Web Browser Error Messages
When you enter an address in your browser, your
browser sends a request header (packet) through your phone line to your ISP's dial-up
router. This computer then checks its Domain Name Server for the IP address of the site
(like looking up a persons phone # before placing a call) and then checks its router table
to determine which of the computers it is attached to would be the best one to forward the
request. It then sends that packet to the next router in line and this process continues
until your packet reaches our server. Each router in line forwards the packet by the
quickest route it knows of. When our server receives this request header, it sends the
requested .html page back to your browser by the quickest route it knows of using the same
type of process. If anywhere along these routes, a router is busy with other requests,
your packet or file waits until it can be forwarded. If it waits too long, it dies. If
your browser does not receive a response from our server in a set amount of time for any
reason, it gives one of a number of generic error messages such as those listed below,
which do not always address the true nature of the problem.
Many books on html or CGI programming
begin with a discussion of the page request/delivery cycle. Your local bookstore or our resources page should be able to
help you find one for your level.
"No DNS Entry"
means that the initial stage (finding the IP address for the site) failed. We recommend
typing in the IP address itself to bypass this stage. Your IP address is listed in the
last line of the setup email you received from us. If you do not still have this email, a
copy can be found at:
"Connection Reset By
Peer" means that the server did not receive the complete request and is
asking you to resend it (roughly speaking). We recommend clicking on "Refresh"
or "Reload" or typing in the URL or IP address again.
" Server returned an
invalid or unrecognized response" means that the server's response to your
request was corrupted in transmission and can't be read by your browser. We recommend
clicking on "Refresh" or "Reload" or typing in the URL or IP address
"Server Not Responding
..... may be down, contact host..." could arise from any situation that
prevents the return of a web page. If this message continues to display after all other
diagnostics are performed, please contact
Interrupted" When your browser receives a page, it begins to
paint the screen according to the instructions in that page. If the page includes a
graphic file, the browser must send a separate request to the server to get it. If that
request gets too corrupted along the way to the server, the server can't make sense of it
and sends back the "transfer interrupted" message which is displayed in place of
the requested image. We recommend clicking on "Refresh" or "Reload" or
typing in the URL or IP address again.
Error" results from an error in a CGI
program or incorrectly set file
permissions. We recommend following these links to our tutorials on these subjects.
"File Not Found - Error
404" means that either the link you followed is outdated or you mistyped the
URL. We recommend retyping the URL or sending email to the webmaster of the site in
The best way to determine where the problem lies is
to examine each connection along your route across the Internet. For this we use the traceroute tool.
404 is just one of
many possible Status Codes. Click here
for information on others.