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Q: How to see a web folder directory (II) ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: How to see a web folder directory (II)
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: spurious-ga
List Price: $2.00
Posted: 14 May 2003 03:09 PDT
Expires: 13 Jun 2003 03:09 PDT
Question ID: 203521
What I need:

I want to see a directory listing of objects in a given web folder. 
An example would be to find a URL listing of all excel files on a site
or in a particular folder.

You can assume I have permission to access that folder (i.e. the
folder is not password protected).

I don't want to simply refer the html page in that folder. I'm
particularly interested in the files that you can't see but can


I am running Internet Explorer 6 on a Windows machine. I would
strongly prefer a simple solution that does not involve downloading or
installing new software.

I have a registered copy of Subject Search Siter, but it took a very
long time to run, didn't work particularly well and immediately it was
installed I began having security problems that smacked of a Trojan


A very basic Answer will do for five stars.  I need a solution,
recommendation or a web site, etc. and it doesn't have to come with
very time consuming/detailed instructions.


Please refer to the previous question to avoid possible
Subject: Re: How to see a web folder directory (II)
Answered By: errol-ga on 15 May 2003 15:48 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi there, Spurious.

Believe it or not, this actually qualifies as malicious "hacking",
despite the information being publicly accessible if you know the
exact file paths.

For example, see the following Google search:
In these results, you can see that there are many security related
websites listed detailing the methods that people could use to bypass
the index.html files.
However, these flaws would have been fixed long ago and I strongly
recommend that you do not attempt to perform any of these URL tricks
due to the dubious legality of it and the fact that detailed log files
are kept by web servers.
Most web servers will have directory listing disabled, although around
2 million, including do not ;)

If an index file such as "index.html, .htm, .php, .asp" or
"default.htm, .asp" is present in the folder root then the server will
refuse to give out a directory listing.
This is hard coded into the server configuration files and is
impossible to get around.
So, the short answer is "no" -- it cannot be done.

I do have several partial and morally acceptable solutions for you

First, our friend Google comes in handy once again and we are able to
search for every page contained in the index of a certain domain.
For example, I used Google to search Google:

Simply replace the domains in the search to whatever you want to and
it will return some surprising results.
Microsoft has around 414,000 on the "www" sub domain alone:

Secondly, there is a well known spidering utility available for
Unix/Linux called "wget".
This basically downloads every single file from a web site, as long as
they're all linked to from any html page.
The Windows version can be found on the following link, the Unix/Linux
version is already included in the operating system.

If you would prefer something a little more user friendly, I recommend
Teleport Pro [ ] which is
a fantastic tool for spidering and also has a 30 day trial.

I hope that this helps you somewhat.

spurious-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $2.00
Thanks for the advice.  It's good to know that I shouldn't have been
trying to do it in the first place!  Thanks also for finding an
acceptable solution too.

Subject: Re: How to see a web folder directory (II)
From: mvguy-ga on 15 May 2003 10:00 PDT
I'm not sure how to find _all_ the files, but it is possible to find
all of them in a given domain that have a very common word in them. 
For example, using " filetype:xls +a" without the quotes
as a search term in Google will give you all the listed Excel files on that have the word "a" in them.
Subject: Re: How to see a web folder directory (II)
From: spurious-ga on 15 May 2003 20:33 PDT
Thanks for the advice mvguy-ga, I already tried that and it wasn't
completely effective.

Erroll-ga, "malicious hacking"? Are you serious? Well, maybe that
explains why there's not a simple way to do it.  All I really want to
do is find a simple way of finding and downloading stuff that I
couldn't find with google, but I know where it's kept.  Where web
pages have corrupted, I notice that if you simply type the folder
above, sometimes you find a bunch of useful files that weren't linked
properly or were orphaned from old versions of the page.  I'd never
have guessed it wasn't legal.  So, thanks for keeping me out of

I also now realise that SSSiter was probably spidering the entire
website, and that's why it was taking so long.  Maybe it triggered
some script or executable and that's why my machine got infected.
Subject: Re: How to see a web folder directory (II)
From: errol-ga on 15 May 2003 23:36 PDT
Thank you for your kind generosity, Spurious. :)

I don't think it's really "illegal" as in the sense of "going to jail"
but it is definitely malicious because you would be sending a
specially crafted URL to the server with the intent of obtaining
information that you are not supposed to see.
Of course, the subject of keeping such confidential data on a public
server is highly debatable.

Thanks again,

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