Possible GoogleBot DNS Issues Causing Indexing Issues at Google.com

Sep 11, 2007 • 8:12 am | comments (4) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

A detailed Google Groups thread is reporting various reports of webmasters claiming GoogleBot is timing out before reaching their pages.

First, these webmasters are noticing a drop in GoogleBot activity on their server. So they login to Google Webmaster Tools and see the error "We can't currently access your home page because of a timeout." Then they drill deeper to see "URL timeout: DNS lookup timeout."

This is happening for several webmasters, all on different hosts and servers.

The question is, is this a Google issue or a host issue outside of Google. Does Google need to clear their DNS cache in order to be able to recrawl these sites?

Here is one concerned Webmaster's story:

This is exactly the same problem I have!

Long time indexed, no problems, then 9/5 suddenly we start getting the 'hompage timeout' errors. Same with the site map-- DNS timeout. But Yahoo! gets the sitemap just fine, and we didn't change anything on our end-- neither in DNS zone files, nor in server setup, nor the sitemap files themselves.

Googlebot is still pulling down other files from our server, just not the sitemap and index (and robots). Indexing is down *significantly*-- so this is not just a funny coincidence.

The last download of robots.txt was: September 5, 2007 3:49:14 PM PDT. Does this match yours?

Google representative, Susan Moskwa, said she is now looking into it:

Just wanted to let you know that we're looking around to see if this is being caused by something on our end. Also, as webado noted, it helps if you post the URL in question.

We will track this thread and report back on the outcome.

Forum discussion at Google Groups.

Previous story: Google Now Has The Time After Dropping the Feature



09/11/2007 03:05 pm

I see this as well for one site, and coincidentally, that site lost rankings on the 7th . I noted this Google ripple on SEO Scoop at the time, noting also that others had been affected as well. Now I'm wondering if perhaps this DNS glitch on Google's part might not have affected the rankings of those sites.


09/17/2007 06:55 am

I'm regularly noticing this error message. Why is so? I feared that something went wrong with my site.


01/28/2008 08:11 am

I to am having this problem, google bot last succefully accessed my homepage on the 27th August but not since. I have notice my homepage now has dropped of google index. At firts I assumed a robots.txt issue...


07/26/2009 01:29 pm

Since yesterday everything was working properly in my site www.ellinas.org greek e-shop, portal, live cam, online games etc but today i checked google webmasters tools and i see that the above dns error is there and that google has not indexed any of my sitemap pages! The day before yesterday it had indexed 60+ pages! Before some days my provider changed a datacenter and they changed my website ip! They have done all proper dns declarations so my site is on air and can be visited properly however i do not see the googlebot visiting my pages anymore! Please help give me your opinion should i do something to fix this problem or should i wait until the google webmasters tools are also updated with the new ip of my web site! Please take notice that google does properly verify my site with the included html they need!

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