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Tech: ?404 not found /null?

Sandra in Sydney 09 Nov 03 - 07:18 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 08 Nov 03 - 05:19 PM
Sandra in Sydney 30 Oct 03 - 07:04 AM
JennyO 29 Oct 03 - 09:06 AM
JohnInKansas 29 Oct 03 - 08:19 AM
Sandra in Sydney 29 Oct 03 - 07:21 AM
Sandra in Sydney 29 Oct 03 - 06:45 AM
nutty 28 Oct 03 - 03:17 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 28 Oct 03 - 03:04 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 28 Oct 03 - 03:01 PM
GUEST,Q 28 Oct 03 - 02:57 PM
JohnInKansas 28 Oct 03 - 04:09 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 27 Oct 03 - 10:20 PM
Chris Maltby 27 Oct 03 - 09:09 PM
Sandra in Sydney 27 Oct 03 - 07:49 AM
The Fooles Troupe 27 Oct 03 - 07:39 AM
Sandra in Sydney 27 Oct 03 - 07:34 AM
Chris Maltby 26 Oct 03 - 07:50 PM
JohnInKansas 22 Oct 03 - 03:11 PM
Willie-O 22 Oct 03 - 02:40 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 Oct 03 - 12:57 PM
Sandra in Sydney 22 Oct 03 - 09:54 AM
GUEST,sandra in sydney at work 22 Oct 03 - 03:00 AM
JohnInKansas 21 Oct 03 - 02:51 PM
JennyO 21 Oct 03 - 02:21 PM
GUEST,Q 21 Oct 03 - 01:38 PM
JohnInKansas 21 Oct 03 - 01:28 PM
Burke 21 Oct 03 - 12:05 PM
JohnInKansas 21 Oct 03 - 11:54 AM
Sandra in Sydney 21 Oct 03 - 08:46 AM
JohnInKansas 20 Oct 03 - 01:27 PM
Sandra in Sydney 20 Oct 03 - 08:20 AM
JohnInKansas 20 Oct 03 - 03:39 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 11:58 PM
JohnInKansas 19 Oct 03 - 11:40 PM
mack/misophist 19 Oct 03 - 10:27 PM
JohnInKansas 19 Oct 03 - 06:09 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 05:25 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 05:12 PM
JohnInKansas 19 Oct 03 - 04:06 PM
JohnInKansas 19 Oct 03 - 04:03 PM
JohnInKansas 19 Oct 03 - 03:59 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 03:38 PM
treewind 19 Oct 03 - 02:51 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 12:19 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 19 Oct 03 - 11:42 AM
Sandra in Sydney 19 Oct 03 - 08:44 AM
Sandra in Sydney 19 Oct 03 - 08:42 AM
Sandra in Sydney 19 Oct 03 - 08:41 AM
JohnInKansas 18 Oct 03 - 07:58 PM
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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 09 Nov 03 - 07:18 AM

Q - there are 2 threads explaining what happened - one on Mudcat (a BS thread), the other on Mudcat Help

where did the ads go?
http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=64240

404 thread
http://help.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=2383&messages=29

everything is fine for me & for Nutty thanks (& now for you!!) thanks to Jeff's efforts

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 08 Nov 03 - 05:19 PM

Problem with Mudcat on Netscape has disappeared. If someone at Mudcat helped, many, many thanks.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 30 Oct 03 - 07:04 AM

Mudcat Help is working for me tonight - Joe Offer has passed this thread to Pene Azul for his consideration as he deals with heavy techo stuff.

I had trouble even getting into Mudcat tonight - I clicked onto Mudcat in my Bookmarks & it started connecting & loading but before the home page showed up I got a 404 message. After a couple of tries I got in & right clicked on threads.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JennyO
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 09:06 AM

Sandra, I can't get into Mudcat Help either. I think it must be down.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 08:19 AM

There is an indication that the error report seen here can result from an incorrect setting for a Proxy Server. This normally occurs only for communication on a LAN (Local network); but for some kinds of internet connection interfaces a Proxy may be set.

