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Revision as of 08:09, 4 February 2022 by Wikiafripedia>Godsy (→‎Optional parameters: -cat)
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This template sets the __INDEX__ behavior switch, a magic word which instructs search engines to index the page. The only difference between the template and the magic word is that the template may optionally display a message.

On English Wikipedia, __INDEX__ and {{INDEX}} should only be used on User and User talk pages, where they override the default, which is not to index these pages.

Optional parameters

  • |visible = yes : makes the template display a line of plain text to inform editors that the page is included in search engine indexing, e.g. {{INDEX|visible = yes}} shows the message:
Please use {{INDEX}} only within the User and User talk: namespaces, as those are the only two in which it has an effect.
  • |demo = yes : makes {{INDEX}} work even if it is placed in the wrong namespace so that examples of the template can function, e.g. on this doc page – {{INDEX|visible = yes|demo = yes}} renders as:
This page has been added to search engine indexes.

Technical details

__INDEX__ overrides $wgNamespaceRobotPolicies, but not robots.txt. It obeys the $wgExemptFromUserRobotsControl variable. On English Wikipedia, MediaWiki:Robots.txt is used in lieu of $wgArticleRobotPolicies.

On English Wikipedia, the default robot policy for the entire wiki is to index all pages. This default has been overridden in these namespaces:

  • User talk is not indexed, as of September 2008
  • Draft and Draft talk are not indexed, as of December 2013
  • User is not indexed, as of November 2015

Additionally certain selected pages, primarily in Wikipedia and Wikipedia talk, are not indexed, as defined in MediaWiki:Robots.txt.

Mainspace, Draft and Draft talk are exempt from user control, so __INDEX__ is disabled in these namespaces; such use is not tracked (see below), and this template consequently has no effect there.

As all other namespaces are indexed by default, and robots.txt cannot be overridden by __INDEX__, the only namespaces where it overrides the default are User and User talk; however use in other namespaces is tracked.

Usage tracking

This template was originally used as a tracking mechanism for __INDEX__ usage; valid uses are now tracked by Category:Indexed pages.


See also