Webs

From Archiveteam
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Webs
Webs logo
Webs - 1-4-21.png
URL https://www.webs.com/
Status Closing
Archiving status In progress...
Archiving type Unknown
Project source webs-grab
Project tracker webs
IRC channel #webbed (on hackint)
Data? archiveteam_webs

Webs (formerly Freewebs) is a web host founded in 2001 offering free and paid website hosting. It is shutting down on 2021-06-30 with paid sites being partially migrated to the parent company Vistaprint.[1] As of 2014, at least 55 million sites have been created with Webs, according to the site's 404 page.[2]

Shutdown date

The shutdown was initially planned for 2021-03-31 (announced on or before 2020-11-19). In late March, the date was moved to 2021-06-30.[1] However, as of 2021-10-17 it seems that no shutdown has taken place.

Site Structure

Sites hosted on Webs are accessible from sitename.webs.com, freewebs.com/sitename, and the site's custom domain, if configured. The site owner can choose the primary URL that can be used to access the site, as well as change the site name from an older user settings page.

Most sites contain a robots.txt file at /robots.txt and a sitemap at /sitemap.xml, though some older sites appear to lack a sitemap. Sitemaps also contain a last modified date which appears to always be the same for all pages in the sitemap. The /sitemap.xml file does not seem to be accessible under the freewebs.com URL for a website.

Site Builders

Analytics code in the source code of all pages hosted by Webs (search for "webs.stats") indicates the site builder used to create the website. Possible values for "builderType" include "SB_1_OR_2" for sites created by the first two generations of site builders and "SB_3" for the third generation site builder.

"SB_3" was also used by Vistaprint for their previous site builder (known as Websites (V3)), though Vistaprint now uses a new site builder known as Websites (V4), which is referred to in "builderType" as "tower". The infrastructure for "SB_3" is shared between Webs and Vistaprint; features between the products are nearly identical and the website/user ID counter is shared between the two companies. Vistaprint Websites (V4) now uses an infrastructure that is mostly separate from Webs (it seems statistics collection may still be shared).

Sites and User IDs

It appears that Webs initially used a system where each user directly logged into a website; websites were user accounts. Around 2009, they introduced a system where each site would be linked to a container account known as a "Webs ID". Webs IDs can have multiple websites associated with them. Internally, websites are still considered user accounts and are still given user IDs. It appears most website accounts are associated with a Webs ID or Vistaprint account. Website accounts may not be associated with a Webs ID or Vistaprint account if they predated the Webs ID system (though the migration to Webs ID may have been made mandatory at some point) or if they are sandbox websites. Sandbox websites are temporary websites that can be used to try the Webs editor before creating an account. You can create a sandbox website (and later optionally associate it with a Webs ID) by visiting https://members.webs.com/s/signup/sandbox (link found in Webs' robots.txt). Internally, it appears that websites and Webs IDs are differentiated by the same ID field, meaning that the highest user ID number appears to increase for each Webs ID and for each website created separately. This means that each Webs user may have multiple ID numbers associated with their account, including their website ID(s) and their account ID. As of February 2021, this number ranges from 1 to well under 143 million, and increases by several hundred each day.

While on a Webs or Vistaprint V3 website, you can find the site ID in the source code of any page. While viewing the source code, search for "siteId", "webs.site" or "webs.stats".

Endpoints of Interest

You can convert a site/user ID into a URL by using the following endpoint: http://profiles.members.webs.com/Profile/index.jsp?userID={userid}. An example ID is 20257. The response content will contain HTML code containing Javascript code which redirects to the primary URL for the given site ID. The response content will resemble <script>document.location='https://haroon.webs.com/';</script>\n. This endpoint is available on at least 52 domains or subdomains (more may exist), though some domains add an additional script tag below the one containing the converted URL. Unless otherwise noted, the domains redirect HTTP to HTTPS, use CloudFlare, have a valid HTTPS certificate configuration, and do not append an extra script tag to the redirect response. A test script is available. The 52 domains are as follows:

