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The raw access logs from your cPanel account provides information on traffic and visitors to your site. The graphical tools such as AWStats and Recent Visitors in your cPanel use the data from these logs to create the charts and graphs you see in those tools. Information contained in the raw access logs includes: user agents, IP addresses, HTTP activity, and resources accessed by each visitor (explained in more detail below). Statistic programs can also use this log to determine the traffic to your site.
Below is an example of what a typical raw access log may look like:
Here's a brief description about each part of the data contained on each line of this file. Since the first few lines are actually from WordPress tasks performed by the server itself, we'll use the entry number 7 in the sample log above as our example.
|22.214.171.124||IP address||The visitor's IP address|
|[22/Feb/2012:03:49:30 -0800]||Time Date Stamp||This is the date and time the user visited your site. In this example, the visit occurred at 3:49 (AM) on February 22, 2012. Time is shown in military time format ( hours are numbered from 00 to 23)|
|HTTP activity||What HTTP requests the user sent to retrieve information from your site. GET and POST are the most common.|
|Resource accessed||Usually shows specific file path to the file (document, image, etc.) the user viewed|
|"Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Baiduspider/2.0; +http://www.baidu.com/search/spider.html)"||User agent||Identifies how a user is accessing your site. User agents are anything that can view and read web pages. Browsers and search spiders are the most comment user agents.
Your raw access logs can be passed along to others who may be working with you on your site and need more information about your site visitors. You can also import the logs into a visual statistic program on your local computer to further review and analyze the information.
You can download your raw access logs from within your cPanel account. In our next article, we'll walk you through configuring and downloading your site's raw access logs.
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