Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Marc Slemk » Sat, 22 Nov 1997 04:00:00




Quote:>I'm haveing a problem with some AOL proxy servers when accessing files on
>my site
>that are 'server-parsed-html'.  My www server is Apache 1.2.4 and I use
>server-parsed-html files to implement a rotating banner ad.

Last I knew, AOL deliberately modified their proxy servers to cache
things when they should not.

There may be some header their cache will listen to, however from
what I know they generally don't want people to be able to demand
that their documents not be cached.  

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by David A. Le » Sat, 22 Nov 1997 04:00:00


I'm haveing a problem with some AOL proxy servers when accessing files on
my site
that are 'server-parsed-html'.  My www server is Apache 1.2.4 and I use
server-parsed-html files to implement a rotating banner ad.

I use HTML code like this

<!--#include virtual="/mall/ad/ads/all.inf"-->

This causes the 'next' add HTML code to be inserted in place everytime the
page is viewed.

The problem I've found is that AOL's proxy server (sometimes??) doesnt
re-request the
page if it was previously cached.
I did some digging around in Apache docs and found (and verified) that with
'server-parsed-html'
files there is no Last-Modified-Date HTTP header output.  The docs say that
this is
because the server has no idea if the generated HTML is the same as
previously so
doesnt output this header. That makes sense.  It furthermore states that
this causes
proxy servers *NOT* to cache the page. Great! Thats just what I want!
BUT ... AOL's servers seem to (sometimes?) get this backwards.  I've only
had
complaints from one customer (in the DC area) about this.  So I tried a few
more tricks.
I installed the 'mod_expires' Apache module and set it up so that all the
html files
generate an 'Expires' header for 10 seconds after the last access.  This
*should* force
the proxy servers to dump the cache for that file after 10 seconds.
But no! My client is still complaining that no matter how many times she
reloads
the page it still has the same banners on this.

I'd apprecate any comments, suggestions, complaints or clues at all about
what can be
done about this, or if it is indeed an AOL bug or maybe a user error or
what.
I cant think of anything else to do.

Server: Apache 1.2.4
OS: BSDI 3.0
URL: http://www.newageinfo.com/
   (and most sub-pages)

Please reply by email if possible

-----------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Lee
Dal Enterprises Inc.


 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Martin Kelly - Teleport Web Adm » Sun, 23 Nov 1997 04:00:00




>>I'm haveing a problem with some AOL proxy servers when accessing files on
>>my site
>>that are 'server-parsed-html'.  My www server is Apache 1.2.4 and I use
>>server-parsed-html files to implement a rotating banner ad.

>Last I knew, AOL deliberately modified their proxy servers to cache
>things when they should not.

>There may be some header their cache will listen to, however from
>what I know they generally don't want people to be able to demand
>that their documents not be cached.  

Another option, mean though it may be, would be to do a redirect to an error
page for AOL browsers, informing them they should use Netscape or MSIE and
bypass the AOL cache - mod_rewrite could do this, and I'm definately one for
the stance that if you can't see something I created the way I intended it to
be seen, you don't get to see it at all.....

Martin

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Art Sto » Sun, 23 Nov 1997 04:00:00


On 21 Nov 1997 19:52:07 GMT, Marc Slemko e*d 13 billion electrons
with:


>>I'm haveing a problem with some AOL proxy servers when accessing files on
>>my site
>>that are 'server-parsed-html'.  My www server is Apache 1.2.4 and I use
>>server-parsed-html files to implement a rotating banner ad.

>Last I knew, AOL deliberately modified their proxy servers to cache
>things when they should not.

>There may be some header their cache will listen to, however from
>what I know they generally don't want people to be able to demand
>that their documents not be cached.  

AOL has a very long-winded technical discussion of this issue at
http://www.veryComputer.com/

It goes into how to modify your web pages and/or server to make them "a
great web site", one which is AOL Compatible(tm).

Art Stone  
--
The Huge list of Totally Awesome Web Sites : http://www.veryComputer.com/~artstone/biglist.html

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Marc Slemk » Sun, 23 Nov 1997 04:00:00



>On 21 Nov 1997 19:52:07 GMT, Marc Slemko e*d 13 billion electrons
>with:

>>>I'm haveing a problem with some AOL proxy servers when accessing files on
>>>my site
>>>that are 'server-parsed-html'.  My www server is Apache 1.2.4 and I use
>>>server-parsed-html files to implement a rotating banner ad.

>>Last I knew, AOL deliberately modified their proxy servers to cache
>>things when they should not.