  • link.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • toolbar.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • blogs.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • counters.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • polls.freewebs.com (does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • memberfiles.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • dynamic.websimages.com
  • thumbs.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • thumbs.freewebs.com (extra script tag)
  • fwapps.freewebs.com (does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • fwapps-yyz.freewebs.com (does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • fr.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • de.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • uk.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • au.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • dk.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • nl.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • it.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • sv.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • ca.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • no.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • es.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • auth.members.webs.com (invalid HTTPS certificate, does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • secure.members.webs.com (HTTPS ONLY, false negative given over HTTP, does not use CloudFlare, inaccurately redirects HTTP to HTTPS)
  • zumba.members.webs.com (invalid HTTPS certificate, does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • members.freewebs.com (invalid HTTPS certificate, does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • www.members.freewebs.com (invalid HTTPS certificate, does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • webs.com (extra script tag)
  • profiles.members.webs.com (invalid HTTPS certificate, does not use CloudFlare, does not redirect HTTP to HTTPS)
  • www.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • members.webs.com (extra script tag)
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.de
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.fr
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.es
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.com
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.nl
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.jp
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.in
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.no
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.sg
  • websitebuilder.vpsite.it
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.co.uk
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.co.nz
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.ie
  • websitebuilder.vpsite.se
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.ca
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.at
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.dk
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.eu
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.be
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.ch
  • websitebuilder.vpweb.com.au

It appears that the domain webs.soy was also valid at one point but the domain has since expired.

You can retrieve the profile image for a user/site using http://profiles.members.webs.com/Members/viewProfileImage.jsp?userID={userID} or https://thumbs.webs.com/s/viewProfilePic/?siteId={siteId}&memberId={userId}&size=normal&{some number} (size and some number are optional).

You can check to see if a site name exists using https://members.webs.com/s/signup/checkUsername?username={sitename}. The endpoint will return 1 if the sitename exists or 0 if it doesn't.

You can retrieve a thumbnail of an image file given a fileID using https://profiles.members.webs.com/Members/viewThumb.jsp?fileID=67510503.

All of these endpoints should be available on the 52 domains listed above.

You can search their stock image library using https://stock-image.herokuapp.com/images/search/{search_term}, which will return a JSON-formatted list of image metadata including URLs to the images.

Some files seem to be hosted on other domains, such as https://memberfiles.freewebs.com/72/18/57241872/documents/TAX%20CLIENT%20INFORMATION%20SHEET_01_12_2012.pdf and https://webzoom.freewebs.com/g8jnj/FatMax%20Antenna.pdf (thanks Flashfire42).

Additionally, images and other media seem to be processed (resized, etc.) on the mediaprocessor.websimages.com domain. Example: https://mediaprocessor.websimages.com/width/471/crop/15,16,440x545/www.waterprooffloors4u.com/Tsunami%20Rigid%20King%20Jr.%20Cottonwood.JPG (thanks Flashfire42).

Web Rings

Webs has a feature known as "web rings" or "Freewebs Groups". Joining a ring places a badge on the homepage of the site, allowing people to navigate through the sites in a ring. On the rings homepage (accessible to logged-in users), Webs describes the feature as the following:

Rings are communities of sites where site owners connect to share ideas and site traffic. Members of a ring have a ring page where only they can post comments and share news items. Each member site displays the Ring Badge on their site which links the sites together into a webring. The ring creator and owner manages ring membership by sending out invitations and responding to requests to join, posts news items, and manages comments.

Everyone can belong to 10 rings but only own and manage five of the ten.

Why rings? Interesting sites connected together experience higher traffic than a single site alone!

Rings are organized by category. Rings are accessible from the following URLs for logged in users:

Rings are accessible from the following URLs for unauthenticated users (note that the CSS styles appear to be missing on these pages, and that, for large rings, some sites may be missing on the public version of the page compared to the authenticated version because the non-authenticated version of the page does not display websites which have the badge disabled):

Ring IDs are believed to go from 0 to 137423. Authenticated users can use a partially-broken user profile search feature (normally displayed embedded) to invite users to their web ring. It seems that recent accounts aren't listed here, and the only search result that is ever returned is a user with a username exactly matching the search query. Additionally, enabling the ring badge on websites seems to currently be broken (except for listing or delisting a site from the public ring page), and most rings were created on or before February 12, 2012.

REST API

Webs has a REST API at https://api.webs.com/ that can be used to access some data from the service. Archived documentation is available. Most endpoints require registration, which is no longer possible. In particular, having access to the /sites/{siteid}/ would be helpful for archiving purposes because it would allow converting between site names, site IDs, and domain names, as all three identifiers are acceptable values for {siteid}.

The only endpoints that appear to currently be accessible to the public without registration appear to be /apps/, which lists the apps which are currently featured in the Webs App Store, /apps/{appid}/, which gets metadata for an app given an app ID number or handle, and /templates/, which lists some basic information about some templates. The /apps/ endpoint currently only lists 9 apps, all published by Webs, but a scan of the app metadata endpoint for IDs 0 through 2499 revealed the existence of at least 196 apps, though some appear to be for testing or internal use. App IDs seem to skip around, but the highest known app ID in this range is 1764, and the largest gap between app IDs appears to be 91. The metadata is available as a combined JSON file. The app metadata API doesn't seem to include URLs for app icons, but for most apps icons appear to be available at https://staticthumbs.freewebs.com/Apps/{appid}/icon.png, https://staticthumbs.freewebs.com/Apps/{appid}/icon-medium.png and https://staticthumbs.freewebs.com/Apps/{appid}/icon-large.png

Official API client libraries are available for Java and Ruby.

