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What is visits, hits, requests?

Little explanations:
hits - one hit is one web page request. Web page is HTML, HTM, ASP, JSP, PHP file.
requests - it's any resource: web page, image file (JPG, GIF, BMP), CSS file, even LOG file. In practice one request is one line in log file.
visitors - is a sequence of page requests with the same IP address, with maximal interval between page requests 30 minutes.

Definition of a user visit is an approximation, it's not 100% the same in all log analyzers. So it is considered as a standard delay = 30 minutes. But if we take as maximal interval 60 minutes, the number of visits will be different (normally less).

For example, user visited these pages: /info/default.asp then after 5 minutes he visited: /info/inhoud.asp then after 15 minutes he visited: /info/main.asp then after 35 minutes he visited: /info/default.asp, no records for ip= after this line.

So in fact we have 2 visits, because delay was 35 minutes after /info/main.asp page. But we have only one IP address.

Some log analyzers count visitors as number of unique IPs. So they will show that you had 1 visit for the case above.

I have chosen ex020824.log as sample file. On sites tab I have chosen only this file.
ALA gave me stats:
Number of hits for 24-08-2002: 73. I opened ex020824.log and I counted all ASP files. I found 73 ASP pages.

Number of visitors: ALA gave 8 visitors. In text editor I saw also 8 different IPs that formed 8 visits (time interval 30 minutes was Ok). But here is one odd thing: if in Sites tab I put *.log and I analyze all log files, it will show that number of visitors was 7 for 24-08-2002. So somehow ALA have lost one visitor.

Requests: ALA showed 95 requests, but in log file were 94 log lines (with out 3 header lines started by #).

What is value. It depends on report. For example, in "Most requested pages", Value parameter means page hits. If you go to Reports tab and see "Most requested pages" report, you see "Pages only" parameter. So in unchecked state it will count all files: pages, images, exe, zip etc.
It's done in this way in "Most requested files".

See also: