Seems I can only download dropbox files using explorer such as chrome and firefox. If I use wget to download, then I would get a file which is in html format. Why?

For example you can open this link

You would not get the content of this file, why? The following is part of test.txt to download it, this is not the content of test.txt at all.

So is it possible to download Dropbox files using wget rather than explorer?

document.observe('script:loaded', function() {
SharingModel.init('test\x2etxt', Util.from_json('\x7b\x22item\x5fid\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22secure\x5fhash\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22subpath\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22tkey\x22\x3a\x20\x22mx9eqve5l2ipgyk\x22\x7d'))
$('emsnippet-9911dfc627e1d541').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(50, 0.750).escapeHTML();
$('emsnippet-add7879f5d805012').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(20, 0.750).escapeHTML();
$('emsnippet-981ac0639529f983').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(20, 0.750).escapeHTML();
FilePreview.init_text('https\x3a\x2f\x2fdl\x2edropbox\x2ecom\x2fs\x2fmx9eqve5l2ipgyk\x2ftest\x2etxt', 0)                        });
                    } else if (window.jQuery) {
jQuery(function () {
SharingModel.init('test\x2etxt', Util.from_json('\x7b\x22item\x5fid\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22secure\x5fhash\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22subpath\x22\x3a\x20\x22\x22\x2c\x20\x22tkey\x22\x3a\x20\x22mx9eqve5l2ipgyk\x22\x7d'))
$('emsnippet-9911dfc627e1d541').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(50, 0.750).escapeHTML();
$('emsnippet-add7879f5d805012').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(20, 0.750).escapeHTML();
$('emsnippet-981ac0639529f983').innerHTML = 'test\x2etxt'.em_snippet(20, 0.750).escapeHTML();
FilePreview.init_text('https\x3a\x2f\x2fdl\x2edropbox\x2ecom\x2fs\x2fmx9eqve5l2ipgyk\x2ftest\x2etxt', 0)                        });

I cannot get test.txt with command

wget https://www.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.tx

ls -l 
-rw-rw-r-- 1 mirror mirror  30K Sep  6 15:01 test.txt
  • Stupid question: were you logged into DropBox when you tried to download using a browser? – user3463 Sep 6 '12 at 5:23
  • 1
    Using wget on your link retrieves test.txt (containing the 4 bytes "test") just fine on my side. Maybe something in your .wgetrc is causing this? – jjlin Sep 6 '12 at 6:31
  • @jjlin what is your command? mine is add above – hugemeow Sep 6 '12 at 7:02
  • 5
    I used wget --no-check-cert https://dl.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.txt. That worked fine for me, but if you want to force a download, you might consider trying wget --no-check-cert 'https://dl.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.txt?dl=1' instead (note the ?dl=1 query parameter). – jjlin Sep 6 '12 at 15:43
  • @jjlin so maybe a script is needed if i want to download file from dropbox:) – hugemeow Sep 6 '12 at 15:54

The link in your question is not the link to the file, is a link to the Dropbox page of this file.
If you want to use wget to download it, you should copy the link to direct download from the menu that drops when pushing the download button to the right.

In my case, that worked fine. However, sometimes problems in downloading links from outside the browser relate to parameters other than the link itself. A common element that does not exist when you simply copy the link are the site cookies.

Try this cool FF add-on to get the correct wget links

And also, especially if we are talking about a known workstation and not a casual one, you can of course install the Dropbox client. This will be the easiest way, just let your box be part of your file structure and eliminate the need of complicated downloads.
See this askubuntu.com post, and the Dropbox download page.

| improve this answer | |
  • 4
    Trying to get the direct link in the browser pops up an ad for an upgrade option. I see the other answer (superuser.com/a/486351/106977) involving ?dl=1, but that does not allow one to get at the link either (probably due to Box's preventing use unless you upgrade). – bgoodr Mar 23 '13 at 14:20
  • @amotzg is there a way to resume the download from dropbox with flag --continue? It seems not working to me. (unix.stackexchange.com/questions/174850/…) – prayagupd Dec 19 '14 at 13:36
  • @PrayagUpd, found this stackoverflow.com/questions/18084677/…. – amotzg Jan 1 '15 at 12:25
  • 1
    This add-on helped with a shared dropbox link which requires a password to download it. Note, right clicking on the "download" button, selecting cliget gives you the URL to the ?dl=0 output, which is a smaller file. Changing that to ?dl=1 gives the correct download path. – JonTheNiceGuy Mar 2 '17 at 10:37

Just add ?dl=1 at the end of the link! For example: https://www.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.txt?dl=1

That should give you a fine retrieval of the file in question without adding anything to the file.

One more thing! If you wanna save the file somewhere else use the -O option like this

wget -O /root/Desktop/test.txt "https://www.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.txt?dl=1"

And if you want to have a little bit of GUI you can use zenity to mark the location to where the file is going to be downloaded!

