Scrapy vs Pyspider: Which Should You Use?

February 9, 2024 · 2 min read

Do you need to decide between Scrapy or Pyspider for your next web scraping project? Both support large-scale web scraping, but there are some differences you need to consider before making a choice. 

This article compares Scrapy vs. Pyspider and concludes the best between the duo. Let's get started!

Scrapy or Pyspider: Which Is the Best?

Scrapy is an actively managed, full-featured Python web scraping and crawling framework that relies on the command line interface (CLI) for project management.

Pyspider is a web crawling service with a user interface for managing web scraping processes. It last received an update in 2018 and relies on the deprecated PhantomJS for JavaScript rendering.

Scrapy is an excellent choice if you need a more straightforward, extensible, and reliable tool to handle large-scale web scraping from your CLI. Go for Pyspider if you want a user interface for real-time task management and don't mind its rigorous setup and update inactivity.

Overview: Scrapy vs. Pyspider

Let's briefly overview Scrapy vs. Pyspider in the table below.

Consideration Scrapy Pyspider
Language Python Python
Ease of use More beginner-friendly Not beginner-friendly
HTTP request Yes Yes
JavaScript support Requires external tools like Scrapy Splash or Selenium Available via PhantomJS
Avoid getting blocked Proxy middleware and headers rotation, integration with scraping APIs Headers customization and proxy rotation
Scraping management CLI User interface, CLI
Task scheduling Available Available
Concurrency Supported Supported
Community Active Inactive
Documentation Detailed Detailed
Maintenance and upkeep Actively updated Not maintained since 2018
Parsing strategy CSS selectors and XPath CSS selectors

Want to know more in-depth? Keep reading for a more detailed comparison of both tools. 

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Scrapy Review

Scrapy is an actively maintained Python web scraping and crawling framework that packs all the essential tools for extracting data from the web. Scrapy web scraping relies on third-party plugins like Splash for headless browsing, and spider management is via the CLI.

⭐️ Popularity of Scrapy:

👍 Pros of Scrapy:

  • Supports scheduling of scraping tasks.
  • Perfect for large-scale web scraping.
  • Proxy middleware and web scraping API support to avoid anti-bot detection.
  • Supports concurrent scraping.
  • Regularly maintained.
  • Active community.
  • Detailed documentation.
  • Easy learning curve.
  • Built-in pipeline for organizing data.
  • Easy to set up.

👎 Cons of Scrapy:

  • No built-in JavaScript support.
  • Project management is limited to the CLI.

👨‍💻 Best Use Cases for Scrapy:

  • Web scraping and crawling.
  • Online price monitoring.
  • Data aggregation from various sources.
  • Social media sentiment collection.

Pyspider Review

Pyspider is a task-based web crawling service that lets you manage scraping tasks via a web-based user interface or the CLI. It inherently supports JavaScript rendering via PhantomJS, a discontinued JavaScript headless browser.

⭐️ Popularity of Pyspider:

👍 Pros of Pyspider:

  • Web-based UI and CLI management tools are available.
  • Headless browser for JavaScript rendering.
  • Excellent support for task scheduling.
  • Runtime server available.
  • Supports concurrency.
  • Well-documented.
  • Proxy and header rotation to avoid getting blocked.
  • Supports real-time monitoring.

👎 Cons of Pyspider:

  • Inactive community.
  • Not actively maintained.
  • Steeper learning curve.
  • Complex setup requirements.
  • Dependence on a discontinued tool for JavaScript rendering makes it outdated.

👨‍💻 Best Use Cases for Pyspider:

  • Real-time price monitoring.
  • Content tracking.

Best Choice to Avoid Getting Blocked While Scraping

Many websites implement one or more anti-bot techniques, and your scraper needs to bypass them to avoid getting blocked. How does each tool handle anti-bot detection?

Pyspider supports proxy and request header customization via its built-in crawl configuration parameters.

Implementing a proxy in Scrapy is also easy with the built-in proxy middleware. Additionally, you can bypass JavaScript challenges by rendering JavaScript in Scrapy using third-party libraries like Splash.

The best solution to avoid getting blocked while scraping is to employ a web scraping API like ZenRows. ZenRows integrates fully with Scrapy and helps you handle hardcore tasks like anti-bot detection, JavaScript rendering, and premium proxy rotation behind the scenes.

Scrapy's ability to integrate with scraping solutions makes it better than Pyspider at avoiding blocks.

Conclusion

In this Scrapy vs. Spider comparison, it’s evident that Scrapy surpasses Pyspider in terms of customization, stability, and maintenance. It’s also better than Pyspider at avoiding blocks during web scraping.

That said, your scraper needs a consistent way to avoid anti-bot detection. ZenRows is a complete solution to achieve that and keep scraping the web without getting blocked. Try ZenRows for free today!

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