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Re: user agent label format

From: Koen Holtman <koen@win.tue.nl>
Date: Tue, 14 Sep 1999 18:27:33 +0200 (MET DST)
Message-Id: <199909141627.SAA14712@wsooti08.win.tue.nl>
To: connolly@w3.org (Dan Connolly)
Cc: dberansky@ucsd.edu, www-talk@w3.org
Dan Connolly:
>
>Dmitry Beransky wrote:
>> 
>> It seems that despite the fact that most agents (at least the ones I pulled
>> off my server logs) follow the format specified in the HTTP spec, it's
>> still impossible to determine with 100% accuracy the agent's make, model,
>> os platform, etc., since most of this info is stored in an unstructured
>> comment field.  Is there any work done on trying to further standardize the
>> agent data?
>
>Not that I'm aware of.

Some additional observations: the HTTP spec implies that the
User-Agent field is free-form, and in at least one browser (Lynx), the
end users can set this field to anything they want.

This implies to me that developing a standard format for the User-Agent
field is a lost cause.  The best hope with respect to reliable browser
identification is the wide deployment of one of the content negotiation
mechanisms referenced elsewhere in this thread.

>Dan Connolly, W3C

Koen.
Received on Tuesday, 14 September 1999 12:27:42 GMT

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