Subfinder is a subdomain discovery tool that discovers valid subdomains for websites by using passive online sources. It has a simple modular architecture and is optimized for speed. subfinder is built for doing one thing only – passive subdomain enumeration, and it does that very well.


Fast passive subdomain enumeration tool.

Subfinder is a subdomain discovery tool that discovers valid subdomains for websites by using passive online sources. It has a simple modular architecture and is optimized for speed. subfinder is built for doing one thing only – passive subdomain enumeration, and it does that very well.

We have designed subfinder to comply with all passive sources licenses, and usage restrictions, as well as maintained a consistently passive model to make it useful to both penetration testers and bug bounty hunters alike.



  • Fast and powerful resolution and wildcard elimination module
  • Curated passive sources to maximize results
  • Multiple Output formats supported (Json, File, Stdout)
  • Optimized for speed, very fast and lightweight on resources
  • STDIN/OUT support for integrating in workflows


subfinder -h

This will display help for the tool. Here are all the switches it supports.

Flag Description Example
-all Use all sources (slow) for enumeration subfinder -d -all
-config Configuration file for API Keys, etc subfinder -config config.yaml
-d Domain to find subdomains for subfinder -d
-dL File containing list of domains to enumerate subfinder -dL hackerone-hosts.txt
-exclude-sources List of sources to exclude from enumeration subfinder -exclude-sources archiveis
-max-time Minutes to wait for enumeration results (default 10) subfinder -max-time 1
-nC Don’t Use colors in output subfinder -nC
-nW Remove Wildcard & Dead Subdomains from output subfinder -nW
-ls List all available sources subfinder -ls
-o File to write output to (optional) subfinder -o output.txt
-oD Directory to write enumeration results to (optional) subfinder -oD ~/outputs
-oI Write output in Host,IP format subfinder -oI
-oJ Write output in JSON lines Format subfinder -oJ
-r Comma-separated list of resolvers to use subfinder -r,
-rL Text file containing list of resolvers to use subfinder -rL resolvers.txt
-recursive Enumeration recursive subdomains subfinder -d -recursive
-silent Show only subdomains in output subfinder -silent
-sources Comma separated list of sources to use subfinder -sources shodan,censys
-t Number of concurrent goroutines for resolving (default 10) subfinder -t 100
-timeout Seconds to wait before timing out (default 30) subfinder -timeout 30
-v Show Verbose output subfinder -v
-version Show current program version subfinder -version


Subfinder requires go1.14+ to install successfully. Run the following command to get the repo –

▶ GO111MODULE=on go get -v

Post Installation Instructions

Subfinder will work after using the installation instructions however to configure Subfinder to work with certain services, you will need to have setup API keys. The following services do not work without an API key:

Theses values are stored in the $HOME/.config/subfinder/config.yaml file which will be created when you run the tool for the first time. The configuration file uses the YAML format. Multiple API keys can be specified for each of these services from which one of them will be used for enumeration.

For sources that require multiple keys, namely Censys, Passivetotal, they can be added by separating them via a colon (:).

An example config file –

  - binaryedge
  - bufferover
  - censys
  - passivetotal
  - sitedossier
  - 0bf8919b-aab9-42e4-9574-d3b639324597
  - ac244e2f-b635-4581-878a-33f4e79a2c13
  - ac244e2f-b635-4581-878a-33f4e79a2c13:dd510d6e-1b6e-4655-83f6-f347b363def9
certspotter: []
  - [email protected]:sample_password
securitytrails: []
  - d23a554bbc1aabb208c9acfbd2dd41ce7fc9db39
  - asdsd54bbc1aabb208c9acfbd2dd41ce7fc9db39

Running Subfinder

To run the tool on a target, just use the following command.

▶ subfinder -d

The verbose flag v can be used to display verbose information.


The -o command can be used to specify an output file.

▶ subfinder -d -o output.txt

To run the tool on a list of domains, -dL option can be used. This requires a directory to write the output files. Subdomains for each domain from the list are written in a text file in the directory specified by the -oD flag with their name being the domain name.

▶ cat domains.txt
▶ subfinder -dL domains.txt -oD ~/path/to/output
▶ ls ~/path/to/output

You can also get output in json format using -oJ switch. This switch saves the output in the JSON lines format.

If you use the JSON format, or the Host:IP format, then it becomes mandatory for you to use the -nW format as resolving is essential for these output format. By default, resolving the found subdomains is disabled.

▶ subfinder -d -o output.json -oJ -nW
▶ cat output.json

The subdomains discovered can be piped to other tools too. For example, you can pipe the subdomains discovered by subfinder to httpx httpx which will then find running http servers on the host.

echo | subfinder -silent | httpx -silent

Subfinder with docker

You can use the official dockerhub image at subfinder. Simply run –

▶ docker pull projectdiscovery/subfinder

The above command will pull the latest tagged release from the dockerhub repository.

If you want to build the container yourself manually, git clone the repo, then build and run the following commands

  • Clone the repo using git clone
  • Build your docker container

docker build -t projectdiscovery/subfinder .

If you are using docker, you need to first create your directory structure holding subfinder configuration file. After modifying the default config.yaml file, you can run:

▶ mkdir -p $HOME/.config/subfinder
▶ cp config.yaml $HOME/.config/subfinder/config.yaml
▶ nano $HOME/.config/subfinder/config.yaml

After that, you can pass it as a volume using the following sample command.

▶ docker run -v $HOME/.config/subfinder:/root/.config/subfinder -it projectdiscovery/subfinder -d

For example, this runs the tool against and output the results to your host file system:

docker run -v $HOME/.config/subfinder:/root/.config/subfinder -it projectdiscovery/subfinder -d >

Subfinder Go library

Usage example:

package main
import (
func main() {
	config := runner.ConfigFile{
		// Use the default list of resolvers by marshaling it to the config
		Resolvers: resolve.DefaultResolvers,
		// Use the default list of passive sources
		Sources: passive.DefaultSources,
		// Use the default list of all passive sources
		AllSources: passive.DefaultAllSources,
		// Use the default list of recursive sources
		Recursive: passive.DefaultRecursiveSources,
	runnerInstance, err := runner.NewRunner(&runner.Options{
		Threads:            10, // Thread controls the number of threads to use for active enumerations
		Timeout:            30, // Timeout is the seconds to wait for sources to respond
		MaxEnumerationTime: 10, // MaxEnumerationTime is the maximum amount of time in mins to wait for enumeration
		YAMLConfig:         config,
	buf := bytes.Buffer{}
	err = runnerInstance.EnumerateSingleDomain(context.Background(), "", []io.Writer{&buf})
	if err != nil {
	data, err := ioutil.ReadAll(&buf)
	if err != nil {
	fmt.Printf("%s", data)


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