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Thread: What is the difference between .htaccess and robots.txt?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Bangalore, India

    What is the difference between .htaccess and robots.txt?

    Please someone let me know the difference between these two:

    .htaccess and robots.txt

  2. #2
    .htaccess is a file that is giving right to all the visitors and robots.txt is only for search engine crawlers

  3. #3
    .htacess is for Apache server only. robots.txt is normal text file

  4. #4
    A more detailed explanation:

    The robots.txt file is a simple text file (as the name suggests) that is just for bots and spiders (web crawlers) to look at for reference. It can contain a list of what pages/directories are not supposed to be index or crawled by the bots. It can also be ignored by them and often is by 'bad' bots from unscrupulous sites like phishers and spammers. It should not be relied on to keep anything out. It is a purely passive 'read only' type file and is a suggestion rather than an instruction. It can usually be seen just by typing it's name in a browser bar and is not hidden.

    The .htaccess file is an apache server system file that can contain instructions for the server to carry out given certain conditions. Like blocking IP's or rewriting webpages or redirecting error pages and such. This can be relied on to perform it's job like keeping out spammers etc. and would be what you should use for guaranteed functions. It cannot be ignored and is an 'active' type file that must be obeyed. It is hidden from view and cannot be accessed by visitors.

    Summary: robots.txt = suggestions & .htaccess = instructions (system file).

    I hope that's clear now
    If I can't be a good example, I'll just have to be a terrible warning...

  5. .htaccess is a server file, and really can only be "seen" by the server or the website owner.

    robots.txt is a public file that anyone, mainly search engines, can see.
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