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✅ htmltest

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If you generate HTML files, html-proofer might be the tool for you. If you can't be bothered with a Ruby environment or fancy something a bit faster, htmltest may be a better option.

🔍 htmltest runs your HTML output through a series of checks to ensure all your links, images, scripts references work, your alt tags are filled in, et cetera.

🏇 Faster? Yep, quite a bit actually. On a site with over 2000 files htmlproofer took over three minutes, htmltest took 8.6 seconds. Both tools had full valid caches.

😕 Why make another tool: A mix of frustration with using htmlproofer/Ruby on large sites and needing a good project to get to grips with Go.

💾 Installation

🐧 Linux / 🍏 macOS

This godownloader script will query GitHub for the latest release and download the correct binary for your platform into the directory set with the -b flag.

System-wide Install

curl | sudo bash -s -- -b /usr/local/bin

You'll be prompted for your password. After simply do htmltest to run.

Into Current Directory

curl | bash

By default this will install htmltest into ./bin of your current directory, to run do bin/htmltest. Rather suitable for CI environments.

More options

Run curl | bash -s -- -h for help text.

📦 Package Repos

We're available in some package repositories such as Homebrew and repos for certain distros. Do note the version available may not be the latest.

Packaging status

win64 Windows

⬇️ Download the latest binary release and put it somewhere on your PATH.

🐳 Docker

docker run -v $(pwd):/test --rm wjdp/htmltest Mount your directory with html files into the container and test them.

If you need more arguments to the test run it like this: docker run -v $(pwd):/test --rm wjdp/htmltest -l 3 -s

🧾 Temporary Files

We store temporary files in tmp/.htmltest by default. This contains a log of output and a cache of external links, speeding up subsequent runs. You probably want to ignore it in version control, and perhaps cache it in your CI system.

💻 Usage

htmltest - Test generated HTML for problems

  htmltest [options] [<path>]
  htmltest -v --version
  htmltest -h --help

  <path>                       Path to directory or file to test, if omitted we
                               attempt to read from .htmltest.yml.
  -c FILE, --conf FILE         Custom path to config file.
  -h, --help                   Show this text.
  -l LEVEL, --log-level LEVEL  Logging level, 0-3: debug, info, warning, error.
  -s, --skip-external          Skip external link checks, may shorten execution
                               time considerably.
  -v, --version                Show version and build time.

🔬 What's Tested?

Many options of the following tests can customised. Items marked 🔜 are not checked yet, but will be soon.

  • a link img script: Whether internal links work / are valid.
  • a: Whether internal hashes work.
  • a link img script: Whether external links work.
  • a: 🔜 Whether external hashes work.
  • a link: Whether external links use HTTPS.
  • img: Whether your images have valid alt attributes.
  • link: Whether pages have a valid favicon.
  • meta: Whether refresh tags are valid and the url works.
  • meta: 🔜 Whether images and URLs in the OpenGraph metadata are valid.
  • meta title: 🔜 Whether you've got the recommended tags in your head.
  • DOCTYPE: Whether a doctype is correctly specified.

What's Not

I'd like to test the following but won't be for a while.

  • Whether your HTML markup is valid. htmlproofer has the ruby library Nokogiri, I've not found one for Go yet.

🙈 Ignoring content

Add the data-proofer-ignore attribute to any tag or to the class of a tag to ignore it from every check. The name of this attribute can be customised.

<a href="http://notareallink" data-proofer-ignore>Not checked.</a>

📑 Caching

Checking external URLs can slow tests down and potentially annoy the URL's host. htmltest caches the status code of checked external URLs and stores this cache between runs. We write the cache to tmp/.htmltest/refcache.json and expire items after two weeks by default.

🌈 Colour Output

By default, output in the TTY uses colours to indicate warnings, errors, and success. To turn off colourization, set an environment variable named NO_COLOR. If it is present, no colour will be used. The value is ignored. (See

📠 Logging

If you've got a lot of errors, reading them off a TTY may be difficult. We write errors to tmp/.htmltest/htmltest.log by default. The log level is set in the config file.

🔧 Configuration

htmltest uses a YAML configuration file. Put .htmltest.yml in the same directory that you're running the tool from and you can just say htmltest to run your tests. You'll probably also want to cache the tmp/.htmltest directory.

