What does double slashes often found in URL's mean exactly?
Please note that I'm not referring to the beginning right after
That is an error in the programmers'/developers' code. If you compare these two URLS:
They look different but if you were to visit either, both of them would work in most modern browsers.
This is something you want to fix. If you have the double slash it could confuse Google's web crawlers and make them think there is 2 versions of the page.
As mentioned by @RandomBen, the double slash is most likely the result of an error somewhere.
That the page loads has nothing to do with the browser, but rather that the server ignores the extra slash. The browser doesn't do anything special with extra slashes in the URL, it just sends them along in the request:
It looks like current versions of Apache and IIS both will ignore the extra slashes while resolving the path and return the document that would have been returned had the URL not had extra slashes. However, browsers (I tested IE 8 and Chrome 9) get confused by any relative URLs (containing parent path components) of resources in the page, which produces bad results. For example, if a page has:
Upon loading the page
(This obviously won't happen if the URL doesn't have a parent path component (
It is my opinion that Apache and IIS (and probably others) are acting incorrectly as
If you're using Apache with
This will issue a HTTP
The double slash has a meaning when it is used in resource URL's. For example, when it is user in CSS for an URL of a background image:
Here it means this background image is fetching from a different domain other than the domain of the present web page. Or in other words,
But this double slash in between the URL's (e.g.:
As mentioned, some servers are setup to ignore a double slash in the URL path, but Amazon S3 static hosting will not. If you want to handle/ignore them in that case, you can use Redirection Rules in the properties panel.
If you want to ignore a double slash following the domain name then you could use something like this:
You can probably also find and replace them throughout, but that was enough for me.