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Google returns my ip rather than my url

 10:04 pm on Jul 17, 2012 (gmt 0)

I started a new website. It has no backlinks. It is new. Its domain name is www.example.com based on unique ip xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh

Unfortunately I discovered that I can visit it by typing its domain name and by typing its ip on a browser. So one week ago I asked to my sys admin to disable xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh and now it returns a default web site page different from www.example.com (I do not know which code it returns)

BUT Google (I do not know how) has xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh in its index rather than www.example.com

If I type on google search box a sentence from my home page, Google returns xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh.

What do I have to do to avoid problems with Google? Waiting until it understand that xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh has been disabled or take some action?

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 12:19 am (utc) on Jul 18, 2012]
[edit reason] disabled text string filter & fixed formatting [/edit]



 1:50 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

Google will update it in a relatively short time, it sounds like just a temporary thing. You feed the bots one thing, then feed it another. It takes a little time to remove the old data and replace it with the new data. Nothing to worry about imo.


 3:15 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

On some I have added it to htaccess along with the non-www. to with-www. redirect but never has one been listed by just the IP.


 4:27 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

The IP is the address, on the Internet, of where the content is hosted. The domain name is not where the content is hosted. The domain name simply points to the IP address of where the content is hosted. That makes it easy to find the content.

When you configure the domain name to point to the content, you are actually telling the domain name servers to point to the IP address so that when someone is looking for example.com that this should point to the content hosted at a specific IP.

What apparently happened is that the OP published the content on the IP address at which the content is hosted. But somehow, perhaps the information hadn't been entered at the domain name registrar yet, or the information hadn't yet spread through the domain name servers, whatever the reason, the IP address became associated with the content, not the domain name, and that's how Google indexed it.

Not a big deal. Now it's just a matter of a short while for Google to update itself with the corrected data.


 5:07 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

I saw the same thing today with one of my blogs, google was displaying the ip address rather than the domain name which looked quite odd, it must be some sort of bug.

Just to add, this is a shared ip so typing the ip address does not take you to the site, you must type in the url. But in the google listings it showed the ip and the link DID go to the site... strange.

Robert Charlton

 7:24 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

I saw the same thing today with one of my blogs, google was displaying the ip address rather than the domain name which looked quite odd, it must be some sort of bug.

Chances are it's not a bug. Please forgive my asking, as you may be aware of these issues, but is your domain "canonicalized", with your server set up to return a single preferred "canonical" form of your domain, or have you simply been lucky up until now?

The IP address instead of a domain name is one form of canonical problem, which is a form of dupe content. If your site isn't properly canonicalized (preferably using 301s with mod_rewrite) to avoid multiple urls, and you have several urls of your domain available, you're subject to the vicissitudes of who links to you in what form. Usually, the version with the strongest inbound linking will get displayed by Google.

We haven't discussed canonicalization here for a while. I recommend taking a look up in the Google Hot Topics [webmasterworld.com] section, pinned to the top of the Google SEO forum home page... and checking out the "Duplicate Content" section... in particular the "same domain" and "canonical issues" areas. With regard to some of the current questions regarding IP address display, take a look at these threads...

Duplicate Content Overview [webmasterworld.com] - will I be 'penalized?'

Canonical URL Issues [webmasterworld.com] - many ways to introduce duplicates

IP Address in the Index [webmasterworld.com] -you want the domain name


 7:58 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

Robert, for my case, do I only have to wait until Google understand that the real website is www.example.com?


 7:59 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

I recommend a rewrite that redirects any other hostname to the correct one. Google also indexes reverse DNS domain names, and one of the largest datacenters has 4.4M+ pages indexes with domains like vvv.yyy.zzz.hhh.-static.reverse.example.com

Robert Charlton

 9:17 am on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

Robert, for my case, do I only have to wait until Google understand that the real website is www.example.com?

serenoo - I'm assuming that your sys admin did a 301 redirect when he "disabled" the IP. You can check that by entering http://xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh into your address bar and seeing if http://www.example.com/ is returned. I recommend that you also do a server header check for the IP address to be doubly sure that it is a 301 redirect.

If not, you should set up proper canonical redirection.

To encourage the bot, you might also want to get a good inbound link, from a well-indexed site, to your proper canonical domain. That should speed things along.


 1:33 pm on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

Robert I do not want that http://xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh redirects to http://www.example.com because I will add another website based on that ip http://xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh
For this reason I asked to sys admin to "disable" http://xxx.yyy.zzz.hhh
So 301 solution is not good for me. Probably I should get an inbound link, but getting unnatural link now is very dangerous. The website is new and it is not completed, so I think getting a backlink is unnatural.

