Log Window
Snooping the browser - server link
Proxomitron - viewing the web the way you want

Description

The log window is a device which allows the user to observe the communication between the browser and web server, including some of the intervention of the Proxomitron filtering program. Skip down to see uses for this feature.

The functioning of the log window is described in Scott's help file. Note that the information there is not current, and the current log window has two extra features, visible in the screen capture below, and detailed below the picture.

Screen Cap

Local file requestsSee the headers for information which the Proxomitron passes back to the browser. (This is usually hidden.)
Misc. informationActions such as socket closing and reuse are shown. Not usually of much interest, unless something funny is happening with Proxomitron.

For convenience, the text written to the log window is colour coded to allow you to easily separate the various kinds of information. The following is a modified excerpt from Scott's help file entry.

Colour DisplayedMeaning
GreenRequests from your browser to the server
YellowResponses from the web server to your browser
WhiteProxomitron information
GreyPosted data and minor information
RedError messages
VioletWeb page filter matches
CyanProxy test progress messages

Uses

The primary purpose for the log window was for debugging proxomitron filters, mostly "HTTP filters" and Headers, but also "HTML filters", especially with "HTML Debug info" selected. (Note: this will apparently disable the web browser's rendering and show what appears to be "raw HTML". However, this will be annotated with the edits that Proxo has made on the web page.)

This tool also provides an education as to what is going on between your browser and the web site. You get a chance to see the HTTP header information, as well as which web hosts your request goes to. (Because of silent redirection, your query may go to computers that aren't obvious to you as you wait patiently for your browser to display the web page you asked it to show.)

The process of watching the query and reply can give you an idea if you are being spoofed or phished, as you will be able to see when your requests aren't going to appropriate computers. As well, if you turn on "View Posted data", you can see if any hidden parameters are being sent to the remote web site by your browser. (Or information being sent by another web-enabled application, if you can route the traffic from that application through Proxo.)

As you can examine headers in the requests and replies, you can troubleshoot problems with the communications between your browser, and the web site(s) and page(s) it visits. This may come in handy when "your browser" isn't working. It might not be the browser's fault.

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The Proxomitron is Copyright © 1999-2003 by Scott R. Lemmon.