In IE, click "Tools" and then "Internet Options." Click the "Connections" tab at the top. Click on the "LAN Settings" button at the bottom. In the settings screen that comes up, if there is no entry at the bottom, for "Proxy Server," then this doesn't apply. If you do have a Proxy Server checked on, look at the address entry and make sure there is NOT a "\," "/," or a blank space at the end of the address.

Details at Microsoft KB article 296275 are vague on whether this might relate to your web connection; but the remote possibility is there.

Another KB article, on which I have some notes but haven't been able to find again, indicated that the same sort of "extra \ or / or space, in script used on your ISP's server could cause the problem. Unfortunately, since there's not too much you can do about that, I didn't keep good enough notes. Apparently, when the extraneous character at the end of an address gets "read into" the script to make the actual connection, it can get translated into a \null or /null that looks like a non-existent folder identification to the server.

It's a long shot - but simple to check and eliminate.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 07:21 AM

Hey, Nutty

I've been following your advice - it works!! I love it & it ain't a hassle at all.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 06:45 AM

Hello, again

Unlike Q my frustration levels have risen. EVERY thread I try to read in Mudcat these days gets the 404 message & often more than once. So I'm not opening every thread that looks inbteresting and logging off earlier than I normally do!

And then I got really pissed off tonight as I can't open Mudcat help. Last night I posted this thread & asked Joe & the other experts for their advice. Has anyone logged into help & seen if there is a reply?

John - once again many thanks for the research & good advice. And once again, all the words are English but I don't understand it - I am a bear of small (computer/internet) brain! - but I'll send an email to Chris as I always do when I'm overwhelmed by complicated computer/internet stuff.

Nutty - welcome! & thanks for the advice.

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: nutty
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 03:17 PM

I'm getting these problems with Netscape but am managing to overcome them.
Netscape starts to load Mudcat but then the 404 message comes up.
If I then use my back button Netscape usually continues to load normally (although on occassions I have had to use the back button two or three times).
I then read the threads by using the right click - open in new window - which works normally and means that Netscape isn't having to refresh all the time.
It's a little inconvenient but it works OK.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 03:04 PM

Yep, I was a Guest just for the one post at IE. Now IE also has restored my membership.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 03:01 PM

Guest in above post, but I think this one will put me as a member. I have not used the membership facilities. Odd!


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 02:57 PM

Thanks, John, for the IE notes.
I generally use and prefer Netscape, but I will use IE today and see if any 404 problems with Mudcat crop up.
I switched to IE for this post, and notice that I will probably be posted as a Guest, although I just posted a message in Mudcat through Netscape and was recognized as a member.

The frustration level has remained about the same since my last post to this thread.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 28 Oct 03 - 04:09 AM

Possibly applicable, even though Netscape has been mentioned as a browser where the problem sometimes occurs:

Microsoft Knowledge Base Article - 827667
"HTTP 404 - File Not Found" Error Message When You Try to Visit Web Pages That Are Opened by JavaScript Functions in Frames or in Windows

SYMPTOMS
After you apply the cumulative security patch for Internet Explorer that is included in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS03-032, you may receive the following error message when you try to visit Web pages that are opened by JavaScript functions in frames or in windows:

         HTTP 404 - File not found

CAUSE
This problem occurs because the cumulative security patch for Internet Explorer that is included in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS03-032 changes the base URLs of JavaScript functions to the direct scripting sites. If the JavaScript functions use relative URLs to open Web pages, this change will cause the URLs of the Web pages to be incorrect and you will receive the error message that is in the "Symptoms" section of this article.

RESOLUTION
A supported hotfix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem that is described in this article. Only apply it to systems that are experiencing this specific problem. This hotfix may receive additional testing. Therefore, if you are not severely affected by this problem, Microsoft recommends that you wait for the next Internet Explorer 6 service pack that contains this hotfix.