>>There may be some header their cache will listen to, however from
>>what I know they generally don't want people to be able to demand
>>that their documents not be cached.  
>AOL has a very long-winded technical discussion of this issue at
>http://www.veryComputer.com/
>It goes into how to modify your web pages and/or server to make them "a
>great web site", one which is AOL Compatible(tm).

According to their document, it should be sending an If-Modified-Since
request for every client that requests a document parsed with
mod_include.  This means it should always re-transfer the document.
This assumes you aren't using xbithack group or something.

ie. the only readers the server should be returning are along the
lines of:

        HTTP/1.1 200 OK
        Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 05:50:06 GMT
        Server: Apache/1.3b4-dev
        Connection: close
        Content-Type: text/html

If the AOL cache is not doing that, then it is broken and complain
to AOL.

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Nick Littl » Sun, 23 Nov 1997 04:00:00



> <snip>

> Please reply by email if possible

> -----------------------------------------------------------------
> David A. Lee
> Dal Enterprises Inc.


 Am I the only person who is bugged by people who request E-mail replies.
Essentiallly, David, you are saying that we should read through the whole
newsgroup, use our time to help you, but you can't be bothered to check back
here to see if anyone has responded?

--
Nick Little
To reply, replace the obvious with concentric

"A man could spend a lot of time
Wondering what was on Jack Ruby's mind..."

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by Alan J. Flavel » Sun, 23 Nov 1997 04:00:00



[about AOL]

Quote:> According to their document, it should be sending an If-Modified-Since
> request for every client that requests a document parsed with
> mod_include.  This means it should always re-transfer the document.
> This assumes you aren't using xbithack group or something.

> ie. the only readers the server should be returning are along the
> lines of:

>    HTTP/1.1 200 OK
>    Date: Sat, 22 Nov 1997 05:50:06 GMT
>    Server: Apache/1.3b4-dev
>    Connection: close
>    Content-Type: text/html

I noticed that the site in question was sending an Expires: header that
tried to be only a few seconds into the future, but, because their clock
was about a quarter of an hour fast, the Expires was a time about a
quarter of an hour into the future.

Say, are clients/proxies supposed to adjust the expiry time against the
claimed date and time that the server sends on its Date: header, or may
they simply take the expiry time as stated?

OTOH when the user requests a Reload it usually requests proxies to
punch through and do, at least, an if-modified-since, no?  The poster
was claiming that even this wasn't having the desired effect.

Not that I have any great sympathy with people who want to reload
an entire document merely to get a different advertising banner, but
there _are_ situations where this is an issue that would worry me.

all the best

[followups narrowed]

 
 
 

Problem with AOL Proxy Server and Apache 1.2.4 Server-Parsed-Include

Post by David A. Le » Tue, 25 Nov 1997 04:00:00


Am I the only bothered by people who just want to be snotty and presume
people are idiots ?

I request an Email reply "if possible" because my ISP deletes newsgroup
entries entirely
too quickly. Sometimes I simply cant make it to my system to check the news
replies before
they have become stale and no longer accessible.   If I answer a newsgroup
posting I happily
spend the few extra seconds to paste their email address on the "cc" line
in case
they have the same problem that I do and their news servers delete replies
before they
can read them!  I certianly do not indicate that people shouldnt also post
the reply
to the net for other's edification.

--
------------------------------------------------------------------
David A. Lee
Dal Enterprises Inc.




> > <snip>

> > Please reply by email if possible

> > -----------------------------------------------------------------
> > David A. Lee
> > Dal Enterprises Inc.

>  Am I the only person who is bugged by people who request E-mail replies.
> Essentiallly, David, you are saying that we should read through the whole
> newsgroup, use our time to help you, but you can't be bothered to check
back
> here to see if anyone has responded?

> --
> Nick Little
> To reply, replace the obvious with concentric

> "A man could spend a lot of time
> Wondering what was on Jack Ruby's mind..."

 
 
 

1. Include Problem, Content-type: text/x-server-parsed-html (Apache/NCSA)

I'm trying to allow server side includes in ".html" files.  I haven't
decided if the is the way I want to set things up, but I find that the
"shtml" extension can be confusing when people type the URL.

However if I use":

AddType text/x-server-parsed-html .html

as suggested by the NCSA documentation.  However when I do this
".html" files the do not have any server side includes are returned
with:

Content-type: text/x-server-parsed-html

making at least "lynx" and Netscape 1.1N for Mac barf (however,
Netscape 1.1N for the X windows system doesn't...).

This seem to be the case with Apache 0.6.3, Apache 0.6.5, and NCSA
httpd 1.3.

Is it a bug, is it a feature, or am I missing something?

->Spike
--
          Indra's Net  --  Internet Access with an Attitude

             Modem: (303) 786-7405  Voice: (303) 546-9151

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