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What the heck is going on? No one but Google would know about the file, so it would seem Google is intentionally requesting file names that don't exist?
I've been having so many problems with Google listings, some of them are my fault, but I don't need Google making things worse. Any ideas?
The uppercase vs lowercase -- maybe that's a check to see if your server returns files in a case-sensitive manner? Maybe Google is trying to determine if filename.html is the same page as FileName.HTML.
I went to my account at Google Sitemaps, and noticed that the verification link had changed to lower case. I'm certain it was originally upper case, as I remember thinking how strange it was that GOOGLE was all caps.
So, at some point Google changed the file name to lower case, and I just caught it this morning. Now my site has both upper and lower case verification files. Should I remove the old upper case one, or leave it?
I'm at a loss. Maybe someone will come along who knows about the uppercase/lowercase thing.
gobbledygookblurb_noexist or whatever is a test of your missing file response - you MUST return a proper 404.
Just to be helpful - if you don't, Google will say: "Unsupported format" and not "Incorrect missing file response".
I'm just speculating, but is it possible Google changes the file name when it sees a lot of changes to a site, just to reverify the site?
So was any recommendation made by Google about changing the verification file name? I never saw anything. Should I delete the old upper case one or just leave it?
I've been working so hard to fix this site, I don't want something like this to create another problem. That I don't need, I've already created enough of them myself!
The check for the non-existent file is to make sure that the server returns a 404 for a file that doesn't exist (if the server returns a 200, then we have no way of knowing if the verification file actually exists or if the server just returns a 200 for everything).
You're seeing this activity now because last month, we started rechecking verification a little more often than before.