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No Fresh Dates anywhere at all...

.. for nearly 36 hours now.

     
11:23 pm on Apr 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Fresh Dates, those little tags next to the cached link in the Google SERPs, have been missing in all SERPs for at least 36 hours, even where results have a cache copy as little as 14 hours old.

What happens next?

10:56 am on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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They reappear.
I can see them in the UK
DerekH
11:20 am on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Our main site has a fresh date of April 29 as of 1 min. ago.

Dayo_UK

11:22 am on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Fresh dates are back.

Well I cant drop the url - but there is a site that measures the rank or pulse ;) of over 1000 sites and they are showing huge changes for today.

However I am seeing little change.

2:12 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Testing this for webmasterworld:

allinurl:webmasterworld.com site:www.webmasterworld.com

finds no fresh dates or cache in the first 100 returns.

Actually, 2 cached in the 1st 162 returns.

Dayo_UK

2:48 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I guess as Webmasterworld has no cache tags it nevers gets fresh dates.

Never noticed before. - May not be true.

3:11 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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over 1000 sites and they are showing huge changes for today.

I also saw the chart that this is the largest number of changes since they started tracking the top 1000 however in checking our sites there do not appear to be any changes and the Goggle forum is very quiet.

I wonder if they access one data center that has made changes while the other DC's have remained the same?

4:52 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It took more than 10 hours for the first post in this thread to pass into public view. Minutes after posting it the situation changed:

As of 2005-04-30 at about 23:30 UTC Fresh Dates reappeared across all SERPs pretty much simultaneously, after having been missing for 36 hours.

I originally noticed them missing around midday of 2005-04-29.

2:11 am on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I thought I posted this somewhere else following a g1smd post, but I can't find it...

Anyway, looks like an update was due based on the date and a pattern of spidering I see on my site. On Wednesday my site was deep spidered by Google and that plus the date told me an update might be coming soon.

I also looked at that pulsing rank thingy but all is so quiet here. Anyway, the pattern I usually see for my site is this:

Heavy spider about 3 - 6 days before an update
Heavy spider about 7 - 10 days after an update

Repeat (in a very predictable way)

Anyway, I was deep spidered on Wednesday, so I was not surprised to see the rank thingy report, figuring that was the update. But what I am surprised to see is that Google is deep spidering my site again today. The last time that happened was in September.

Anyone else seeing Gbot spidering hard today?

2:28 am on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I too am seeing the ranking chart that all is speaking of. My site, and a couple of competitor sites seem to be out of the top 10 altogether! That's scarry looking, but I also see on other tracking sites that my site ranking is unchanged (still 3rd) and the other sites generate data from multiple DC's.

On one site, that lets you store your keywords and track your +/- in the rankings showed be at -9999 at one point earlier in the day, and just checked now and I am back to 3rd...

perhaps there is some kind of update on the way?

4:03 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Yeah, it's stale and broken, maybe someone will kick the machine?
5:27 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Gone again for all searches.

I'm possitive something is about to happen soon. Or, is happening?

5:42 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Yes. All gone as at 2005-05-02 around 17:15 UTC.
7:13 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I'm seeing major shuffle.
8:08 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I also saw the chart that this is the largest number of changes since they started tracking the top 1000

I too am seeing the ranking chart that all is speaking of.

Can someone help me out here please? What chart?

g1smd - what are you using as baseline to test with? I used webmasterworld the other day as a test. Valid?

8:11 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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At least 20 different searches, some involving sites I am associated with that usually show fresh dates every day, random searches for various "money" keywords, and things like "BBC", "CNN" etc.

Dayo_UK

8:47 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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nickied

Webmasterworld is not a good choice for checking fresh dates as Brett does not allow pages to be cached. I assume therefore that the fresh date will not be shown as there is no cache date (any chance of a backup on this thought)

9:33 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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g1smd:

At least 20 different searches . . . . BBC . . .

BBC works for me. Also perhaps my favorite, content rich site, and I'm across the pond.

Dayo_UK:

Webmasterworld is not a good choice for checking fresh dates as Brett does not allow pages to be cached.

Yes, see that now, missed it earlier in the thread.

Also, thanks to the folks who forwarded me the chart url.

Regards,

Jim

9:52 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Could somebody please send me this chart you guys are talking about. Thanks.

No worries now I've found it.

6:48 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I am now seeing the first fresh date (althought the cache did show fresh data everyday) since last Thursday.

I am also seeing a very nice [minor] change in the SERPS.

My traffic is up today via Google to the internal pages of my sites, in a major way.

:)

7:48 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Most of the DCs are almost similar to each other for the keywords I follow. Is there any DC leading the changes?

Dayo_UK

8:00 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Dcs for me are virtually always different nowadays - and have been for weeks (6-8 weeks?)

So would not know which DC is leading the way.

Seeing good Googlebot activity last night and this morning though (mostly Mozilla - did someone mention that the Mozilla bot did not add pages to the index though?)

9:16 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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So would not know which DC is leading the way

True. But in a major update, one or more DCs will have significantly different results vis-a-vis yesterday's.

9:22 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I am seeing Fresh dates now - of 1 May 2005

(no changes in keywords i observe, but thats a small sample)

... and now some 2 May fresh tags too

7:47 pm on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Major crawl going on for me right now--almost 250K pages yesterday and today.

Dayo_UK

7:41 am on May 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Hi Critter - is it Mozilla bot though :(
8:01 am on May 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Mine is:
Robot Name.......: Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +http://www.google.com/bot.html) Robot Address....: 66.249.66.174 Robot Host.......: crawl-66-249-66-174.googlebot.com

What the difference? Is that the Adsence one?

Dayo_UK

8:03 am on May 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Not sure what Mozilla Googlebot does - there are suggestion that it does not add pages to the index, or that it lays a path for regular Googlebot or that it is a duplicate content checker.

Mozilla started crawling Sun evening UK time - no pages added yet. No increase in normal Gbot activity yet.

6:44 pm on May 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Dayo -

I'd be interested in hearing how you are doing over the next month or so in Google. That Mozilla bot is a strange one, sometimes it works from the same IP address as the Adsense bot.

The theory I heard was that a visit from this bot is not a positive sign, only Google knows for sure what this critter is looking for.

I do believe that it takes compressed pages when offered.

7:25 pm on May 4, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Not sure what Mozilla Googlebot does - there are suggestion that it does not add pages to the index, or that it lays a path for regular Googlebot or that it is a duplicate content checker

For those that don't know the "Mozilla/5.0 compatible" section of the userAgent. It is derived from the days of the browser wars,

Netscape included a whole bunch on non-standard extensions to HTML in their browser such as blink and script tags.

Web designers started using these extensions in their pages, but in order to satisfy users of the other browsers, they detected the userAgent and served a standard HTML document to any browser that didn't include the term "mozilla" in its userAgent.

Since then every browser that supports these Netscape extensions has started their userAgent string with "mozilla (compatible" to make sure that these detection scripts showed the main version of the page.

In effect, the string "Mozilla" at the beginning of a userAgent has come to mean "supports javascript and other browser extensions".

Google are basically saying, this userAgent understands Javascript.

Now Just a thought...

Google is rumored to be creating a browser of their own. I guess it might be possible that this bot is actually an automated version of their in-development browser. In which case they may be testing it out on a large sample of real-world web sites.

Otherwise...

It's trying to interpret the javascript on a page in order to read data that might be embedded in javascripts.

It may be detecting cloaking. However the type of cloaking that it's detecting for is "good cloaking" i.e serving the best version of HTML that the userAgent supports. I can't see Google downranking for that.

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