Monday, October 16, 2017

Merge Pages: No param in URLs

User question:
> I have a page with the format and want 
> to merge with sub pages. The sub pages have the format 
> and so on. How can I do that 
> since the Merge feature only supports URLs with parameters.

If the sub pages don't have parameters (such as &page=NN) then you have to create a private plugin to merge these pages into a single page. The source code below will work with the URL syntax in the provided example:

Sub Wsw_MergePages(Handle, ..........)

   Dim nParamPageNumber, sFilename

   If nPageNumber > 5 Then
   End If

   sFilename = GetFirstRegexMatch(sUrl, "page\/\d+")
   If sFilename = "" Then
      nParamPageNumber = 2
      sUrl = ReplaceText(sUrl, sFilename, "")
      nParamPageNumber = CInt(ExtractDigits(sFilename)) + 1
   End If
   sFilename = "page/" + CStr(nParamPageNumber)
   sUrl = sUrl + AddSlash(sFilename)
   If Pos(sUrl, sMemWeb) > 0 Then
      sStatusMessage = "New page via Merge-Plugin"
      sNewUrl = sUrl
      sStatusMessage = "Merge-Plugin executed"
   End If
End Sub

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

WebSite-Watcher under Mac or Linux

We are often asked for a Mac or Linux version of WebSite-Watcher. Fact is that WebSite-Watcher is a Windows software and we always recommended to use a Virtual Machine to run WebSite-Watcher on a Mac or Linux. But this also require licenses for a Windows version and a Virtual Machine.

Today we received the following information from a user:

I am sure you might get questions about your tool working on Mac and Linux or some people who would like for you to say that they would like it under Mac or Linux. Now you can tell them that it works under CrossOver.

CrossOver officially lists WebSite-Watcher in their supported software list at

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

CSV file with references to checked bookmarks

User question:
> I'm trying to find out if there is a way to have Website-Watcher 
> create a file that would consist of information about bookmarks 
> where an update is detected.  I'm sure there must be a way to do 
> this but after looking at the help document and the forums for a 
> while I wasn't able to figure it out.  I run a daily check of all my 
> bookmarks and I would like that check to produce an excel or CSV 
> file that contained the URL, the three Info Fields, a path to the 
> highlighted version of the page and the date and time of the check.  
> Is there a way to do that? 

yes, you can use the Report/Export feature (Tools menu) to generate a CSV file with that information.

First you have to create a CSV template with a text editor, this template must contain the fields you want to export. An example template can be found at

Supported variables can be found at

In your case you would need the variables:

Monday, September 11, 2017

Monitor data in drop down boxes

User question:
> I monitor a page that has important information in drop down boxes. 
> I know there is a plugin to only monitor the OPTION tags, but I also 
> need the information that is displayed in the page. Any way to do 
> this?

One way would be to duplicate the bookmark and check one copy with the plugin "Monitor OPTION tags", but this is definitely not an elegant solution.

What I would recommend is to use a private plugin that eliminates the drop down boxes and inserts the entries of the drop down boxes as data into the web page. Then you have both, the page content and the drop down box entries. Here's a plugin code that you can use as starting point.

1. Open the bookmark properties
2. Select the Advanced tab
3. Select "Plugin" on the left side
4. Click the button "Create Private Plugin"
5. Enter the following plugin code

Sub Wsw_PreProcessPage(Handle, ByRef sMemWeb, ByRef sStatusMessage, ByRef iStatusCode)
   sMemWeb = ReplaceWildcard(sMemWeb, "<option*>", "(")
   sMemWeb = ReplaceWildcard(sMemWeb, "</option*>", ") ")
   sMemWeb = DeleteAllWildcardMatches(sMemWeb, "<select*>")
   sMemWeb = DeleteAllWildcardMatches(sMemWeb, "</select*>")
End Sub

Monday, August 28, 2017

Number of simultaneous connections

User question:
> Can you tell me how many connections WSW can make to check at the 
> same time? I have noticed that my version is only ever checking 3 
> different url's at once.

