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Pages Blocking My Links

Discussion in 'Link Development' started by tsptom, Jun 12, 2004.

  1. #1
    On my site, tsptalk.com, I have links to pages on the government site www.tsp.gov. Until a week ago, these links worked fine. Now I get the error page...

    Forbidden
    You don't have permission to access /rates/share-prices.html on this server.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Apache/2.0.49 (Unix) mod_perl/1.99_14 Perl/v5.8.4 DAV/2 Server at www.tsp.gov Port 80


    Yet if you take the link and cut and paste it into a browser manually it works. So they are blocking links from my server? What's up with this? Any ideas, suggestions or comments?
    SEMrush
    If you want to try it, the links are on any of my pages about 1/3 of the way down on the left side in the "TSP Links" menu.

    Thanks!
     
    tsptom, Jun 12, 2004 IP
    SEMrush
  2. digitalpoint

    digitalpoint Overlord of no one Staff

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    #2
    Look like it (they are blocking based on referrer).
     
    digitalpoint, Jun 12, 2004 IP
  3. Owlcroft

    Owlcroft Peon

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    #3
    As of about 8:40 p.m. Pacific Time, I was able to satisfactorily load pages from the links on your page. The condition may have been transitory, or they may have woken up.

    I suspect that they have no right to block you if you are not grossly abusing their service, and I don't think an unusually heavy load is abuse. If this recurs, consult a lawyer expert in governmental matters: they may have made your fortune for you.
     
    Owlcroft, Jun 12, 2004 IP
  4. tsptom

    tsptom Well-Known Member

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    #4
    Interesting, because I still get the error page. Did you use the links under "TSP Links?"

    Thanks for your help!
     
    tsptom, Jun 12, 2004 IP
  5. Owlcroft

    Owlcroft Peon

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    #5
    I go to your site, click on the links in the column in the left, under "TSP Links", and they all work fine.

    That's all I can say.
     
    Owlcroft, Jun 12, 2004 IP
  6. ViciousSummer

    ViciousSummer Ayn Rand for President! Staff

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    #6
    I get the "forbidden" notice when clicking on your links...
     
    ViciousSummer, Jun 13, 2004 IP
  7. Owlcroft

    Owlcroft Peon

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    #7
    Here are the IPTRACE records:

    GET http://www.tsp.gov/rates/share-prices.html HTTP/1.1
    Host: www.tsp.gov
    User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (OS/2; U; Warp 4.5; en-US; rv:1.6) Gecko/20040212 Firefox/0.8
    Accept: text/xml,application/xml,application/xhtml+xml,text/html;q=0.9,text/plain;q=0.8,video/x-mng,image/png,image/jpeg,image/gif;q=0.2,*/*;q=0.1
    Accept-Language: en-us,en;q=0.5
    Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate
    Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7
    Keep-Alive: 300
    Proxy-Connection: keep-alive
    Referer: http://www.tsptalk.com/

    HTTP/1.1 200 OK
    Date: Sun, 13 Jun 2004 08:23:31 GMT
    Server: Apache/2.0.49 (Unix) mod_perl/1.99_14 Perl/v5.8.4 DAV/2
    Accept-Ranges: bytes
    Content-Length: 95061
    Connection: close
    Content-Type: text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1

    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
    <!-- saved from url=(0037)http://www.tsp.gov/rates/summary.html -->
    <HTML><HEAD>
    <TITLE>TSP Rates, Share Price History, 2004-02-12</TITLE>
    [etc. etc.]
     
    Owlcroft, Jun 13, 2004 IP
  8. Cricket

    Cricket Well-Known Member

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    #8
    I truly doubt your site is being blocked.

    They have the following notices posted on their site. I would guess it is related:

    Special Notice: Because the financial markets will be closed Friday, June 11, 2004, for the National Day of Mourning for President Reagan, TSP share prices will not be updated and transactions will not be processed until the following business day (June 14).

    Special Notice for June 11, 2004: Due to hardware maintenance, Account Access will be unavailable between 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., eastern time on Friday, June 11th. Due to system maintenance updates, some of the transactions in Account Access may not be available from 5:00 p.m., eastern time on Friday, June 11th, to 1:00 a.m., eastern time on Sunday, June 13th.
     
    Cricket, Jun 13, 2004 IP
    ViciousSummer likes this.
  9. expat

    expat Stranger from a far land

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    #9
    It looks like you are being blocked either based on referrer or maybe on IP.

    This may well be the intrusion detection software as your site would show significantly more than average referrals. It might be best to contact them and explain what you are about. You may be given a "key", be loaded to a special table or be given an alternative entry point - at least that is what I've done in the past when agressive IDS looked out genuine referrers.

    I assume you have not contacted them before to smoothe the way?

    I run IDS on some sites and this automatically bans heavy referrers as suspected intrusions. I do get a list but quite frankly if it's not a genuine public proxy or I do not get contacted I leave these in.
    It also sometimes happens that shared IP's get blocked and this does often happen where a new site is released under shared IP's that may misbehave having nothing to do with the other websites.
    M
     
    expat, Jun 13, 2004 IP
  10. tsptom

    tsptom Well-Known Member

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    #10
    Thanks. I wonder if there is a way to cloak that "Referer:"

    It's been going on for about a week now and that message came out Thursday and is a normal message given during holidays.

    Not so coincidentally, someone under the email address ...@tsp.gov, obviously an employee, joined my email alert service about the same time this strated happening. This is intentional.

    That is odd, but good to know.

    Thanks expat! I quess I'll have to try to contact them. They are not always eager to help. I emailed them twice when I started the site to see if it was OK and they never replied. I did send an email the other day, so far without response, but I may have to wait for Monday to hear back.

    Thanks again for all your help.
     
    tsptom, Jun 13, 2004 IP
  11. Geir

    Geir Berserker

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    #11
    I get the forbidden message as well, but the links work fine when typing them directly.

    Certainly seems like there is some kind of block in effect...

    :) Geir
     
    Geir, Jun 13, 2004 IP
  12. Cricket

    Cricket Well-Known Member

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    #12
    I am curious. Was this situation was ever resolved?
     
    Cricket, Jun 19, 2004 IP
  13. tsptom

    tsptom Well-Known Member

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    #13
    Kind of. I ended up using java scripts (href="JavaScript:window.location='http://www.tsp.gov';") and it got by the problem, but a couple of days later I received a FedEx letter from tsp.gov telling me the links "must be discontinued as of the close of business on...".

    Their problem was that the links went to pages within their site and people could be confused thinking it was a tsptalk.com page and not tsp.gov. Pretty dumb but I complied. They said I could link only to their home page with written permission after I made their requested changes.

    Thanks for asking.
     
    tsptom, Jun 19, 2004 IP