Handy Web ExtractorHandy Web Extractor is a simple tool for everyday web content monitoring. It will periodically download the web page, extract the necessary content and display it in the window on your desktop. One may consider it as the data extraction software, taking its own nitch in the scraping software and plugins.

What is it for?

Have you ever needed to track some web site changes without visiting it again and again? If so, you may find this program useful. The idea is simple: it periodically downloads the specified web page, extracts the part you need and displays it for you in a small window. You can easily move, resize, hide or show this window according to your needs.

It’s totally free and available for download.

How does it work?

After installing the program you will see the following window:

Handy Web Extractor

At the top of the window (on white background) you may see the extracted web page itself (in this case it’s a header of this article) followed by program settings (on light yellow background). If you don’t see the program settings click on the gear icon (if you want to hide them click it again).

Settings available:

  • Web Site URL – type the URL of the target web-page you want to scrape
  • Extract using XPath – use this option if you want to specify the portion of the web-page using XPath expression
  • Extract using Regex – use this option if you want to specify the portion of the web-page using Regex expression
  • Update every N min – to specify how often the program will scrape the target website
  • Autostart – check this box if you want the program to start automatically when Windows starts

After you change either the web site URL or XPath/Regex expression click the “Update now” link at the bottom to rescrape the web site.

You may always access this window via the “magnet” icon in the system tray. Click the icon to show/hide the window and right-click it to display an additional menu.

That’s it. The only thing I’d like to mention here is that the program remembers all your settings right away (including window position and size) and you don’t need to “save” them manually.

Usage Examples

Stocks

You can use Handy Web Extractor as a stock tracker:

Stock tracker

Hot news

Here is an example of how to monitor hot news using Handy Web Extractor:

Hot news monitoring

Number Tracker

With Handy Web Extractor you can easily extract a single number using Regex expressions. Here is an example of how to track your program downloads:

Number Tracking

Here is how it may look on your desktop:

Handy Web Extractor

Picture of the day

You may even use Handy Web Extractor to display a picture of the day from any web site :) :

Picture of the Day