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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador
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    January 17th, 2005
    Server Side Includes
    How is it possible to find out if a site is using SSI.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    If the server is processing the SSI properly, there wouldn't be a way for a surfer to view the source code to see whether the source code itself includes SSIs - since the only source code provided to the browser is the post-SSI-parsed source code.

    There are a whole lot of alternative processing avenues as well as SSI, PHP, ASP, and other scripting languages can also perform some of the tasks which SSI is typically added into plain HTML sites to perform.

    A typically giveaway for a site using SSI could be the extension of .shtml or .sht or .shtm (server-parsed HTML) but with a little bit of .htaccess work, that can easily be camoflaged. For example, a site owner could remap .html as a PHP extension, or as a server-parsed/HTML extension, or as an ASP extension. A logical time to do such a re-map would be so that they wouldn't have to rename all of the files on their old site to a new extension when they upgrade the back-end technology that they use to present the site; which could cause 404 errors for visitors, and a loss of the search engine listings which the site already has.

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    Los Angeles
    You just put a couple of lines in .htaccess for the server to parse .html or .htm as PHP and no one would ever know the difference (for PHP includes, which is what I prefer to use instead of SSI).

    That's *nix/Apache for IIS I've got no idea. But no way to tell if it's done like that, so the file extensions stay "normal."

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador Andy's Avatar
    Join Date
    January 18th, 2005
    As mentioned above, if the pages are coded .shtml, etc., that's a good indication that the page is using SSI, but the server can be configured to do the same thing with .html extensions, so that makes it difficult to tell what's going on, as the whole point to SSI is to insert code into another document. Since that happens before the .html goes to the browser, the inserted code appears to be part of the code on the page itself.

    Bottom line, I don't think it's possible to know for certain whether a site is using SSI or not, because what you see is the finished product, and you really have no way of knowing what's being done to it before your browser loads it. I have a few .shtml pages that are including a blank file right now, as there's nothing I want inserted at this time, so someone might think they're seeing an include, but they're not.


  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador
    Join Date
    January 17th, 2005
    But what ist the matter with robots. Do they have a possibility to find out wether ther is SSI coded or not? Perhaps the following:
    <!--#if expr="$HTTP_USER_AGENT = /googlebot/" -->

    bla bla bla
    <!--#else -->

    wow wow wow
    <!--#endif -->


  6. #6
    Member infoscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    March 17th, 2005
    You won't know which of my pages are SSI without being able to FTP the files. Those encoded pages all end in .html.
    [LEFT]Scott :tartanber [URL=]My Vanity Page[/URL][/LEFT]

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