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Re: 404 Error "Standards"

From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 08:24:56 -0500
Message-ID: <399BE7A8.C4FA09F3@w3.org>
To: "Siegel, David" <David.Siegel@dialogic.com>
CC: "'www-talk@w3.org'" <www-talk@w3.org>
"Siegel, David" wrote:
> 
> In the process of researching how to "ping" a URL to check its validity, a
> quick solution of just checking for a string involving "HTTP 404 Error" and
> variations of it presented itself as a quick solution.  Is there currently a
> "default" standard for web servers for 404 errors?

Er... yes; if the first 3 bytes of the response message
are the ascii codes for '4', '0', and '4', then it's a 404 response.

6.1.1 Status Code and Reason Phrase
http://www.w3.org/Protocols/rfc2616/rfc2616-sec6.html#sec6.1.1

10.4.5 404 Not Found
http://www.w3.org/Protocols/rfc2616/rfc2616-sec10.html#sec10.4.5

There's no standard for the content of the error message
(it doesn't even have to be HTML). You have to look at the
HTTP protocol status code.

>  Is there a specific HTTP
> header or META tag I can look for in the page that gets returned when the
> page does not exist on the server? (This would probably be more consistent -
> if it exists)
> 
> Any advice here would be great!!!
> 
> Thanks,
> 
> David Siegel
> mailto:david.siegel@dialogic.com

-- 
Dan Connolly, W3C http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
tel:+1-913-491-0501 (office phone as of 27 Apr 2000)
mailto:connolly.pager@w3.org?subject=pls%20call%20+1-NNN-NNN-NNNN
Received on Thursday, 17 August 2000 09:25:07 GMT

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