I need to take our company site offline for a month, and instead of actually removing the content, I just want to make it unavailable. Is there any way to use .htaccess to direct *ALL* page requests to forward to a single URL (a notice page telling visitors about the downtime)?
I've seen lots of information about remapping directories to new directories, or specific pages to new page locations, but not remapping an entire site to one specific URL.
This can be done with a single RedirectMatch or RewriteRule directive, but I'd be remiss if I didn't say that it's probably a bad idea, and will make your compnay seem 'unprofessional' on the Web, as well as possbily destroying your search engine rankings for several months.
If the reason for this action is that you need to put up a new site and test it on-line, then consider developing and testing your new site in a separate subdirectory or on a separate subdomain and switching over 'all at once' after you're finished testing, rather than taking your existing site down for the duration of the development project.
Thanks for your advice, guys, but it's a little more complicated than that. Our company, a wine importer, violated one of the many rules some years ago and after fighting the case in court, we've decided to take our punishment. One month suspension, during which time we cannot conduct *any* business activity. The regulators consider our web site a "sales tool" and so it must be taken down for 30 days.
Crazy, isn't it?
I'd like to do this with as little damage to our search engine ranking as possible. Will a temporary redirect be effective for this?