To resolve this problem immediately, contact Microsoft Product Support Services to obtain the hotfix. For a complete list of Microsoft Product Support Services phone numbers and information about support costs, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=fh;[LN];CNTACTMS
Note In special cases, charges that are ordinarily incurred for support calls may be canceled if a Microsoft Support Professional determines that a specific update will resolve your problem. The usual support costs will apply to additional support questions and issues that do not qualify for the specific update in question.
Prerequisites
You must apply the cumulative security patch for Internet Explorer that is included in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS03-032 before you install this hotfix. For additional information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
822925 MS03-032: August 2003 Cumulative Patch for Internet Explorer


Note that this is a fairly old article, and that the "fix" that caused the problem was the August 2003 update. There has been at least one more IE update that may have fixed this as part of the upgrade. For WinXP and Win2K users, I'd recommend the IE6 upgrade, and then get it current to latest bulletins. (I have IE6 on my Win98 machine, but I use that one so seldom for web stuff that I can't really say whether it's a "recommended" update there.)

Even if you use another browser, Windows has to have current IE to operate those other browsers.

Since few people have the problem, I'd still be inclined to think it's coming from some server in your path to the 'cat, rather from mudcat, but I guess that's something to figure out - - - eventually.

And since those who've been most affected seem to be up to date on everything else, it's just a "shot in the dark" that anyone may need IE updates.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 10:20 PM

A technician at my server played with it awhile. He also thinks the null is from Mudcat, but is not sure.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Chris Maltby
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 09:09 PM

Now that Sandra has posted the details of the error she is seeing, I'm inclined to believe it's some sort of error at Mudcat...


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 07:49 AM

we'll all be rooned said Hanrahan!


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 07:39 AM

Ozemail - who bought Powerup - so I'm stuffed too - :-)

is/was part of the Worlcom Global Empire that went phut a while ago..

Robin


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 27 Oct 03 - 07:34 AM

Hello, Chris

Welcome to Mudcat- you'll love it (well, you've seen bits of it already)

Tonight I have looked at 3 threads since I logged on (interspersed with reading & replying to mail) - all tried to connect to the funny google site & got 404 messages.

Right clicking n Netscape doesn't give Properties, instead I get View source & View Info.

1. View source -
#HTML##HEAD##TITLE#404 Not Found#/TITLE##/HEAD#
#BODY bgcolor="White"##H2#404 Not Found#/H2#
The requested URL was not found on this server:#P##CODE#/null#P#(c:\!webserver\mudcat\htdocs\null)#/CODE##P#
Please return to the #A HREF="http://www.mudcat.org/thread.cfm?threadid=62028&messages=163&page=1"#referring document#/A#
and note the hypertext link that led you here.#P#
#/BODY##/HTML#
................
2. view info

Location:
                http://www.mudcat.org/null
File MIME Type:
                text/html
         Source:
                Currently in memory cache
Local cache file:
                none
   Last Modified:

                Unknown
   Last Modified:
                Unknown
Content Length:
                390
         Expires:
                No date given
         Charset:
                Unknown
       Security:
                This is an insecure document that is not encrypted and offers no security protection.
...............................

all very intersting - last night it I read a number of threads before getting one that gve the 404 message (17 minutes after logging on), tonight the first thread I clicked on gave the 404 message.

I'll go to Ozemail's site later to see if I can see anything useful there - like a client services address! I can't call them as I don't have a mobile.

for those not in the know my ISP is one of the big ones here. I think it's a subsidiary/relation of AOL (I dunno if that is a Good Thing or not!)

sandra

pps. I submitted & got the following insistant message - in red!!
.......................
Your post contains a forbidden HTML tag.Your post contains a forbidden HTML tag.Your post contains a forbidden HTML
tag.Your post contains a forbidden HTML tag.Your post contains a forbidden HTML tag.
....................
I assume that was referring to the source message as it contains cryptic bits in pointy brackets! I'll try to remove the pointy brackets & substitute hatches### & see what happens.

this is fun (but then I do have a twisted sense of homour)


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Chris Maltby
Date: 26 Oct 03 - 07:50 PM

I think JohnInKansas is barking up the right tree by pointing the finger at the service provider. Getting help from them is likely to be frustrating at best - disabling web proxy settings may help, but not if they have a transparent proxy.

My guess is that Mudcat suffers worse from the problem because so little of its content is cacheable...


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 22 Oct 03 - 03:11 PM

From an earlier Q:

"if it is service providers, why is it just Mudcat that is affected?"

I do see fairly frequent "hangs" where a mudcat page loads partially, and then there's a wait (sometimes fairly long) before it finishes loading. I've always assumed it was just from traffic - my reply had to wait until the 'cat server got done talking to someone else.

