How do I monitor a webpage to get alerts when it's content changes?

Matthew Emery
Matthew Emery used Ask the Experts™
on
This weekend we missed out of tickets for Glastonbury Festival for the first time in 6 years.  

As well as the official resale's, they also have unofficial sales of small batches of tickets on this URL: https://glastonbury.seetickets.com/

Please can someone recommend to me a website I can use to get email alerts for when websites change.

I was signing up to www.followthatpage.com but then discovered they may only check every 20 minutes which means there is a big gap where lots of other people may get alerts first depending on when they setup the alert, is there other solutions available with shorter intervals OR, I do have my own hosting space and beginner/Intermediate web experience with WordPress, could I setup my own basic checking solution, maybe there is a plugin?

I guess it's about getting the right balance of not hitting a server too often and getting blacklisted too.
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Fractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
https://www.google.com/alerts is a dirt simple approach.

Set your search to something like...

site:glastonbury.seetickets.com

Open in new window


Then set search frequency to as it happens + you'll get a message when Google senses the page change.

If this isn't frequent enough (likely it won't be), then you an use https://github.com/baruch/websec (Web Secretary) which is a simple script you can run yourself.

Run this in a CRON job every minute + this will likely work.

Tip: Some sites might see this as an attack, so randomly run your CRON job between say 1-10 minutes, to keep from getting blocked by the site... which might happen... Better to be safe than sorry.

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Commented:
Hi David,

Web Secretary looks perfect for us to use, thanks for the quick response.
Scott FellDeveloper & EE Moderator
Fellow 2018
Most Valuable Expert 2013

Commented:
With google alerts, you may not get results fast enough.  There are plenty of online resources for this such as https://changetower.com/uses/ and most have free options for a minimum amount of urls to track and nothing to install.
David FavorFractional CTO
Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Yep. WebSec is old code + works so well.

I've been using it... geez... seems like somewhere around 20 years... It just works...

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