MSNBot 1.1 is retired

The Bing team has been talking about its new crawler (aka bot), MSNBot 2.0b, in this blog for quite some time now. We have made numerous improvements in its performance, addressed some webmaster concerns, and published detailed information on how to control the bot with a robots.txt file. Today we are announcing that the new bot is fully operational. This development will enable Bing to do a better job at gathering the information we need from the myriad of websites we index worldwide.

As MSNBot 2.0b enters full-scale production, the time has come to retire our previous generation bot, MSNBot 1.1. By the end of the first week in November, you will no longer see the following user agent in your referrer logs:

msnbot/1.1 (+http://search.msn.com/msnbot.htm)

The only Bing user agent you will see in your logs from this point forward will be this, our new bot:

msnbot/2.0b (+http://search.msn.com/msnbot.htm)

This event is a major milestone for the Bing engineering team, and we look forward to the positive developments that this bot will bring to our search engine index and thus to Bing customers. We want to specifically thank all those webmasters who provided us with valuable feedback as we ramped up the production of the new bot. Your assistance and cooperation was essential to making this milestone happen.

Stay tuned for more information about this and other developments from the Bing engineering team. We’ll have a lot more to talk about in the coming weeks and months.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to post them in our Crawling/Indexing Discussion forum. Be back at you soon…

— Rick DeJarnette, Bing Webmaster Center

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