May. 13, 2013

Using pywhois for retrieving WHOIS information

What is pywhois?

pywhois is a Python module for retrieving WHOIS information of domains.

pywhois works with Python 2.4+ and no external dependencies [Source]


The installation of pywhois is done through the pip command. 
pip install python-whois
Now when the package is installed, you can start using it. 

Remember, that you have to import it first.
>>> import whois

pywhois Usage

We can use the pywhois module to query a WHOIS server directly and to parse
WHOIS data for a given domain.

We are able to extract data for all the popular TLDs (com, org, net, ...)

pywhois Examples

On the pywhois project website, we can see how we can use pywhois to extract data.
Let's begin by importing the whois module and create a variable.
>>> import whois
>>> w = whois.whois('')
To print the values of all found attributes, we simple type:
>>> print w
The output should look something like this:
creation_date: [datetime.datetime(2012, 9, 15, 0, 0), '15 Sep 2012 20:41:00']
domain_name: ['PYTHONFORBEGINNERS.COM', '']
updated_date: 2013-08-20 00:00:00
We can print out any attribute we want.

Say, that you just want to print out the expiration date:
>>> w.expiration_date 
Show the content downloaded from the whois server:
>>> w.text 
To make the program a bit more interactive, we can add a prompt where users can
put any domain they want retrieve WHOIS information for.
import whois

data = raw_input("Enter a domain: ")
w = whois.whois(data)

print w
With the help of the pywhois module, we can use Python to do WHOIS lookups.
More reading

Share this article

Recommended Python Training – DataCamp

For Python training, our top recommendation is DataCamp.

Datacamp provides online interactive courses that combine interactive coding challenges with videos from top instructors in the field.

Datacamp has beginner to advanced Python training that programmers of all levels benefit from.


Download Our Free Guide To Learning Python

* indicates required

Read more about:
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, only recommend products or services that we try personally and believe will add value to our readers.