You can have max 10 simultaneous connections, this can be configured in the program configuration:

1. Open the program configuration
2. Click the "Check" tab
3. Click the "Connection..." button

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Send mail via Yahoo

User question:
> I'm trying to send a test mail via my yahoo account, but I always 
> get the following error:
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - WSW> WebSite-Watcher 2017 (17.1)
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - WSW> Begin Login POP3
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - < +OK Hello from jpop-0.1
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - > USER **********
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - < +OK Password required.
> 2017-07-25 12:24:19 - > PASS **********
> 2017-07-25 12:25:19 - WSW> Result = 10
> 2017-07-25 12:25:19 - WSW> Login POP3 - ERROR

We could send a test mail with the following configuration. It seems that a login to the POP3 server is not required, but it also works with the configuration in the screenshot below.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Plugin: Escape certain characters

User question:
> I'm writing a plugin and need to escape certain characters in an 
> URL. Is there a function available to escape characters?

No, there's no built in function available.
Here's a small function that you can use as starting point to escape certain characters:

Function EscapeChars(s As String) As String
   Dim i, s2
   s2 = ""
   For i = 1 To Length(s)
      If Pos(LowerCase(s[i]), "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz0123456789%.") > 0 Then
         s2 = s2 + s[i] 
         s2 = s2 + "%" + IntToHex(Ord(s[i]), 2)
      End If
   Return s2
End Function

s = EscapeChars("")

s =

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Multiple pages with login

User question:
> If several (in fact more than 10) of my bookmarks share the same
> web-based login, can I set it up so that there is only one login
> instead of as many logins as there are bookmarks? 

Only if that page has a "Stay logged in" option which saves the login information in a cookie. In that case you have to login once in a browser tab of WebSite-Watcher, this will write the cookie which will then be used for the bookmark checks.

If it's not possible to save login information permanently, then you have to record a check macro for each bookmark. In that case it's not possible to share the login information.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Show removed content

User question:
> Is it possible that website watcher also shows the removed content in a different color?
> Or maybe it opens both versions (tiled vertically or horizontally) so I don't need to 
> click another icon to get that

This only works when you call it manually via the browser toolbar.

If you want to see it in the same document, you have to use the highlight method "Exact" with the option "Show removed content".

Monday, June 5, 2017

Autostart script and AutoWatch

User question:
> I use the option to automatically start AutoWatch when I launch 
> WebSite-Watcher. Since a couple of days this stopped working. The 
> only thing that I changed was that I created an Autostart script to 
> automatically import URLs from a text file when I launch WSW.

When you use the special script "autostart.wws" (which is executed each time you start WebSite-Watcher), then the option to automatically start AutoWatch is not used.

You have to start AutoWatch manually in your script as the following example shows:

ImportBookmarks /Text1 (+)
   /file="c:\folder\urls.txt" (+)
   /targetfolder="testfolder" (+)


Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Server sometimes reports Out of memory

User question:
> A bookmark sometimes shows an out of memory error. Any way to avoid 
> this? This is the error message we get:
> Fatal error: Out of memory (allocated 6029312)in /public_html/wp-includes/post.php on line 3937

This is a server error that you also see in your web browser when you click the "Reload" button long enough.

In WebSite-Watcher you can try to use the "Ignore Updates" feature to ignore these kind of false positives. Just enter a part of the error text (eg: Fatal error: Out of memory), then WebSite-Watcher won't alert an update if that text is available in the page.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Restore previous version

User question:
> Sometimes Website Watcher checks a bookmark when the site is doing
> maintenance and there is a general maintenance message displayed.
> The comparison with an old version is then useless. It would be nice
> to have a functionality where you could disregard the latest change.
> In that way I can check the bookmark again after the maintenance and
> the comparison with an old version is useful.

This works with the shortcut: Ctrl+Shift+R

Or via context menu: Right click + Organize + Restore previous version

You can also display a toolbar button in the toolbar of the internal browser to quickly restore the old version.

