Counters

This document describes how to add counters to your TDE home page(s). A counter is a graphic image placed on a home page that indicates how many times the home page has been hit by people on the Internet. Each time someone accesses the home page, the current count is converted into a GIF image and displayed on the home page. The counter is then incremented to count the access which just occurred.

While counters can be used to get an indication of how many times a home page has been hit, they are by no means exact. If you plan to use your counter for statistical purposes, please keep the following things in mind.

Many web browsers implement caching to improve performance. If the home page being accessed is already stored in the computer's memory or hard drive, the browser will retrieve the page from there rather than accessing the server again. While this does improve performance from the perspective of the person browsing the web, the counter for that page is not incremented since the server was not accessed. This produces a count which may be lower than the number of times the home page has actually been read by people.

Many web browsers have a "back" button to return to the home pages passed through to get to the home page currently being viewed. Suppose someone hits the TDE home page, goes to your home page, then follows a link on your page to somewhere else. If they then use the "back" button several times to get back to the TDE home page, they will hit your page on the way. If your page isn't in their browser's cache any longer, their browser will access the server to retrieve your page (and thus increment your counter). In this situation, it's likely that this is not a "real" hit on your home page, but rather was just a step back though the pages that they had been to. This situation may produce a count which is higher than it really should be.

Finally, keep in mind that counters will also be incremented if someone uses the "reload" button found in many browsers. If someone repeatedly uses the "reload" button on a page, the effect will be an inflated counter.

Usage Instructions

This section explains how to add a simple counter to your home page. There are also a number of options that can be used customize your counter.

To install a counter on your home page, add a line similar to the following to the home page where you want the counter to appear:

<IMG SRC="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?arg1=value1&arg2=value2&.....&argn=valuen">

or translated using real arguments (options):

<IMG SRC="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?style=a&link=username.pagename">

Username is your username at TDE. Pagename is the name of the home page you are installing the counter on. If your home page is in a subdirectory, be sure to include the subdirectory name as part of pagename, but separate the subdirectory from the pagename with a . (period) rather than a / (slash). Please note that the ? character is required, and there is no leading / character before username.

Example #1:


        <IMG SRC="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?style=a&link=jdoe.index">
        This line will add a counter for jdoe's index.html home page.

Example #2:

<IMG SRC="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?style=a&link=jdoe.funstuff.goodies">
This line will add a counter for jdoe's "goodies" home page located in the "funstuff" subdirectory.

 

Here is the list of available counter arguments (options):

Argument
(* means required)
Possible Values Meaning
link* anything that doesn't contain a space Uniquely identifies the page calling the counter. This is case-sensitive. See examples below.
width 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 or 9 The width of the resulting image in digits. Extra zeros will be added to the beginning. If the width is too short for the number to be displayed, it is lengthened so that all digits may be displayed. Default is 4.
style* any directory name under the /digits directory, for example, led, or the reserved value simple. Should not contain spaces Specifies the set of digits to use in constructing the final image, or specifes the use of the simple style 1. Should be all lower-case
bgcolour RRGGBB or trans When using the simple style, specifies the background colour of the image, or if trans is used, specifies a transparent background. RRGGBB should be 3 2-digit hex values in one string, similar to the HTML command
<BODY BGCOLOR="RRGGBB">

. This argument has no meaning when style does not equal simple. The default is 000000 (black).

fgcolour RRGGBB When using the simple style, specifies the foreground colour of the image. Same format as bgcolour. The default is FFFFFF (white).
inc 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 Determines how much to increment the counter. Using 0 means the counter will not increment. Using a value less than 0 will result in no increment. Using a value greater than 5 will result in an increment of 5. If you are calling from a computer specified in the [No-Increment-For] section of counter.cfg, this argument has no effect.

