By Jim Rapoza  |  Posted 2004-08-16 Print this article Print

Keynote Systems Inc.s WebIntegrity 3.0 suite can scan even the largest Web sites and provide reports that help administrators find the root causes of poor performance or limited accessibility for site visitors, determine why pages fail to follow proper security or privacy guidelines, and even check for improper use of words or terminology in Web site content.

WebIntegrity 3.0, which was announced in June, might be overkill for small or simple Web sites, but it can be a valuable tool for large, complex ones. In eWEEK Labs tests using a large Web site, WebIntegrity found serious problems that would have been difficult to detect otherwise.

Available as a service or as an appliance, WebIntegrity starts at $650 per month for scanning as many as 10,000 pages and rises incrementally, up to $3,200 per month for scanning an unlimited number of Web pages. The WebIntegrity appliance costs $3,200 per month for unlimited page scans.

We tested the WebIntegrity service on a small, relatively simple Web site and on a large, complex site. We accessed the service exclusively through a Web browser.

Starting a site test is simply a matter of entering the URL of the site to be tested and defining a few simple options, such as whether to test for privacy or accessibility. Most of the defaults will work well for simpler sites, but larger, more complex sites will want to use the advanced options to focus the tests and decrease false-positive results.

A test of a small site can take minutes, but large-site tests will take several hours. For example, it took us 9.5 hours to scan a 2,000-page site.

Click here to read eWEEK Labs review of three Web site analysis tools. When the test completed, WebIntegrity sent an e-mail message that contained a direct link to the finished site report. When we clicked on the link, we could access the report without logging in—this is unacceptable for sensitive site information, given the lack of security in e-mail.

WebIntegrity reports are informative and detailed but easy to read. In general, reports are divided into several sections, including privacy and security, content review, site health, accessibility, and page and image catalogs.

In privacy tests, WebIntegrity can check for use of the P3P standard and for consistent links to privacy information. In our test of the large site, WebIntegrity found one page that didnt link to the sites privacy policy—a potentially serious problem that would probably have gone unnoticed.

The reports site health section offers broken-link information and page-load-time tests but goes into much greater detail than do link-checker tools. The HTML check provided detailed information on potential coding problems, and a handy feature attempted to create a fixed version of the page that could be uploaded to the site.

The report also provided a browser compatibility matrix that let us quickly see which browsers would have difficulty viewing a site.

The accessibility report, although useful, was probably the least capable feature in WebIntegrity. Rather than generating a detailed report, we had to go through a step-by-step wizard on each page that had potential accessibility problems. This proved time-consuming even on the small test site.

A helpful feature in WebIntegrity let us view a trending report to see if the site was actually improving over time. It was also possible to export the reports into Microsoft Corp.s Excel.

Labs Director Jim Rapoza can be reached at jim_rapoza@ziffdavis.com.

Check out eWEEK.coms Developer & Web Services Center at http://developer.eweek.com for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools.

Be sure to add our eWEEK.com developer and Web services news feed to your RSS newsreader or My Yahoo page

Jim Rapoza, Chief Technology Analyst, eWEEK.For nearly fifteen years, Jim Rapoza has evaluated products and technologies in almost every technology category for eWEEK. Mr RapozaÔÇÖs current technology focus is on all categories of emerging information technology though he continues to focus on core technology areas that include: content management systems, portal applications, Web publishing tools and security. Mr. Rapoza has coordinated several evaluations at enterprise organizations, including USA Today and The Prudential, to measure the capability of products and services under real-world conditions and against real-world criteria. Jim Rapoza's award-winning weekly column, Tech Directions, delves into all areas of technologies and the challenges of managing and deploying technology today.

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel