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filename to read cookies from


#include <curl/curl.h>

CURLcode curl_easy_setopt(CURL *handle, CURLOPT_COOKIEFILE, char *filename);


Pass a pointer to a null-terminated string as parameter. It should point to the filename of your file holding cookie data to read. The cookie data can be in either the old Netscape / Mozilla cookie data format or just regular HTTP headers (Set-Cookie style) dumped to a file.

It also enables the cookie engine, making libcurl parse and send cookies on subsequent requests with this handle.

By passing the empty string ("") to this option, you enable the cookie engine without reading any initial cookies. If you tell libcurl the filename is "-" (just a single minus sign), libcurl instead reads from stdin.

This option only reads cookies. To make libcurl write cookies to file, see CURLOPT_COOKIEJAR(3).

If you read cookies from a plain HTTP headers file and it does not specify a domain in the Set-Cookie line, then the cookie is not sent since the cookie domain cannot match the target URL's. To address this, set a domain in Set-Cookie line (doing that includes subdomains) or preferably: use the Netscape format.

If you use this option multiple times, you add more files to read cookies from.

The application does not have to keep the string around after setting this option.

Setting this option to NULL (since 7.77.0) explicitly disables the cookie engine and clears the list of files to read cookies from.


This document previously mentioned how specifying a non-existing file can also enable the cookie engine. While true, we strongly advise against using that method as it is too hard to be sure that files that stay that way in the long run.






int main(void)
  CURL *curl = curl_easy_init();
  if(curl) {
    CURLcode res;
    curl_easy_setopt(curl, CURLOPT_URL, "https://example.com/foo.bin");

    /* get cookies from an existing file */
    curl_easy_setopt(curl, CURLOPT_COOKIEFILE, "/tmp/cookies.txt");

    res = curl_easy_perform(curl);



As long as HTTP is supported

Return Value

Returns CURLE_OK if HTTP is supported, and CURLE_UNKNOWN_OPTION if not.

See Also


Referenced By

curl_easy_setopt(3), CURLOPT_ALTSVC(3), CURLOPT_COOKIE(3), CURLOPT_COOKIEJAR(3), CURLOPT_COOKIELIST(3), CURLOPT_COOKIESESSION(3), CURLSHOPT_SHARE(3), libcurl-symbols(3), libcurl-tutorial(3), nbdkit-curl-plugin(1).

2024-05-22 libcurl