TheHarvester: A Powerful OSint Tool


What is TheHarvester?

TheHarvester is an open-source intelligence (OSINT) tool used for gathering information about a specific target domain. It is primarily designed for reconnaissance and gathering data such as email addresses, subdomains, hosts, employee names, open ports, and more. The tool was developed in Python and is widely used by security professionals, penetration testers, and ethical hackers.

TheHarvester leverages various sources such as search engines, social networks, and public databases to extract information. It saves time by automating the process of gathering data and provides a consolidated report for further analysis.

How to Install TheHarvester

TheHarvester comes pre-installed on Kali, but if you run a different Linux Distro you can install it using:

sudo apt install theharvester

If neither of the options above are suitable for your system, you can follow these general steps:

Download TheHarvester:

TheHarvester is written in Python, so ensure you have Python installed on your system. You can download TheHarvester from its official repository on GitHub:

Setup Dependencies:

TheHarvester relies on some external libraries. You can install them using the following command:

pip install -r requirements.txt

How to use TheHarvester

To use TheHarvester, you would typically provide a target domain or organization name as input, specify the data sources you want to query, and execute the tool. It then goes through the specified sources, scrapes relevant information, and presents the results in a structured format.

Running TheHarvester: Once the dependencies are installed, you can run TheHarvester using the command-line interface.

Here’s the basic syntax:

theharvester -d <target_domain> -l <limit> -b <data_source>
  • <target_domain>: Specify the domain or organization you want to gather information about.
  • <limit> (optional): Set the number of search results to retrieve per data source (default is 500).
  • <data_source>: Choose one or more data sources to query. You can specify multiple sources separated by commas or use “all” to query all available sources.

To search for email addresses related to the domain “” from Google and PGP servers:

theharvester -d -b google,pgp

To gather subdomains and hostnames for “” using all available sources:

theharvester -d -b all

TheHarvester supports several other options, such as specifying output formats, using API keys, setting a user-agent, etc. You can explore the tool’s documentation or run: theharvester -h to view all the available options.


TheHarvester is a powerful tool with great potential for gathering information from various sources, but it should always be used with a strong commitment to ethical principles and respect for privacy. By following responsible guidelines, adhering to legal regulations, and obtaining proper authorization when necessary, we can harness TheHarvester’s capabilities for legitimate and constructive purposes.

Remember, ethical use not only protects individuals’ privacy and data but also ensures that this valuable tool remains a force for good in the ever-evolving world of information gathering. So, as you explore the possibilities of TheHarvester, let ethical principles be your guiding light, ensuring that you leverage its power responsibly and ethically.

Update: Newer versions of theHarvester program may require you to use the command theHarvester instead of theharvester

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We have many guides to help you on your journey into the world of Ethical Hacking. If this is something you find interesting, please take a look here today: Ethical Hacking Guides.


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Luke Barber

Hello, fellow tech enthusiasts! I'm Luke, a passionate learner and explorer in the vast realms of technology. Welcome to my digital space where I share the insights and adventures gained from my journey into the fascinating worlds of Arduino, Python, Linux, Ethical Hacking, and beyond. Armed with qualifications including CompTIA A+, Sec+, Cisco CCNA, Unix/Linux and Bash Shell Scripting, JavaScript Application Programming, Python Programming and Ethical Hacking, I thrive in the ever-evolving landscape of coding, computers, and networks. As a tech enthusiast, I'm on a mission to simplify the complexities of technology through my blogs, offering a glimpse into the marvels of Arduino, Python, Linux, and Ethical Hacking techniques. Whether you're a fellow coder or a curious mind, I invite you to join me on this journey of continuous learning and discovery.

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