shtml and search engines

Ok, i am not sure where to ask this so i will ask it here as i am using perl SSI.

I am working on making a site with a shopping cart, i want to add in some nice features (using SSI) but i need to be sure that using ssi will not hurt my search engine rankings, does anyone know if using ssi will hurt my rankings on search engines?

also, i was told that using blah.cgi?blah=blah&blah=blah is looked down on through search engine bots, is this true? the site i am building is going to be in a VERY flooded market so search engine ranking is going to be vital to my success.

Thank you for any help.
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A: Search engines cannot tell whether you are using SSI if you arrange your web server (can I assume it's Apache) to process certain .html files for SSI. See the comments about the XBitHack at

B: Most bots will not spend time looking at dynamically generated pages from a URL that's clearly a CGI script. If you want the content to be spidered, you have to arrange for the bot to think it's a bunch of static web pages.

tcompanyAuthor Commented:
do i need to have root access to do this or can i do this just in selected directories with .htaccess file?
I don't know for certain, but my reading of that documentation page indicates you can put the directives in a .htaccess file.

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FWIW, Google indexes our cgi pages just fine.
A.(as said) a robot does not see any SSI
B. "I am using perl SSI"
   what does this mean? perl does not use SSI.
   If your perl generates pages with SSI, your web Server most likely does not deliver what you expect' I only know of apache 2.x which can do that (if configured properly)
C. pages with SSI can be part of .htaccess, you even can include only parts which are protected
Nothing has happened on this question in more than 8 weeks. It's time for cleanup!

My recommendation, which I will post in the Cleanup topic area, is to
split points between jmcg and ahoffman.


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