTrack? – amanthethy Aug 7 '14 at 3:23
up vote 25 down vote accepted

Why not try axel ? It is a fully fledged Command line based Downloader.
install axel and spawn download by axel -a -n [Num_of_Thread] link1 link2 link3 ... where '[Num_of_Thread]' is the number of parallel connections to create for each link you want to download.

-a just show an improved progress bar.

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Thank you @Gufran, it's unnecessary to make wget multi-threading, if there is a multi-threading download tool exists already. – Teifi Nov 8 '12 at 2:18
I am wondering if there is a way, maybe via alias and wrapper to use axel when is available instead of curl or wget, unless there is more than one parameter to the command line. – sorin Mar 6 '15 at 9:23
My internet connection has a per-download bandwidth limit, but no limit on total bandwidth used by any user. Using axel, I was able to get much better speed. – Sahil Singh Jul 19 at 22:05

I tried axel upon Gufran's recommendation but it hugely disappointed me. My goal was to find a CLI replacement for DownThemAll because it hogs the CPU and hard disc and slows the entire system down even on an 8-core Mac Pro. I also wanted a multithreaded replacement for wget and curl, not some kludge of a script that runs multiple instances of these. So I searched further and found what I think right now is the ultimate most modern multithreaded CLI downloader there is -- aria2. The big problem I had with axel was that it 'faked' downloading files over SSL. I caught it doing that with tcdump. It was downloading https links as ordinary http. That really pissed me off and if I hadn't checked, I would have had a false sense of security. I doubt that many people know about this serious breach in security. Getting back to aria2, it is more advanced than any other downloader. It supports HTTP(S), FTP, BitTorrent, and Metalink protocols, is multiplatform, and is a download guerrilla. It maxes out my ISP's bandwidth with no load on the CPU or hard disk, unlike DTA. The man page is gigantic. I will never use more than a few of its many options. And oh, BTW, I checked its SSL performance with tcdump and it is solid, not fake. I wrote a script that mimics DTA's behavior, if not its convenience.

The basic command I use to get max bandwidth is

aria2c --file-allocation=none -c -x 10 -s 10 -d "mydir" URL

-c allows continuation of download if it gets interrupted, -x 10 and -s 10 allow up to 10 connections per server, and -d "mydir" outputs file to directory mydir.


filename="$1" # get filename from command line argument

while read -r line
    if [ "$line" ] # skip blank lines
        if [[ "$line" =~ (https?|ftp)\:\/\/ ]] # line contains a URL, download file
            echo "URL: '$line'"
            aria2c --file-allocation=none -c -x 10 -s 10 -d "$currdir" "$line"
        else # line contains a directory name, create directory if not already present
            echo "Directory: '$line'"
            if [ ! -d "$currdir" ]
                mkdir -p "$currdir" # '-p' enables creation of nested directories in one command
done < "$filename"

It reads a text file of the format:


dierctory 1
directory 2/subdirectory/sub-subdirectory/…

The script reads the filename from the command line: files.txt

It creates the directories and downloads to them. It can create nested directories as shown in the second example.

For more details see my post Bash script to download files from URLs to specified directories listed in a text file.

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Although it's not matter to this question, but it's very helpful! Thank you sir! – Teifi Nov 22 '14 at 11:43

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