URLs change often, which causes problems when potential site visitors click on a link, only to receive the error message "404 - The Requested Page was Not Found." If your Joomla! website has URLs that have changed as the website has evolved, you may want to consider adding URL redirects to make them work again. Joomla! version 1.6 offers URL redirects, but if your website is using Joomla! version 1.5, you will need to install an extension to add this functionality.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Access the Joomla! version 1.6 back-end administrator control panel using the following URL:
Enter your administrator username and password. The administrator control panel will load after you log in.
Download the free "Redirect for Joomla 1.5" plug-in from the Joomla! Extension Directory to your local computer (see Resources). This extension is a direct implementation of the Joomla! version 1.6 plug-in supplied with Joomla!.
Click on "Install / Uninstall" in the Joomla! Extensions menu. Click the "Browse" button after the Extension Manager loads, and navigate to the downloaded installation file on your local computer. Double-click the file to select it and return to the Extension Manager.
Click the "Upload File & Install" button. Joomla! will install the redirect plug-in. Click "Plug-in Manager" in the Extensions menu. Locate the redirect plug-in, and click on the red circle under the Enabled column to enable the plug-in. The redirect plug-in is now able to collect URLs that generate 404 errors, which you may redirect to working URLs.
Redirect for Joomla! 1.5 Plug-in Installation
Move the mouse pointer over the Components menu, and click "Redirect" to start the Redirect Manager. The Redirect Manager will list all of the URLs that have generated 404 errors, which Joomla! 1.6 calls "Expired URLs."
Click on an expired URL. Enter a working URL to use as a substitute for the defunct URL in the Destination URL field. A good way to ensure that the correct URL is entered is to copy and paste the URL address from your browser while viewing a working page on the website.
Select "Enabled" from the drop-down list located in the Options section on the right side of the page. The default selection is "Not Enabled," and unless you change it, the URL redirect will not work.
Click "Save & Close" in the Redirect Manager menu to save the redirected URL.
Tips and warnings
- The Redirect plug-in should be enabled by default in Joomla! 1.6. You can verify this from the Extensions - Plug-in Manager screen. Just click on the red circle if it is not enabled.
- If you upgrade the Redirect for Joomla 1.5 plug-in, do not uninstall the old version first. Newer versions install directly over the old version in order to preserve the URL redirects and expired URL database tables.
- You can create redirects for URLs that have not generated a 404 error yet. Force the error by attempting to access the URL, and then add a redirect for it.
- The redirect plug-ins in both Joomla! 1.5 and 1.6 are only for redirecting links on your Joomla! site. If you need 301 redirects for multiple domain names or changed domain names, use the 301 redirect plug-in found in the Joomla! Extension Directory (see Resources).
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