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Is it possible to consult the state of progress of a Firefox (http) download with a SSH connection?

When I log to an new TTY, is it possible to see a Process who's the Firefox download with a percent or something like that?

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You could use screen with wget instead? – Phoshi Nov 22 '09 at 12:57
up vote 3 down vote accepted

Just use watch ls -l /path/to/file. You can do an sudo lsof |grep firefox to locate the file if you don't already know where it is. You won't be able to get the percent remaining, only the number of bytes transferred so far (though if you know the URL, you can do a curl --head URL | grep Content-Length to find out the expected size of the download).

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Firefox saves the file it is downloading under ${original-filename}.part before moving it once the download is complete.

You can examine the file size of the .part file with a command line tool such as ls -lh.

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a very rough interpretation of "consult the state of progress", but i suppose it would do the job. :) – quack quixote Nov 22 '09 at 16:25
I have to choose only an answer.. So if i can choose two, yours is good too. – bAN Nov 22 '09 at 20:03

No, this is not possible (without additional software). To my knowledge, Firefox has no built-in way to produce a report on one of its graphical windows with terminal output. In theory, this functionality could be provided by a Firefox addon or an external script.

You could use VNC (or VNC-over-SSH if you like) to remotely view the state of the desktop, including the Firefox window.

Or, you could use GNU screen and download with wget or curl, as suggested by Phoshi. Then connect with SSH and reconnect to the screen session to view the download progress. As a side benefit, wget can continue a partial download if the connection is cut-off.

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Hard to to use VNC because its from a mobile device.. But good advice.. – bAN Nov 22 '09 at 20:02

You have a Ubuntu system with Firefox installed that is downloading an update. The intention is to follow the progress of the download -- if required through another SSH login to the same Ubuntu system.

From a purely academic standpoint, this should be feasible with an iptables meter tracking the download TCP connection.

The meter will of course count only from the time it is started. If you know the target size of the download, you can estimate the progress.

Finally, it would be more practical to use wget or curl for the purpose as already suggested.

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