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Is there anyone who can tell me about what's going on? Is this an old issue or totally new experience?
Unfortunately, the expert on this phenomenon is no longer with us (but perhaps he has a ghostly presence).
"new" is time relative. If you mean in the last 2 months the answer is no.
Since Nov/Dec 2002 Google has applied a number of filters. They don't always catch sites on day 1 or even month 3. But, eventually you might get damaged by one or more.
I suggest you create a few test sites that only exist for the purpose of testing the Google Algo. If they get "hit" for some filter reason then you can use them as an early warning system for your real site(s).
Of course it doesn't prevent all damage, but it can be used to quickly back track on some of those that Google is about not to like :)
If this is a bug, I should admit it's doing the job perfectly. It choses only some of the top10-20 web sites of the some very competitive search terms.
You know what I mean, most of the dissappeared sites should join adwords to survive.
If it's a bug, I should name it "Google"!
When you ask for the domain name without the slash, the web server will try to find a file called "www.domain.com". As it is not able to find such a file, it will look for a directory with that name in stead. As it finds the directory it will redirect the request to the directory (folder) in stead and serve a "302 Found" status code.
Server header checker: [searchengineworld.com...]
(Try, eg. yahoo.com without the trailing slash)
Server status codes: [w3.org...]