Why won't my blog work?

A few days ago, I was just talking to Spoz, and I told him to check out my blog to see what was up with me. He then asked what my blog address was, as he had tried this address, and it said “Requested URL could not be retrieved.”

I told him that it was the address, and he insisted that it didn’t work. So then I tested it out just to make sure the site hadn’t gone down or something, and it worked for me. When I told him this, he said that was weird… it didn’t for him, and had been like this the last few days. (he even thought I’d had the site removed or something… nope!) I thought that was extremely funny, since others had certainly been able to access it the last few days… and of course, I had no problems with it.

So why does the site seemingly work for everyone else, but not for him? It’s not because he’s in Australia, and somehow this blocks all Canadian sites, is it? Actually, if someone else who lives in Australia could test it out, I’d be happy. If not, I have other Aussie friends who could do that for me. (yes, I know Australia is a huge country… but humor me)

We have NO idea why it doesn’t work now, when it has before. His blog works, as does Kemporalia… but apparently mine doesn’t. It all makes no sense, because all three of the blogs are on the same server! Definitely blows away his theory about how his proxy server doesn’t accept it for some odd reason.

I talked to him just now about this issue, and when he tries to access my blog, he gets this:

No, I have no idea where the “.80” in the URL comes from… maybe a port number, according to my extremely limited knowledge of computers. But what makes it really weird is that he was currently downloading a FILE with underscordes in it… and if underscores weren’t allowed in the blogspot domain names, I suspect that I would have been informed when I signed up for one.

He says all the weird stuff that he got usually doesn’t stop him, unless his current proxy settings crap all over it.

It could be that his ISP’s being poopy or playing mad tricks on him, but I don’t know enough about these kinds of things to say for sure. Could also be a server issue… but I have no idea about that, either. Help, please?

F_X

Not much good to you, but both links above to your blog work for me, Flamsterette_X. Could be the Aussie ISP. Sometimes, they have problems accessing SDMB, for example, while I still can (while being almost next-door).

I can access it.

And “:80” is just the default http port.

A couple of interesting clues were in the following lines:

First, to the best of my knowledge (and I am not the greatest expert), underscores are not (in general) a problem in web addresses. Hence, you haven’t seen problems with the underscore, Ice Wolf and Desmostylus didn’t have problems accessing it, and neither did I. So there is something different about your friend’s setup if that’s a standard warning in his 404.

Second, I don’t think most people have a “cache administrator”. For me, for example, I have a local cache on my machine, but my ISP doesn’t necessarily cache pages. This is true of most people. This implies Spoz’s ISP has something with an intermediate cache step (ISTR this is called something like “server caching”, but I can’t remember the details - will look this up later if I have time).

Hypothesis: Spoz’s access goes through a path with an intermediate server cache. This software/hardware isn’t configured to handle underscores. (File uploads/downloads would not traditionally be cached, so would not see the same path, and problems.) This intermediate server is giving the error. None of the rest of us in this thread are set up this way, so we don’t see the problem.

Ways to check this hypothesis:
[ul]
[li] Find someone else with an underscore in their web address, see if Spoz can access that address.[/li][li] Have Spoz ask his ISP (or e-mail that “cache administrator” address) and find out the details of his setup.[/li][li] Try to use the same URL with the “_” character replaced with the character escape sequence for the underscore ("%5F"). Thus, the web address would be (I think) http://flamsterette%5Fx.blogspot.com/ - see if that works for Spoz[/li][/ul]

If not, post results back here, and we’ll all continue to scratch our heads.

Well, the problem has been fixed for good now. Turns out it was what he suspected all along: there was some weird specific in his proxy settings that his ISP goes into when he exceeds his download limit. We still don’t know why it doesn’t accept underscores in domain names. But, all hail a new month! :smiley: The proxy server shouldn’t have had any problems with [url=http://] sites, and doesn’t usually… but it was the accursed underscore! :smiley:

When he set up his Internet access, he was given two choices: either pay $1 per hour he was on the Internet (with unlimited download), or get unlimited Internet time (and a download limit of 250 meg / month). He chose the first option, because he didn’t want to have to worry about how much time he spent online. So he has a download limit every month; after he exceeds it, he shouldn’t be able to access things that run on their own server (Hotmail, ICQ, etc.), but he’s figured out a way to bypass that. However, he’s been known to go crazy on the downloads, so he exceeds the limit every month… oh yeah.

Funny how the underscore was hanging things up, though… I’ve fixed that little problem so it hopefully won’t happen again next month. (changed the domain name slightly to get rid of the underscore)

F_X

actually… to clarify,
it’s a 750 meg / month limit…
unlimited hours…

works quite well, since they don’t charge extra on downloads OVER the limit… but, merely chuck you on a proxy instead for the rest of the month… (which is different from every OTHER ISP here… that charges you extra past a download limit… which is usually set to 250 - 300meg…)

I usually aim to download 500 meg or so in a mad rush at the beginning of the month… coast on 250 meg… for the rest of the month… till, near the end… say 5 days before… I go OVER the limit… on purpose… and hoard up any downloads thru http:// links…

the proxy usually limits me from external / exclusive servers… unless I somehow figure the firewall settings for each (which I have done to ICQ and Yahoo Messenger)

it stops me from using FTP, WinMX, mIRC or, funnily enough… accessing my hotmail…

and now, I’ve discovered it doesn’t like underscores in domain names… weird aye?