[thesite] anchors and 6 possible URL formats

Daniel J. Cody djc at starkmedia.com
Mon Apr 16 10:02:37 CDT 2001

jeff wrote:
> :~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> : From: Daniel J. Cody
> :
> : jeff wrote:
> : > that's the problem though.  matt has brought
> : > up a valid issue of there being too many url
> : > formats to get to an article.  i think that's
> : > a valid concern.
> :
> : I'm not introducing any new URL formats. Sure its
> : a valid concern, but its got nothing to do with
> : the redirecting.
> :~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> sure it does.  instead of using the article title, the redirect has the
> string "301" in the article title's place.  at the very least that should be
> fixed so it's consistent with the rest of the links on the site to that
> article.

I didn't realize this was such an issue all the sudden. I mean, we're
using other things besides '301' in 5 or 6 other places. But ya, sure we
could use the article title there instead. I put 301 in there for a
couple reasons though; 1.) To track which sites were sending us the most
'old school' URL's. That way, we could manually contact those people and
have them update their links and over the course of a month or two have
almost zero 'old school' URL's coming into our site anymore, fixing the
problem for good. 2.) I didn't feel like putting more shit in there than
I needed.. When i was working on it, I recall something being in the
code that made me say 'Too much trouble/DB processing time' or something
like that.. And since DB processing time seems to be such a big issue
lately, maybe its not a bad call..

> no, i didn't miss isaac's post.  however, i did miss a response to that one
> saying that something was going to be done about it and talking about
> possible solutions -- as i've been brought to task for recently.


> if we're going to go this route with it, then why not make the entire
> old-style url 404 handling app perform a redirect for all old urls and not
> just articles?

Seeing that 99.5% of all old school URL's that we were worried about
were for articles, I didn't see it a pressing need to give 301's for
people that may have bookmarked a users information page(for example). 
But ya, whatever..

> :~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> : To be clear, someone comes in with an old(evolt 1.0)
> : URL like /index.cfm?menu=8&cid=444 - walker and you
> : put that script together that would query the database,
> : put together a new URL and display it on a page telling
> : people to update their bookmarks. The problem with that
> : whole scenerio though is that spiders weren't updating
> : their 'bookmarks', hence the problem.
> :~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> yes, i agree.  that was a problem.  that's why i was asking if there was
> some sort of meta tag or header we can send when displaying the "fix your
> bookmarks" page that would instruct the search engines to update as well
> along with the proper new link to the resource.

I'll recycle this one more time:

"To correct the problem, I have Cold Fusion return a 301
status code which stands for "Moved Permanently" along
with a "Location" field informing the client where the
document can now be found."

> that's the sort of header i was looking for.  i was just looking for
> something that didn't involve a redirect so the user could be prompted to
> fix things on their end.

Its up to the client software how to handle the 'location' field in the
header. Apparently, most browsers seem to do a complete redirect to the
new URL. Its more important that search engines get our content IMO than
making sure 50-75 people out there are made aware that they should
update their bookmarks.


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