Part of the web's reliability comes from the ability to "re-query" until a transmission is completed, and generally the "route servers" will keep trying. If they can't finish the page download, they should give you a connection failure message rather than the "file not found," but the RFC permits them to use the 404 message for almost anything.

It's possible that some server in your path "gives up too easily" and gives you the "Error 404 lie" because you've exceeded a "timeout" value that the server has set. Since route servers aren't really supposed to do this, it comes back to your ISP again.

Perhaps a call to your service provider (if they give you a number) or a visit to their home site, to politely ask "if they're lying to you or do they know who is" might get at least some suggestions. (Of course, how you phrase the question may affect what they suggest.) You pay them money to make your internet life productive and fun, you're certainly entitled to ask them for help.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Willie-O
Date: 22 Oct 03 - 02:40 PM

Q, Joe speaks the truth. If the Cat is not online when you're trying to get to it, you will of course get a 404....try later.

Having done internet tech support, I can assure you that it's a very common problem, that users from a particular domain can't browse to a particular site due to routing issues. (If that particular site, as sometimes happens, is eBay, the phones get real busy). There used to be a free rerouting service you could go to but I can't find one now. Anyone know of one now? It's handy cause it's a quick way to determine whether its a routing issue or the site is actually having problems.   

W-O


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 Oct 03 - 12:57 PM

Still getting 404'd. Doesn't matter whether I go right in or let the machine set while I do something else.

A message from Joe Offer says "The error message seems to be the one people usually get when Mudcat is "burping"- working on and off." I don't think so, I have worked around Mudcat ups and downs in the past and don't remember getting that message.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 22 Oct 03 - 09:54 AM

more madness - but I am getting used to the constant 404 message, I just click again & again & again. I am getting the 404 message 3 or 4 times while getting into or around a thread. BUT some times it works perfectly.

Leaving early today really confused me - I'll get onto my experts tomorrow.

Hey, Q, how's it going?

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: GUEST,sandra in sydney at work
Date: 22 Oct 03 - 03:00 AM

"There might also be a timing factor - if she does quick trips elsewhere but spends more time at the 'cat, or the reverse. Some providers will kick you back to a sort of "standby" if you're inactive for a while, making it necessary, in effect, to re-connect when you do the next click."

Quite right, John - I open Mudcat & my mail & answer mail between reading mudcat. Then I look at Annex & mayeb a few other sites, but spend the majority ofg my time on Mudcat each night.

I've had a busy day & have to leave early (it's nearly 5pm here) so have not spoken to my techo workmate. I'll contact my techo friend tonight & see if he can visit & look at it.

Regarding the "pagead" address which I noticed very recently, I was wondering if it came from a geocities site I visited on Sunday morning. It had a nasty popup ad for posters & also provoked Netscape to open a window saying something about updating my Privacy protection.

gotta go,it's alost 5pm

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 02:51 PM

If it's not her local provider, there may be a relay server that she goes through fairly consistently to get to mudcat - that she doesn't hit going to other places. To tell whether that's the case, we'd have to look at what other sites she goes to.

There might also be a timing factor - if she does quick trips elsewhere but spends more time at the 'cat, or the reverse. Some providers will kick you back to a sort of "standby" if you're inactive for a while, making it necessary, in effect, to re-connect when you do the next click.

It's not very practical to try to do a "long distance" analysis in this kind of detail. This needs to be done by someone who can get "hands-on" (her computer, that is) and can see exactly what she's doing and where she's going.

As mentioned above, the 'cat is pretty consistent about showing you an error page that it sends back when there's a problem, and it's immediately recognizable. The "404 Error" that you get from other sources is such a generic thing that it's not really much help - particularly since it's usually difficult or impossible to tell where it came from.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JennyO
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 02:21 PM

Well Sandra has been having trouble with emails too. Some of them seem to be being sent several times. One that she sent about her folk club I got 5 times. When I looked at "properties" to see the times sent and received, there are only 3 different sent times (two of them appear to have been sent twice, at the same time), but 5 different received times.

