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Redirect may cause pages dropped from Google in dex
If I only undertstood what's going :o)

 3:27 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have got a website with almost 1000 pages; 800 where on Google's index in Oct 2010; today there are only 85!

From what I can recall doing in October:
a) I added code to redirect example.com to www.example.com
b) added a hotlink prevention script for resources
c) removed references to the default page (show.asp) in all URLs, because of the planned move to PHP (and the changing extension)

... and left the site alone; until I checked my Google stats today

This is what is desired:
1. any link to the site should be www.example.com/?topic=n
not showing www.example.com/show.asp?topic=n

2. I have a link rel=canonical www.example.com/?topic=n in the HTTP header for all pages

Google Webmaster Tools report under Crawl Errors:
www.example.com/?topic=123 redirect error unavailable
for both "sitemap" and "not followed"

Using FireBug to read the headers shows a HTTP 200 for all www.example.com/?topic=123 pages
.. and shows the 302 for any example.com/?topic=123 pages then directed to www.example.com/?topic=123

I am at the end of my wisdom, and do not understand why my pages have dropped off.

My aim with the canonical was to get rid of duplicate contents, which was recommended by the WebMasterTool; I feel in doing so, I killed my site, and subsequent AdSense $$.

Any hints would be much appreciated.



 3:33 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

My first question is why a 302 and not a 301?

www.example.com/?topic=123 redirect error unavailable

Did it have this error for all pages or just the one?

Google does seem to error for unknown reasons at times, if it's just the one, don't sweat it.


 4:07 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

My favourite poster :) Bill!

Apologies it shows a 301!

... and it does it on all pages...


 4:10 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

I was inspired by your lively expressions on hot linkers...
My traffic went up 100 times!
... and Form spammers... all truly gone now! :)

Except I am gone off the index too :(
And this one I do not get...


 4:20 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Has to be something about your rewrite rules Google doesn't like.

Post them and replace your domain with example.com so we can see if anything is obvious.


 4:31 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

At the beginning of the index page (show.asp for all pages) there is this code:

If InStr(strServerName, "www") = 0 Then
With Response
.Status="301 Moved Permanently"
If Len(strQueryString) = 0 Then
.AddHeader "Location","http://www." & strHost & "/"
.AddHeader "Location","http://www." & strHost & "/" & "?" & strQueryString
End if
End With
End if


 4:52 am on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

HTML <head>:
<link rel="home" href="/" />
<link rel="canonical" href="http://www.sub.example.net/?topic=840"/>

for this URL: [sub.example.net...]
and FireBug shows the HTTP result code = 200

Same <head>
for this URL: [sub.example.net...]

redirects to this URL: [[b][...]
and FireBug shows the HTTP result code = 200

and the next line
and FireBug shows the HTTP result code = 304

Maybe I need to use another tool to see the headers?


 11:16 pm on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Took a quick look, didn't see anything obviously wrong.

A good tool that will help with headers for FF is Live Headers, I use it all the time.

You might just have to wait for them to crawl again.

What was the last time Google updated this on WMT?


 11:36 pm on Apr 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks Bill, much appreciated...

The last update was on Apr 21, 2011

I made the canonical change in Oct 10, in Nov I noticed some decline in hits, AdSense, etc. ... the website did not need much attention of the past year due to stable performance... when I checked a few days ago, my chin feel down seeing that there are on ly 80 something links in the Google index.

Usually I attend every 14 days or monthly to the stats, but I spent all spare time on rewriting the site from ASP to PHP.

Given that you can't see anything wrong, I will remove the canonical stuff, because www and non-www duplicate content never seem to have hurt my site. Hence, I rather take this risk than dropping off the radar altogether.

Let's consider my issue as resolved.
Thank you!


 7:05 am on Apr 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

Google reported redirect errors up to Apr 28.

I switched to PHP today (05:00:00 UTC) :)

Will see what this means for these errors.

Thanks for looking into it... and thanks Bill for the Live Headers plug-in for FF -- very nice, more so useful!

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