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Protecting Business Online


Interpreting the Content Check Report

How To Read The Content Check Report
How To Interpret The Broken Link Data
How To Search For The Broken Link
Account Data Section
Objects the Content Check Process Cannot Check
Explanation of Common HTTP Error Codes

Advanced Service Accounts:
@watch Content Check Reports are run and sent out to full service customers once a week. Daily link checking is also available at an additional cost. New customer link reports are scheduled on a day of the week that is the least loaded for our server. From that point on, the Content Check report will always be run on that day.

30 Day Free Accounts:
14-day free accounts are sent one (1) Content Check report. Upgrading from a free account to a full service account will provide weekly Content Check reports.



How To Read The Content Check Report:

IMPORTANT NOTE: All Content Check Reports contain information that was true at the time the report was run. (See Content Check Report for exact time.) Reports are sent immediately after running. However, be aware that this does not mean that all broken links will be broken when you check them. This may mean that the broken links were repaired, intermittent, or Internet problems caused them to be broken at the time the report was run. We show all broken links so you can check them.

At the top of the Content Check report are banners and title information about the starting URL being checked as well as the date that the report was run.

Below the icons is the Summary report. The Summary report consist of the following items:

Maximum Link Depth The maximum number of pages deep that the Link Checker will check, assuming that the maximum number of links is not exceeded. The starting URL is depth one, all of the pages referenced (linked) from that page will be depth two, etc.
Links Scanned The total number of links found during the scanning of the pages.
Links Checked The number of unique links that were found, with duplicates removed, from the Links Scanned as shown above, up to the maximum number of links.
Duplicates Removed The count of unique links checked. The Link Checker only checks a link one time, so if different web pages contain the same link only the first one will be considered unique and the duplicate links will be ignored.
Broken Links The number of broken, or "problem", links that were found while running this Link Check report.

Additional messages that may appear below the Summary report are:

WE COULD NOT REACH YOUR WEB SITE. THE LINK CHECK COULD NOT BE COMPLETED.
This message indicates that there was a problem with contacting the web site and the Link Check could not be run. There could be several causes for this:
  • Server down, malfunctioning, too busy to respond, or refusing connections.
  • Missing DNS information.
  • Data line down, malfunctioning, or overloaded.
  • ISP down, malfunctioning, or overloaded.
  • General Internet problems, routes down, or major NSP problems.
MAXIMUM NUMBER OF LINKS (XXXX) REACHED
This message indicates that the Link Checker has reached the maximum number of unique links and will not collect any more from subsequent pages.

Below the Summary report is the list of broken links for this site. The format is:

"These pages contain a broken link:"

The links following this title are the web pages that contain the broken link. You can click on these links and your web browser will be sent to the appropriate web page.

"Depth: x"

This is the depth, or number of pages deep, for the web page where the broken link was found.

"Error: xxxxxxx"

This is the specific error that was encountered when the Link Checker tried to retrieve the linked web page. The different error messages are explained below. Click here to go to a more in-depth explanation of the error codes

"Broken Link:"

This is the broken or problem link. You can reproduce the problem by clicking on this link.



How To Interpret The Broken Link Data:

The following error message may appear on your Content Check report:

Error: Missing URL
These broken links indicate that the URL was missing and the web server returned a 404 FILE NOT FOUND error. If you click on the link of the missing URL on the report, you should receive a 404 FILE NOT FOUND error or a web page from the server that the URL was supposed to be on. It is possible for a web server to have an internal error that returns a missing URL message, but not very likely. Be aware that many web servers have customized web page error messages, so you may have to pay attention to the text of the web page that comes up to tell that it is a 404 FILE NOT FOUND error page.
Error: Invalid URL
These broken links indicate that there was a problem with the format of the URL and the web server returned an error when it was requested, or the web server had some other unusual problem trying to retrieve the page. This can be a problem with busy banner servers which is considered a transient error and may clear itself up by the time you get the Link Check report. If this was a transient error, when you click on the broken link the service or page will be working.
Error: Server Not Available
These broken links indicate that the web server was not available, malfunctioning, too busy to respond, or its DNS entry was missing when the Link Checker tried to contact it. This is also considered a transient error and may clear itself up by the time you get the Link Check report. If this was a transient error, when you click on the broken link the service or page will be working.
Error: Server Error
These broken links indicate that there was an error with the web server when the Link Checker tried to contact it. This can be because the web server was malfunctioning, too busy to respond, rejected the connection, had an internal server error, or had an unavailable service or gateway. This is also considered a transient error and may clear itself up by the time you get the Link Check report. If this was a transient error, when you click on the broken link the service or page will be working.
Important Note: This error can also be caused by a misspelled or incomplete HTML. For example, the correctly formatted URL http://nyse.com will return a server error because there is no host using that name, but http://www.nyse.com contacts a server and returns a web page .
Error: Timed out retrieving page
These broken links indicate that the Link Checker timed out while trying to retrieve the page from the web server. This can happen for many different reasons, some of which are because the web server was malfunctioning or too busy to respond, or because the data line, service provider, the Internet itself, or a national backbone provider problem.


How To Search For The Broken Link
To find a broken link on a page, click on the appropriate calling URL link above the broken link. After the web page has fully come up in your web browser, select "View Source" from the pull down menu. Then perform a "search" or "find" on the text of the broken link. This will be the broken link on this page.


Account Data Section
Toward the bottom of the report is the Account Information section. This displays pertinent @watch account and site information. Click on the "Update" link to easily log in to Account Administration and review or change your account information.

Objects the Content Check Process Cannot check.
The @watch engine cannot check pages secured with SSL 2.0. We also cannot check the veracity of cookie or javascript ads. We also cannot check the validity of email addresses,forms, or script objects. We do plan to add these features to future updates.