As far as I know she has only had trouble with Mudcat and no other websites. It will be interesting to see if she still has trouble logging on from work tomorrow.

Jenny


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: GUEST,Q
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 01:38 PM

John, if it is service providers, why is it just Mudcat that is affected? No unaccounted problems with any other websites.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 01:28 PM

Burke -

I think we all get these from time to time, but it seems very persistent for these two friends. We've pretty much eliminated the really nasty possibilities - so for now the ugly finger seems to point at mediocre service providers; (although I wouldn't want to make accusations without knowing who's looking most guilty at the moment).

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Burke
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 12:05 PM

I also have this problem from time to time. I've just figured that it was some problem with the server. Usually just using my Mudcat shortcut will get me back in again. It beats being completely down.

There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. I don't think I'm quite as plagued as Q & Sandra are. Next time it happens I'll check the actual message.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 11:54 AM

sandra -

It would be ideal if you can find a local tech to take a look at your problem.

Assuming that you're using Windows, when you get one of those nasty error screens, you can hold down the Alt key while you hit the PrtScn (Print Screen) button, and it will save a picture of the screen to your clip board. Open your Word processor (Word?) and Control-V (or Edit - Paste), and you'll have a picture you can show to your techie - and that you can maybe spend some time to read completely if you wish.

If you're not trying to run with very little memory, you can open Word, or your other WP program and then minimize it before you start trying to surf, to make it a little more convenient to click it up to make notes.

You might also get a little more, or at least different, info if you right click in a blank spot on the error message, select "Properties" from the box that opens when you right click, and do the same Alt-PrtScn, Ctl-V to paste that picture in your WP.

The "pagead2google?syndication.com" looks like an address you might get a pop-up ad from, which does introduce a new possiblility. You could get a "page not found" occasionally from pop-ups or other "page ads" that don't connect, which could "cover" what you are trying to do.

If you see anything other than mudcat in the error message, check the bottom (Start) bar and see if there's more than one browser page button. If there is, hit the little "X" in the top right of the error screen and CLOSE the error message, instead of hitting "Back," and see if there's something useful on the "other page."

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 21 Oct 03 - 08:46 AM

hello, folks

I nearly went mad getting here tonight - i kept getting the 404 message

I noticed I was trying to connect to "pagead2google?syndication.com" or something like that - it was hard to read.

I sent this thread to work to show a techo mate & he didn't have time to read it today & I will send it to another tonight to see if I can get help.

JohninKansas - thanks for your advice

I might log in from work tomorrow

sandra


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 20 Oct 03 - 01:27 PM

sandra -

Since you and Q seem to be the only ones troubled by this, and since both of you have current AV installations, I'm inclined to believe that the problem comes simply from "weak links" somewhere in the net path that you use to connect. I believe that concern about anything "viral" can be discarded.

Q has noted that the problem seems to go away late at night, which would probably be consistent with lower net traffic for him (although I'm not sure where he's located). Since your connection to the 'cat spans 15 time zones, it's likely that your connection will go through some part of the net that is pretty well "loaded" almost any time of the day. (Your 10 pm above was 8 am, on Monday morning, at the mudcat site.)

Very rarely, I've experienced "glitches" at mudcat, but generally only when I've tried to post something "at the same time" as another post. My connection simply "times out" and quits, but it usually gives me a broken connection message rather than the file not found. Even this has been very rare.

On one other site that I visit regularly, where individual page sizes tend to be very large, I do occasionally get a "file not found." It tends to happen when I click to a new page while the current page is still loading (and also may be related to how many other people are trying to get the same page at the same time).

I don't get the same "message" that both you and Q report, but that's not surprising.

When your request for a new page is lost, the individual server that dropped it may send back an html page that "explains" what happened, or it may simply send back an "error code" (technically, an OHSHIT#404).

If a page comes back to you, it will be displayed.

If all you get is the OHSHIT, then your browser may supply an error description page.

If neither of these happens, then Windows gets a more-or-less appropriate page from its own data resources (usually from C:\WINDOWS\System32\shdoclc.dll). The Windows default pages, the only ones I usually see, don't generally give the "error number" directly, in favor of a rather verbose bunch of BS about "it's probably your fault, but you should try again."

