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General Chat Thread, How can they tell? in General; This may be a very naive question but I'll ask anyway. The school subscribes to a web site offering activities ...
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    leco's Avatar
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    How can they tell?

    This may be a very naive question but I'll ask anyway. The school subscribes to a web site offering activities in maths, english and science - classes log on to complete quizzes etc.

    Had an email passed to me, from the company, stating "Our systems indicate that at least some of your computers are using an older version of Flash Player, which could mean you'd receive a less than complete service from us in the future." How do they know what version of flash is installed on the computers?

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    Failures when visiting the site causing a page redirection to say "you need version xyz to run this?" logged against your IP address (publicly) could generate this kind of feedback.

    "Some" could imply one, or all as unless you're passing your internal IP addresses as part of the process they won't be seeing those.

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    As kmount suggests, Flash applets can detect what version of Flash is running them. They could easily embed code in one of the applets on their site that logs the version number into a database along with the IP address you are visiting from. That way they can build up a list of the different versions your site runs over time.

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    webman's Avatar
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    Not too difficult to do.

    Google Analytics (web statistics service) uses Javascript, and it reports on visitors' Flash versions.

    Adobe - Flash Player : Detection Kit

    JavaScript Flash Detection Library (Flash Detect)

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    leco's Avatar
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    OK I can accept there are facilities or apps to gather the statistics but how does the company know what our IP address is?

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    webman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by leco View Post
    OK I can accept there are facilities or apps to gather the statistics but how does the company know what our IP address is?
    Presumably your school have a global username/password or per-student usernames to login to the site? If so, they just tie the Flash capabilities to IP addresses, then the IP address to logins, and logins to the associated school.

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    leco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by webman View Post
    Presumably your school have a global username/password or per-student usernames to login to the site? If so, they just tie the Flash capabilities to IP addresses, then the IP address to logins, and logins to the associated school.
    The school does have both global and per pupil username/password. I'm thinking that it is more likely to be a tie in to the school licence login and not necessarily ip address. If that is the case then some of the machines that are accessing the site do not belong to the school. The children login to do their homework, obviously at home or some other place.

    The reason I'm asking is that I know all the school machines meet the required flash version, so am curious to know why the email came in. Which, incidentally, was sent to an unpublished email address.

    Thanks for the information, I now have a kind of answer to give to my line manager as to why I don't need to visit each machine (by whatever means) to update an already up-to-date facility.

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