Lynx and temporary files for large downloads

I’m still a heavy user of the text-only Lynx web browser. It was my first browser, and it’s still near and dear to my heart.

These days I mostly use Lynx on the server side to navigate web pages that lead to software downloads. It saves transferring from my local machine to a remote machine.

Today, downloading a particularly huge 500MB file from IBM, I found that Lynx was placing its temporary file for the download in my home directory, which, alas, had little space, and certainly not enough to hold 500MB of data.

The solution?

export LYNX_TEMP_SPACE=/directory/with/lots/of/space

Set this environment variable, and then run Lynx, and you’ll find that Lynx will use the location you specify as its location for the temporary file.


nathan's picture
nathan on October 6, 2003 - 21:33 Permalink

To download files to a server, I typically browse for a file with Mozilla on my desktop and then copy/paste the link into a terminal window that’s logged into the server. The link can then be used with wget to download the file.

ykanello's picture
ykanello on May 31, 2012 - 09:58 Permalink

You’re a life savior :)
I had the exact same problem and I was playing around linking temp folders…

za's picture
za on September 13, 2012 - 08:40 Permalink

wget only possible for permanent link, sometimes there are cases when we face only temporary link.

Albert's picture
Albert on August 27, 2015 - 05:28 Permalink

You saved my life :')

Thankful's picture
Thankful on March 4, 2016 - 14:03 Permalink

Worked like a charm!

Greg's picture
Greg on July 27, 2023 - 23:36 Permalink

I like
which means they go straight to the current directory

Gube's picture
Gube on November 12, 2023 - 04:34 Permalink

Ran into the same problem all these years later with Lynx downloading a very large file into a live system running in RAM.

It can be hard to find these tips quickly, especially in the Lynx documentation.