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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Location
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Posts
    6,916

    New posts not appearing in threads

    I've just been looking a bit more into the issue of recent posts not appearing because the forum pages get cached by ISP proxy servers. Apologies if this gets technical, but there's really no other way to put it. This applies to HWC and VDr equally (and quite possibly SE, although I don't use those forums myself). The basic problem is that someone can post, but when the page is reloaded their post isn't at the bottom. That can last for hours or days depending on the proxy server involved unless the user does Shift-Reload. That gets real boring after the 3rd or 4th thread, especially on a dialup connection. Trust me on that one.

    As far as I can see, the only anti-caching method used by the forums is in the form of a no-cache pragma tag at the top of each web page:

    <META HTTP-EQUIV="Pragma" CONTENT="no-cache">

    That does a fine job of preventing browsers from caching the page, but does nothing against proxy servers. Proxy servers may choose to recognise the tag on its way through and not cache the page, but there's no requirement in the standards for them to do so. In fact, some proxy servers (MS Proxy comes to mind) don't even have an option to recognise no-cache tags.

    According to RFC2616, the way to force a proxy server to not cache a page is to return no-cache directives in the HTTP header field in addition to the tag in the data itself. That means both "Pragma: no-cache" (section 14.32, for HTTP/1.0 caches) and "Cache-Control: no-cache" (section 14.9, for HTTP/1.1 caches) directives.

    Is there any chance the forums servers could be configured to include those directives in the headers they return? I know it's a big ask, but my ISP just reconfigured the one proxy that was listening to no-cache tags and I don't have a leg to stand on against them because the tag is meant for browsers, not proxy servers. Technically, the forums aren't asking for the page to not be cached, and the proxy server is behaving within spec.

    I'm not expecting an instant fix, but if you could maybe pass this on to whoever calls the shots with respect to the web servers themselves that'd be great. If there's something in all of that which isn't clear then let me know and I'll attempt to clarify.

    [This message has been edited by Tuttle (edited 06-25-2001).]
    Safe computing is a habit, not a toolkit.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Location
    Quebec, Canada
    Posts
    2,781
    Yes, it happened to me once, I could post, but I couldn't see my replies (and edit or delete my post). I could only see what I wrote if I posted a new thread, and I could edit/delete it. Needless to say it was very annoying . My posts were never reappearing after a refresh, but they sometime would after a disconnect (dial-up) and/or a reboot, and when I could see them, I was unable to delete/edit them...

    That problem is gone as suddently as it appeared, I tried deleting cookies, temp files and temp internet files, I removed my browser bookmark to HWC but no luck. One day I posted and I could see my post. Still ok now.


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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    Sarawak, Malaysia
    Posts
    4,807
    Is this problem only affect HWC or is it my ISP. I have experienced this problem some time last week.
    Sometimes i dould not even find HWC and there seems to be an error in IE saying that it cannot find HWC. I though maybe HWC was down. Has HWC experienced server down in the past?

    ------------------
    Because Windows was not properly shutdown, all of your hard drive have already got bad sectors on it

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 1998
    Location
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Posts
    6,916
    Different problem I think. HWC's servers do go down now and then though.
    Safe computing is a habit, not a toolkit.

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