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I've tried to connect to a server via wget:

wget http://<user>:<pass>@serveradress

But wget responds: invalid port

I know that the server accepts incoming traffic at port 80. How can I fix this issue?

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I don't think you can reliably use the user:pass@name syntax there; wget has separate command line options for those instead, so is probably naively parsing the string after the : as a port number. – geekosaur Mar 5 '11 at 3:02
up vote 62 down vote accepted

Wget interprets <pass>@serveraddress as port. To specify a username and password, use the --user and --password switches:

wget --user user --password pass

From man wget:



Specify the username user and password password for both FTP and HTTP file retrieval. These parameters can be overridden using the --ftp-user and --ftp-password options for FTP connections and the --http-user and --http-password options for HTTP connections.

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I prefer the --ask-password option described by Nabil Kadimi's answer. It has you enter the password invisibly on another line and avoids storing it in your shell history. – Kevin Apr 8 '14 at 1:23
@Kevin You can avoid storing it in the shell history by starting the line with at least one space (as shown by Nabil). If the password/resource is sensitive, then you should worry more about the unencrypted HTTP/FTP/whatever connection than storing it on your disk. – Lekensteyn Apr 8 '14 at 8:58

You have 3 options and here there are in no specific order other than guts feeling:

1/ Password is visible to anyone (using the command history)

me@machine:~$ wget --user=remote_user --password=SECRET

The password will also be visible in ps, top, htop and similar.

2/ Password is visible to anyone looking behind your shoulders

me@machine:~$  wget --user=remote_user --password=SECRET

Notice the white space before the command, it prevents saving it to your history

The password will also be visible in ps, top, htop and similar.

3/ Password is not visible to anyone including you

me@machine:~$ wget --user=remote_user --ask-password
Password for user `remote_user': [SECRET (not visible)]
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don't forget to add the following option --no-check-certificate I.E: wget --no-check-certificate --user user --password pass http://serveraddress/ – Abdennour TOUMI Jan 5 '14 at 5:10
While it is not visible in history, it is visible to all who conduct a ps, top, htop or similar command while the process is running. – user412812 May 22 '15 at 20:04
My wget apparently doesn't know about --ask-password flag: wget: unrecognised option --ask-password'. Version: GNU Wget 1.11.4 Red Hat modified`. Is it normal ? – Anto Mar 9 at 11:01
@AbdennourTOUMI Why would you disable certificate checks, especially if you are sending a password with the request? That is definitely not advisable in general. As far as "hiding" the password on logs or /proc is concerned, the wget manpage gives an additional option: "To prevent the passwords from being seen, store them in .wgetrc or .netrc, and make sure to protect those files from other users with "chmod"." – lxgr Jun 10 at 9:32

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