How is the downloads counter accurate?

Asked by Andrea Corbellini on 2011-01-26

About 24 hours ago I've registered and released python-iowait (a simple Python library). I haven't announced it anywhere, I've just published it on PyPI. Now I'm seeing this: reports 268 downloads reports 16 downloads

16 downloads on PyPI seem to me a reasonable number, because the PyPI homepage always shows the latest released packages. However 268 downloads for an unannounced project looks to me as a very high number. For this reason, I think that most of the downloads on Launchpad were made from bots and web spiders. Is this right? Doesn't Launchpad check the User-Agent when calculating download counts?

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Solved by:
Curtis Hovey
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Best Curtis Hovey (sinzui) said :

Lp does not take user-agent into account, but I do not think that is a big concern. Launchpad has spectacular search presence. It is the dominate link for "python iowait" and I expect users looking for the package will use Lp to get the release. I think your numbers are legitimate. pypi is primarily used by python community and packagers. Most users will not know that it is the authoritative site.

I can compare your high results to my own projects which have a history of releases. My project downloads grow slowly and the downloads grow varies according the the importance of the release, showing that user are the downloaders. Spider can download of course, but the most common bots do not.

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Andrea Corbellini (andrea.corbellini) said :

Thanks Curtis Hovey, that solved my question.