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I'd like to download a directory from a FTP, which contains some source codes. Initially, I did this:

wget -r ftp://path/to/src

Unfortunately, the directory itself is a result of a SVN checkout, so there are lots of .svn directories, and crawling over them would take longer time. Is it possible to exclude those .svn directories?

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wget -X directory_to_exclude[,other_directory_to_exclude] -r ftp://URL_ftp_server

SERVER
    |-logs
    |-etc
    |-cache
    |-public_html
      |-images
      |-videos ( want to exclude )
      |-files
      |-audio  (want to exclude)

wget -X /public_html/videos,/public_html/audio ftp:SERVER/public_html/*
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  • 1
    This actually seems to be the correct comment. The exclude-directories switch does not do patterns/regexes, so you have to include the entire path (from root). The higher-voted answer seems to be incorrect for all but the trivial cases.
    – John O
    Sep 28 '16 at 19:26
  • 1
    I agree. Although the documentation states that wildcards can be used, I could not get them to work. Jan 16 '17 at 17:32
  • 2
    wildcards work, but are interpreted first on shell level, so you have to escape them to work. Oct 1 '17 at 19:20
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wget --exclude-directories=.svn -r ftp://path/to/src
1

I'd like to answer this a bit broader, because the subject of this question can be found via a search engine:

--exclude-directories=list expects absolute paths [1]. This means with host.org/fu/bar/ you have to write --exclude-directories=/fu/bar.

This can be a problem, if you always want to exclude a folder with a specific name, no matter where it is exactly (for example a 'thumbs' folder).

For this we can use --reject-regex [2] like this: --reject-regex="/thumbs/". Given this is now regex and not a comma-separated string list, we can exclude multiple folders via regex1|regex2|regex3: --reject-regex="/thumbs/|/css/". Keep in mind that certain characters like . have a special meaning in regex and need to be escaped to be part of a folder name: "/\.svn/".

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