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What Does That Error Message Really Mean?
|(c) Jim Edwards - All Rights reserved
Surf the 'Net for about 10 minutes and chances rate very
high that you'll encounter an error of one kind or
Whether the error message pops up on your own computer or
on a website loaded in your browser, knowing what the
error means can help you solve the problem much faster
and avoid hours of frustration (especially in a situation
where nothing you do will solve the problem).
The following represent some of the more common error
messages you may encounter while surfing the Internet and
what (if anything) you can do to correct the situation.
Error: 404 File Not Found
This means the web server cannot find the file or web
page you tried to pull up in your web browser.
Almost nothing you can do will correct this situation.
Try hitting your web browser's "Refresh" button to see if
the page will load. If not, email the website operator to
let them know of the problem and then move on.
Error: 500 Internal Error
This error usually occurs when you fill in a form on a
web page (contact form, shopping cart, feedback form) and
click the submit button.
This means the server or the script handling the form on
the server has a major problem. Again, there's nothing
you can do so just email the website owner and move on.
By the way, resubmitting the form a dozen times, banging
your hand on the keyboard, and yelling at your monitor
won't fix the problem!
Error: 408 Request Timeout
This error usually occurs when you try to download a huge
file or large web page and, for whatever reason, the
connection times out.
Simply hit your browser's "Refresh" button and it should
pick up the download again where you left off.
If not, contact the website owner and inform them of the
problem or check back later.
Error: Host Unavailable
Grab a cup of coffee on this one and fall back to reading
You can try hitting your "Refresh" button a couple of
times, but, for all intents and purposes, this means the
server has gone down.
Try again in a few minutes on the off-chance you tried to
access the website just as the owners were restarting the
server or temporarily disconnected it from the Web.
If this doesn't work, the phone rates your best course of
action to contact the website owner since it's a safe bet
their email won't work either.
Error: Unable to Locate Host
This message usually means one of three things: the web
server is down; your Internet connection is dead; you
typed in the web address incorrectly.
To correct the problem, first try retyping the web
address into your browser's address bar. If that doesn't
work, try surfing over to another website to make sure
your connection is live.
If you can't load any websites, contact your Internet
service provider (ISP) for technical assistance.
As a general rule, if you encounter an error while
surfing the web, try these steps in order to fix the
1. Click your Web browser's "Refresh" button.
2. Verify that you typed in the correct URL (web address)
3. Close down and restart your Web browser completely.
4. Contact the website owner to alert them to the problem
or request help.
5. Contact your ISP for help.
About the author:
Jim Edwards is a syndicated newspaper columnist and
the co-author of an amazing new ebook that will teach you
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