Terminology

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Understanding the words and phrases we use with the Web Log Storming software and documentation will make the software easier to use, and you will be more productive.

 

Raw log files

Files created by web servers that contain information about every hit requested by visitors. Each time a visitor's browser requests a file (whether it's a page, image, stylesheet or script file), the web server adds a line to the raw log file.

 

Hit

A hit is a single retrieval request for any file on the web server (one line from the raw log file).

 

Request

Same as Hit.

 

Query

It's part of URL after "?" mark (i.e. /page.php?option=1&type=some). A query is used to send data to web scripts.

 

Session

One session contains hits from a single visitor in a predefined timeframe. Itís impossible to tell exactly which hits belong to each session, but our goal is to achieve the best guess. To determine which hits belong to each session, Web Log Storming uses the visitor's IP address and a session timeout value.

 

Visitor

Visitor is a guess of one physical person (or robot) who visited the web site at least once (one or more sessions). As with sessions, itís impossible to tell exactly what one visitor is.

 

 

 

Some of reasons for this possible inaccuracy are:

 

One visitor can use more than one IP address. For example, he can use more computers (i.e. home and work) or Internet connection with dynamically assigned IP address.
More people can use same computer or connects through same network (local networks with shared Internet access).
Some visitors use proxy servers, and they will all have the same IP address.
Some visitors are not actually people (i.e. search engine spiders or other robots).

 

Itís clear that log files do not provide sufficient information to achieve 100% of accuracy. However, Web Log Storming allows you to browse statistics into details and you will be able to manually identify spiders and robots and add them to Spiders list.

 

 

Bandwidth

The amount of data transferred from the server to client (visitorís computer).

 

Bps (bandwidth per second)

In our case, itís a number of kilobytes that was transferred in one second. This information is not always available Ė to calculate it Web Log Storming needs a "Time taken" value, which is, for example, not a standard part of Apache combined log files. On the other hand, the default IIS log file configuration does contain this value.

 

Referrer

It's a web site or web page that "sends" visitors to your site. For example, if visitor finds your site through the Google search engine, the referrer will be a Google.

 

Path

It's a sequence of pages and files (identification wildcards are configurable in Options window) your visitor accessed in one session.