Hosting Tutorial & Guide

How to Use Redirect Manager in Joomla 3 to Redirect a Page

updated on May 08, 2015
How to Use Redirect Manager in Joomla 3 to Redirect a Page Redirect Manager is an important tool introduced in Joomla 1.6. It allows administrators to redirect invalid web pages to working URLs. When there is no redirection, a page that does not exist or has been removed causes a 404 not found error, but if there is one, visitors to that page will be led to a valid URL with good content.

The proper use of Redirect Manager not only helps a website keep and please visitors by serving them with quality content, but also prevents it from being penalized by search engines due to a lot of inaccessible pages.

This tutorial provides simple guides for using the Redirect Manager in Joomla 3.x to create and manage redirections. The creation and management are quite easy, but there are some things that require special attention. For example, before accessing and using the Redirect component, you have extra tasks to complete.

Enable Redirect Plugin

By default, the Redirect plugin is deactivated. In this case, you cannot use redirections because the system does not allow you to do that. To get the plugin enabled, you have to go Extensions > Plugin Manager, browse through the lists of plugins and find the line for System – Redirect. If the icon before the plugin name is a symbol of "checked", you do not need to do anything, but if not, click on the button to activate the plugin. After the plugin is activated, there will be a message showing up saying "Plugin successfully enabled."

Enable Redirect Plugin

Enable URL Rewriting

To ensure that URL rewriting is allowed is another prerequisite of successful redirections. To get this done, you have two steps to follow, among which the first one is to deal with the Global Configuration.

In the Joomla control panel, go to System > Global Configuration, locate the SEO Settings, turn on Search Engine Friendly URLs and Use URL rewriting, and then click Save on the upper left of the page. Note that Use URL rewriting works only when the option above it is checked.

SEO Settings

The step 2, then, is to change a file on your server to make URL rewriting effective. Assumed that you are using Apache web server, you should log into your web hosting control panel, use the file manager to open the directory of your Joomla installation, and then rename the file "htaccess.txt" to be ".htaccess". If you want to remove index.php from website URLs, you also need to do this.

Rename htaccess.txt

Redirect a Page with Redirect Manager

Here comes the most important part – to create a redirection for an invalid page. To make an example, if we would like to create a redirection from http://joomladomain.com/index.php/2-uncategorised/10-my-test-article-1 (an article that has been deleted) to http://joomladomain.com/index.php/2-uncategorised/11-new-article-for-redirection, the following steps are going to be needed.

Steps 1: Log into Joomla admin panel and open Components > Redirect.

Redirect Component

On the Redirect Manager page, you can see a list of broken links which are categorized under Expired URL. Not the URLs for all the articles that are deleted or moved show in the list, because only when a page is visited by someone and returns a 404 Article not found error, will it be logged and listed by Redirect Manager.

In our testing, we deleted an article and then visited it with its old URL, so we have got a list like this.

Expired URL

Step 2: Now you should click on the broken URL that you would like to create a redirection. On the edit page, you can see that the Source URL has already been filled in, so you only need to fill in the Destination URL. The destination URL means the URL that you want visitors to go when they try to visit the broken source URL. So we entered this link:

http://joomladomain.com/index.php/2-uncategorised/11-new-article-for-redirection

Note that both the source URL and the destination URL must be complete links starting with http:// or https:// instead of a part like those links shown under Expired URL.

Also, do not forget to change the Status from "Disabled" to "Enabled", or the redirection will not take effect. At last, click on the button saying Save.

Edit Link

Now going back to the Redirect Manager, you can find that the destination URL appears under New URL. You can also check whether the redirection is successful by visiting the old URL to see where it takes you to.