The Developer Day | Staying Curious

TAG | referer

Internet Explorer has a strange issue regarding http referers. If you would have a link and would follow that link $_SERVER['HTTP_REFERER'] value would get populated. But if a redirect is done using javascript like this:

top.location.href = 'page.php';

The HTTP_REFERER will not get value populated. I tried to figure out why is this happening but seems it’s just the way it is. All other browsers Firefox, Chrome, Opera will set the referer properly, but IE6, IE7 and IE8 will not.

Though it is not a good practice to rely on HTTP_REFERER and you should probably not use it if you can, but nevertheless such kind of behaviour may cause strange bugs. If you happen to know why Internet Explorer behaves like this or know workaround to still have a referer value set when the browser redirects using javascript please leave a comment.

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