In the few instances where I've encountered a mudcat site error (other than the "site down" happening, when it's just "gone"), mudcat supplies an error page that includes an email link to "mudcat management" so that you can report the error.

Once your request for a new page is "on the net," the relay servers can generally find a route for it. If one link doesn't work, they'll try again with a different link. This means that failures are most likely to occur at the end points. Since the problem seems to be pretty much isolated to you two, it's most likely to come from your ISPs' servers; and probably is simply a matter of inadequate server capacity for the traffic they carry.

I'll give you a better story when I think of one.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 20 Oct 03 - 08:20 AM

very techo!

and I'm still getting 404 messages. I logged on about 15 mins ago (10pm Sydney time) & read 1 or 2 threads then tried to open this & got the 404 message about 5 times so I swore it this time & clicked on Q's last post & got it.

I update Norton twice a week, Sunday & Wed & updated last night after I'd read my mail & Mudcat. I have sent this thread to work to show it to my techo mates to see if they can suggest anything.

There must be some kind of problem here - on Fri night I had a lot of trouble sending out the 5 mailings for my folk club (all bcc & addressed to me). I had 5 copies in my Sent folder but 11 came into my in tray, along with 3 bounces for one address, & several more copies came in yesterday & today, along with more bounces. A techo mate has offered an explanation for the emails.

sandra (hating computers & the internet - but not Mudcat)


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 20 Oct 03 - 03:39 AM

Q -

Anything that prevents you from connecting to the page you're trying to open can give you a "404 Error" page. In the normal course of "webbing" your clicky gets passed to a "local" server, which passes it to some other server, which passes it... etc.

ANY server in this sequence of passes that is unable to forward the request for connection - and receive a response back from the next server down the line - can return a "404 Error."

The difficulty is that there is no strict standard for what the error message says. Some one of the servers, quite likely the one closest to you, has to look up a page that has their canned "404 Error" statement.

The C:\!webserver\ should be the location of the "Error message page" on the server that substituted the "Error message page" for the generic "404 Error" signal. The Error message page can say anything that the particular server that opens it for you wishes to display.

The remainder of what looks like a file name is probably the URL you were trying to reach, in this case mudcat\htdocs.

The RFC that treewind (2:55 pm) linked states (page 66 10.4.5 404 Not Found):
This status code is commonly used when the server does not wish to
reveal exactly why the request has been refused, or when no other
response is applicable.

There are several other places where the RFC says, in effect, "if you don't want to tell them why, you can lie and use 404 Error instead."

Since the problem seems to go away late at night, when traffic may be lower, it is quite likely that you're getting failure to connect due to inadequate server capacity at some point in the relay chain that passes things between you and the mudcat server. The most likely suspect would be your ISP server - the one you connect to first to get to the internet.

It's not common to use the C:\ identifier for server drives (partly because most server operators don't generally allow outside traffic to access their root folder), but if your ISP connects you in a LAN style setup, the C:\!Webserver may be a folder location on your ISP's server. It remains possible that it's a location on your machine, where the "canned" 404 Error page is supposed to be.

If/when the error page comes up again, you might get more information by right-clickin on the error message page, and selecting Properties. It's likely to show you the same information that's on the page itself, but may at least re-arrange things so that it's easier to see where it's coming from.

The \null and /nul that bracket the rest of the message are a puzzle for me, but they may be just artifacts of the system used to insert the target web page into the "address line." I don't see them in the few connect error messages I've bothered to look at (IE6 on WinXP) but most of my "disconnects" are courtesy of my local 'phone company - not really network errors.

For test purposes, there's an invisible clicky to a reliable off-site page at the bottom of this thread page. Just go down about 8 lines below the "Forum Home" clicky and hover 'til you get a "hot spot."

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 11:58 PM

Now that it is night time, the problem has taken a leave of Absence. The same happened last night.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 11:40 PM

misophist

There have been a number of Windows "Reg Clean" utilities. Easy Cleaner may (or not) be the one that Ziff Davis put out. They do have a decent (free) one, as I recall.

