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    OPAC slow; Stopping bot (robot) activity on www_server

    • Article Type: General
    • Product: Aleph
    • Product Version: 20, 21, 22, 23

    Problem Symptoms:

    * OPAC slow
    * Googlebot activity in www_server_4991.log. (See Additional information.)

    Googlebot robot/spidering activity. The following grep showed thousands of entries in the www_server logs:
    > grep -c Googlebot www_server*



    * Place a two-line file with the name "robots.txt" in the $alephe_root/apache/htdocs/ directory:

    User-agent: *
    Disallow: /

    * Restart apache and the WWW server.
    * The preceding robots.txt method is the best approach since it covers all spiders -- not just Googlebot. If that method doesn't work (because the spider is not respecting the robots.txt as it should), another approach is to exclude the spider by address.
    * For instance, if this address for the spider is seen in the www_server log: 111.333.22.111, this line could be added to the $alephe_tab/server_ip_allowed:

    W D 111.333.22..*

    * Then restart the WWW server.


    Useful grep commands

    To get an overview of potential bots, you can analyze user agent strings frequency contained in your current www server log:

    grep -i "^Header: User-Agent" $LOGDIR/www_server_4991.log | cut -f1-5 -d' ' | sort | uniq -c | sort -k1r | head -20 


    Output example:

    11360 Header: user-agent <Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; YandexBot/3.0; 
    228 Header: User-Agent <curl/7.19.7 (x86_64-redhat-linux-gnu) libcurl/7.19.7 
    58 Header: User-Agent <Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; 

    To get a list of IP addresses connected to the specific user agent string:

    grep -B5 'Header: user-agent <Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; YandexBot/3.0;' $LOGDIR/www_server_4991.log | grep "ip address: " | sort | uniq -c | sort -k1r | head -20

    Those IP addresses can be converted to IP ranges and blocked as indicated above.

    Additional Information

    Sample Googlebot entry in the www_server log:
    Header: User-Agent <msnbot/1.0 (+>

    Header: From <googlebot(at)>
    Header: User-Agent <Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1; +>
    Header: Accept-Encoding <gzip>
    2007-11-09 04:58:46 94 [000] [vrb] server_main: OUT 0.0253 31514
    2007-11-08 12:07:10 70 [001] [vrb] IN 20071108 120710
    ip address: 12.345.67.890 445
    request: "/F/89AQP7ACRU7BMT2Q91UAFQLYJN719GF4ENDY4FTMJ5UM5ACXST-33202?f


    • Article last edited: 06-June-2017