Monthly Downloads: 816
Programming language: Elixir
License: Apache License 2.0
Tags: HTTP    
Latest version: v0.12.0

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Crawly is an application framework for crawling web sites and extracting structured data which can be used for a wide range of useful applications, like data mining, information processing or historical archival.


  1. Elixir ~> 1.10
  2. Works on GNU/Linux, Windows, macOS X, and BSD.


  1. Add Crawly as a dependencies:
   # mix.exs
   defp deps do
         {:crawly, "~> 0.13.0"},
         {:floki, "~> 0.26.0"}
  1. Fetch dependencies: $ mix deps.get
  2. Create a spider
   # lib/crawly_example/books_to_scrape.ex
   defmodule BooksToScrape do
       use Crawly.Spider

       @impl Crawly.Spider
       def base_url(), do: "https://books.toscrape.com/"

       @impl Crawly.Spider
       def init() do: [start_urls: ["https://books.toscrape.com/"]]

       @impl Crawly.Spider
       def parse_item(response) do
           # Parse response body to document
           {:ok, document} = Floki.parse_document(response.body)

           # Create item (for pages where items exists)
           items =
             |> Floki.find(".product_pod")
             |> Enum.map(fn x ->
               title: Floki.find(x, "h3 a") |> Floki.attribute("title") |> Floki.text(),
               price: Floki.find(x, ".product_price .price_color") |> Floki.text(),

           next_requests =
             |> Floki.find(".next a")
             |> Floki.attribute("href")
             |> Enum.map(fn url ->
               Crawly.Utils.build_absolute_url(url, response.request.url)
               |> Crawly.Utils.request_from_url()
           %{items: items, requests: next_requests}
  1. Configure Crawly

By default, Crawly does not require any configuration. But obviously you will need a configuration for fine tuning the crawls:

   # in config.exs
   config :crawly,
     closespider_timeout: 10,
     concurrent_requests_per_domain: 8,
     middlewares: [
       {Crawly.Middlewares.UserAgent, user_agents: ["Crawly Bot"]}
     pipelines: [
       {Crawly.Pipelines.Validate, fields: [:url, :title]},
       {Crawly.Pipelines.DuplicatesFilter, item_id: :title},
       {Crawly.Pipelines.WriteToFile, extension: "jl", folder: "/tmp"}
  1. Start the Crawl:
   $ iex -S mix
   iex(1)> Crawly.Engine.start_spider(EslSpider)
  1. Results can be seen with:
   $ cat /tmp/EslSpider.jl

Need more help?

I have decided to create a public telegram channel, so it's now possible to be connected, and it's possible to ask questions and get answers faster!

Please join me on: https://t.me/crawlyelixir

Browser rendering

Crawly can be configured in the way that all fetched pages will be browser rendered, which can be very useful if you need to extract data from pages which has lots of asynchronous elements (for example parts loaded by AJAX).

You can read more here:

Experimental UI

The CrawlyUI project is an add-on that aims to provide an interface for managing and rapidly developing spiders.

Checkout the code from GitHub or try it online CrawlyUIDemo

See more at Experimental UI



  1. [x] Pluggable HTTP client
  2. [x] Retries support
  3. [x] Cookies support
  4. [x] XPath support - can be actually done with meeseeks
  5. [ ] Project generators (spiders)
  6. [ ] UI for jobs management


  1. Blog post on Erlang Solutions website: https://www.erlang-solutions.com/blog/web-scraping-with-elixir.html
  2. Blog post about using Crawly inside a machine learning project with Tensorflow (Tensorflex): https://www.erlang-solutions.com/blog/how-to-build-a-machine-learning-project-in-elixir.html
  3. Web scraping with Crawly and Elixir. Browser rendering: https://medium.com/@oltarasenko/web-scraping-with-elixir-and-crawly-browser-rendering-afcaacf954e8
  4. Web scraping with Elixir and Crawly. Extracting data behind authentication: https://oltarasenko.medium.com/web-scraping-with-elixir-and-crawly-extracting-data-behind-authentication-a52584e9cf13
  5. What is web scraping, and why you might want to use it?
  6. Using Elixir and Crawly for price monitoring
  7. Building a Chrome-based fetcher for Crawly

Example projects

  1. Blog crawler: https://github.com/oltarasenko/crawly-spider-example
  2. E-commerce websites: https://github.com/oltarasenko/products-advisor
  3. Car shops: https://github.com/oltarasenko/crawly-cars
  4. JavaScript based website (Splash example): https://github.com/oltarasenko/autosites


We would gladly accept your contributions!


Please find documentation on the HexDocs

Production usages

Using Crawly on production? Please let us know about your case!

Copyright and License

Copyright (c) 2019 Oleg Tarasenko

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License.

*Note that all licence references and agreements mentioned in the Crawly README section above are relevant to that project's source code only.