3 Ways to access ‘Must Sign Up to View’ Sites

This happens many times to me: I search on Google for a problem I’m having with my computer, click on a search result, reach the site (most of the time, it’s a forum), and boom! I have to register in order to view the solution on the page. Or worse, on some occasions, they want me to pay them to view the page.

But instead I have tried ways to bypass such sign up forms. Here are a few tips for you:

1. Bug Me Not

Aibek previously covered Bug Me Not which is a wonderful service that provides disposable login details for most sites and forums. You could use those IDs and passwords to login – bypassing compulsory registrations. Most of the time this should suffice, especially for popular sites. There’s also a Firefox extension available.

bugmenot disposable logins   3 Ways to access Must Sign Up to View Sites

But Bug Me Not obviously does not have login details for every site on the entire internet. Sometimes the login details provided for some of these sites don’t work anymore. In that case, you could try the following methods:

2. Google Cache

If the snippet near the result seemed to talk about the problem you’re having, there are high chances that Google Cache should have a copy of the website you landed on. One of the sites where it works quite well is ‘Experts Exchange’.

gcache   3 Ways to access Must Sign Up to View Sites

Instead of clicking on the direct link, just click the ‘Cached’ link near the search result. View the page. Go till the end of it. You might end up finding the information there.

3. Be the Bot

In a rare case when you’re not able to view the solution even by accessing the Google Cache, you can use Be The Bot.

bethebot thumb   3 Ways to access Must Sign Up to View Sites

Be The Bot fools the site to thinking that Google Crawler Bot is accessing it. And hence, you’ll get a view of the ‘real’ site via Be The Bot.

What other ways can you think of to bypass compulsory registration forms in sites, especially forums?

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21 Comments -

0 votes

Sherri

Thanks for BeTheBot; I hadn’t heard of that one. I also occasionally use the WayBack Machine at web.archive.org – I made a keyworded search for it.

0 votes

BKB

If you’re using Firefox, you can also use the Firefox user agent switcher to pretend to be googlebot.

linuxtnt.wordpress.com/2007/10/20/daft-web-sites-outfoxed-by-firefox-user-agent-switcher/

You can also use this to pretend to be an iPhone, etc.

0 votes

Shankar Ganesh

Thanks, I’ve tried this extension before, but I totally didn’t remember this when writing this article.

0 votes

Georgios

You may also want to consider mailinator. When a site requires registration, enter your email address as: @mailinator.com

Mailinator (mailinator.com) will accept any incoming email and keep it for some days. You may then access it if you check for the address you used. Anybody else could theoretically also read it but should know the specific string you used as your address…

0 votes

Shankar Ganesh

Good one. Thanks for sharing.

I have tried mailinator before, and I really find these temporary email services very helpful.

0 votes

Patricia

Thank you for that timely piece of info. Be the bot…nice touch!

0 votes

Sumesh

Good tips – I’ve been using another method that you missed. Why reveal now? I’ll write a post on it on MUO.

0 votes

Dave Drager

Be the bot…. great stuff!

0 votes

Jon

For Experts Exchange … no fancy tricks are needed. The results at the top of the page are hidden, but the exact same answers are UNHIDDEN at the bottom of the page. Try scrolling down! It’s because Google has strict rules about showing the googlebot a different page than regular users.

Experts Exchange: Scroll Down!

0 votes

Shankar Ganesh

Didn’t know that when I wrote this :(

But I still believe Google Cache might help you discover hidden info in a lot of other sites.

0 votes

Rich

Great tips, there are more like them here.

0 votes

dentalkid

bethebot.com is wading through shark infested waters. i dont think google, as magnanimous and open minded as it seems to be, is going to take kindly to random sites forging its headers. expect, at the very least, legal action leading to a court order to shut it down very soon.

0 votes

Tim McCormack

I don’t think you have to worry about Google suing BeTheBot.com.

After all, Internet Explorer (and it’s not the only one) forges its headers to pretend to be a Mozilla browser.

It’s a fine tradition.

0 votes

subcorpus

be the bit sounds good …
way back machine doesnt have images most of the time …
so IT related articles dont have screen caps … :(

0 votes

hoodlum

slopsbox.com/

0 votes

ben

Thanks now experts exchange will probably close that hole.

Great

0 votes

Tyler

I never heard of “Be the Bot” before, gonna have to try that out, thanks.

0 votes

Mike

Wow nice websites. Thanks!

0 votes

sangram

Thanks for Expert Exchange trick.

0 votes

tips photo

Thanks for all these great solutions to a problem that has always bugged me. I can definitely use these and let my friends know about these. They will be very grateful.

0 votes

hiiiiiii

does this work for porn sites? :D