Backup Facebook Images using Python

So I’ve been thinking about limiting my Facebook usage, or completely shutting it down. However, having quite a few images on the site I wanted to first backup what I may not have locally.

Now Facebook offers a “Download a copy of your Facebook data“, but this did not seem to work for me when attempting (continued to get 404 HTTP responses).

So a little bit of digging and I found Facebook provides a pretty nice explorer,
but better yet I can use the explorer to help craft RESTful calls.

And here you have it, a hacky Python (2.x) script to do the deed of downloading all
your uploaded photos.

from urllib import urlopen
from json import loads
from sys import argv
import dateutil.parser as dateparser
import logging

def get_logger(label='lvm_cli', level='INFO'):
    Return a generic logger.
    format = '%(asctime)s - %(levelname)s - %(message)s'
    logger = logging.getLogger(label)
    logger.setLevel(getattr(logging, level))
    return logger

def urlrequest(url):
    Make a url request
    req = urlopen(url)

def get_json(url):
    Make a url request and return as a JSON object
    res = urlrequest(url)
    return loads(res)

def get_next(data):
    Get next element from facebook JSON response,
    or return None if no next present.
        return data['paging']['next']
    except KeyError:
        return None

def get_images(data):
    Get all images from facebook JSON response,
    or return None if no data present.
        return data['data']
    except KeyError:
        return []

def get_all_images(url):
    Get all images using recursion.
    data = get_json(url)
    images = get_images(data)
    next = get_next(data)

    if not next:
        return images
        return images + get_all_images(next)

def get_url(userid, access_token):
    Generates a useable facebook graph API url
    root = ''
    endpoint = '%s/photos?type=uploaded&fields=source,updated_time&access_token=%s' % \
                (userid, access_token)
    return '%s%s' % (root, endpoint)

def download_file(url, filename):
    Write image to a file.
    data = urlrequest(url)
    f = open(filename, 'w')

def create_time_stamp(timestring):
    Creates a pretty string from time
    date = dateparser.parse(timestring)
    return date.strftime('%Y-%m-%d-%H:%M:%S')

def download(userid, access_token):
    Download all images to current directory.
    logger = get_logger()
    url = get_url(userid, access_token)'Requesting image direct link, please wait..')
    images = get_all_images(url)

    for image in images:'Downloading %s' % image['source'])
        filename = '%s.jpg' % create_time_stamp(image['created_time'])
        download_file(image['source'], filename)

Usage looks something like this while inside a Python shell:

In [1]: download(USER_NAME, SECRET_TOKEN)
2014-01-14 13:40:19,891 - INFO - Requesting image direct link, please wait..
2014-01-14 13:40:37,352 - INFO - Downloading

I take no responsibility if the above code does not work, this was merely a bit of hacking to achieve my goal, though I figured other may benefit from some of the process I took.

I would also like to note, you can hit these RESTful APIs directly, it merely returns JSON data.
Go ahead and give it a try, remember to plugin your username and access_token (Token can be get and modified in the Explorer‘s Get Access Token button):


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