Is Urllib in Python standard library?

Feb 20, 2024 ยท 2 min read

One of the most common tasks when programming is retrieving data from the internet. Thankfully, Python has a built-in module called urllib that makes this easy.

Urllib is part of Python's standard library, meaning it comes pre-installed with Python without needing to download anything separately. This makes it extremely convenient for fetching data from the web.

Why Use Urllib?

There are other third-party modules like Requests that can retrieve data from the web. However, urllib has some advantages:

  • It's built-in - no need to install separate packages
  • Simple API - easy to make basic HTTP requests
  • Flexible - handles HTTPS, proxies, cookies and more
  • This makes urllib a great starting point for basic HTTP requests before graduating to more full-featured libraries.

    Making Requests with Urllib

    The basic usage is simple. For example, to retrieve a web page:

    import urllib.request
    with urllib.request.urlopen('') as response:
       html =

    We import urllib.request, open the URL, send the request and read the response. We can then process the html string further.

    urllib also allows handling:

  • POST requests - for submitting data to APIs
  • Custom headers - for authentication or mimicking browsers
  • Proxy servers - for accessing restricted resources
  • And more. So while basic, urllib is quite versatile.

    When to Use Something Else

    urllib is showing its age and lacks some conveniences of modern solutions like Requests. For production applications, you may eventually outgrow urllib and migrate to Requests or aiohttp.

    But for learning or simple scripts, urllib is built-in and gets the job done! Over time you can level up to more full-featured libraries.

    So in summary, urllib is Python's no-frills, built-in URL retrieval library. It's simple yet surprisingly capable for basic HTTP requests.

    Browse by tags:

    Browse by language:

    The easiest way to do Web Scraping

    Get HTML from any page with a simple API call. We handle proxy rotation, browser identities, automatic retries, CAPTCHAs, JavaScript rendering, etc automatically for you

    Try ProxiesAPI for free

    curl ""

    <!doctype html>
        <title>Example Domain</title>
        <meta charset="utf-8" />
        <meta http-equiv="Content-type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" />
        <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1" />


    Don't leave just yet!

    Enter your email below to claim your free API key: