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Web site owners use the /robots.txt file to give instructions about their site to web robots; this is called The Robots Exclusion Protocol.
The “User-agent: *” means this section applies to all robots. The “Disallow: /” tells the robot that it should not visit any pages on the site.
There are two important considerations when using /robots.txt:
- robots can ignore your /robots.txt. Especially malware robots that scan the web for security vulnerabilities, and email address harvesters used by spammers will pay no attention.
- the /robots.txt file is a publicly available file. Anyone can see what sections of your server you don’t want robots to use.
So it is not recommended to use /robots.txt to hide information.
How to edit /robots.txt file from WebConsole:
Login to the Console using your domain name and password. From the Console screen click Administration -> Edit Robots.txt
What to put in it?
The “/robots.txt” file is a text file, with one or more records. Usually contains a single record looking like this:
In this example, three directories are excluded.Note that you need a separate “Disallow” line for every URL prefix you want to exclude — you cannot say “Disallow: /uploadedFiles/ /xml/” on a single line. Also, you may not have blank lines in a record, as they are used to delimit multiple records.
Note also that globbing and regular expression are not supported in either the User-agent or Disallow lines. The ‘‘ in the User-agent field is a special value meaning “any robot”. Specifically, you cannot have lines like “User-agent: *bot“, “Disallow: /AddToCart/*” or “Disallow: *.jpg”.
What you want to exclude depends on your server. Everything not explicitly disallowed is considered fair game to retrieve. Here follow some examples:
To exclude all robots from the entire website
To allow all robots complete access
(or just create an empty “/robots.txt” file, or don’t use one at all)
To exclude all robots from part of the website
To exclude a single robot
To allow a single robot
To include all files except one particular folder
This is currently a bit awkward, as there is no “Allow” field. The easy way is to put all files to be disallowed into a separate directory, say ‘stuff’, and leave the one file in the level above this directory:
Alternatively you can explicitly disallow all disallowed pages: