"How many times is your site visited each month?"

Whether a page is cached by your computer for faster service five minutes from now, or by a university proxy server to reduce traffic through its internet gateway, the actual number of pages served to others by a distant server will be much higher than reported.

When the web was first growing, some sites -- intentionally or by ignorance -- exaggerated the number of visits by reporting "hits" (number of files served). This number often included images, of which there could be a dozen or more on one page. One page could, therefore, be reported as 10 or more hits. Also, many sites do not throw away requests made by "web indexers" that follow links and gather pages only to provide much-needed search capabilities to the internet community. Image and "web indexer" requests have never been included in the the Cdn-Firearms web site estimates.

These days, instead of over-reporting, many sites are under-reporting, mostly due to extensive use of caching by individuals, corporations, ISPs and universities.

Many sites now cache web pages to decrease the load on their internet gateways (routers). Since the requests are, in many cases, never seen by the target site, there is no way for the target to determine the real number of page requests. The real number of requests could be 2 or 10 times higher, and the webmaster would never know...

The number given on the Cdn-Firearms Home Page is an estimate based on requests that appear to be made from browsers being used by people and not programs that are searching out links to index the web. The figure does not include non-HTML file requests -- such as images -- and is very conservative. It cannot take into account all requests that never make it to our server(s) because a local cache intercepted and fulfilled the request.

Author: Skeeter Abell-Smith
Copyright © 1997-1998 Skeeter Abell-Smith.
Copyright © 2003-2009 Howard R. Hamilton.