Running a server can be a daunting task. Being able to know exactly what is going on with your server at all times depends on your knowledge of the systems that you are running, and (to a certain extent) on your knowledge of your hardware. Knowing what a logfile is will help any trouble shooter and server issue analyzer when server issues arise. But combined with a powerful logfile analyzer there is a lot more that you can find out about your website and server traffic.
The logfile can usually be found in the root directory of the server that you are running. The file can be accessed by the server system administrator. This is why it is important to make sure that two assigned people in your company are able to access this file, in case an issue presents itself. Imagine not being able to resolve server problems when the only person who can access this file is away on leave! Generally speaking all computer control systems have a logfile. This file is password protected. Logfiles can best be described as a file in which everything that goes on with your server, or computer system, is recorded in chronological order. You could compare a logfile to a black box in a plane. The logfile makes it easier for an analyzer to figure out what went wrong if an issue presents itself. The logfile (combined with a logfile analyzer) can also be a very helpful component in improving your website and in generating more traffic.
A logfile analyzer is a software program that can be used to identify all data recorded in your logfile. Examples of data that have been recorded in the logfile and can be interpreted by the analyzer are: visitor numbers and unique visitors, data regarding days of the week and data, host lists and specific page views, browsers used by visitors and the identification of robots. By using a logfile analyzer you can get a clear view of the traffic that you are generating to your website and server. The data investigated and displayed by your logfile analyzer are valuable in assisting you to create more traffic and can really help you in gearing your site towards generating a different or bigger audience. An important factor in this is keyword and search engine improvement. Knowing what visitors are using which phrases to get to your site is a very helpful tool for website and server administrators. Imagine using your analyzer data to know who is browsing your site at this very moment, and using this information to display news and adverts geared towards these visitors, at the right time.
Understanding your logfile and interpreting its recorded data is an almost impossible task without a good analyzer. There are many different logfile analyzers that do the job, depending on what information you want to distill from your log. Create a clear picture of the things that you want to know about your site visitors and install the best logfile analyzer for that purpose.