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Server Errors and Return Codes
You've all seen them, the cryptic error messages you get sometimes
when trying to find a site. The error message you see is an actual HTML page that someone
has set up to describe the error encountered. More often than not, they don't explain what
the error means, so as far as you know Godzilla is on another rampage and has stomped
Here's a breakout of what they mean. Note that I have typed in the generic title of the
error after the number. Error descriptions are HTML pages created by the server
administrator, so they can be made to say anything.
YMMV <-- This is an acronym for Your Mileage May Vary (It means
you will probably see this, but not always).
300 - Permanent Relocation Not only has this page/file moved, but
it's never coming back.
301 - Moved Target has been moved. Most likely permanently.
302 - Moved temporarily/Redirect You will get this error if
someone has moved the target page for only a short amount of time, it will usually forward
you to the correct URL. This is a temporary relocation.
303 - Another temporary relocation, can't remember what this one
304 - Not Modified You have performed a conditional GET. The
linked page will only be returned to you if it has been modified since a certain date. If
it hasn't been modified, you get this message.
Client Request Codes
400 - Bad Request Your request just didn't quite make sense for
401 - Access denied/Unauthorized This usually shows up when you
have tried to access a file or page that requires a login and password and you typed it
402 - Payment Required To get to the linked page, you were
supposed to pay first. You can get this if you authorized incorrectly for payment.
403 - Forbidden You don't have access to this area. Sometimes you
will get these by accident if the webmaster has incorrectly set the permission levels for
a file or page. Even if you have a valid login and password for this file/URL you can not
get to it.
404 - Requested URL not found This is the most common one you
will see. There are generally two causes. One is that you typed the URL incorrectly (or
the link you clicked on was typed incorrectly), and the other is that the HTML page you
are trying to view does not exist anymore. Usually it's the latter, and it happens quite
frequently. Believe it or not, there is an actual name for these deleted pages... Are you
ready? They're called COBWEBS. Go figure.
500 - Internal server error This message is generated when an
unexpected (read undefined) error occurs. It's not sure what happened, so it can't tell
501 - Not Implemented Whatever you tried to do, the server
software is not designed to do it, or is not configured to do it. Usually you will see
this because of the way you tried to authorize with a login and password.
502 - Service Temporarily Overloaded There is too much going on
with the server. It could be too many processes running or too many users. It's temporary,
so check it later.
503 - Timed Out The server timed out after 30 seconds. It
couldn't complete your request in the allotted amount of time. Could be a busy server, or
your connection is very slow.
666 - Server possessed by evil spirits! This one was a joke error
I ran across on some guys page a while back. I thought it was funny enough to include