Examples

<img src="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?link=myhomepage&style=led">

<img src="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?link=page2&style=odometer&width=7">

<img src="http://webtools.tde.com/cgi-bin/counter/counter.exe?link=page3&style=simple&bgcolour=00FFFF&fgcolour=FF0000">

Digit Styles

A main feature of this counter is the ability to use many different styles of digits. TDE Internet has upgraded the counter program over the years.  Each time the counter program is upgraded, new digit styles come with the newer counter program.   You will notice in the examples below, that some styles are very similar to other styles. In an effort to be backward compatible, we have made any digit style ever used by TDE Internet available for you to use.  Please note that many of the digit style examples are larger in size than displayed in the examples below.

Style Name Example
led
odometer
lcd
speckled
noisy
cyan
eggs
halloween
curly
timex
red
orange
chalk
scoreboard
neat
beach
electric
fancy
frozen
handwriting
oldstyle
sf
web1 web1.gif (688 bytes)
web2 web2.gif (524 bytes)
netscap netscap.gif (205 bytes)
amini amini.gif (2490 bytes)
buftom buftom.gif (4334 bytes)
a a.gif (2692 bytes)
b b.gif (381 bytes)
c c.gif (292 bytes)
d d.gif (3105 bytes)
e e.gif (2841 bytes)
f f.gif (2354 bytes)
g g.gif (2287 bytes)
h h.gif (1076 bytes)
i i.gif (1487 bytes)
j j.gif (1401 bytes)
k k.gif (1797 bytes)
l l.gif (2055 bytes)
m m.gif (1041 bytes)
n n.gif (362 bytes)
o o.gif (955 bytes)
odb odb.gif (6510 bytes)
odw odw.gif (6666 bytes)
lot lot.gif (13411 bytes)
dg dg.gif (468 bytes)
dr dr.gif (468 bytes)
fb fb.gif (12079 bytes)
wd wd.gif (13687 bytes)
cb cb.gif (15510 bytes)
sbg sbg.gif (454 bytes)
sbr sbr.gif (490 bytes)
bajbp bajbp.gif (8140 bytes)
banco banco.gif (7767 bytes)
bancord bancord.gif (7537 bytes)
blueblk blueblk.gif (3269 bytes)
bluewht bluewht.gif (4756 bytes)
blutrns blutrns.gif (3679 bytes)
cgblue cgblue.gif (17286 bytes)
cgdizzy cgdizzy.gif (17123 bytes)
cgstony cgstony.gif (20439 bytes)
enya_g enya_g.gif (7400 bytes)
enya_r enya_r.gif (8447 bytes)
ironl ironl.gif (9502 bytes)
irons irons.gif (6754 bytes)
ironswd ironwd.gif (17475 bytes)
orgtrns orgtrns.gif (4040 bytes)
orngblk orngblk.gif (3738 bytes)
orngwht orngwht.gif (5028 bytes)
slasher slasher.gif (5783 bytes)
slashrc slashrc.gif (8706 bytes)
tiny tiny.gif (163 bytes)

FAQ

Q: How can I keep track of hits without having a visible counter?

A: Not sure why people want to do this, but anyway:
In your <img src="...">, put height=1 width=1.

Q: How can I get my web page to load faster when I'm using a counter?

A: You should specify the height and width of the image. Each digit in these style are 15x20, so width = 15*(# of digits displayed) and height = 20. Now put this in your HTML: <img height=20 width=X src="/cgi-bin/...">

Q: I'm using the simple style, but I can't change the background/foreground colour?

A: 1) Did you spell bgcolour and fgcolour correctly? (Americans note the U).
2) If it uses the default colour (black for background, white for foreground) then you didn't specify 3 two-digit hex numbers. Remember that it goes RRGGBB (Red, Green, Blue).

Q: How accurate is the counter?

A: The counter increments everytime it is loaded. It is not loaded when:

  • People with non-graphical browsers see your page.
  • People are not autoloading images
  • People hit "Stop" before it gets loaded.
  • People look at your page with certain browsers that do not like .exe files in img tags.
  • Someone on the [No-Incremenet-For] list looks at the page.


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