The “Server Name” mapping and “Alternate Access” mapping are two features of SharePoint which provides to alter the URL’s returned in search results. A very common practice is used by different companies is “Internal” and “External” users. These both OOTB features are available in SharePoint 2010.
Let’s see these two mapping options in detail.
1. It is designed for file sharing and also for http content.
2. You cam map any server name to anything you like (it should point to the same set of pages).
Example: If you have a site called http://info and you want to show it as www.eblogin.com. By setting up the server name mapping, you crawling will use http://info for indexing; the good thing is that user will only see www.eblogin.com
1. It is designed for “SharePoint” content.
2. It is basically used for allowing you to modify the results URL’s based on the access URL’s for a site. If you have a same page, a user accessing that page internally will get the internal URL. While if the same page is access externally the user will see the external URL.
Example: If you have same SharePoint contents, the internal user will use http://InternalEblogin to access the site (all search result are prefix with http://InternalEblogin/ ….. ), and the External users will user http://ExternalEblogin/ to access site (all search result are prefix with http://ExternalEblogin /…. ).
3. It does not require a crawl for the setting to take effect.
4. It will generate result based on how the site is being accessed.
5. It will configured at farm level, now if you have more than one search service application in your farm, all of them will be using “Alternate Access mapping”
Using the combination of Server name and Alternate access mapping you can manage URL mapping in search results.