Not showing ‘friendly’ HTTP error messages
Ever wondered how Internet Explorer shows the same “The page cannot be found” when it doesn’t find the requested page, while Firefox doesn’t. I found this little comment in one source page.
- Unfortunately, Microsoft has added a clever new
- "feature" to Internet Explorer. If the text of
- an error's message is "too small", specifically
- less than 512 bytes, Internet Explorer returns
- its own error message. You can turn that off,
- but it's pretty tricky to find switch called
- "smart error messages". That means, of course,
- that short error messages are censored by default.
- IIS always returns error messages that are long
- enough to make Internet Explorer happy. The
- workaround is pretty simple: pad the error
- message with a big comment like this to push it
- over the five hundred and twelve bytes minimum.
- Of course, that's exactly what you're reading
- right now.
Apparently, IE comes configured to “Show friendly HTTP error messages” which replace the server’s normal error messages. Nothing profound about it, just a little eureka.