[edited by: tedster at 2:42 pm (utc) on Jul 18, 2012]


 2:01 pm on Jul 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

If your site isn't even finished yet, I honestly wouldn't even pay attention to what it's doing in Google. The time you're spending worrying would be better spent building your site IMO. This issue will be corrected in time, it has happened to me as well.


 10:38 am on Jul 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

I am worring because it is more than one week that Google keeps that ip instead of my url, so I think it is not normal that it continues providing that not working ip-website .

Robert Charlton

 6:30 pm on Jul 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

serenoo - I understand your point about not getting a link before your site is up.

"Disable", though, has no technical meaning for me. I don't know how you could set up something on your server handle such a situation on named based virtual hosting, which apparently is how your server is set up. You may find it difficult to use the server to do canonicalization on such a configuration.

It may be easiest for you to use the "canonical link element". Take a look at this discussion, which contains many references describing how to use the element....

A search for the domain name returns the site but at the ip address
http://www.webmasterworld.com/google/4381032.htm [webmasterworld.com]

You would simply insert appropriate code in the head section of each page. Be very careful, though, that the canonical url you decide upon for a particular page is correct.


 4:39 pm on Aug 11, 2012 (gmt 0)

I found this thread, only after a far bit of research, not finding an answer per what I'm looking for, and instead of creating a new thread, and likely getting on somes bad side, for possibly asking a totally stupid question: I've decided to post my stupid question here - thanks for taking the time to see what I am up to here:

I recently added an SSL Cert to my site and since I installed the SSL upon a dedicated I.P, etc.....I've come to find through emails from customers and others, that my site is available via not only the URL, but also through the new dedicated, unique I.P addy.

I took care of duplicate content problems a long time ago, and I haven't ever seen this particular one. I hope some of you have, for my sake! In the obvious circumstance the i.p and the url are both offering the same content, I assume I need to do a 301 redirect; pointing the I.P to the URL, so that my site is only accessed via my URL.

Reason I'm asking is because before I attempt this, i'm going to make sure, it's what needs to be done. Then again, would Google and others consider a I.P as it would a URL, and dubb it as duplicate content in the first place?

I would really appreciate any and all input. Thank you for taking your time to offer some help on this.


[edited by: tedster at 11:32 pm (utc) on Aug 11, 2012]


 11:44 pm on Aug 11, 2012 (gmt 0)

When you say your site "is available through the new dedicated, unique I.P addy" you are describing a situation that is ALWAYS true for any website. You can use the IP address in the browser's location bar instead of the domain name and still access the site.

The issues come up if and when Google starts to index your pages USING the IP address. That can be one kind of canonical issue, and although it is really rare that it causes a problem, it certainlt can happen.

I assume I need to do a 301 redirect; pointing the I.P to the URL, so that my site is only accessed via my URL.

Whether there is a current problem or not, it is a good preventative measure. In fact there are scores of possible canonical issues, not just the IP address issue.

While you're in the business of fixing one, why not fix them all? Here's a link to a thread in our Apache forum that offers you the "master fix" for almost every kind of canonical problem, including the IP address issue: A guide to fixing duplicate content & URL issues on Apache [webmasterworld.com]


 2:08 am on Aug 12, 2012 (gmt 0)

Thanks a ton Ted. This is surely what I was looking for. I'm going to devour that link, inside and out.

Is there an easy solution to fixing crawl errors, or a guide you can recommend per crawl errors, other than what Google has to say?

Thanks a lot!


 7:01 pm on Aug 12, 2012 (gmt 0)

There's no one guide for fixing all crawl errors because there are so many different types and reasons behind them. The thing to realize is that the phrase "crawl error" just means the crawler returned an error. It doesn't necessarily mean that the site owner MADE and error and now needs to fix it.

What we should fix is an educated decision that we need to make for ourselves, based on our own study and knowledge of the technical situation.

Robert Charlton

 1:43 am on Aug 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

Hi gregorysmith... It might help you to take a look at the threads in the canonical issues area of the Duplicate Content section, that's posted in our Hot Topics [webmasterworld.com] thread (which is always pinned to the top of this forum's index page). I think you'll find it interesting and helpful.

Once you get some of the vocabulary down, so you know what to search for, using WebmasterWorld's site search can also be extremely helpful... or just do a site search in Google...

site:webmasterworld.com your search query

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