Site Directory

Freewebs/Webs used to offer a site directory which allowed browsing through sites by category. Websites default to having no category set. While the directory itself does not seem to be currently accessible by the public, users can still choose the category of their website in their site settings. Some current metadata, including the list of categories and the number of sites in each category, is still included in the response to an XHR request made while loading the Webs control panel.

Gallery

References


v · t · e         Archive Team
Current events

Alive... OR ARE THEY · Deathwatch · Projects

Archiveteam.jpg
Archiving projects

APKMirror · Archive.is · BetaArchive · Government Backup (#datarefuge · ftp-gov· Gmane · Internet Archive · It Died · Megalodon.jp · OldApps.com · OldVersion.com · OSBetaArchive · TEXTFILES.COM · The Dead, the Dying & The Damned · The Mail Archive · UK Web Archive · WebCite · Vaporwave.me

Blogging

Blog.pl · Blogger · Blogster · Blogter.hu · Freeblog.hu · Fuelmyblog · Jux · LiveJournal · My Opera · Nolblog.hu · Open Diary · ownlog.com · Posterous · Powerblogs · Proust · Roon · Splinder · Tumblr · Vox · Weblog.nl · Windows Live Spaces · Wordpress.com · Xanga · Yahoo! Blog · Zapd

Cloud hosting/file sharing

aDrive · AnyHub · Box · Dropbox · Docstoc · Fast.io · Google Drive · Google Groups Files · iCloud · Fileplanet · LayerVault · MediaCrush · MediaFire · Mega · MegaUpload · MobileMe · OneDrive · Pomf.se · RapidShare · Ubuntu One · Yahoo! Briefcase

Corporations

Apple · IBM · Google · Loblaw · Lycos Europe · Microsoft · Yahoo!

Events

Arab Spring · Great Ape-Snake War · Spanish Revolution

Font Repos

DaFont · Google Web Fonts · GNU FreeFont · Fontspace

Forums/Message boards

4chan · Captain Luffy Forums · College Confidential · DSLReports · ESPN Forums · Facepunch Forums · forums.starwars.com · HeavenGames · JamiiForums · Invisionfree · NeoGAF · Textream · The Classic Horror Film Board · Yahoo! Messages · Yahoo! Neighbors · Yuku.com · Zetaboards

Gaming

Atomicgamer · Bazaar.tf · City of Heroes · Club Nintendo · Clutch · Counter-Strike: Global Offensive · CS:GO Lounge · Desura · Dota 2 · Dota 2 Lounge · Emulation Zone · ESEA · GameBanana · GameMaker Sandbox · GameTrailers · Halo · HLTV.org · HQ Trivia · Infinite Crisis · joinDOTA · League of Legends · Liquipedia · Minecraft.net · Player.me · Playfire · Raptr · SingStar · Steam · SteamDB · SteamGridDB · Team Fortress 2 · TF2 Outpost · Warhammer · Xfire

Image hosting

500px · AOL Pictures · Blipfoto · Blingee · Canv.as · Camera+ · Cameroid · DailyBooth · Degree Confluence Project · DeviantART · Demotivalo.net · Flickr · Fotoalbum.hu · Fotolog.com · Fotopedia · Frontback · Geograph Britain and Ireland · Giphy · GTF Képhost · ImageShack · Imgh.us · Imgur · Inkblazers · Instagram · Kepfeltoltes.hu · Kephost.com · Kephost.hu · Kepkezelo.com · Keptarad.hu · Madden GIFERATOR · MLKSHK · Microsoft Clip Art · Microsoft Photosynth · Nokia Memories · noob.hu · Odysee · Panoramio · Photobucket · Picasa · Picplz · Pixiv · Portalgraphics.net · PSharing · Ptch · puu.sh · Rawporter · Relay.im · ScreenshotsDatabase.com · Sketch · Smack Jeeves · Snapjoy · Streetfiles · Tabblo · Tinypic · Trovebox · TwitPic · Wallbase · Wallhaven · Webshots · Wikimedia Commons

