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Q: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP ( Answered,   4 Comments )
Subject: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
Category: Computers
Asked by: aroth816-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 21 Jun 2002 15:58 PDT
Expires: 21 Jul 2002 15:58 PDT
Question ID: 31379
Logging onto Yahoo using Perl and LWP::UserAgent / LWP is diffucult
because Yahoo has a low of forwards/weird things/etc that occur during
the sign in process. I once had code to do this, but it no longer
works. If anyone can provide me with the code (again, using Perl and
LWP) I will pay generously (if your quick, ill pay above the initial

Adam Roth
Subject: Re: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
Answered By: runix-ga on 21 Jun 2002 19:35 PDT
Hello adam

I've coded an example script that logs into yahoo mail and gets the
number of new mails on the folders.
It can be easily extended, because the hard part (the login, with the
md5 tricks) is inside a function.

Here's the script:

use LWP::UserAgent;
use HTTP::Cookies;
use HTTP::Request::Common;
use MD5;
use strict;
our	$ua = new LWP::UserAgent;
$ua->agent("AgentName/0.1 " . $ua->agent);

my $mu=""; 
my $user="USERNAME";
my $pass="PASSWORD";

if (my $mainPage=login($mu,$user,$pass)){
	print "login ok!\n";
	print "finished!\n";
sub login($$$){
	my ($mu,$user,$pass)=@_;
	my $req=new HTTP::Request GET => $mu;
	my $res=$ua->request($req);

	#some yahoo login tricks :)
	my ($challenge)=$res->content=~ /<input type=hidden
name=\"\.challenge\" value=\"([^\"]*?)\" >/;
	my $hexpass=MD5->hexhash($pass);
	my $passwd=MD5->hexhash($hexpass.$challenge);
	my $loginURL="$passwd&user=$user&login=$user&.js=1&.challenge=$challenge&.hash=1&.src=ym";
	my $to=$loginURL;
    $res=$ua->simple_request(GET $loginURL); # 
	if ($res->content=~ /Invalid Password/im){print "Passwd
incorrect!\n"; return 0;}
	if ($res->content=~ /This Yahoo! ID does not exist/im){print "Login
incorrect!\n"; return 0;}
	while ($res->header('location')){
		$res=$ua->simple_request(GET $to);
	return $to;

sub getFolders(){
		my $mainPage=$_[0];
		my $res=$ua->simple_request(GET $mainPage);
		my $text=$res->content;
		(my @mb)=$text=~/><a
		my $i=0;
		for($i=0; $i<$#mb; $i+=2){
			print "New mail:  ".($mb[$i])." (".$mb[$i+1].")!!!\n";


Hope it works!

Additional links:

Here's an explanation of how to write web robots

Search Strategy

Personal experience
Subject: Re: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
From: mohsen-ga on 21 Jun 2002 17:44 PDT
Hello Adam,

If you are going to download your emails from yahoo using a perl
the good news for you is that they have established a project on
freshmeat, called fetchyahoo, dealing exactly with the same matter.
The script is fully
configurable, can use secure connections as well as proxy:

However, if your need is something diffrent you can see the script to
find out how they have logged into yahoo using LWP. should you require
more information, feel free to ask.

Google search term: yahoo login perl update script

Hope it was helpful,
Subject: Re: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
From: lighthousej-ga on 21 Jun 2002 20:56 PDT
I think on line 7:
    our $ua = new LWP::UserAgent;

is incorrect, you should use a 'my' instead of 'our' because 'my'
properly declares the local variable.

If it's not correct, I'd like to know what perl interpreter you use
because I have 5.005_03 for linux.  Other than that, nice tight code.
Subject: Re: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
From: runix-ga on 21 Jun 2002 23:53 PDT
yeah, yeah :) but this version is the public version of this script:
before , I used global variables and ugly things like that :)
Subject: Re: Logging in to Yahoo using Perl and LWP
From: pne-ga on 24 Jun 2002 04:19 PDT
"our" is new with Perl 5.6.0.

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