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Google crawl errors being caused by JavaScript in our CMS?

Googlebot attempts to follow 'links' which only appear in the CMS script.

10:09 pm on Jan 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

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About 2 1/2 months ago, we started seeing crawl errors across all of our sites in Google Webmaster Tools. The phantom 'pages' all followed the same pattern:


After some investigation, we realized Google could only be pulling these strings from one location - a single line of embedded JavaScript created by our content management system. Here's an example of what the offending line looks like (this is fake code, just to help you visualize):

flmanageCM.fsrollup_mlc="/2621551/billybob/" + location.hostname + "/" + flmanageCM.fsrollup_default_pc;

In this faux example, the resulting error page would be mysite.com/2621551/billybob/. Here's where it gets weird: after about a month, all of these crawl errors started disappearing from Webmaster Tools - we thought we were off the hook. This week as the sites are being crawled, they're all coming back. So:

-Has anyone else seen a situation where Google has tried to crawl strings that look like 'folders' or 'pages' in JavaScript?
-Anyone observed recent changes in Google's protocol in handling JavaScript?

Thanks for any thoughts or observations!

7:53 am on Jan 8, 2008 (gmt 0)


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

joined:Aug 10, 2004
votes: 83

i think this has been common behavior for quite some time.

you can obfuscate your links in the javascript by url-encoding all reserved characters.


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