NIST Web Metrics FAQ

  1. How much do the NIST Web Metrics tools cost? Are there any restrictions on their use?

    The NIST Web Metrics tools are in the public domain. We give them away free and do not restrict their use in any way. However, we request that you let us know if you find these tools useful, to help us justify continued development.

  2. How do I install Perl?

    The Active Perl "Install Notes" at provide detailed instructions for installing ActivePerl on Windows, Linux, and Solaris. We have had good results with ActivePerl on Windows. ActivePerl and other Perl distributions can be found through the CPAN Perl Ports web page Find your platform in the list of links at the top of the page, e.g., "Windows 95/98/Me/MT/2000/XP." Follow that link to jump down the page to a list of links to distributions available for your platform. Perl 5 comes with IRIX since version 6.4, but you can get a newer distribution from the SGI Freeware web site

    You also might need to install some Perl packages. See the requirements section of the documentation for the individual Web Metrics tools for the required Perl modules. Perl modules are installed in ActivePerl on Windows with the "ppm" command (see, and on Unix systems with the "cpan" command.

  3. How do I install Tcl/Tk?

    Tcl distributions with "Install Notes" can be found through the Tcl Developer Xchange web site We have had good results on Windows with the ActiveTcl distributions. Cautious users may wish to skip the beta distribution, identified by a 'b' in the name, and get the latest stable version. ActiveTcl also includes Tk. IRIX users might need to get the source code distributions of Tcl and Tk and compile them. When I checked on the SGI Freeware web site, on February 13, 2002, the newest binary distributions of Tcl and Tk were version 8.0.4, compiled in 1999. Some of the NIST Web Metrics tools require version 8.2 or higher.

  4. How do I install Microsoft PWS or IIS?

    We recommend using the Apache HTTP server instead. Instructions for installing Apache on Windows can be found at If you must run a Microsoft web server, which one you use, or whether you can at all, depends on the version of Windows you have.

    Windows 95 or NT
    Microsoft provides Personal Web Server (PWS) for Windows 95 and Peer Web Services (PWS) for Windows NT. The instructions for both are interwoven for your convenience at and an important security patch at (15 Feb. 2002). Windows NT can also run IIS 4.0 according to
    Windows 98
    PWS (Personal Web Server) comes with Windows 98, but it is not easy to find. Microsoft provides instructions at;EN-US;Q306898&ID=KB;EN-US;Q306898 and an important security patch at
    Windows 2000
    To install IIS follow the instructions at Be sure to follow the link labeled "Internet Information Services Documentation Update" which provides a correction to the installation instructions. Microsoft provides a patch that fixes several security problems at
    Windows ME
    Microsoft does not support a web server on Windows ME, but they tell you how to do it anyway, if you dare, at;EN-US;Q266456&.
    Windows XP Professional
    IIS 5 comes with Windows XP Professional, and it is installed like other Windows components. Open the "Start" menu, select "Settings," open "Control Panel," open "Add/Remove Programs," click on "Add/Remove Windows Components" to pop up another dialog box, select "Internet Information Services" and click on "Details...," select "World Wide Web Service" and click on "Details...," select "World Wide Web Service" again in the new dialog box and click "OK." Then find and install all the critical bug fixes from Microsoft.
    Windows XP Home Edition
    Microsoft says you need to upgrade to XP Professional to run their web server, see the last question and answer in Note: A web server is necessary to host an Internet web site.

  5. Why is the default installation location in Windows "C:\WebMetrics" instead of in "C:\Program Files\WebMetrics?"

    We started out using "C:\Program Files\WebMetrics" for the default installation location, but we found that Microsoft PWS would not correctly execute Perl CGI scripts containing spaces in the full pathname.

Version 3.0
Page last modified: 1 Jul 2002
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