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What Does Your User Agent Say About You?

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A user agent is a computer program representing a person, for example, a browser in a Web context.

Besides a browser, a user agent could be a bot scraping webpages, a download manager, or another app accessing the Web. Along with each request they make to the server, browsers include a self-identifying User-Agent HTTP header called a user agent (UA) string. This string often identifies the browser, its version number, and its host operating system.

Spam bots, download managers, and some browsers often send a fake UA string to announce themselves as a different client. This is known as user agent spoofing.

The user agent string can be accessed with JavaScript on the client side using the navigator.userAgent property.

A typical user agent string looks like this: "Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux x86_64; rv:35.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/35.0".

(Source: Mozilla.org)

User Agent String

Browser Data

User Agent Explorer

author
Maria Johnson
• Thursday, 24 December, 2020
• 8 min read

Thanks to the new flags page in Internet Explorer 11, it is now very easy to change the user agent string. You can experiment with it using the latest publicly available Windows 10 build at this moment, which is 9879.

explorer internet agent user
(Source: www.filecluster.com)

Contents

Now Internet Explorer 11 tells websites that it is Firefox running on Linux. By Sergey Lukashenko on January 2, 2015, last updated on March 22, 2018, in Internet Explorer.

Sergey Lukashenko is a software developer from Russia who started Winner back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software.

If you ever wanted to make your web traffic seem like it was coming from a different browser–say, to trick a site that claims it’s incompatible with yours–you can. This allows you to request web pages intended for different browsers–or even different devices, like smartphones and tablets.

Click the menu button to the right of the “Console” tab at the bottom of the Developer Tools pane and select “Network Conditions” If you don’t see the console at the bottom, click the menu button in the top right corner of the Developer Tools pane–that’s the button just to the left of the “x”–and select “Show Console”.

On the Network conditions tab, uncheck “Select automatically” next to User agent. It only works while you have the Developer Tools pane open, and it only applies to the current tab.

user agent internet explorer change string homepage ie switcher howtogeek
(Source: www.howtogeek.com)

To create the preference, right-click on the about:config page, point to New, and select String. This setting applies to every open tab and persists until you change it, even if you close and reopen Firefox.

To revert Firefox to the default user agent, right-click the “general.user agent.override” preference and select Reset. Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer have user agent switchers in their developer tools, and they’re nearly identical.

To open them, click the settings menu and select “F12 Developer Tools” or just press F12 on your keyboard. The developer tools will open in a separate pane at the bottom of the window.

You can find extensive lists of user agents on various websites, such as this one. It only applies to the current tab, and only while the F12 Developer Tools pane is open.

Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami's NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read more than 500 million times---and that's just here at How-To Geek.

agent internet explorer change ie12 ua restart changes apply must
(Source: winaero.com)

Other sites, such as Vodafone Greece, are even worse by denying to load at all unless I open them in another browser such as Firefox. I want to use Internet Explorer 11 instead, so I tried to open the Developer settings and change the user agent in Firefox or Chrome, but apparently I did not do that correctly, all the affected sites still detect I run IE 11.

Have you tried using the string below -other examples are shown on the following page (you can even try the Linux version) Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; WOW64; RV:54.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/73.0 Other sites, such as Vodafone Greece, are even worse by denying to load at all unless I open them in another browser such as Firefox.

I want to use Internet Explorer 11 instead, so I tried to open the Developer settings and change the user agent in Firefox or Chrome, but apparently I did not do that correctly, all the affected sites still detect I run IE 11. User agent changes successfully but cannot trick Vodafone or YouTube.

Have you tried Microsoft Edge as the User Agent ? Try 'Other” at the bottom of the pop-up, enter the user agent string and “OK”.

I have searched the Web and find all sorts for Chrome etc but I cannot find a string to paste for IE of any version to run on Safari 13 I couldn't find Safari 13 specific IE user agent string either.

agent user change useragent browser extensions installing without any preference override general
(Source: www.howtogeek.com)

There was a IE extension that used to be free on chrome as well and now they want to charge u for it. I usually use the developer tab but my computer auto updated itself to 13.0.3 and not IE is gone ...

There has not been an Internet Explorer version for Mac in 16 years. There is no sergeant String that would Identify a current Internet Explorer version on a Mac.

This will work for the agent string: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSI 8.0; Windows NT 5.1; Trident/4.0) Unfortunately, you have to do this step each time you want to use the in question website.

Over the past few years, mainstream browsers have all started including such functionality as a part of their developer console or within standard menus. Although uncommon, there is a chance for browser extensions to become hijacked for malicious purposes, which could be a risk to your security.

If you look or scroll down towards the bottom of this panel, you should see a User agent label, which includes a respective set of options. Here, you can select from a set of defined user agents or even enter your own custom user agent string.

agent user string explorer internet change switcher conclusion ie second
(Source: www.howtogeek.com)

If it’s your first time doing so, you should see a disclaimer stating that you’re entering risky territory that’s for advanced users only. If the preference isn’t there, right-click on a blank area of the page, hover New, and select the String option.

Craig is a long-time writer, coder, and marketer with years of experience in the technology and gaming spaces. Since 2008, he's worked remotely with some of the most notable publications in these industries, specializing in Windows, PC hardware and software, automation, and the like.

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Mir adore is a cloud-based Mobile Device Management (MDM) platform that provides a smarter way to securely manage both company-owned and personal Android, iOS, macOS, and Windows devices. Sergeant strings come in all shapes and sizes, and the number of unique user agents is growing all the time.

agent user string firefox change windows author switcher testing positive extension website ie
(Source: www.howtogeek.com)

If you need to integrate the user agent parser directly into your website or system then it's very simple to use the API. This will let you do things like advanced filtering and searching, identify trends in user agents, perform statistical analysis and other interesting applications.

There's no “standard” way of writing an user agent string, so different web browsers use different formats (some are wildly different), and many web browsers cram loads of information into their user agents. Some mobile web browsers will let you change what the browser identifies itself as (i.e. “Mobile Mode” or “Desktop Mode”) in order to access certain websites that only allow desktop computers.

Other Articles You Might Be Interested In

01: Npm User Agent Parser
02: Safari User Agent Internet Explorer 11
03: Safari User Agent Version
04: Sample User Agent String
05: Screen Reader User Agent
06: Bing Bot User Agent
Sources
1 blogs.bing.com - https://blogs.bing.com/webmaster/december-2019/Announcing-future-user-agents-for-Bingbot
2 www.searchenginejournal.com - https://www.searchenginejournal.com/new-bingbot-user-agents/340683/
3 searchengineland.com - https://searchengineland.com/bing-to-update-bingbots-user-agent-326483
4 www.webnots.com - https://www.webnots.com/user-agents-list-for-google-bing-baidu-and-yandex-search-engines/
5 searchfacts.com - https://searchfacts.com/robots-txt-allow-disallow-all/
6 www.onely.com - https://www.onely.com/blog/detect-verify-crawlers/