One Plugin Gained, One Lost

I’ve been having a little bit of fun with the “Counterize II”: plugin. I’ve suspected for a while that the “WP-Shortstat”: plugin may not be entirely reliable – I’ve run concurrently with a couple of other stats plugins and Shortstat has consistently short more hits than any of the others. Now I’m running Shortstat and Counterize concurrently and deciding that Counterize is probably far more accurate. For one thing it actually shows me the IP addresses of folks who surf through here, and I have all these pretty little charts tracking traffic. For a stats geek like me, that’s pretty darn nifty. Counterize also has this nice little option to click for a geographic location by IP, though as I discovered last night, it’s not wholly accurate – my home IP showed up as being several states away, which is actually pretty ok by me. But I do get a general idea of what countries people who see my site are in. So far, I’ve seen IPs from all around the world – Singapore, Sweden, Denmark, Thailand, Korea, and the USA, just to name a few. It’s truly fascinating.

Unfortunately, I’ve also had to disable a different plugin. I like trackbacks. I don’t get a lot of them on my site – I apparently don’t inspire much in the way of follow-up discussion. But I have noticed that what trackbacks I _should_ be getting (“Technorati”: is actually pretty good about showing me folks who link back to me) haven’t been making it through, even into my spam folder. Turns out, the trouble is with the “Trackback Validator plugin”: I was running. It’s supposed to sort out just the spam trackbacks, but instead it seems to have been catching _all_ trackbacks and blocking them, which is just completely unacceptable. So, I’ve turned that one off. “Akismet”: has always provided a very adequate level of spam protection, so I’m willing to let that plugin go it alone. Why ‘fix’ it if it ain’t broke?

10 thoughts on “One Plugin Gained, One Lost”

  1. Yeah, takes a little bit for the numbers to start rolling in, but I’m definitely enjoying looking at them and seeing the trends. Hope you find it useful and fun, as well.

  2. Thanks for posting this (and sending pinging ShortStat’s page) – I too have decided to give Counterize a look. I’m pretty happy with ShortStat grabbing the correct information, but I’d like to see IPs, and with the new version, I’ve lost some functionality.

    Did you experience a performance hit with Counterize and ShortStat running at the same time?

  3. You’ll notice a significant difference in the number of unique hits on your blog between the two plugins. Honestly, I tend to trust Counterize’s count over ShortStat because I think ShortStat logged everything – bots, spammers, etc. Counterize is a bit more discriminating, I think, and the only real hits I care about are legitimate users.

    And no, there’s been no hit to performance or page loads times or anything with the two running side-by-side. I’ve been very pleased with their functionality.

  4. Yet, it’s still possible to turn bot logging on through the options … as well as change the amount of data you see in the graphs … and limit what logged in users are tracked …

    Very cool :D Thanks again for writing about this about plugin! 6 hours of data and I’m ready to switch :)

  5. Yeah, I dunno. I just know that the two plugins obviously track stats different, with ShortStat being the much more generous of the two (which makes me think ‘bots’). Not really sure what the difference is.

    Yeah, Counterize is pretty slick. I still run the two side-by-side, but ShortStat may end up getting retired at some point.

  6. No, you’re absolutely correct. Bots are captured (and I in fact helped add some to the official code).

    You’re also right about the spam – the particular file used for posting of comments shows up quite a bit in my data, and looking at the data in the db, it points to spam.

  7. I think if Counterize logged referrers as reliably as ShortStat does, I’d simply disable the latter, since I like the stats that the former gives me better. Most of the referrers I see logged in Counterize, though, show as ‘unknown’, where SS actually gives me specific websites.

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