There's a possibility that something like this might be a help, since some of them can run through the registry and identify "dead calls" like the one that appears to be the problem here. It's not really certain though, that the "call" comes from the registry, and regedit can search there quite effectively if you have some clues, as here, to search for. The problem call may be in any .dll (or a couple of other file types) anywhere on the machine, rather than, or in addition to, in the registry.

In general, with the later versions of Windows, the "excessive use of utilities" tends to cause more problems than they solve. (This is likely because the people who use them are the same ones who try out all the "freeby" stuff they can get their hands on?) With Win2K or WinXP, you shouldn't need them, and it's almost impossible to be assured that a given one of them is certifiably "Windows Compatible." I tend to not use them, although I can't object to them in cases where there is a confirmed problem. I can't personally confirm that any such utility would be likely to find, or fix, "this particular" problem.

It probably wouldn't hurt to try it. I'm simply not sufficiently familiar with the particular utility to guess about how helpful it might be.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: mack/misophist
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 10:27 PM

John in Kansas: When I was still using windows, I kept my registry tweaked and clean with a free utility called Easy Cleaner (Ithink). Would something like that be useful in a situation like this? I was very happy with it at the time.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 06:09 PM

Q -

50,000 files is amazing. I run about 380,000.

It's not likely that someone at mudcat was targeting people, but a lot of people at mudcat share their email addys with each other, and if you're in someones address book, many viruses will use that to send to everyone in the book. They often use your address to send, but "fake" the return address just to make it harder to isolate them.

I'm still a little suspicious of your current problem, because of a personal incident with a virus some time ago.

It does happen, rarely, that Norton or other AV will "capture" the file that contains the viral signature, but will not block "other parts" of the virus package. It will sometimes allow fragments that do "normal stuff" to get by and remain on the machine.

This likely happens when you get the virus before it's found by the AV guys and signatures have updated. With new sigs, Norton deletes the "signature" file, but may not remove other fragments of the "program" that came with it. Unfortunately, with the "virus" file deleted, it becomes impossible to identify which virus was there, and without the virus name it's very difficult to track down any "peripheral damage."

In the incident we experienced, we would get a "file not found: cp.dll" on boot. The cp.dll, which contained the "virus" had been blocked, and removed, by Norton, but the "call" to execute it had been "installed."

Something on your machine is asking for a file, c:\webserver\mudcat\htdocs\null or c:\!webserver\mudcat\htdocs\null, that doesn't exist on your machine.

Unfortunately, it can be rather difficult to find the point of origin of an "unknown" file call. It's even more difficult to decide whether it's coming from a legitimate process that's "bent" or if it's something that's not supposed to be there - i.e. to decide whether you can just delete it or whether you need to fix something.

If the problem continues, for most users I'd say it's time to call the most expert person you can find who can actually "lay hands on" your machine. It's just not generally fruitful to try to work something like this through second hand correspondence.

If you do want to look further, you might find something using Windows Explorer (not Internet Explorer) to search for "files containing webserver" or some such. The rest of the filename is likely to be an "interpreted" name generated by a program wild card (%something) that inserts the site name you're connected to.

If you are really confident that you can do it without messing things up, you could try using regedit to search the registry for the suspect filename or short fragments of it. Be sure you back up the registry (standard warning) before you make any changes. (If you need instructions on using regedit - you probably shouldn't.)

Since Norton gives you a clean bill, you don't need to worry too much about spreading anything; but there is apparently something on your machine that needs to be fixed. There aren't enough complaints to make the assumption that it's a mudcat server problem, and the error message says it's on your machine.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 05:25 PM

John in Kansas, I quit as a member of Mudcat over a year ago and became a guest after getting a virused email a day for a couple of weeks, and had to change my email (a nuisance!). During the attack, Norton isolated the messages and deleted them all. No more virused messages and no problems until a week ago.

Some screwball at Mudcat may be targeting individuals again.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 05:12 PM

I have Norton antivirus on subscription. A complete scan picked up nothing (amazed at the number of files, etc. I have- over 50,000). Takes Norton about 20 minutes to run the scan.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 04:06 PM

The first link was to a "page" that I got to by navigating from the NAV home page, after putting in info on my system. Apparently it doesn't allow "direct entry."

