Direct post link problem

Discussion in 'Errors / Problems' started by HoHun, Jan 18, 2009.

  1. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi everyone,

    I think I have finally understood why some people have problems with the direct links to specific posts I have been posting:

    If a direct link to a forum post is generated, the URL follows the pattern:

    - <Base-URL><Thread-Name-and-ID><"-"><Page-Number><"#post"><Post-ID>

    However, the page number count depends on the user settings for posts per page, so the result is not always the correct post.

    For example, if I try to link post #70, it's on page 4 for someone who uses 20 posts per page, but on page 2 for someone who uses a 40 posts-per-page display.

    This also affects Google search results for this forum: I have set the forum to display the maximum number of posts per page, and if I use Google to find a post here, clicking the link with the search results usually takes me to a completely wrong location in the correct thread because Google builds its links for the default number of posts per page.

    I hope my interpretation of what I'm seeing is correct. I have to admit that I don't see an easy fix for this - it's probably something the forum software programmers would have to address, not something the forum administration here could handle.

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  2. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Yeah I don't think there is anything that can be done about it by the admins here.

    It seems like it is something the developers of the forums software (VBulletin) haven't addressed. You would think it would be easy enough to initiate a recode of this section so that is address the number of posts on each page.

    However this would probably won't affect how Google displays the results because the links will be generated in the default form (20 posts per page). As a result it will probably only affect how you link to posts (have you tried seeing what the link to the post looks like at limit (is the same as at 20 posts per page)? If it is then it probably is going to require quite a recode...
     
  3. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Gnomey,

    >However this would probably won't affect how Google displays the results because the links will be generated in the default form (20 posts per page). As a result it will probably only affect how you link to posts (have you tried seeing what the link to the post looks like at limit (is the same as at 20 posts per page)?

    It's my impression that when I'm logged in, the Google links take me to incorrect locations, which would be consistent with the links depending on the posts-per-page counts set by the user (as I don't use the default setting here).

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  4. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    OK. I think the problem you have is what I was trying to explain. As Google uses the 20 posts per page (unlogged in users use this and Google searchbots are generally unlogged in users). Thus when it is indexing the page it indexes it how it sees it (i.e. 20 posts per page) from which it produces a link shown in the search results. With this link (based on 20 posts per page) it directs you to the correct thread but the wrong section because of the way you have the forum laid out. At least that is my impression of it (which is probably wrong).
     
  5. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Gnomey,

    >OK. I think the problem you have is what I was trying to explain.

    Ah, yes - exactly!

    The same problem also occurs with manually copied URLs as the URLs obviously are only pseudo-URLs (which generally is good practice). Of course, if the pseudo-URLs are not resolved to point to the same content regardless of user settings, this is confusing (and probably not what the programmers intended).

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
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