If such a maintenance message comes often, you can also use the bookmark option "Ignore updates" to avoid false positives.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Archive monitored pages

User question:
> I believe Website Watcher also archives web pages.  Can you tell me 
> how many versions of each page are archived,

This can be done with the tool Local Website Archive. After you have installed Local Website Archive, you have to enable the action "Local Website Archive" in the bookmark properties.

There is no real limit of archived pages, you can however limit the number of archived pages with the option "Delete pages from archive".

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Start WebSite-Watcher when Windows starts up

User question:
> How to I configure website watcher to startup when windows starts up?

You have to create a shortcut in the Windows Startup folder. You can
also do this directly in WebSite-Watcher:

1. Click "Options" in the main menu of WebSite-Watcher
2. Click "Icons"
3. Click "Start with Windows (Startup)"

Thursday, March 16, 2017

My watch filter doesn't strike out content

User question:
> I have applied watch filters, but when alert generated for these 
> pages, we found that the unwanted data is not showing strike out. 
> Ignore filters however work correctly.

If you work with watch filters and want to strike out unwanted content, then you have to enable that behavior with an extra option in the bookmark properties.

Unwanted content is only striked out automatically in combination with ignore filters and doesn't always make sense in combination with watch filters. For example if you use a watch filter for a text such as "Number of comments: 123" and WebSite-Watcher should highlight the new comments.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

How to backup my data to dropbox

User question:
> Where do I change saving the data from my C drive to a Dropbox
> folder, in case I ever lose this hard drive, I will be able to
> restore my data and settings to another PC and not lose anything?

There are several ways you can do that.

First we do not recommend to save the database in your dropbox folder, just a copy or a backup.

1) Use a third party tool to mirror or backup the bookmark database and configurations files

2) Use the internal backup feature (Tools menu) to regularly backup your data to your dropbox folder

3) Save the AutoBackups in your dropbox folder (the AutoBackup path can be changed in the program configuration + Advanced + AutoBackup, just change it to your local dropbox folder)
The AutoBackups are generated automatically by WebSite-Watcher.

4) Use the CloudSync feature to regularly sync your bookmarks into your dropbox cloud folder.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Archive pages to LWA with the first check

User question:
> I archive pages via the bookmark action "Local Website Archive", but 
> this only archives the page after a change was detected. Is it 
> possible to archive a page instantly (i.e. not as a trigger on a 
> change). 

If you also want to archive a page with the first check, then you have to enable the bookmark option "Alert/Actions on initialization" in the bookmark properties.

You can also pre-define that option for new bookmarks, then you don't have to enable it manually for each bookmark.

You can pre-define that option
1) globally in the program configuration
2) rule based for certain domains
3) via the folder properties for all bookmarks in that folder

More information on how to pre-define bookmark properties can be found at

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Apply created filters to similar bookmarks

User question:
> We are able to create filters for individual pages. Specifically,for 
> example, we create filters to ignore a date string on a website. Is 
> it possible to apply filters to multiple websites in bulk, or do 
> filters have to be created and applied to web sites one by one? 

Usually filters have to be created individually per bookmark.

To apply the same filter definitions to similar bookmarks, you can
check the "Update similar bookmarks" in the bookmark properties.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Export/Import single bookmarks

User question:
> I'd like to ask if there's a way to import bookmarks without 
> undergoing the whole restore function? I wanted to keep the original 
> bookmarks I have in my current database and the restore function 
> seems to erase them whenever I use it with another WSW zip file.

The backup/restore feature is based on the whole database.

To export/import single or multiple bookmarks, you have to use the features:

  • Export selected bookmarks to export file (*.zip)
  • Import bookmarks from export file (*.zip)

Friday, February 17, 2017

Problematic RSS feed with changing GUID

User question:
> I have an RSS feed that sometimes changes the guid 
> of items. The content is not changed, but WebSite-Watcher always 
> alerts an update in that case.

