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Early risers or what

Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 13:36
by DudleyB
Just noticed that the greatest amount of people on website at once was at 1-49am this morning.Have we achieved notoriety in some far off land? or is their a much more sensible explanation.Perhaps someone could enlighten me.

Posted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 19:22
by MartinF
I'm guessing here, but I very much doubt it's anything to do with real people...

Our site gets continually "crawled" by web spiders like Google, Inktomi, and many others. Every time I log in as administrator, I can see who is connected at that time - though only by IP address. It's by resolving those IP addresses that I can identify which web spider.

Every web spider seems to be connected several times - so I guess they have a number of threads on each site they visit in order to speed up the indexing.

Also, each "visit" has a pre-configured duration. In other words, when you first hit a Bulletin Board page, it seems to me liket you start a timer. When you hit another page, or read a post, it looks like you start another timer. And so on. So, if you've been very active, and hit a number of pages in a very short time (before the timer expires and assumes you've left), the application seems to count each of those as a separate visit - but only if the visitor is not logged-in.

So I've seen times when there are apparently about 20 users connected, no-one is logged-in (except myself), and most of those connections belong to 2 spiders. Hit a chance point in time when we might get half a dozen spiders crawling the site simultaneously, and I could well believe we could hit that figure for (apparent) number of users online.

Believe half of what you see and a quarter of what you read, and life becomes less skewed!