Meta tag authentication frustration resolved (From the Forums)

Today’s installment of the From the Forums column involves a user who had difficulties getting the required authentication code installed on the default page of her website so she could take advantage of the Bing Webmaster Center tools.

The customized authentication code issued by Bing Webmaster Center ensures that only the site owner who registered with Webmaster Center can get access to the detailed information about the site as collected by the Bing search crawler. Unfortunately, some users have difficulty in getting the authentication code installed. As a result, Webmaster Center cannot validate the site owner logon process and thus blocks access to the site’s data through the tools.

Bing Webmaster Center offers two methods of installing the authentication code onto a website:

  1. Upload a Bing-provided XML file containing the code to the root directory of the website
  2. Add a custom <meta> tag containing the code to the website’s default page

This process is explained in detail in the Webmaster Center online Help topic Authenticate your website.

Forums volunteer Archie Watts assessed the likely situation and shared his experiences with how to manage the authentication process. The issue in question appeared to stem from the same problem/solution recently added to the Webmaster Center FAQ:

Q: I’m not able to gain access to Webmaster Center with the authentication code used in a <meta> tag. Can you help?

A: The Webmaster Center online Help topic Authenticate your website recommends using a <meta> tag formed as follows:

<meta name=”msvalidate.01″ content=”0123456789ABCDEF0123456789ABCDEF” />

However, some users attempt to combine the flow of authentication codes for multiple sites in the <meta> tags. If you must use the <meta> tag method of authentication (as opposed to the XML file authentication method as described in the Help topic), we recommend placing your Bing Webmaster Center authentication code last so that it is not followed by a space. In addition, Webmaster Center does look for the proper XHTML-based closing of the <meta> tag – the ” />”, so be sure to use this closing in your code.

To see the forum conversation thread, check out Why can’t I change my site’s profile or update contact info or even go to the Profile page??? in the General Questions and Feedback forum. Many thanks to Archie Watts for his excellent contribution to the Bing Webmaster Center forum community!

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to post them in our Webmaster Center forums. See you again soon…

— Rick DeJarnette, Bing Webmaster Center

Join the conversation

  1. Quality Directory

    "From The Forums" column is a great encouragement to members who spend their precious time helping out other site owners in need.

    Keep it up, Rick!

  2. Seattle SEO

    Thanks for fixing this, I'll upload it soon and see if it works. Thanks again.

  3. Kareena

    Thanks for the post

  4. Brainwork Technologies

    Hi Rick,

    this is very useful post to install webmaster authenticity for any webiste.

    Great post


    brainwork technologies

  5. givelord

    Very helpful and professional article, congratulations!

  6. toscho

    Wait … the Webmaster software uses an XML parser that understands application/xhtml+xml?

  7. conran

    Thanks for the info, but it still isn't working!

    I've tried this several times now and nothing is working. The help section is really poor too and just tells me what I already know. It doesn't offer any solution or even explain the problem beyond what the original error report states.

    Just about ready to give up on Bing totally.

  8. accurategaragedoor

    I used a website builder to build my site and I can't figure out how to get authenticated with bing. I do not have XML experience, but I did paste the code on my website, not sure where it was supposed to go! Can you help??

  9. Brett Yount


    If you are experiencing difficulties authenticating your site in our tools and have verified that you have properly placed either the authentication meta tag within your <head> section as outlined by Rick or have a valid XML file located at the root of your domain, please contact me at and I will work with you.  

    Thank you,

    Brett Yount

    Bing Forums

  10. novintabligh

    Thanks for fixing and update on this issue.

  11. rlance2010

    ihave a office lie web site and the only place to put meta tags is in page properties i tried puting the meta tag in but it still wont work

  12. xdra

    Meta tag works fine, but XML verification doesn't work so far.

  13. Seika

    Would be nice if Bing had authentication for blogs without access to the folder nor changing meta tag though.

    Something like searching for a special authentication string in the post for example.

    Not just for those who can’t afford hosting their own blog engine but also for those that by choice used hosted blog service.

  14. jeffreymsherman

    I have uploaded the XML file to the root directory and I've installed the meta data code but still can't access my site.  Are others having this same issue?

    How do I fix the problem?

Comments are closed.