If an RSS feed changes important fields that are used to detect updates, you have to decide manually which fields should be used to detect updates.

The following screenshot shows a configuration to only get update notifications when the items title or pubdate have been changed.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Notification on no-update for x-days

User question:
> I would like to receive notifications if there has not been an 
> update on a webpage for a specified number of days.
> Can this option be presently set?

Such a feature is not available as separate option, but you can do this via the plugin system.

With the example below, WebSite-Watcher will alert an update if the last change is more than 30 days ago.

Sub Wsw_BeforeCheck(Handle)
   ' Ensure that the page is always checked by content (avoid possible optimizations)
   Bookmark_SetProperty(Handle, "checkmethod", "content")
End Sub
Sub Wsw_CompareVersions(Handle, ByRef sMemWeb, ByRef sMemLocal, ByRef sStatusMessage, ByRef iStatusCode)
   Dim d, sLastChangeDate, nDayDiff
   ' Get the last change date
   sLastChangeDate = Bookmark_GetProperty(Handle, "last_change_date")
   ' Calculate the differences in days
   d = EncodeDate(Copy(sLastChangeDate, 1, 4), Copy(sLastChangeDate, 5, 2), Copy(sLastChangeDate, 7, 2))
   nDayDiff = Date - d
   ' Alert if the last change is more than 30 days ago
   If nDayDiff > 30 Then
      sStatusMessage = "Last change " + CStr(nDayDiff) + " ago"
      iStatusCode = 1
   End If
End Sub

To enter this plugin,
1. Open the bookmark properties
2. Select the Advanced tab
3. Select "Plugin" on the left side
4. Click the button "Create Private Plugin"
5. Enter the plugin code
6. Close and check the bookmark

BTW: It is planned to add a separate option for such a functionality in an upcoming 17.x release.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Watch filters with regular expressions

User question:
> I want to monitor the number of a news header and want to create a 
> watch filter, but I never learned Regex

You must not really understand regular expressions, most things can be created with the filter assistant and just a few mouse clicks.

1. Open the bookmark properties
2. Click the button Filter Assistant
3. Select the text you want to monitor
4. Click the button "New filter" and follow the assistant as shown in the following animation.

This will automatically create  a watch filter that is based on regular expressions. No further knowledge about regular expressions is required here.

Monday, February 13, 2017

WebSite-Watcher proxy configuration and the embedded Internet Explorer

User question:
> When I setup proxies in WebSite-Watcher, the built in browser shows 
> my static IP address when browsing

The proxy configuration in WebSite-Watcher is only used for bookmarks that are checked with the check technology "Default".

The embedded Internet Explorer and bookmarks with the check technology "Internet Explorer/Browser" (or an Internet Explorer Macro) will always use the proxy configuration of Internet Explorer. It's not possible to use an other proxy as configured in Internet Explorer here.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Message "Your browser is outdated"

User question:
> On several pages I get a message that I use an outdated web browser, 
> however I'm already on Internet Explorer 11. I have WebSite-Watcher 16.0

Please update to at least WebSite-Watcher 16.3

In version 16.3 we introduced a major improvement to the internal parser what makes WebSite-Watcher more compatible to the latest IE version. So updating to at least version 16.3 is required to get rid of these messages.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Sending e-mails: Display folder name

User question:
> For my global template, I have a bit at the top of the sent emails 
> which gives me some info about that bookmark, like this:-
> -----------
> Name: {name}
> Url: {url}
> Status: {status}
> -----------
> That works fine, but with so many bookmarks it would be useful if I 
> could also have the bookmark folder returned there too. 

You can use the variable {foldername}, this will be replaced with the folder name (without path).
If you want to use the absolute folder path, you can use the variable {folder}.

For example:
Folder: {foldername}
Name: {name}
Url: {url}
Status: {status}

All available variables for sending e-mails can be found at

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Pages with overlapping images

User question:
> the gray area overlaps the text so that the changes are difficult to 
> see

When a web page uses layers or certain CSS definitions, it can happen that images overlap some other areas in the checked bookmark. This could be a side effect when WebSite-Watcher converts script based content into static content as the following screenshot shows.

