Here you’ll find our list frequently ask questions asked about Checkbot. Please check here for answers to queries before contacting support. If your question isn’t answered here, please contact us. Think you’ve found a bug? Please fill out a bug report. You can also try posting anything you want to share or discuss on the Checkbot subreddit.

General

How do I start Checkbot?

After you’ve added Checkbot to Chrome, you should see a small Checkbot icon in the top-right of your browser window. When you click this icon, Checkbot will launch. You should see then see a prompt asking you which URL you want to start crawling from.

What operating systems does Checkbot run on?

Checkbot will run on any operating system that the Google Chrome browser can run on. This includes macOS, Linux, Chrome OS and Microsoft Windows.

Is Checkbot available for Firefox and other browsers?

Right now, Checkbot is only available for Google Chrome.

Why does Checkbot require the Chrome extension permissions it asks for?

To perform crawls, Checkbot has to be able to fetch URLs from potentially any website. The only way to do this in Chrome at this time is if Checkbot asks for the “read and change all your data on the websites you visit” permission. This permission is used by Checkbot for the sole purpose of processing URL responses requested by Checkbot during crawls within the tab Checkbot runs inside. Checkbot does not interfere with your regular browsing in any way. We’d love to be able to ask for less permissions but like with other developer extensions for Chrome, this currently isn’t possible.

Is Checkbot a web service or does it run locally?

Checkbot is not a web service: all crawling and other functionality is performed locally on your own machine. This has the benefit that you can crawl as many sites as you want as often as you want which wouldn’t be practical on a web service shared between many users.

Install issues

How do I install Checkbot when Chrome keeps saying “this item is already being downloaded and added into Chrome”?

This is a rare Chrome error that impacts extensions in general that prevents installation from succeeding. You should try clearing your browser cache and cookies, restarting your machine and then attempting to install Checkbot again. Please let us know what worked for you as it isn’t clear yet how to reliably fix this.

Updates

How do I get the latest release?

Google Chrome should transparently check for and download updates to Checkbot in the background within a few hours of a release being uploaded to the Chrome Web Store. You need to close and restart Checkbot for a recently downloaded update to be applied. If you want to force Chrome to check for and apply an update you can visit the chrome://extensions/ URL and press the “Update extensions now” button. Be aware that doing this will restart Checkbot and you’ll lose your current progress.

How do I know which version I have?

You can see which version of Checkbot you’re running by launching the extension and reading the version number from the corner of the start page. The version number is also displayed in your list of installed extensions if you visit the chrome://extensions/ URL.

How can I get notified about releases?

We frequently post on Twitter, Facebook and Google+ about new releases so you can follow us on social media to keep up with the latest changes. You can also sign up to our newsletter to keep up with Checkbot news.

How do I report bugs or feature requests?

If you’re having any problems using Checkbot or have ideas for new features and improvements, please feel free to contact us. Please fill out a bug report if you think you’ve found a bug.

Checkbot guidelines

Should I aim to get a perfect score?

If Checkbot gives your site a low score in any category, we would recommend you address the critical problems and whichever issues you consider important but we wouldn’t recommend you aim to get a perfect score. It’s close to impossible for a moderately complex website to get full marks and even the Checkbot website has to make some concessions. For example, fixing some minor issues might require 1) major overhauls of your backend 2) for you to switch to a hosting solution that supports the customisations you need or 3) a third party script provider to make changes for you. Only you can decide which issues are important and practical to fix for your own website.

Features

How can I export and share reports?

For each report, in the bottom right next to the search bar you should see a blue “export” button. Click that button and the current table will be exported as a CSV file. If you’ve searched for anything, the file contents will be filtered by your search term also.

Crawl behaviour

Can I tell Checkbot to ignore URLs?

In the sidebar on the startup screen, there’s an option to ignore URLs by pattern. See the help text there for tips on how you can give a list of regular expressions to ignore sets of URLs which match particular patterns. For example, you could ignore all URLs ending in “.png”, URLs to “example.com” or URLs containing the path “/login” to stop Checkbot from checking URLs you’re not interested in.

Does Checkbot execute JavaScript?

Checkbot does not currently execute JavaScript. Some of the reasons for this are that many websites don’t use JavaScript to modify the core contents of their pages and running JavaScript during crawls would significantly slow the speed we could check pages along with other complications. We’re currently focused on features that give quick feedback for sites that don’t rely on JavaScript execution. You should also consider than many search bots do not execute JavaScript, search bots that do might have trouble indexing your particular JavaScript code, and some users might have JavaScript disabled.

Will Checkbot appear in my site’s analytics reports?

Checkbot does not execute JavaScript or send cookies during crawls so if your analytics solution requires these to work, Checkbot won’t get tracked. If your analytics solution tracks visits when HTML pages, image URLs or similar are requested, you’ll need to add some way to filter Checkbot from your logs.

Why does Checkbot report a page issue I cannot see with my browser?

Sometimes Checkbot might report a problem on a web page you don’t see yourself when you visit that page in your browser. This can be for a number of reasons. For example, the page could be changing its behaviour based on the user agent or cookie contents, or because JavaScript execution is required.

What can I do if Checkbot is being blocked or shown a CAPTCHA?

Some websites have anti-scraping protection in place that block bots or give CAPTCHA challenges. If this behaviour is based on the user agent string, you can try changing the user agent setting used when Checkbot performs crawls. Beyond this, your only option is to get the administrator of the website to add an exemption for Checkbot somehow such as by user agent or IP address.

What are the terms for a single paid license?

A single paid license is usable only by the person it was purchased for. If you have a license to use Checkbot, you can personally use it on as many devices as you wish.

What’s the difference between the free and paid version of Checkbot?

See the pricing section for more information about the differences between the free and paid versions of Checkbot.

Checkbot for Chrome can crawl your site to automatically check you're following
the 50+ web best practices from our SEO, security and speed guides.

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