Looking for some brief information on how to extract data from files on the web? If there are any tutorials or pieces that you know of, it would be great help.

  • 1
    What format is the data? Are you trying to parse XML, extract data from different MIME types, pull down CSV files embedded on a page, extract tags from HTML? Each of those typically have different answers and different requirements.
    – Praxiteles
    Sep 13, 2016 at 20:15
  • Files available on the web really doesn't restrict you to any format. Are there any formats or files that you are particularly interested in?
    – nmtoken
    Jan 4, 2017 at 10:25

2 Answers 2


There is a good piece here: https://blog.datazar.com/mastering-the-art-of-data-preparation-fea2074232fa#.iblmav7eq that goes over all components of data preperation. There is a specific portion of it devoted to data extraction from files, web sources and RDBMS sources using R.


Can you be just a tad more specific - what files are you extracting data from? What format are they? Are they data file already or are they text/pdf documents?

If you simply want to programmatically grab files off the web, I would suggest checking out cUrl: https://curl.haxx.se/ it is extremely handy for downloading pretty much anything from a url.

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