Which Language is Better for Writing a Web Crawler? PHP, Python or Node.js?
Thursday, April 14, 2016
Yesterday, I saw someone asking “which programming language is better for writing a web crawler? PHP, Python or Node.js?”and mentioning some requirements as below.
The analytic ability to web page
Operational capability to database(MySQL)
Efficiency of crawling
The amount of code. "
Someone answered to the question.
“When you are going to crawl large-scale websites, then efficiency, scalability and maintainability are the factors that you must be considered.
Crawling large-scale websites involves many problems: multi-threading, I/O mechanism, distributed crawling, communication, duplication checking, task schedule, etc. And then the language used and the frame selected play a significant role at this moment.
PHP: The support for multithreading and async is quite weak and therefore is not recommended.
Node.js: It can crawling some vertical websites. But due to the support for distributed crawling and communications is relatively weaker than the other two. So you need to make a judgment.
Python: It’s strongly recommended and has better support for the requirements mentioned above, especially the scrapy framework. Scrapy framework has many advantages:
Good performance based on twisted
Has debugging tools
C & C ++: I’m not recommended. Although they have good performance, we still have to consider many factors such as cost. For most companies it is recommended to write crawler program based on some open source framework. Make the best use of the excellent programs available. It’s easy to make a simple crawler, but it’s hard to make an excellent one.
Truly, it’s hard to make a perfect crawler. But if there is such a software program that could meet your various needs, do you want to have a try?
The features of web crawlers:
Free yet powerful
Support data extraction of arbitrary HTML elements
Support distributed crawling
Deal with static pages and AJAX pages
Provide Data API
Connect to Database to export data
Author: The Octoparse Team
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