Mobile Site 3DS

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  • Gaol 29 Feb 2012 20:03:27 2,262 posts
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    When browsing to this site on the 3DS browser it keeps defaulting to HD, which takes an age to load, instead of the mobile site.

    Switching to mobile loads up the current page in mobile view, but as soon as I click a link to another page on the site it's back trying to load up the HD page.

    I've tried deleting history/cookies but can't seem to work around this.
  • DFawkes 29 Feb 2012 20:40:12 22,063 posts
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    I've been on about this for months. It seems like a simple issue with cookies too - when it's on Mobile it displays quite well. There were no issues with the old EG Mobile site either, so it's something they've changed in the big switchover.

    It is handy to be able to visit EG if it's my 3DS I've got in my hands - I clocked up over 50 hours of browsing on the old, excellent EG Mobile site.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • mal 29 Feb 2012 20:40:46 21,958 posts
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    Hmm, didn't used to be the case. Must be something that broke.

    Edit: I'm pretty sure I visited EG forums since the redesign on my 3DS, but it's possible I'm thinking of the old site.

    Edited by mal at 20:41:49 29-02-2012

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • DFawkes 5 Mar 2012 22:58:26 22,063 posts
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    Any movement on this? I can't see it being massively difficult to fix. It might not be the biggest problem in the world, but if it's not working for one browser it might not be working for the same reason on other browsers.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • mal 6 Mar 2012 00:55:35 21,958 posts
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    In general, it would still be awesome if we could force mobile mode via a URL argument or something, so I didn't have to download the full fat site every time I use a new device or clear my cookies.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • DFawkes 8 Mar 2012 22:45:33 22,063 posts
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    I'm not going to drop this. If this site never worked on 3DS then I might just assume it's not technically possible, but it used to work. So one of the changes made broke it. I also wouldn't be fussy if I thought there were no more features being added, but at least 2 have been added recently so it must still be an ongoing thing.

    Just to be clear, before the change, the mobile version of the site worked fine and it remembered you were on the mobile version.

    Now, it works fine if you patiently wait for it to load the HD version, then scroll all the way down to Mobile and click that. However, if you go to another page it'll forget this preference and load the HD version. It'll do this every time.

    So if being able to force Mobile through the URL isn't practical, just see if you can make it the way it was and save the fact I've hit Mobile.

    Cheers :)

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • mal 9 Mar 2012 14:53:41 21,958 posts
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    Before the change the two sites ran on entirely different urls, but just accessed the same back end database. Now all pages use the same URLs, but the site decides what page to serve by looking at the cookies your browser serves when it requests the URL.

    I've not heard of the 3DS browser having cookie trouble before, but with access to a 3DS and the server logs it should be easy to tell if it's serving the correct cookies.

    Nicely designed sites let you work without cookies by setting them via a URL argument which is preserved on any links you follow from that page.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • DFawkes 10 Mar 2012 20:58:02 22,063 posts
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    I see, didn't realise how it used to work :)

    As you say though should be easy enough to track why the cookies aren't working. I appreciate that coding it so you can use URL arguments might be impractical, so just getting the cookies working properly should do quite nicely.

    Edited by DFawkes at 23:37:37 11-03-2012

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • DFawkes 12 Mar 2012 15:12:57 22,063 posts
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    Is there anything I can do to help track down this problem? It's easy enough to track which cookie it is on PC, but if there's anyway I can help by sharing something from my 3DS, please do let me know :)

    Definitely just seems to be a case of it either not setting Version to "Mobile" or not reading it on opening another page. Can't imagine it's too difficult to track down.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • DFawkes 17 Mar 2012 17:11:34 22,063 posts
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    Any movement on this? I'm asking daily now, because that's how I roll.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • DFawkes 18 Mar 2012 17:45:02 22,063 posts
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    When I say every day, I don't include Sunday in that, or Saturday. But that'll only count from next week. Of course for all I know it's fixed and reading those cookies properly, but I'm going to stop trying as it really does make using EG a lot less pleasurable.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • Nazo 18 Mar 2012 21:25:50 313 posts
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    I doubt it's an issue with the 3DS, visiting on an iPhone for the first time, the mobile site gets served.

    I imagine it looks for the user set cookie and if it's not present it will decide which site to serve based on how the browser identifies itself. Either they haven't added the 3DS browser to their list of known mobile devices or the 3DS doesn't identify itself clearly enough. It's more likely to be the former.

