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Last Post by MartyMcFly
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Maybe you could enlighten me, out of interest.

a. Why would a Search Engine Ping an empty page?
b. How did you find these pages?
c. Why would the message provided not be sufficient for anyone else who managed to find these pages?

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a. Why would a Search Engine Ping an empty page?

it wouldn't ping, but it might query a page, these pages aren't empty, they just have no useful content. A search engine might query such a page through another website. And with the combination of link rot it could access it. Another way of thinking of it: Suppose someone links to one of the discussions. And in about a year dani decides she wants to clear out the database (for whatever reason), say all topics over 3 years old get erased automatically. Now some user now has a link to page that no longer exists. And that's how a webpage would query such a page.

b. How did you find these pages?

Those link that is used is a tell tell signature of a mod_rewrite url. And since the forum auto increments on it's topic id, I just raised the anti and created a topic id that was significantly bigger.

c. Why would the message provided not be sufficient for anyone else who managed to find these pages?

This message is suffecient to a person reading the page, but is not to any machine scavaging the site. A machine cannot read the page and realise it is an error page, it relies on http standards to tell it that it is an error page

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I think the point is, though, that no bot would access those "pages", because they aren't linked to... there is no link to "follow" to non-existent forums and/or threads.

I suppose, in theory, your example of a moved thread, might occur, and in any case, the advice to create a 404 page is valid.

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
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