To avoid that problem, you can select the option "Don't display images" in the bookmark properties. With that option, WebSite-Watcher shows a transparent image instead the real images or the gray replacements.

The result:

The option "Don't display images" was introduced in WebSite-Watcher 2017.
If you use WebSite-Watcher 2016 or prior, a solution might be to create a private plugin and remove all images from the HTML source code (this can be done in the event function "Wsw_PreProcessPage").

Monday, January 30, 2017

Can I check pages when I shut down my PC?

User question:
> When i shutdown my PC does your application still check my bookmarks?

Both, your PC and WebSite-Watcher must be running, otherwise it's not possible to monitor web pages. WebSite-Watcher is designed as desktop software that runs on your PC.

However, some of our customers use Amazon WorkSpaces or a similar service, then WebSite-Watcher can fully work online.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Can the AutoWatch feature monitor pages in real time?

User question:
> I need to monitor pages in real time. Every second is critical. Can 
> this be done with your tool?

No, it's not really possible to monitor pages in real time.

WebSite-Watcher always performs a check run of your bookmarks with AutoWatch enabled. After the check run has finished, WebSite-Watcher calculates the countdown to the next check run based on your AutoWatch time configurations.

So, if you have 100 bookmarks, then WebSite-Watcher will check these 100 bookmarks before a new check run can be started. If you have all bookmarks configured to be checked every second, then WebSite-Watcher will still check these 100 bookmarks, calculates and performs the countdown of 1 second and starts the next check run. But checking these 100 bookmarks will take some time. It means that the countdown is 1 second in that case.

If you would like to check bookmarks every couple of seconds, then in reality this would only work if you have just one or a couple of bookmarks with AutoWatch enabled.

Starting with WebSite-Watcher 2017, you can install and start multiple instances of WebSite-Watcher at the same time on the same PC. That way you can save and monitor critical bookmarks in a separate database/instance.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Which bookmarks have a plugin assigned?

User question:
> I wanted to know what are the bookmarks that uses plugins.

You can show that information in a custom column and sort the bookmark list by that column. Then you can easily see which bookmarks use a plugin.

1. Call Options + "Columns..."

2. Then use the configuration as shown in the following images.

Then your bookmark list will show two new columns with the plugins that are used.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Scripts: Select and check the folder "Errors"

User question:
> Can we run Scripts for the virtual folders like "Changed Bookmarks" or "Errors".
> If yes, I need script for the below action requirement:-
> Mark as visited to "Changed Bookmarks" folder --> Check folder "Error" Folder

Yes, this is possible.

Here's an example script that marks all bookmarks as visited, select the folder "Errors" and checks all bookmarks in that folder:

MarkAsVisited /all
SelectFolder "Errors"
CheckFolder "Errors"

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Browser integration: Ability to move the WSW eye icon to the left

User question:
> is it possible to position the browser icon a bit somehow ?
> It covers the chrome new tab icon by default when numerous tabs are open...

There's a program tweak to move that WebSite-Watcher button to the left.

1. Open the program configuration
2. Select the "Advanced" tab
3. Select "Tweak" on the left side
4. Enter the following line:


     where 50 is the number of pixels. Change that value to your needs.

5. Restart WebSite-Watcher

Friday, January 6, 2017

Can I use my license on multiple PCs?

User question:
> I wonder if my license (single user license) permits installation on 
> a 2nd pc (laptop)? Both are used only by me so it is still "single 
> user".

Licenses are "single-user licenses", you need one license per user. You can of course use that license on all your PCs. Simply install WebSite-Watcher on your second PC and enter your license key.

See also:

Welcome to our new blog

In that blog we will post about new features of WebSite-Watcher and typical support questions that might also be useful or interesting to other users.

You can also use that place as additional source to our knowledge base and the forums archive.