I have a freeware hosted on my website, and use webalizer to track the traffic. I can get the data of my installation file from webalizer in section "Top 10 of 583 Total URLs By KBytes" (till Jan. 23):

  • Hits: 21753 (6.45%)
  • KBytes: 40150088 (91.27%)

The size of installation file is 6564989 bytes, suppose it's 6565 Kbytes. Then the total downloads can be simply calculated as:

40150088 / 6565 = 6115, convert to weekly downloads will be 6115 / 23 (till Jan. 23) * 7 (days/week) = 1861.

Now comes with my questions:

  • Is the total downloads 6115 accurate here?
  • What does the 21753 Hits mean? 2/3 of the hits failed or people using multi-thread download tools?

Is the total downloads 6115 accurate here?

No - the "Top URL's by KBytes" statistic is compiled from total KB downloaded, not from total completed downloads - this means that five people who downloaded 20% of the file would be counted as 1,313 KB each (and, in total, those five people would count as 6565 KB) ... but 20% of the download across five different users does not equate to one full download in practice.

What does the 21753 Hits mean? 2/3 of the hits failed or people using multi-thread download tools?

21,753 hits means that the file was requested from your webserver 21,753 times - webalizer makes no distinction between human and bot traffic here, and a single visitor may very well be issuing multiple requests against the file.

You'll need to review your actual server logs to see HTTP/1.1 206 - Partial Content requests for those users resuming file downloads or using parallel download tools.

Webalizer is not the best tool for calculating the total number of complete downloads - you may be better off putting up a script which serves file contents and can track partial and complete downloads by user IP address or a cookie.

  • Thanks a bunch for your reply. How about redirect to download.com? I found someone did this way. Jan 24 '11 at 7:58
  • 1
    @Mason Chang - That might be the best option, as it would lend well to customers' perception that the file, which presumably includes executables, does not include any viruses or spyware... in any case, Webalizer isn't the best way to get the data you're after here / Edit: I would use a link to the download.com page instead of a redirect, though, because visitors will then be able to see the download stats and pick a mirror :)
    – danlefree
    Jan 24 '11 at 8:21

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