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Shall I use a 301?

     
9:06 am on Feb 4, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have till now set a rule that apart from www.example.com if someone types abc/def/anything.example.com the user will get to see the contents of www.example.com This is bcuz of some old sub domains that I couldn't shut off and there were around 2k odd pages that were indexed by google.

Now that those old subdomains can be removed, shall I set a 301 permanent redirection rule for each of those subdomains so that the bots can update accordingly? For instance anything.example.com/test.html will get redirected to www.example.com/test.html
4:00 pm on Feb 4, 2010 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Administrator phranque is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

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a 301 to your canonical domain would be an improvement compared to serving all that content to multiple subdomains.
it would be better if you didn't 301 to a 404 page - i.e. redirect to a non-existent url on www.example.com.
you also have to decide what to do about wildcard subdomains.
by this i mean subdomains that don't exist and never existed.

these threads may help understand the issues:
Wildcard subdomains [webmasterworld.com]
A Records vs CNAMES vs wildcard subdomains in fail-over DNS [webmasterworld.com]
4:59 pm on Feb 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

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if subdomains exists.. then 302 would be better...
5:02 pm on Feb 5, 2010 (gmt 0)

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sorry ... i meant to say 301 would be better...