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NDSU Search + CMS

NDSU Search is a service separate from CMS. CMS interacts with NDSU Search with the following caveats.

For department pages, a search box is included as part of the NDSU template and is configured to attempt to filter out content for your department only vs. all NDSU Web content. Since a site is defined at the domain level (meaning www.ndsu.edu is the site), the search service itself doesn't recognize your CMS department pages as a "site," so attempt to filter is said loosely.

Further, there is a chicken-and-egg dilemna when it comes to your department page go-live and indexing it in the NDSU Search service:
1, If your department page isn't live, there is no content available to crawl and index.
2, When it goes live, you want it to be in the index right away. But the crawler must first be configured so that its next crawl on the following Saturday can include your now-live content.

In the end, there will be a delay from the time your department pages go live to the time the content is available in NDSU search results. Generally the delay is 7-10 days.

Availability to search engines

Any page or content that is published can be accessed by search engines regardless of whether the department page is live.

You should verify that no published content in your workspace contains information that is confidential or inappropriate.  This includes pages with dummy content (like "this page/site is under construction"), public announcements that are not ready for distribution, or drafts of documents that require some sort of approval by the state or other governing entity.

The easiest way to keep work in progress from the eyes of search engines is to NOT publish it.  Leave work in progress in the editing stage until it is ready for the public.

Another option for avoiding indexing

If it is not possible to leave the page unpublished, you should hide the page or any unpolished page content before publishing it.

Flag pages with "do not search"

On occasion, there will be pages that you do not want appear in search results, such as "thank you" receipts to Web forms.  The solution below is designed to work well with the NDSU search service, and has been observed to work with Google Search but other search engines may have their own requirements.  While this procedure will prevent indexing of your page in most cases, you still should not keep truly confidential information on any Web hosting service.

To set the "do not search" flag,

  1. Edit the page properties for the page that should not appear in search results
  2. On the Behavior tab, check the Include in Search Disable checkbox
  3. Save and publish the page as usual

This will flag the page so that it is not included in the NDSU search.  It will also set a "meta tag" to instruct other search engines (like Google) not to index the page but does not guarantee those search engines will obey the rule.

Behavior of "Last updated"

The Last update field value in Page Properties (Metadata tab) will be affect the display value of the Last updated date in the footer of the page.

The Last update field value will not be used for purposes of determining the actual last updated date for search engines.  This is because a page should be re-indexed if it is modified, even if you choose to override the in-page last-updated display.


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North Dakota State University
IT Help Desk: +1 (701) 231-8685
Physical address: IACC 206, 1320 Albrecht Blvd., Fargo, ND 58102
Mailing address: NDSU Dept. 4530 / PO Box 6050 / Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Page manager: Content Management System

Last Updated: Monday, December 03, 2012 6:10:50 PM