Here's an example code:

dir=$(zenity --file-selection --directory)
wget -O $dir/test.txt "https://www.dropbox.com/s/mx9eqve5l2ipgyk/test.txt?dl=1"
| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    That is awesome, works out of the box... – slotishtype Dec 1 '13 at 16:11
  • Just used your suggestion to get a shared folder, and received an amazing zip file (miss named). Awesome! Thanks a lot!! – Rafareino Nov 15 '14 at 15:18
  • 2
    Much better answer than the accepted one. This helped a lot, thanks. – Seiyria Sep 22 '15 at 17:08
  • 4
    Is this method still working? Using the command wget 'https://www.dropbox.com/sh/my_folder_url?dl=1' I keep getting ERROR 400: Bad Request. – Paul Rougieux Nov 7 '16 at 9:31
  • 2
    It works for me. Even today. This solution is better than the answer – TheBlackBenzKid Nov 11 '19 at 6:39

Dropbox has modified it so that wget will do the right thing and retrieve the file instead of the interstitial.

Use "Share Link" to retrieve the direct link to the file.

| improve this answer | |
  • This should be the correct answer, it's trivial with the share link. – davidparks21 Jan 8 '17 at 23:04
  • Nice! I got a wget: No match output, which was solved using the link enclosed within single quotation marks (due to the ? in the url maybe?) – Matifou Oct 16 '17 at 18:51
  • You sure that is the correct answer. It seems download is only for folks with business account! Please correct me if I am wrong! – chikitin Feb 27 at 14:25

Saw this question and thought this may help someone trying to download many files at once.

Here's a small Windows CMD/Batch script you can use.
It can easily be adjusted to work under a Bash shell (Mac/Linux/etc).
It uses CURL. WGET should also work with some minor adjustments..

1. Install Curl for Windows.

2. Put the individual SHARED links in a text file (1 per line).

3. Adjust all the "?dl=0" parameter(s) in your text file to "?dl=1" and save.

4. Copy script below to a file called 'geturllist.cmd' (or your choosing)

5. Open a CMD prompt and execute the CMD script.

Downloaded files will appear in current working directory you executed script from.

You must have properly formatted SHARED LINKS that "Anyone with the link" can open. This script does NOT work with password protected links or shares based on a Dropbox login/email.
If the single file or file group(auto zipped) is over a certain size, it will fail with error ("The (zip) file is too large. Please add it to your Dropbox."). In this case you must do as it says.. this script will not work because share link isn't directly downloadable.

Example text file:
("RandomShareCharacters/Here" will be replaced with what it says in share link)



@echo off
set count=0
IF [%1]==[] GOTO BLANK

IF [%1]==[/?] GOTO HELP
IF [%1]==[--help] GOTO HELP


  for /f "delims=" %%u in (%1) do (

      set /a count=count+1
      curl -kL "%%u" -O -J

      REM For other share sites:
      REM (ZIP EXAMPLE) if no filename type header sent:
      REM > curl -kL "%%u" -o "!count!.zip"
      REM > echo "!count!.zip"
      REM Will download file(s) called 1.zip, 2.zip, etc.
  ) ELSE (

ECHO    Usage:
ECHO    geturllist [path]\[filename]
ECHO    Required Parameters:
ECHO    [filename]  A text file with one url per line
ECHO    -h      Help

ECHO Error: no input file found

ECHO Try -h for Help

ECHO Exiting.

Example Usage:

geturllist.cmd X:\somepath\dropbox.txt

| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    Down-votes with no comments are lovely. Thanks. Hurt your feelings? – bshea Aug 15 '17 at 20:55
  • 1
    Unbelievable why people downvoted this answer ffs, upvoted. – Josyula Krishna Sep 16 '18 at 10:11

You are gonna get something named "file" or some weird name... Just renaming that file to whatever you want will do the trick. Actually downloaded file is the file you wanted just with weird name and without the file type attribute.

| improve this answer | |

The easiest and most guaranteed method for these type of downloads is to use google chrome's developer tools.

  • Press F12 to open developer tools
  • Go to network tab
  • Press the download link to start the download
  • Find the download event in the network events
  • Right click the line and select "Copy as cURL (bash)" or windows if you want

  • The url will look like this:

    curl "http://yoururl.com/yourfile" -H "Pragma: no-cache" -H "Origin: http://yoururl.com" -H "Accept-Encoding: gzip, deflate" -H "Accept-Language: en-US;q=0.8,en;q=0.6,fr;q=0.4" -H "User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 bla bla" -H "Content-Type: text/plain;charset=UTF-8" -H "Accept: */*" -H "Cache-Control: max-age=0" -H "Referer: http://yoururl.com/downloadpage" -H "Cookie: e07214fb60a1a; _ga=98987; " -H "Connection: keep-alive"
  • Replace curl with wget

  • Replace -H "some headers" with --header="some headers"
  • Paste that to your bash window and add the -o parameter. (If you don't add this parameter, the output will be printed to the console.
  • Press enter and enjoy your download.
| improve this answer | |

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