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How to Create a Robots.txt File

How to Create a Robots.txt File

Web site owners use the robots.txt file to give instructions about their site to web robots; this is called The Robots Exclusion Protocol.

It works likes this: a robot wants to visit a Web site URL, say http://www.example.com/welcome.html. Before it does so, it firsts checks for http://www.example.com/robots.txt, and finds:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

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.

Where to Put it?

In simple answer: It should be located in the top-level directory of your web server.

So, How to Create a Robots.txt File? The robots.txt file is a text file, with one or more records. It usually contains a single record looking like this:

To allow all robots complete access

User-agent: *
Disallow: 

To exclude all robots from the entire server

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

To exclude all robots from part of the server

User-agent: *
Disallow: /cgi-bin/
Disallow: /tmp/
Disallow: /junk/

To exclude a single robot

User-agent: BadBot
Disallow: /

To allow a single robot

User-agent: Google
Disallow:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

To exclude all files except one

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:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /~joe/stuff/

Alternatively you can explicitly disallow all disallowed pages:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /~joe/junk.html
Disallow: /~joe/foo.html
Disallow: /~joe/bar.html

Please click here to learn more about robots.txt file.