Browsers: IE6 and Meta Refresh

started by Scott Mccabe on Sep 15, 2004 — RSS Feed

Scott Mccabe Scott Mccabe
Posts: 2


I'm having a problem with my work-in-progress website that I hope someone out there can help me resolve.

First, how I designed things to work:

The URL (fake for the sake of this post, because not-yet-released site resides in password protected directory) "" is entered.

The page loads saying, "You should be automatically prompted to download the file.  If the download doesn't automatically begin, select here" ('here' being a link to 'download2.php').

A meta refresh kicks in after a second, using the following URL:

The file 'download2.php' sends out headers that prompt the visitor to save a Zip file.

Note that key/value pairs after the '?' in the URLs are simply variables to be forwarded to 'download2.php' to determine which Zip file to download.

What's now happening:

In the Firefox browser, everything works fine.

In IE6, 'download.php' loads, the meta refresh kicks in, but then I get a "File Download" dialog box that says:

-- Dialog Box --

Getting file information:

...=00000000000000000&s=000&q=hi from

Estimated time left

Download to:

Transfer rate:

-- End Dialog Box --

After a minute, an error message appears:

-- Error Message --

Internet Explorer cannot download ...=00000000000000000&s=000&q=hi from

Internet Explorer was not able to open this Internet site...

-- End Error Message --

What's strange is if I select the "here" link on 'download.php' (which uses the exact same URL as the meta refresh -- verified in 'view source'), IE6 works great and simply prompts the visitor to save the Zip file.

In other words, the meta refresh causes a problem, but manually selecting the "here" link works perfectly.  Why is this?

I tried various Google searches and no one seems to have ever experienced this problem.

I'm dying to get my new website up and running, but this issue needs to be resolved first.

Any help is most appreciated!

Sincere thanks in advance,

- ph0ed1n

Baxter Baxter
Posts: 157

OK, perhaps I'm dim, but why not just link to the file to be downloaded and instruct users to right click on it?

Scott Mccabe Scott Mccabe
Posts: 2

Because this is an ecommerce operation.

If people know the URL to the file, they can bypass paying for it by simply entering that URL.

'download2.php' prompts the user with suggested filename, but provides no convenient clue as to the real filename and directory.

It also uses input parameters to match up to a database to determine if song was purchased and whether or not the user already downloaded the file.

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