5
Vote

improving the accuracy of the forums' download statistics by identifying unique downloads

description

I think download statistics are very, very important and therefore that they be as accurate as possible.

I would like to see added a download gateway where the end user is prompted to state,
perhaps by a check box, perhaps by a yes/no, whether she/he has downloaded the file before.

The reason that I think this request to be important is because accurate, unique download counts
indicate to the next downloader how many individuals may be involved.

I know that this indication is less than perfect. For example, one may download a file and decide
that she/he has no further interest in a given project. In other cases, a team may download a file
that gets further internally distributed to many individuals.

Another reason that this indication is less than perfect is because although only a few
persons have downloaded the just released version, thousands or more may have
downloaded previous versions. Hence, historical statistics would be useful imo.

Blended numbers are also unintentially misleading.
Example: http://www.codeplex.com/xunit/Release/ProjectReleases.aspx?ReleaseId=16811
5305 downloads are claimed but many of the 5305 files are part of the same "set" of files.
2198 =. xunit-1.1.zip
457 =. xunit-1.1-symbols.zip
480 =. xunit-1.1-src.zip
946 =. xunit-1.1-samples.zip
1224 =. xunit-1.1.chm
As can be seen from above, only about 3000 downloads of "xUnit" have happened
because not everyone downloads the full "set". In some cases, there are duplicates.
For example, I've personally downloaded these files more than once because
I use multiple computers.

Thank you.

Regards,
Gerry (Lowry)

comments

koyama wrote Feb 12, 2009 at 5:48 PM

Hmm... I think it may be too much to ask users to check an additional check box. One already has to go through the license agreement step.
If you want to track number of unique downloads, it should be possible for CodePlex to use cookie information. That may be an idea.