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Alpha Testing User Tracking Contribution

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All -

 

Download from: http://www.aravia.com/user_tracking.tar.gz

 

You'll need to copy three new files to your OSC tree and slightly modify four files (mostly just a couple defines).

 

This modification will allow you to watch the activity of each user as they go, or have gone through your site. You can see the exact click sequence they used from start to beginning - historically from the time you install this modification onward.

 

This is an PRE-ALPHA test. Post here your experiences with the modification, I will be packaging all suggestions that I implement into the software into a BETA software package on the OSC Contributions page, and then after a user period of a couple weeks to a month, I will apply any bug fixes and release a final 1.0 version.

 

I have been using this modification on my site for the past three days, and it appears to be working well.

 

WORDS OF WARNING: Please *do not* email me asking how to do this on Windows machines, I don't know, and I don't care. Please *do not* email me asking what to do with a tar file or how to add a table to MySQL, if you don't know, you shouldn't be using this software. Please *do* email me with helpful suggestions and advice concerning the software. Please *do* enjoy using the software!

 

Thanks!

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Superb, this is a really nice mod that went it without any problems.

 

This is the sort of output it produces in admin:

 

Session ID

Guest, a810749bd6a4e4c5579be6323efe28ac

IP Address: 192.54.46.103 Start Time: 13:30:53

Host: Iapetos.csfps.de End Time: 13:44:56

13:44:56: /default.php/cPath/2

13:44:48: /default.php/cPath/36

13:44:38: /default.php/cPath/28

13:43:51: /default.php/cPath/30

13:43:27: /default.php/cPath/23

13:42:25: /default.php/cPath/25?osCsid=a810749bd6a4e4c5579be6323efe28ac

13:30:53: /

Guest, 845229e68659440e1a7c109503f1fb8c

IP Address: 62.190.240.153 Start Time: 13:25:38

Host: guspc-1 End Time: 13:34:56

13:34:56: /

13:34:48: /

13:30:10: /default.php/cPath/34

13:30:07: /default.php/cPath/32?osCsid=b3947db9553c88eb7caa62050bac1f28

13:30:02: /default.php/cPath/32?osCsid=b3947db9553c88eb7caa62050bac1f28

 

Better formatted ;-).....

 

Thanks Andrew.

 

John.

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A nice to have aswell is someway of 'tidying' the logs.

 

Having surfed the site myself, my screen is now 4pages long, imagine this after a few days/weeks.

 

Am I right in understanding it only displays 24hrs worth?... If so does it house keep the DB and clear prev 24?.

 

Thanks

 

John

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My site gets around 500 unique visitors a day. The output for this can be quite lengthy (over a meg of HTML easily), so it's not something I reload every 2 minutes, it a report I like to run once a day.

 

The script does NOT houseclean, it keeps all data historically. You can surf back using the "Back to Sept 16th" or to the future with "Forward to Sept 17th" hrefs on the page.

 

I'm considering dividing it into "pages" showing around 50 visitor patterns and surfing back and forward with the options of 50 items, or a full 24 hours. Actually, I think that's likely what I will do and it will solve the "busy site" problem for sure.

 

Here is a screen shot user_tracking.jpg.

 

Let me know if you have any suggestions for this script!

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What are the implications of storage like for those on a shared server?

 

Is this likely to create big files and store them forever unless expunged?

 

And also on that note, is it gonna be relatively easy to empty out the old history?

Just a few initial thoughts I have had.

The biggest being the effect i think this will have for those on a shared server.

 

CC.

 

Just a note though Andrew , your hacks are excellent. Well put together and much more than just quick fixes, they have great purpose.

I hope we can see more of them from you.

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CC - I write these hacks for myself because they aren't available. I struggle to let them out into open source because I'm so greedy by nature :) I have to convince myself that I'll get more joy out of letting them out into the open that hoarding them for myself ;) hehehehe...

 

Yeah, in the beta version I'll have a "CLEAN HISTORY" button that will nuke out any data older than 72 hours. Doing it automatically is a possibility as well, but would decrease performance (it would have to process the delete from table_name where time < now() - XX hours logic on EVERY page load).

 

I'll see what users ask for and then add that. I think the CLEAN HISTORY button would be better by far, but what do I know.

 

Andrew

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haha, thats always the trouble, you spend X hrs doing stuff to earn you ??/$$ and think, hey, why should anyone else benefit!..

 

But having got my hands on the OSC code, its changed my view alot. OSC team have spent yrs? doing this code, and if you're like me you'd of checked out the competition and thought, umm, not bad, but sod pay ?/$500+ to get it, and then some for any small mod.

