www. is deprecated!

Posted by reto on 18 June, 2005 18:10

My site (hugi.to) validates as no-www.org Class B!www. is deprecated is what it's all about on no-www.org. And I think they are absolutely right. "www." is 4 chars too much to be entered to reach any top level domain. My hoster did a reasonable setup of my domain by allowing http://www.hugi.to as well as http://hugi.to. The only thing I had to do to get the Class B validation is putting these lines into my .htaccess file:
# no-www.org setup
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www.hugi.to$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://hugi.to/$1 [R=301,L]
If you'd like to do the same on your site, be sure you do it in the top level folder (aka web-root). The rule will be inherited through all subfolders with one exception: subfolders which already have some special url_rewrite rules in place (like pLog has) will not inherit the rewrite rule. Make sure to update these .htaccess files with the rewrite rule and don't forget the slightly different rewrite code:
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www.hugi.to$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://hugi.to/blog/$1 [R=301,L]
no-www.org has some good explanations, why www should be avoided if possible. But there's another not less important thing to consider: The decision of unifying the access to your homepage through the setup of a permanent redirect (that's what R=301 does) might most likely improve your pageranking on google (BTW: Google doesn't validate, but at least http://google.com works) and maybe other search engines. Of course, it's not important if you decide on having www.domain.com or domain.com in this case, but don't allow both!

As an example you may have a look at one of my projects domain (it now validates as Class B, but still has different PageRanks because I did the changes only two days ago). http://kunst-und-kultur.com has a PageRank of 3 at the time of this writing while http://www.kunst-und-kultur.com has a PageRank of 4!

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Re: www. is deprecated!

oscar | 20/06/2005, 10:04

But isn't this a bit too extreme? After all, how many people still type the host names in the URL bars manually? How about bookmarks? :)

Re: www. is deprecated!

reto | 21/06/2005, 00:11

Well, people shouldn't bother about it too much. www.hugi.to still works and all the major browsers on the major platforms (Windows, Linux, MacOS) will automagically request the resource from port 80 over http if nothing else than the domain is provided. The same goes for bookmarks of course: they are equally valid, no matter if saved as http://www.hugi.to or http://hugi.to.

Does this answer your question and allay your concerns?