Knowledge/Wikis

arXiv · Citizendium · Clipboard.com · Deletionpedia · EditThis · Encyclopedia Dramatica · Etherpad · Everything2 · infoAnarchy · GeoNames · GNUPedia · Google Books (Google Books Ngram· Horror Movie Database · Insurgency Wiki · Knol · Lost Media Wiki · Neoseeker.com · Notepad.cc · Nupedia · OpenCourseWare · OpenStreetMap · Orain · Pastebin · Patch.com · Project Gutenberg · Puella Magi · Referata · Resedagboken · SongMeanings · ShoutWiki · The Internet Movie Database · TropicalWikis · Uncyclopedia · Urban Dictionary · Urban Exploration Resource · Webmonkey · Wikia · Wikidot · WikiHow · Wikkii · WikiLeaks · Wikipedia (Simple English Wikipedia· Wikispaces · Wikispot · Wik.is · Wiki-Site · WikiTravel · Word Count Journal

Magazines/Blogs/News

Cyberpunkreview.com · Game Developer Magazine · Gigaom · Hardware Canucks · Helium · JPG Magazine · Make Magazine · The Escapist · Polygamia.pl · San Fransisco Bay Guardian · Scoop · Regretsy · Yahoo! Voices

Microblogging

Heello · Identi.ca · Jaiku · Mommo.hu · Plurk · Sina Weibo · Tencent Weibo · Twitter · TwitLonger

Music/Audio

8tracks · AOL Music · Audimated.com · Cinch · digCCmixter · Dogmazic.net · Earbits · exfm · Free Music Archive · Gogoyoko · Indaba Music · Instacast · Instaudio · Jamendo · Last.fm · Music Unlimited · MOG · PureVolume · Reverbnation · ShareTheMusic · SoundCloud · Soundpedia · Spotify · This Is My Jam · TuneWiki · Twaud.io · WinAmp

People

Aaron Swartz · Michael S. Hart · Steve Jobs · Mark Pilgrim · Dennis Ritchie · Len Sassaman Project

Protocols/Infrastructure

FTP · Gopher · IRC · Usenet · World Wide Web
BitTorrent DHT

Q&A

Askville · Answerbag · Answers.com · Ask.com · Askalo · Baidu Knows · Blurtit · ChaCha · Experts Exchange · Formspring · GirlsAskGuys · Google Answers · Google Baraza · JustAnswer · MetaFilter · Quora · Retrospring · StackExchange · The AnswerBank · The Internet Oracle · Uclue · WikiAnswers · Yahoo! Answers

Recipes/Food

Allrecipes · Epicurious · Food.com · Foodily · Food Network · Punchfork · ZipList

Social bookmarking

Addinto · Backflip · Balatarin · BibSonomy · Bkmrx · Blinklist · BlogMarks · BookmarkSync · CiteULike · Connotea · Delicious · Designer News · Digg · Diigo · Dir.eccion.es · Evernote · Excite Bookmark · Faves · Favilous · folkd · Freelish · Getboo · GiveALink.org · Gnolia · Google Bookmarks · Hacker News · HeyStaks · IndianPad · Kippt · Knowledge Plaza · Licorize · Linkwad · Menéame · Microsoft Developer Network · myVIP · Mister Wong · My Web · Mylink Vault · Newsvine · Oneview · Pearltrees · Pinboard · Pocket · Propeller.com · Reddit · sabros.us · Scloog · Scuttle · Simpy · SiteBar · Slashdot · Squidoo · StumbleUpon · Twine · Voat · Vizited · Yummymarks · Xmarks · Yahoo! Buzz · Zootool · Zotero

Social networks

Bebo · BlackPlanet · Classmates.com · Cyworld · Dogster · Dopplr · douban · Ello · Facebook · Flixster · FriendFeed · Friendster · Friends Reunited · Gaia Online · Google+ · Habbo · hi5 · Hyves · iWiW · LinkedIn · Miiverse · mixi · MyHeritage · MyLife · Myspace · myVIP · Netlog · Odnoklassniki · Orkut · Plaxo · Qzone · Renren · Skyrock · Sonico.com · Storylane · Tagged · tvtag · Upcoming · Viadeo · Vine · Vkontakte · WeeWorld · Weibo · Wretch · Yahoo! Groups · Yahoo! Stars India · Yahoo! Upcoming · more sites...

