View HTTP Request and Response Headers with LiveHTTPHeaders

LiveHTTPHeaders lets you view browser request and server response headers. Great for debugging forms and communications problems, and occasionally diagnosing server issues.

By JC

Ever wonder what secrets your browser tells the webserver? Or what the webserver whispers back when you’re not looking? OK, maybe you don’t, but as soon as you start writing a web application and have problems with sessions, cookies, forms, or anything else that happens mysteriously between the time you hit “submit” and the time the response comes back, you will. Or setting up gzip… god that’s a pain. :-) But hey, this is a secret! How can you find it?

Well, in most languages there’s a way to dump out some of the bits and pieces from the headers, but getting both request and response can be a bit of a pain. But you don’t need to worry about that, now… just use LiveHTTPHeaders.

It’s a pretty simple tool. You set it up as a sidebar or have it open in a new tab in FireFox or Mozilla, and when you hit a page, it gives you your request and the server’s response headers. You can leave images, css, etc in or filter them out via regex.

Here’s an example:

GET https://www.forevergeek.com/ HTTP/1.1
Host: forevergeek.com
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.0; rv:1.7.3) Gecko/20040913 Firefox/0.10
Accept: text/xml, application/xml, application/xhtml+xml, text/html;q=0.9, text/plain;q=0.8, image/png, */*;q=0.5
Accept-Language: en-us,en;q=0.5
Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate
Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7
Keep-Alive: 300
Proxy-Connection: keep-alive

HTTP/1.x 200 OK
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2004 17:01:15 GMT
Server: Apache
Content-Type: text/html
Content-Length: 31837
Age: 16759

Here’s another one with a post request:

POST https://www.forevergeek.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-search.cgi HTTP/1.1
Host: forevergeek.com
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.0; rv:1.7.3) Gecko/20040913 Firefox/0.10
Accept: text/xml, application/xml, application/xhtml+xml, text/html;q=0.9, text/plain;q=0.8, image/png, */*;q=0.5
Accept-Language: en-us,en;q=0.5
Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate
Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7
Keep-Alive: 300
Proxy-Connection: keep-alive
Referer: https://www.forevergeek.com/
Cookie: user=JC(rest removed)
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded
Content-Length: 26
search=freeflatscreens.com

HTTP/1.x 200 OK
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2004 21:44:38 GMT
Server: Apache
Pragma: No-Cache
Content-Type: text/html; charset=ISO-8859-1
Content-Length: 3919
Age: 2

So, grab it, make your life easier. Oh, I should note there’s a plugin for IE that’s supposed to do about the same thing, but I didn’t have much luck with it, which sucks, because I use IE more than I do firefox, though between LiveHTTPHeaders and the Web Developer Toolbar, that’s changing.

I’m curious… did this solve a problem for you? Do you already use this, or something else? What do you guys use?

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