Webmasters Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for pro webmasters. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

was wondering wether searchengines index this correctly in a multilingual website:

Currently, the htaccess eats nice urls on pages like /de/somepage and rewrites them invisibly to /somepage?ln=de so the query with the language (de, fr, en, it, etcettera) is put as a folder and the current page is added after it. Resulting in a clean static url that is better cachable than the one with ?= string url (is this true by the way?)

However, some months ago there were no nice urls. only ugly ones floating on my site. imagine! Now I found out these old urls still remain roaming on the searchengines and think that these ugly ones are stretching their lifespan further than I pleased them to.

So. Would this suffice (each and every page would have its own canonical...

<link rel="canonical" href="http://website.com/fr/page444">

As well as an original-source meta:

<meta name="original-source" content="http://website.com/fr/page444""/>

Is this the right way to do it? Any and all info is +1 worth to me.

share|improve this question
up vote 2 down vote accepted

All you need is the canonical URL in your page. That's it. The example you show is fine. It does exactly what it's supposed to do: show the URL you want Google to use as the main URL for all of the possible pages showing the same content with different URLs.

The original source meta tag is only needed when republishing articles from other websites. Not for duplicated content on your own website.

share|improve this answer
Thanks very much John! Very helpful answer! (fogive me if i was bit upset for closing down the other thing. oh well.. you have earned my respect again +1 :) – Sam Dec 18 '10 at 5:53

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.