I have an online website that I'd like to move to a new URL. Therefore I need to edit all website html files (100+ files) to update the URL links inside each file of this website.

I'm thinking of making an off-line copy of the website files to edit.

Is it possibile to use Automator OS X to - open each file in the website file folder - search inside the file content for a specific URL link (say "www.website.com") and change it to the new URL (say "www.website.com/old")?

Else, do I need to rely on a text editor + Automator to make this process?

Or, can it be done using a UNIX script that you run in the Terminal ?

Thanks for any advice on how to perform this process!

  • You can use sed in Terminal, but for a specific answer we would need to see an excerpt of one of the web pages showing the old and the new URL. – nohillside Jul 21 '17 at 13:12
  • I did something similar a while back but did it in BBEdit as it can find/replace across multiple files. In case you are interested in commercial ($) options. – Steve Chambers Jul 21 '17 at 15:55
  • Did any of the solutions below help you? – ʀ2ᴅ2 Jul 25 '17 at 12:49

Assuming all files are in the same folder:

mkdir new
for i in *.html; do
    sed 's|website.com|website.com/old|g' "$i" > "new/$i"

If you're commonly editing website file contents you should invest in an editor.

Sublime Text 2

Drop the website onto the icon and it will build the project:

enter image description here

run cmdshiftF and enter the replacement:

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Click the Replace button and verify the Replace:

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It will open and change all the files:

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Is an excellent and robust application I primarily use to edit code. Drag and drop the folder onto BBEdit and go to File -> Save Project and it will create a file named foobar.bbprojectd:

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run cmdshiftF and select the project with the replacement parameters:

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It will prompt you after clicking Replace All:

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If you are unsure on your changes select Leave Open because if you select Save to disk it is very hard to revert back.


There is already a sed solution but you could also do the same with Perl:

# !/bin/bash


if [ ! -e "$DIR/new" ]; then 
    mkdir -p new
    echo "made folder new"
    echo "folder exists"

for htmlfile in $(ls "$DIR"/*.html); do
    htmlbase=$(basename $htmlfile)
    echo "Working on "$htmlbase
    perl -pe 's|www.website.com|www.website.com\/old|g' "$htmlfile" > $TEMPFILE && mv $TEMPFILE "$NEW/$htmlbase"

There are other editors out there but these are the two I primarily use. You could also do this in pure AppleScript but you haven't shown any code and mentioned terminal so I made the above in Perl.

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