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DCN Web Tools: Count.cgi

WWW Homepage Access Counter

Introduction

This is a CGI program to keep record of the raw hits (document requests) for a web page. It generates a GIF image of the number of hits and returns it to the browser as an in-lined image.

Are the hit counts accurate? No way! To anyone who knows how access counters work, a counter on your web page is the equivalent of a bumper sticker on a car reading "WARNING: I don't know how to drive." However, they can be fun if not taken seriously.

PLEASE NOTE:
Availability of this hit counter is experimental. If it's abused or proves to generate a high server load or support burden, the web team may remove it without notice.

Features

  • Does not require server-side includes.
  • Supports digit images with variable width.
  • Counter can be displayed without incrementing (for monitoring etc.)
  • A literal digit string can be displayed.
  • A random digit string can be displayed.
  • The color of the digits can be negated.
  • The counter can be rotated (only integral of 90 degrees, 90,180,270). The default rotation is 270 degrees.
  • An ornamental 3D frame can be wrapped around the counter image with thickness and color defined at run time.
  • The frame and transparent color can be a name (e.g. red,green,pink etc.). The color can be specified as a hex string, e.g. ffffff, ff0000 etc. as well as RGB triplets as before.
  • Any color of the counter image can be made transparent at run time.
  • Style of digits can be specified at run time.
  • Maximum number of digits can be set or counter can be displayed with exact number of digits at run time.

Installing a Counter

    You may refer to the program from web page like this:

    <img src="/cgi-bin/Count.cgi?df=sample.dat" align=absmiddle>

    Substitute your login id for the "sample" in the HTML code above.

    The string between ? and " is called the QUERY_STRING. Make sure there are no line breaks in the <img src= line and no spaces in the QUERY_STRING. Here, df=sample.dat, df means datafile and sample.dat is the counter datafile. The file will be created for you in a special server directory. It's important that it's not in use by another user; so, your login id plus ".dat" is a good choice.

    The counter program has lots of options, you can make it work and look the way you desire. In the query string, you can use the options described in the table below. The options can be separated by a | or a &. You can use either one or both. Here is an example:

    <img src="/cgi-bin/Count.cgi?ft=T&frgb=gold|df=sample.dat" align=absmiddle>

    The options may be in any order and not case sensitive.

Digit Styles

    Style A styleA
    Style B styleB
    Style C styleC
    Style D styleD
    Style E styleE

    A suggested use of style E is to make the white color transparent.

Counter Options

Parameter Name Description Default
ft=X Frame Thickness You can wrap the counter in an ornamental frame of X pixels thick. Use 0 for no frame. Values over 5 make a nice 3-D effect. ft=6
frgb=R;G;B Frame Color Specifies the color of the frame in RGB (red/green/blue) format. Each color component, R, G, and B is specified as a value between 0 and 255. If you use ft= without a frgb= param, the default color is used.

If you specify a frgb= without a ft=, then the frame thickness defaults to 5. All the examples show ft=5. The color can be specified as hex string or a name. Do not use a # before the hex string as Netscape. For example, if you want to specify white in hex, you do frgb=ffffff. Look at the color name mapping database for some hints.

frgb=100;139;216 or
frgb=648bd8
tr=B Transparency On/Off You can specify if your counter image will have a transparent color with the Boolean B. So tr=Y means there will be a transparent color; and tr=N means there will not. It does not matter if the GIF files used for the digits are "transparent"; you must specify explicitly which color to make transparent. If you specify a trgb=, then you do not need to specify tr=Y. Valid values for B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0. tr=N
No Transparency
md=X Max Digits Defines maximum number of digits to display. Any value between 5 and 10 inclusive are permitted. Padding with leading zeros is automatically done for you; longer counts are truncated to the given X. md=6
Without padding
pad=B Padding with 0's Turn padding on/off in conjunction with md= setting. Valid values for the Boolean parameter B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0. pad=N
Without specification of a md=value

pad=Y
With specification of a md=value

dd=A Digit Style Denotes a specific styles of digits. dd=A
My green led digits
st=X Start Count Used to set the initial value of the counter to some number X. This is only valid if you decided to allow automatic datafile creation. This is a bad practice to compile with this option, however it makes site maintaining easier. Note that this parameter has no effect if the datafile alreay exist. If you want to change the counter value in a existing datafile, hand edit the file. The minimum value for st is 1. st=1
Count starts at 1
sh=B Show digits Used to turn display of digits on or off according to the Boolean B. When sh=T, counter will be displayed and incremented, this is the default behavior.

If sh=F no digits will show, but the counter will still increment; instead of digits a transparent 1x1 GIF is displayed. Valid values for the Boolean parameter B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0

sh=Y
df=data_file Datafile to store count Specifies the name of the file for storing the count in. If no file by that name exists, one will be created for you in a special counter directory. Counter files inactive for more than a month are periodically deleted. df=random
if no datafile is specified
incr=B Increment Count Makes it possible to display the current count without incrementing the count. This can be used to examine the count for reporting or other purposes without adding to the count. Valid values for the Boolean parameter B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0.

incr=T
Increment the counter on each invocation
lit=X Display literal Makes it possible to display a given, predetermined value. Valid values for the string X are digits. None
negate=B Negate the color Makes it possible to negate the color of the counter digits. Note that the Frame is exempted from negating. Valid values for the Boolean parameter B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0. negate=F
Do not negate
degrees=X Rotate X degrees Makes it possible to rotate the counter image X degree. The possible values of X is 90, 180, 270 and 360. Note 360 is meaningless as the counter will come back to the original 0 degree. degrees=270
With rotate=Y and without degrees=X
rotate 270 degreess clockwise
rotate=B Rotate On/Off The Boolean value B turns on or off rotating. If you use degrees= settting, rotate is not needed. Valid values for the Boolean parameter B are Y, N, T, F, 1, or 0. rotate=F
Do not rotate

Error Messages

    Count will try to return an image in any event. That is, even if it fails for some reason, it will write the error messages in GIF format.

Copyright

    The counter program and the text on which this page is based were developed by Muhammad A Muquit and Kevin J. Walsh.

    Copyright 1995 by Muhammad A Muquit. Permission to use, copy, modify and sell this program for any purpose is hereby granted without fee, provided that this copyright notice appear in all copies and that both that copyright notice and this permission notice appear in supporting documentation, and the author's name not be used in advertising or publicity pertaining to distribution of the software without specific written prior permision. If the program is included in a book, publication or software distribution media for sale, the author must be notified about it.

    THIS PROGRAM IS PROVIDED "AS IS" WITHOUT EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTY. THE AUTHOR DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES WITH REGARD TO THIS SOFTWARE, INCLUDING ALL IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS, IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHOR Muhammad A. Muquit BE LIABLE FOR ANY SPECIAL, INDIRECT OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER RESULTING FROM LOSS OF USE, DATA OR PROFITS, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, NEGLIGENCE OR OTHER TORTIOUS ACTION, ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OR PERFORMANCE OF THIS SOFTWARE..



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URL: http://www.dcn.davis.ca.us/tools/counter/homepage.html
Last Revised: March 11, 1997