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‘X-Robots-Tag’ http header

X Robots Tag is used to control more data then Robots.txt file and Robots Meta Tag. The X-Robots-Tag can be used as an element of the HTTP header response for a given URL. Any directive that can be used in an robots meta tag can also be specified as an X-Robots-Tag. Here’s an example of an HTTP response with an X-Robots-Tag instructing crawlers not to index a page:

X-Robots-Tag: noindex

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Tue, 25 May 2010 21:42:43 GMT
(…)
X-Robots-Tag: noindex
(…)

Multiple X-Robots-Tag headers can be combined within the HTTP response, or you can specify a comma-separated list of directives. Here’s an example of an HTTP header response which has a noarchive X-Robots-Tag combined with an unavailable_after X-Robots-Tag.

X-Robots-Tag: noarchive & unavailable_after

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Tue, 25 May 2010 21:42:43 GMT
(…)
X-Robots-Tag: noarchive
X-Robots-Tag: unavailable_after: 25 Jun 2010 15:00:00 PST
(…)

The X-Robots-Tag may optionally specify a user-agent before the directives. For instance, the following set of X-Robots-Tag HTTP headers can be used to conditionally allow showing of a page in search results for different search engines:

X-Robots-Tag: googlebot

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Tue, 25 May 2010 21:42:43 GMT
(…)
X-Robots-Tag: googlebot: nofollow
X-Robots-Tag: otherbot: noindex, nofollow
(…)

Directives specified without a user-agent are valid for all crawlers. The section below demonstrates how to handle combined directives. Both the name and the specified values are not case sensitive.

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