Many websites have private areas only available to authenticated users. WebCopy supports two methods of authenticating with such websites, form based and challenge based. This tutorial will demonstrate how to use forms authentication.

WebCopy is unable to log into web sites using two-factor authentication (2FA) or multi-factor authentication (MFA).

Capturing a form automatically using the Capture Form tool

The simplest way to add a form definition to WebCopy is to use the built in capture tool.

An example of capturing a form

  • Ensure you have entered the address of the site you want to copy, for example
  • Select Capture Form from the Tools menu
  • Using the embedded browser window, navigate the website until you reach the login page
  • WebCopy will list any forms in a list in the top right window, select the most appropriate form (if multiple forms are present)
  • You can also fill in the form in the embedded web browser - but do not submit! Once you have filled in the appropriate values, click the Scan Forms button to detect the values you have entered
  • By default, WebCopy will automatically select all non-hidden parameters. The hidden parameters are often still required, but WebCopy will automatically pull them out of the form each time it is posted. This means that forms using dynamic values such as anti-forgery tokens can be submitted by WebCopy.
  • Click the Create Form button. This will automatically create a definition pointing to the correct URL for posting the form, along with the parameters you defined, and then close the tool.

Password and form data is stored unencrypted within a WebCopy project file.

Copying the web site

When copying a web site, WebCopy will submit any form definitions before copying commences after which the copy will progress as normal. If you followed this tutorial using the WebCopy demonstration website, a number of additional pages will be present, such as authenticationprofile.php.

Copying a website using forms authentication