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Adding Robots.txt file to Django Application

Robots.txt is a standard used by websites to communicate with web crawlers and other web robots. The standard specifies how to inform the web robot about which areas of the website should not be processed or scanned.


Why robots.txt is important:

Before a search engine crawls your site, it will look at your robots.txt file as instructions on where they are allowed to crawl/visit and index on the search engine results.

If you want search engines to ignore any pages on your website, you mention it in your robots.txt file.


Basic Format:

User-agent: [user-agent name]
Disallow: [URL string not to be crawled]

Example:

      User-agent: Mediapartners-Google
      Disallow:

      User-agent: TruliaBot
      Disallow: /

      User-agent: *
      Disallow: /search.html

      User-agent: *
      Disallow: /comments/*

      User-agent: Mediapartners-Google*
      Disallow:


Steps to add robots.txt in Your Django Project:

Let's say your project's name is myproject.

Create the directory 'templates' in the root location of your project.

Create another directory with the same name as your project inside the 'templates' directory.

Place a text file robots.txt in it.

Your project structure should look something like this.

myproject
 |
 |--maypp
 |--myproject
 |    |--settings.py
 |    |--urls.py
 |    |--wsgi.py
 |--templates
 |    |--myproject
 |    |   |--robots.txt


Add user-agent and disallow URL in it.

User-agent: *
Disallow: /admin/
Disallow: /accounts/


Now go to your project's urls.py file and add below import statement

from django.views.generic import TemplateView


Add below URL pattern.

urlpatterns += [
    url(r'^robots\.txt$', TemplateView.as_view(template_name="myproject/robots.txt", content_type='text/plain')),
]


Now restart the server and go to localhost:8000/robots.txt in your browser and you will be able to see the robots.txt file.


Serving robots.txt from web server:

You can serve robots.txt directly from your web server.

Below is the sample configuration for apache.

<Location "/robots.txt">
 SetHandler None
 Require all granted
</Location>
Alias /robots.txt /var/www/html/project/robots.txt

Quick Tips:
  1. robots.txt is case sensitive. The file must be named robots.txt, not Robots.txt or robots.TXT.
  2. robots.txt file must be placed in a website’s top-level directory.
  3. Make sure you’re not blocking any content or sections of your website you want to be crawled as this will not be good for SEO.


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1 comment on 'Adding Robots.Txt File To Django Application'
Login to comment

David Panofsky Aug. 15, 2020, 3:41 p.m.
Anything added to robots.txt file is an advertisement to script kiddies and malicious bots of potentially valuable endpoints. Not saying people should avoid robots.txt, just that they should be aware.

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