One of my favorite ways to batch download files on the CLI is using xargs, cat and cURL. I know, I know… there are more efficient ways of doing this - usually involving parallel, but I’ve found this to be the most reliable way when moving between Linux distros.

First, you need a file(files.txt) with a list of files to download. I like to name my files when they are downloaded, so my list also has a name for each file.

files.txt contents:


Then to download these files we just run the following:

cat files.txt | xargs -n 2 curl -L -o

That’s it, the files will download one at a time with the names in the file.

If you’d like to do this in parallel, simply add the -P option:

cat files.txt | xargs -n 2 -P 2 curl -L -o