Skip to Content

10 ways to troubleshoot wget: unable to resolve host address

The “unable to resolve host address” error in wget occurs when the tool is unable to resolve the domain name of the host you’re trying to access.

This could be due to various reasons, such as DNS server issues, network connectivity problems, or incorrect URLs.

10 ways to fix unable to resolve host address in wget command

Here are some steps you can follow to troubleshoot and fix this issue:

Sure, here’s a more detailed explanation of each step:

  1. Check the URL:
    Sometimes, the “Could not resolve host” error occurs due to a simple mistake in the URL.
    Make sure you have entered the correct URL, including the proper protocol (e.g., “http://” or “https://”).
    Additionally, ensure there are no extra spaces or special characters in the URL.
  2. Verify the host’s DNS:
    The Domain Name System (DNS) is responsible for converting domain names (e.g., into IP addresses (e.g., that computers can understand.
    If wget cannot resolve the host’s domain name to an IP address, it won’t be able to establish a connection. Use the ping command to check if your DNS is working correctly. Open your terminal/command prompt and type:
    If you receive responses with an IP address, it indicates that your DNS is resolving correctly. If there are no responses or you get an error, it means there is an issue with DNS resolution.
  3. Check your internet connection:
    Ensure that your internet connection is active and functioning properly.
    If you are on a corporate network, behind a proxy server, or have a firewall, make sure that wget is allowed to access external hosts.
  4. Use an alternative DNS server:
    Your default DNS server may experience temporary issues or outages.
    You can try using a different DNS server to see if it resolves the host’s name correctly.
    To change your DNS server, you can modify your network settings to use public DNS servers like Google’s DNS ( or Cloudflare’s DNS (
  5. Flush DNS cache (Windows):
    On Windows systems, DNS data is cached to improve performance.
    However, sometimes this cache can become corrupted or outdated. To clear the DNS cache, open the Command Prompt as an administrator and run the following command:
    ipconfig /flushdns

    This will clear the DNS cache and force your computer to request fresh DNS information from the configured servers.

  6. Restart networking service (Linux):
    On Linux systems, restarting the networking service can help resolve network-related issues.
    The commands to restart the networking service may vary depending on your Linux distribution.
    For example, on Ubuntu, you can use:
    sudo service networking restart
    Alternatively, you can try restarting your computer to reset the network configuration.
  7. Temporarily disable your firewall and antivirus:
    In some cases, your firewall or antivirus software may be blocking wget from accessing the internet.
    Temporarily disable them to check if they are causing the issue. If disabling them resolves the problem, you can adjust the settings to allow wget to function properly.
  8. Check for typos and mistakes:
    Carefully review the URL you are trying to access. Typos, misspellings, or incorrect domain names can lead to the “Could not resolve host” error.
    Ensure there are no unnecessary spaces or special characters in the URL.
  9. Use the IP address directly:
    If all else fails and you know the IP address of the host, you can try using it directly instead of the domain name. For example:
  10. use curl command:
    if the wget command is not available on your system, you can use the curl command as an alternative for downloading files.
    curl is a versatile and widely used command-line tool that supports various protocols, including HTTP, HTTPS, FTP, SCP, and more.
    It can perform similar tasks to wget, such as downloading files from URLs.To use curl to download a file, you can use the following command:
    curl -o URL
    Replace <URL> with the actual URL of the file you want to download.
    The -o option tells curl to save the downloaded file with the same name as the original file from the URL.
    curl provides a rich set of features and options for downloading files, and it can be an excellent alternative to wget in situations where wget is not available or not installed on your system.


Wget FAQ

1. What is wget? wget stands for “web get” and is a command-line utility for downloading files from the internet. It is available on various operating systems and supports various protocols like HTTP, HTTPS, FTP, and more.

2. How do I use wget to download a file?  You can use wget by opening a terminal or command prompt and typing wget followed by the URL of the file you want to download. For example:


3. How do I specify the output filename with wget? By default, wget will save the downloaded file with the same name as the file on the server. To specify a different output filename, use the -O option:

wget -O

4. How can I resume a partial download with wget? To resume a partially downloaded file, use the -c or –continue option with wget:

wget -c

5. How do I limit the download rate with wget? You can limit the download rate using the –limit-rate option followed by the desired download rate in bytes per second, kilobytes per second (K), or megabytes per second (M):

wget --limit-rate=1M

6. How do I download multiple files with wget? To download multiple files, you can provide multiple URLs to wget:


7. Can wget download recursively? Yes, wget can perform recursive downloads, allowing you to download entire directories from a web server. Use the -r or –recursive option:

wget -r

8. How do I specify a user-agent with wget? You can set a custom user-agent string using the –user-agent option:

wget --user-agent="MyCustomUserAgent"

9. Can wget download over FTP? Yes, wget supports FTP downloads. Just provide the FTP URL for the file you want to download:


10. Where can I find more information about wget? You can access wget documentation and additional options by typing man wget in your terminal. Alternatively, you can check online resources and tutorials for more detailed information about wget.

If none of these steps resolve the issue, it’s possible that the host you are trying to access may be temporarily down or inaccessible. You may need to wait for the host to come back online or contact the website administrator for further assistance.

Rey Hande

Monday 18th of December 2023

It works for me. The root cause is the bad dns server. Thanks.