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1. Web Measurement Basics > 6. Understand Common Data Sources

Understand Common Data Sources

Before you get started analyzing, determine where the data will be coming from.

In the early days of web site measurement, there was only a single source of data, web server logfiles [Hack #22] . Generated automatically by web servers like Apache and Microsoft Internet Information Server, these flat text files were simply a report of which IP addresses were requesting which objects. At one point, a smart and enterprising soul realized that these files could be parsed and that the results could tell you roughly what people were doing on your web site. Some say, “In the beginning there were logfiles and they were good.…” Unfortunately, web server logfiles weren’t good enough.


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