The subsequent link, at 04:03 PM let me in "direct," so should work for anyone.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 04:03 PM

Unusual, but my link above doesn't want to work....
Trying once more, Norton Security Check

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 03:59 PM

The error detail that's coming up indicates something on your local C:\ drive that the machine is looking for, and not finding.

The error appears to be confined to a few people, and doesn't seem to be a "mudcat" error.

The "null" call in the filepath, c:\!webserver\mudcat\htdocs\null, suggests a common viral "trick" where screen displays are sent to "null" to prevent you from seeing that something's going on. (In which case it would normally appear as c:\!webserver\mudcat\htdocs>null, but this isn't the only "standard" use for a "null address.")

I'm not able to find a specific infection that I can link directly to the symptoms described; but in ALL CASES OF UNEXPECTED BEHAVIOUR a recommended step is a FULL ANITVIRUS SCAN with CURRENT AV SIGNATURES. (Shouting intentional).

If you don't have a current AV on your machine that has been updated within the past week, Norton Free Scan is one of several places where you can get your machine scanned.

Use the program/provider of your choice; but the behavior described - limited to a few users who get unexpected results - suggests that a scan is in order.

You have "unidentified" files that are not readily found. You didn't put them there. Suspicion is merited.

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 03:38 PM

Something wrong at the Mudcat end? Does that mean I can sue them for cruelty?


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: treewind
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 02:51 PM

404 means you've connected to the server, but the server can't find the resource (file or script) that you've requested.

It doesn't mean that you don't connect at all - then your browser gives a different message.

If you get it on an address that usually works for you, like mudcat, it means something is wrong at the mudcat end. It's unlikely to be a fault with your own computer.

The full set of numeric responses is documented in RFC 2616, which is the bible of how the web works.
Most of the numbers aren't errors so you don't see them. The numbers in the 400's and 500's are error message.

You really don't want to go there unless you have a deep technical interest....

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 12:19 PM

O No! Problem back again.
In answer to one question, I have disk cleanup, defrag and scan disk scheduled on a weekly basis.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 11:42 AM

A real nuisance, Sandra. I get it with both Netscape and IE. Glad (no, wrong word, should be wished on no one) to know it isn't just me.
I signed on very early today and no problem so far. Cleaned my caches, etc. yesterday but still had the problem.
Looked at the folders in C-drive, but too many to comprehend- did find three more McAfee folders, which a technician and I thought we had cleared out a while back- their fingers were in everything! Don't dare remove because they might shut down something, as they shut down attachments to my mail the last time I deleted some.

Wish you luck, Sandra!


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 08:44 AM

I forgot to say that it went back to Forum, then imediately went back to the 404 message.

here we go again!!


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 08:42 AM

little bastard did it again, it looks like I'll have an interesting night!!
...................
404 Not Found

The requested URL was not found on this server:

/null

(c:\!webserver\mudcat\htdocs\null)

Please return to the referring document and note the hypertext link that led you here.

.....................


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 19 Oct 03 - 08:41 AM

I've been getting this stupid 404 message tonight -

I use netscape 4.7 & Mudcat is the first site I lginto, suing my bokmarks. So it goes looking for www.mudcat.org & gave this message. So I called it a lying bastard & clicked on the Back icon & got the normal mudcat homepage.

I read a thread then arrowed back again & got the 404 message, so I protested again, & got back to the threads. Same happened when I read the next thread.

Then I saw this one & opened it, all very interesting but very techo. Thanks for the info

I wonder if I will get the 404 message when I submit!! If so, I'll submit again & report bck

bye for now

sandra (hitting submit!!)


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Subject: RE: Tech: ?404 not found /null?
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 18 Oct 03 - 07:58 PM

Q -

The C:\ in the error description probably indicates that your browser is looking for something on your own machine, since that indicates a "local drive" in most cases. The folder name "null" is not often used on "Windowy" machines, although it does pop up occasionally on UNIXy machines.

It looks like your browser is going to your C:\ drive for an instruction that's not there. (I'd expect something more like c:\webserver\mudcat\htdocs>nul in such an instruction, though.)

Rebuilding your links/favorites files sometimes is necessary housework. Hope it helps. A "Disk Cleanup" run sometimes also clears up problems with links, too.

John


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