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I prefer to use a cross domain canonical instead of 301:

<link rel="canonical" href="http://example.net/dirA" />

is it OK for SEO purposes?

Is it better than meta refresh like this?

<meta http-equiv=refresh content="0; url=http://example.net/dirA" />
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    What are you trying to accomplish? – John Conde Oct 13 '16 at 12:49
  • I basically want to redirect as much link force as possible to a new domain without serverside 301 – Tom Oct 13 '16 at 13:10
  • Using meta refresh will not do it. In fact, it is seen as extreme low quality and can indicate that you have a spammy site. You are always far better off using a 301 redirect on the server side. You can create this using PHP or using some other mechanism such as the .htaccess file. Why are you hesitant to use the proper tools for this?? – closetnoc Oct 13 '16 at 15:58
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Meta refresh is much slower and not recommended but it is your next best option if a server side redirect isn't possible. As Moz says:

Meta refreshes do pass some link juice, but are not recommended as an SEO tactic due to poor usability and the loss of link juice passed. — Moz

Here's a quote from Google Webmaster:

This meta tag sends the user to a new URL after a certain amount of time, and is sometimes used as a simple form of redirection. However, it is not supported by all browsers and can be confusing to the user. The W3C recommends that this tag not be used. We recommend using a server-side 301 redirect instead. — Google Webmaster

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