Shopping/Retail

Alibaba · AliExpress · Amazon · Apple Store · Barnes & Noble · DirectCanada · eBay · Kmart · NCIX · Printfection · RadioShack · Sears · Sears Canada · Target · The Book Depository · ThinkGeek · Toys "R" Us · Walmart

Software/code hosting

Android Development · Alioth · Assembla · BerliOS · Betavine · Bitbucket · BountySource · Codecademy · CodePlex · Freepository · Free Software Foundation · GNU Savannah · GitHost  · GitHub · GitHub Downloads · Gitorious · Gna! · Google Code · ibiblio · java.net · JavaForge · KnowledgeForge · Launchpad · LuaForge · Maemo · mozdev · OSOR.eu · OW2 Consortium · Openmoko · OpenSolaris · Ourproject.org · Ovi Store · Project Kenai · RubyForge · SEUL.org · SourceForge · Stypi · TestFlight · tigris.org · Transifex · TuxFamily · Yahoo! Downloads

Television/Radio

ABC · Austin City Limits · BBC · CBC · CBS · Computer Chronicles · CTV · Fox · G4 · Global TV · Jeopardy! · NBC · NHK · PBS · Penn & Teller: Bullshit! · The Howard Stern Show · TV News Archive (Understanding 9/11)

Torrenting/Piracy

ExtraTorrent · EZTV · isoHunt · KickassTorrents · The Pirate Bay · Torrentz · Library Genesis

Video hosting

Academic Earth · Bambuser · Blip.tv · Epic · Freshlive · Google Video · Justin.tv · Mixer · Niconico · Nokia Trailers · Oddshot.tv · Periscope · Plays.tv · Qwiki · Skillfeed · Stickam · TED Talks · Ticker.tv · Twitch.tv · Ustream · Videoplayer.hu · Viddler · Viddy · Vidme · Vimeo · Vine · Vstreamers · Yahoo! Video · YouTube · Famous Internet videos (Me at the zoo)

Web hosting

Angelfire · Brace.io · BT Internet · CableAmerica Personal Web Space · Claranet Netherlands Personal Web Pages · Comcast Personal Web Pages · Extra.hu · FortuneCity · Free ProHosting · GeoCities (patch· Google Business Sitebuilder · Google Sites · Internet Centrum · MBinternet · MSN TV · Nifty · Nwnyet · Parodius Networking · Prodigy.net · Saunalahti Iso G · Swipnet · Telenor · Tripod · University of Michigan personal webpages · Verizon Mysite · Verizon Personal Web Space · Webs · Webzdarma · Virgin Media

Web applications

Mailman · MediaWiki · phpBB · Simple Machines Forum · vBulletin

Information

A Million Ways to Die on the Web · Backup Tips · Cheap storage · Collecting items randomly · Data compression algorithms and tools · Dev · Discovery Data · DOS Floppies · Fortress of Solitude · Keywords · Naughty List · Nightmare Projects · Rescuing floppy disks · Rescuing optical media · Site exploration · The WARC Ecosystem · Working with ARCHIVE.ORG

Projects

ArchiveCorps · Audit2014 · Emularity · Faceoff · FlickrFckr · Froogle · INTERNETARCHIVE.BAK (Internet Archive Census· IRC Quotes · JSMESS · JSVLC · Just Solve the Problem · NewsGrabber · Project Newsletter · Valhalla · Web Roasting (ISP Hosting · University Web Hosting· Woohoo

Tools

ArchiveBot · ArchiveTeam Warrior (Tracker· Google Takeout · HTTrack · Video downloaders · Wget (Lua · WARC)

Teams

Bibliotheca Anonoma · LibreTeam · URLTeam · Yahoo Video Warroom · WikiTeam

Other

800notes · AOL · Akoha · Ancestry.com · April Fools' Day · Amplicate · AutoAdmit · Bre.ad · Circavie · Cobook · Co.mments · Countdown · Discourse · Distill · Dmoz · Easel · Eircode · Electronic Frontier Foundation · FanFiction.Net · Feedly · Ficlets · Forrst · FunnyExam.com · FurAffinity · Google Helpouts · Google Moderator · Google Poly · Google Reader · ICQmail · IFTTT · Jajah · JuniorNet · Lulu Poetry · Mobile Phone Applications · Mochi Media · Mozilla Firefox · MyBlogLog · NBII · Newgrounds · Neopets · Quantcast · Quizilla · Salon Table Talk · Shutdownify · Slidecast · Stack Overflow · SOPA blackout pages · starwars.yahoo.com · TechNet · Toshiba Support · USA-Gov · Volán · Widgetbox · Windows Technical Preview · Wunderlist · YTMND · Zoocasa

About Archive Team

Introduction · Philosophy · Who We Are · Our stance on robots.txt · Why Back Up? · Software · Formats · Storage Media · Recommended Reading · Films and documentaries about archiving · Talks · In The Media · FAQ