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Gwmt - Messed Things Up Again


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#1 1dmf

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 06:06 AM

just a heads up in case no-one has noticed, GWMT has changed the criteria for their verification file.

before it was just the name of the HTML file that mattered, so I used to use a zero byte file.

now the file has to contain a specific line of text.

Damn you Google, I have an automated system for all our white labelled website users and now I have to go recode the verification file portion because of this.

Can anyone think of a valid reason for this change? I can't, if you know the name of someones google file name, you can also now add the same text, so what's the point?

I guess i'm missing something like usual!

#2 Randy

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 09:36 AM

I can take a guess 1dmf. wink1.gif

Let's say someone has their server misconfigured like so many seem to be out there, so that a missing page actually gets a 200 OK server response. On those servers it would look like that specially named file existed, even if it didn't. In effect allowing anyone who felt like it to run a few nonsense queries against any and all sites, looking for one that deliver 200 OK responses to a few nonsense file names. And when they found one of these misconfigured servers they could "claim" all of the domains on each of these server in WMT.

Why anyone would want to do that is beyond me. But they certainly could.

By forcing the file to contain some site specific text string removes this possibility completely from the equation.

#3 1dmf

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 09:40 AM

Knew there had to be an explanation, cheers Randy.

Certainly was a pain in the butt finding this out when trying to do some housekeeping for new members websites, i always wait a bit to give them a chance to add the website content via the CMS before telling google about them and uploading their site map.

Sometime it works , sometimes G! beats me to it.

At least I found out now, i will give G! some credit, it didn't affect domains already verified which use the zero byte file, only when trying to add new ones.

One small consolation I guess!




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