    Do EG even have web developers working for them? There are still loads of things that don't work right on the mobile site that haven't worked since day one. As a web dev myself I'd be embarrassed to allow one of my sites to be broken for so long, especially as some of these things are really simple fixes.

    With the iPhone app now gone it's even more annoying.
  • mal 18 Mar 2012 21:42:24 21,958 posts
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    Yes, browser id string identification can help get the right site first time (and it'd be nice if Opera Mobile triggered the mobile site automatically), but I can forgive any web dev for not implementing all browser id strings, cos there are a frankly silly number of them.

    This is not about browser idenification though - it's about the site saving mechanism using cookies isn't working, and it's falling back to the default. Granted, if the default for the 3DS browser was the mobile site it'd suit DFawkes, but not everyone wants the same site. The site should be setting the cookie when you choose the site, the 3DS browser should be sending that cookie back every time you load a page, and EG should respond by selecting your chosen site. Without seeing that network traffic it's not possible to see which of this chain is failing.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • Nazo 18 Mar 2012 23:45:37 313 posts
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    Ah yeah, sorry. Wasn't paying proper attention there.

    It looks like the cookie EG sends always has it's expiry date set to the date and time of the response, my guess is that the 3DS deletes it as soon as it is received, which is what I'd expect it to do.
    Actually I'm not sure why this isn't happening on other browsers. Looking through my EG cookies in Firefox there are still some there that should have expired in 2010.
    I could be missing something obvious though as I'm tired and not thinking straight.

    Edited by Nazo at 23:46:02 18-03-2012
  • mal 19 Mar 2012 02:09:25 21,958 posts
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    Ooh, good spot. Wikipedia states that cookies sent with expiry dates in the past should be deleted immediately. Perhaps they're being sent with a maxAge of 0? That's often used in databases to indicate the record should never expire, but I don't know how it works in HTTP cookies. I'd RFC it but it's 2am and I can't really be arsed.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • Nazo 19 Mar 2012 09:10:20 313 posts
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    In fact no, I was just tired and confused :( they are set to expire in exactly a year, which is reasonable.

    Very weird, maybe it is a problem with the 3DS browser. Looking again I can't see anything untoward in the request or response when browsing on my PC other than a load of advertising scripts but that's par for the course these days.
  • Nazo 19 Mar 2012 09:57:40 313 posts
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    Hmm interesting. I just tried the site on the PS3 browser, which is also Netfront based, the same as 3DS.

    I had the same but opposite problem, the site initially displayed the mobile version, I could change to the HD version but following a link bunged me back to the mobile site. I'm sure both browsers do accept cookies, so I guess either there's some kind of weird compatibility issue going on or EG is ignoring the cookie when it comes from Netfront browsers for some reason.
  • mal 19 Mar 2012 19:32:38 21,958 posts
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    Yes, I just tried it in Firefox and got expiry dates one year in the future as well. I've no idea why it doesn't work in NetFront based browsers (it seems to work in Gecko/Opera/Webkit based browsers okay).

    I'd guess it's identifying the PS3 variant of the browser as being a mobile device (perhaps they got a list of all NetFront browsers and set them all to mobile, as that's where the tech is predominantly used, at least last time I checked), but the problem's the same - it's going back to the default every time you visit a new page and not respecting the cookie.

    Can we confirm that the experience is exactly the same on the 3DS; namely that on clicking the 'mobile' button it switches, but then on opening any links it defaults back to HD? The site switch buttons are implemented as a form, of which there are many on the page. The site switch buttons all set the form variable 'version'. On posting that back to EG, the server sends back the correct site, along with a cookie also called 'version', but next time you click on a link it has to rely on the client sending back that 'version' cookie, and that's where things are breaking as I understand it.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • Nazo 19 Mar 2012 22:34:21 313 posts
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    Bugger, it's an error at EG's end I reckon. I was able to recreate the issue on my PC by changing the User agent string Firefox sends to match that of the PS3 browser. I then got the same behaviour: site renders in mobile mode, can switch to HD version using the buttons but it goes back to mobile mode as soon as a link is followed. The only thing different is the user agent the browser is sending; the version cookie is being sent correctly but is apparently being ignored.

    Having said that I didn't get the same behaviour with the 3DS user agent string I found on the net but it might have changed since that was posted. Can someone with a 3DS visit http://whatsmyuseragent.com/ and post the result?
  • DFawkes 20 Mar 2012 00:04:18 22,063 posts
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    A couple of days and I already forget to keep posting here! Nice to see smart people discussing it though, maybe it'll even get fixed!

