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I have a friend who would like to start a 'blog'.

The problem is that she would like it to be private so that only people invited can read it. So I told her to use a private WordPress. But she said she would like it to be so private that you cannot even see that the blog exists if you don't know about it.

So maybe something hosted privatly?

Any recommendations of what to look into?

  • "that you cannot even see that the blog exists if you don't know about it": What does that mean exactly? If people don’t know about it, how would they possibly see it? -- Should the existence of the blog even be hidden for users that know the URL? – unor Mar 30 '14 at 2:32
  • blogspot allows you to make your blog private and invite only. – DevZer0 Mar 30 '14 at 6:13
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1. Serverside - block Search Engines

Create a robots.txt file in your root directory and add this text to it:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

Theoretically, This should block all search engines (the ones that honour robots.txt).

2. Know how Search Engines are crawling your site and control your site's visibility.

Since you want it to be extremely private, I will recommend that you sign up with google webmaster tools and make sure that your blog is not being indexed by google.

GWT is a bit late to reflect realtime search results so you can also do a search for site:yoursite.com to keep an eye on realtime indexing.

If you see something indexed that you do not want, you can remove it using this link: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/removals

You can follow the same procedure for bing, Yahoo and any other search engines as they provide similar tools to control your site's visibility.

3. Serverside - Password protect your blog

If the content being shared is of extreme sensitive nature, I would recommend password protecting the site (and sharing password when you share the link). If you're using wordpress, here's a good plugin that will help you achieve that.

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A hosted WordPress.com blog would already seem to offer all the privacy settings you would need. Not only can this block the content from search engines, but can also be set to "invite only":

Site Visibility

Source: Site Visibility - Privacy Settings

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