 

The OSC community is sooooo nice. So many people with good causes, reminds me of the old 'linux' days. :)

 

Anyway, you've done a good thing with this, and lets see everyone else get involved and help out..

 

Thanks

 

John

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Yeah, in the beta version I'll have a "CLEAN HISTORY" button that will nuke out any data older than 72 hours.  Doing it automatically is a possibility as well, but would decrease performance (it would have to process the delete from table_name where time < now() - XX hours logic on EVERY page load).

 

I for one would prefer a cron job for that. I understand not all users have this option but I would definetly include that among the CLEAN options.

 

The performance loss is not a big issue if it would only do the actual delete at the specified time. The whos_online function in the Admin uses a similar technique I think.

 

Mattice


"Politics is the art of preventing people from taking part in affairs which properly concern them"

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Who's online performs a "insert into whos_online" as well as "delete from whos_online where ... " EVERY time a user loads a page.

 

MySQL is a pretty fast database. I've had databases with more than 800 million rows across 30 columns with 2 keys and the speed is incredible still, even on moderately complicated SQL select queries.

 

The problem comes from complicated SQL select queries (reads) when the database is too busy writing. This is not a MySQL problem as much as it's a problem with the technology of hard drive manufacture. For OSC to experience a performance loss due to this modification would take on the order of 2 million rows of user_tracking data with several hundreds of people surfing an OSC site at the same time.

 

The only reason you'd want to clean this database is if you had STORAGE requirements (as on a shared server), or if you really didn't like stale data hanging around. For me, this data is never stale, how my users are navigating my site is the number one most important thing to me.

 

I might just not recommend the user tracking reports to 1) shared server folk, 2) those with hundreds of users tracking per second, all in favor or a more expensive log analysis package.

 

Andrew

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One solution to the storage space problem might be to dynamically compress and decompress the output via gzip as needed. This seems to work well for web server logs and other highly compressible data.

 

I'm sure this idea has already been considered and subsequently tossed out to due technical reasons and/or time constraints, but I decided to lob up the idea anyway. Feel free to spike it down. :wink:

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Looks like a great mod. How is this different than using a log analyzer to view page statistics & progression? The only thing I can think of is that it can target individual users.. am I correct in saying that?

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Well, you are right. However... I think there is intrinsic value to integrating the analysis functions right into the software.

 

First off you don't have to buy or configure a log analyzer if you use this mod - it is a fully integrated statistics package (and will get better in that regards).

 

Second, you can track individual users by session, as well as associated session data - most importantly the shopping cart. Abandoned shopping carts are a commerce killer and knowing the habits and trends that make that happen is how you can improve sales. No log analysis package will help you with that.

 

Andrew

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Hey thanks! Hopefully this weekend I'll be able to put some work into more "average" / "median" / "trend" analysis of this data. I'm not promising anything, but hopefully it will turn out pretty good. As it is, I'm satisified it's a pretty decent modification that I personally can't live without :)

 

Let me know if you have any suggestions.

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Andrew, did you ever get around to adding more to this mod like the "Clear History" and other reports? I installed this the other night and fell in love with all this valuable data!!

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Tyler,

 

I've been tweaking this script on my machine for the past weeks as I've been getting more experience with the data we might be able to collect. It's already a lot better than it was. In a few more weeks I'll release a new set of features to everyone.

 

Andrew

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Rock on! I can't wait... this data is so valuable to see how and if your site is tweaked to the max by the way customers poke around your site!

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Well, the purge has been added, but I also have "Original Referer" working. I still have to add "View 50 At a Time" with a page by page selector, as well as I have to add "global statistics". Once those are done, I have to clean up the code and we should have a alpha release.

 

Andrew

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Andrew,

 

Add me on the "I can't believe it's not butter" list! I will be waiting for this mod to arrive also! Keep up the good work!

 

Also, I'm guessing that you had to add a new table for this to work... what color did you make that?

 

dt951117.gif

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Perfect - this modul is realy great !!!!!!!

 

Perfect - and 1.000.000 Thanks...... ;-)

 

After 24 h, you wait a long time for the html-Site.... ;-) - But is OK for 5.000 Pageviews......

 

Problems:

nothing....

 

For the future:

(Ups - my english is to bad... ;-( )

 

Thanks

Boergi

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Nice mod ive just downloaded this and made a little change to the admin side and added a reset button so you can get rid of the stats once you have viewed them. You can download the page here


www.pcbuzzard.de

www.casearts.de

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