I’ve written before about del.icio.us. It allows me to save, organize and tag bookmarks to Internet sites in such a way as that I can access them from any browser and wherever I may be located, as long as I have an Internet connection. No more remembering that I have to take a copy of my bookmarks.html (or whatever the Internet Explorer equivalent may be) along. I’ve also said before that a backup of that data is a must for me, and I then presented a backup solution as a fail-safe mechanism in case del.icio.us is not reachable. That works in as much as I then have a raw XML file which I can at least use in an editor to search for something, but that isn’t really a very elegant way to go about it, is it? As far as I’m concerned, I now have the ultimate backup solution which can be used whether you use del.icio.us or Scuttle. Do note that by backup, I mean the possibility to access my del.icio.us bookmarks in the event that the site is not available or that it goes down. Not that it seems likely to happen, but one never really knows (remember the “life for free” e-mail address at Bigfoot, that suddenly wasn’t so free anymore?) The solution? Install a local copy of Scuttle and use the del.icio.us API to pull a copy of your existing bookmarks into your local copy. This can be done even if you don’t want to openly host your own scuttle installation in such a way as that you’d use it in lieu of del.icio.us. What do you need? a platform which will run a database (e.g. MySQL), a web server such as Apache, PHP and a bit of curl. Even if you don’t run Linux or Unix, these components are available to you: on Windows you can easily install the wonderful XAMPP package which contains the first three prerequisites, and binaries for curl are available for a number of platforms. After setting up scuttle ensure you’ve registered with your installation and make a note of your credentials (username and password). You will also need the credentials of your del.icio.us account from which we’ll be retrieving the bookmarks. Whether the source is del.icio.us or scuttle doesn’t matter: since scuttle uses most of the del.icio.us API, the procedure is the same; just the URL changes. Try getting all the bookmarks from the source, replacing suser and spass by the username and password of the _s_ource service respectively.

curl --user suser:spass -O mybookmarks.xml http://del.icio.us/api/posts/all

Check the resulting output in mybookmarks.xml; it ought to contain all your bookmarks, including description and tags. Use this file to import into scuttle. I periodically grab all bookmarks to ensure I always have the latest and greatest copy of my data, and once in a while I import them into my local scuttle. I’d like to have been able to schedule this automatically, but I haven’t yet located the API with which to do that. I may at a later stage try and build one myself…

Software, MySQL, and Apache :: 28 Feb 2006 :: e-mail