Basic Options

Option Description Default
DirectoryPath Directory to scan for HTML files.
DirectoryIndex The file to look for when linking to a directory. index.html
FilePath Single file to test within DirectoryPath, omit to test all.
FileExtension Extension of your HTML documents, includes the dot. If FilePath is set we use the extension from that. .html
CheckDoctype Enables checking the document type declaration. true
CheckAnchors Enables checking <a… tags. true
CheckLinks Enables checking <link… tags. true
CheckImages Enables checking <img… tags true
CheckScripts Enables checking <script… tags. true
CheckMeta Enables checking <meta… tags. true
CheckGeneric Enables other tags, see items marked with checkGeneric on the tags wiki page. true
CheckExternal Enables external reference checking; all tag types. true
CheckInternal Enables internal reference checking; all tag types. When disabled will prevent internal hash checking unless the reference only contains a hash fragment (#heading) and therefore refers to the current page. true
CheckInternalHash Enables internal hash/fragment checking. true
CheckMailto Enables–albeit quite basic–mailto: link checking. true
CheckTel Enables–albeit quite basic–tel: link checking. true
CheckFavicon Enables favicon checking, ensures every page has a favicon set. false
CheckMetaRefresh Enables checking meta refresh tags. true
EnforceHTML5 Fails when the doctype isn't <!DOCTYPE html>. false
EnforceHTTPS Fails when encountering an http:// link. Useful to prevent mixed content errors when serving over HTTPS. false
IgnoreURLs Array of regexs of URLs to ignore. empty
IgnoreInternalURLs Array of strings of internal URLs to ignore. Exact matches only. ⚠ Likely to be deprecated, use IgnoreURLs instead. empty
IgnoreHTTPS Array of regexs of URLs to ignore for EnforceHTTPS. These URLs are still tested, unless also present in IgnoreURLs. empty
IgnoreDirs Array of regexs of directories to ignore when scanning for HTML files. empty
IgnoreInternalEmptyHash When true prevents raising an error for links with href="#". false
IgnoreEmptyHref When true prevents raising an error for links with href="". false
IgnoreCanonicalBrokenLinks When true produces a warning, rather than an error, for broken canonical links. When testing a site which isn't live yet or before publishing a new page canonical links will fail. true
IgnoreExternalBrokenLinks When true produces a warning, rather than an error, for broken external links. Useful when testing a site having hundreds of external links. false
IgnoreAltMissing Turns off image alt attribute checking. false
IgnoreAltEmpty Allows alt="" for decorative images. false
IgnoreDirectoryMissingTrailingSlash Turns off errors for links to directories without a trailing slash. false
IgnoreSSLVerify Turns off x509 errors for self-signed certificates. false
IgnoreTagAttribute Specify the ignore attribute. All tags with this attribute or with this class will be excluded from every check. "data-proofer-ignore"
HTTPHeaders Dictionary of headers to include in external requests {"Range": "bytes=0-0", "Accept": "*/*"}
TestFilesConcurrently ⚠️ 🚧 EXPERIMENTAL Turns on concurrent checking of files. false
DocumentConcurrencyLimit Maximum number of documents to process at once. 128
HTTPConcurrencyLimit Maximum number of open HTTP connections. If you raise this number ensure the ExternalTimeout is suitably raised. 16
LogLevel Logging level, 0-3: debug, info, warning, error. 2
LogSort How to sort/present issues. Can be seq for sequential output or document to group by document. document
ExternalTimeout Number of seconds to wait on an HTTP connection before failing. 15
RedirectLimit Allowed number of redirects. Use built-in behavior with negative values. -1
StripQueryString Enables stripping of query strings from external checks. true
StripQueryExcludes List of URLs to disable query stripping on. [""]
OutputDir Directory to store cache and log files in. Relative to executing directory. tmp/.htmltest
OutputCacheFile File within OutputDir to store reference cache. refcache.json
OutputLogFile File within OutputDir to store last tests errors. htmltest.log
CacheExpires Cache validity period, accepts go.time duration strings (…"m", "h"). 336h (two weeks)


DirectoryPath: "_site"
EnforceHTTPS: true
- ""
- "^/misc/js/script.js$"
- "lib"
CacheExpires: "6h"

📢 Issues? Suggestions?

Submit an issue.