I can't find standard Google Analytics paramters in the query string of the collect image that sends the param-value-pairs to my Google Analytics account.

In the network tab of Chrome Dev Tools I search for analytics and take look at the collect image query string, like so:

enter image description here

Why are there no param-value-pairs listed for information that is captured by default, like dh for hostname or dr for the referrer?

Can I find them somewhere else?

  • Well, you could always try using the Tag Assistant chrome plugin to debug your GA implementation. May 25, 2016 at 17:10
  • Your references indicate that those parameters are both optional so perhaps they were not set, or were set as undefined.
    – nyuen
    May 26, 2016 at 1:21
  • I thought the mentioned parameters are mandatory as in automatically extracted from the header information (like the hostname). @nyuen Where does my reference that those parameters were optional? I've just taken the information from a random site (I think lunametrics), which implements Google Analytics. Is there a reference web page/other source that documents, how to extract exactly what is sent via Google Analytics when a Tag fires? May 30, 2016 at 20:11
  • @SomewhereDave, in the links you provided to the Google support pages, it says "Optional" right underneath the header.
    – nyuen
    May 30, 2016 at 20:33
  • From what I understand "optional" in that case means, you may specify those paramters, but if you don't they are automatically extracted from the header. In Google Analytics every pageview also has an attributed hostname (otherwise its spam), which usually is your URL. I would still like to see where and when this parameter is set, if its not deliberatly set in the GA Javascript snippet. May 31, 2016 at 8:33

1 Answer 1


As @nyuen pointed out the hostname is an optional query-string-parameter. What I failed to realize before is that Google Analytics automatically extracts the hostname from the full page url stored under the dl parameter, if the dr parameter isn't provided separartly.

In general, it seems GA paramters which are not set are notlisted in the query string. As for referrer, the dr parameter could not be found, because the URL was called from the browsers's address bar.

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