    I'll do what I can, including visiting that user agent thingy. Not sure what you need so I'll just type it exactly as it displays on my 3DS:

    Mozilla/5.0 (Nintendo 3DS; U; ; en) Version/1.7455.EU

    Edited by DFawkes at 00:06:00 20-03-2012

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • mal 20 Mar 2012 02:30:47 21,958 posts
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    Same here. Curiously, that doesn't look like a Netfront user agent string.

    I've just managed to get my 3DS briefly online this evening, and can confirm with my previous assumptions - clicking 'mobile' works initially, but all further page loads return to the default. Oddly, reloading the mobile page doesn't switch it to the default, but I guess there's some caching going on.

    Edit: Doh, not caching. Reloading the page that loaded after clicking on the form probably resubmits the form inputs, so that's why that works - it's not relying on the cookie.

    Edited by mal at 03:10:00 20-03-2012

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • DFawkes 21 Mar 2012 16:38:22 22,063 posts
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    Any movement from anyone on EGs end now there seems to be clues on what's causing it? If you need anything else from me please let me know.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • mal 21 Mar 2012 17:28:11 21,958 posts
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    I got as far as faking the PS3 and 3DS user agent strings in firefox and observing the same behaviour as Nazo - namely the cookies don't work on the PS3 settings, but still seem to on the 3DS one.

    I do think the NDS browser is a Netfront browser, just using an obfuscated user agent string, given it's obfuscated the same way on the PS3, and Nintendo have a history of using Netfront.

    Next thing to do is work out what's happening with cookies on the PS3 setting, to see if that gives any clues to what's happening on the 3DS, but I haven't had time to go through the logs yet.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • Nazo 21 Mar 2012 23:19:38 313 posts
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    Same thing using the PSP user agent string, which is also a Netfront browser I believe.
    It's a weird bug, I can't imagine why it would manifest itself just with one browser maker's browsers, it doesn't happen on iPhone, even though the site detects it and sets it to mobile mode by default.You'd think that would point to a flaw with the browser itself but the fact that it can be reproduced in Firefox shows it isn't. Why would it act differently for different browsers?
    I can't reproduce it using the 3DS user agent though, which is also weird. Full of mysteries this one, I really want to know what's causing it.
  • mal 22 Mar 2012 02:08:40 21,958 posts
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    I think it is recognising one of either the 3DS browser or the PS3 browser, as it defaults the first to HD but the second to Portable.

    Cubby didn't know how to turn off sigs!

  • DFawkes 23 Mar 2012 16:02:51 22,063 posts
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    I'd just like to confirm it's still broken. Even signing in to post this triggered a reload that made it HD again. Heck, the front page has so much loading to do it doesn't get as far as loading the button to set it as Mobile! It's not even funny anymore.

    Is anyone at EG looking at this? Is it a hilarious running joke? I reported this within days of the switch-over to the new site. I understand it's not high priority but surely the fact it's prioritising the user agent string over cookies is worth a look as it shows something clearly isn't right?

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • Nazo 23 Mar 2012 23:37:58 313 posts
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    I wonder if EG doesn't really care about the mobile site as it doesn't get them any ad revenue? It certainly doesn't seem to be a priority.

    I made a JavaScript bookmarklet that improves the comment pages slightly on the mobile site, I wonder if I could do something to help with this a bit until it gets fixed. I don't know if the 3DS supports bookmarklets though. I assume you can add bookmarks, does it have any kind of copy / paste functionality?
  • DFawkes 24 Mar 2012 01:55:28 22,063 posts
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    Don't think so. Nothing advanced really, just bookmarks and cookies. Even if it does support bookmarklets, it's going to be a pain typing it in the first time, and the first time you follow a link it'll just go HD again (I think, I'm a real novice in these matters).

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

  • Nazo 24 Mar 2012 09:17:56 313 posts
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    Well, my idea was to hijack any links so they post the mode switch form to the target page. In theory it would send you to the mobile version of the link.
    Does it have 'bookmark this link' type functionality?
  • DFawkes 24 Mar 2012 15:32:06 22,063 posts
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    Not sure. Only ways that seems apparent are bookmarking current page or typing one in. Can't see anything to "bookmark this link", though I could have a look later once it's charged.

    I'd kick the living daylights out of the producers of Tipping Point - Ghandi

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