WordPress Weekend Project - Broken Link Checker

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Attribution License by koka_sexton

This website and blog has gone through a number of changes since I started it in February 2007. The blog was originally on Blogger on a sub domain, then moved into WordPress on the same sub domain. Eventually I merged the original website and blog together, and most recently I changed servers, add that up with blog being online since 2007 and there are bound to be some broken links.

I have talked about checking for broken links in the past will let you do this and makes running a link check on your WordPress driven website and blog an easy to accomplish task.

brokenlinksIt has been awhile since I have run a link check on my website so I thought this would be the perect time tom try the Broken Link Checker plugin a try. I have to say I am impressed. It shows that I have 1709 external links and of that there are 57 broken links. Finding the broken links is nice, but once the broken links are found you have some additional choices on how to manage that link. You can click on “Details” to find out more about the link, how many times it has failed a link check, the HTTP code the link returns and all kinds of great geeky good log information. You can choose “Unlink” which remove the link from all posts, great for those links that you know are simply gone. You can click “Exclude” the link from being checked. You can also click “Edit URL” which will allow you to edit the URL and quickly and easily fix the link if you know what it is. This is be far the nicest feature, allowing you to quickly and easily fix the broken link without having to open the post editor and search for the link. In the event that Broken Link Checker has found a link that it thinks is broken but is actually correct you can choose “Discard” to mark the link as valid.

The Broken Link Checker also can add custom CSS to broken links so your readers can see that something is not quite right with the link. The default CSS is to put a strike through on the broken link but I am sure the more creative types could make it do more. That comes in handy because there are times when you might not want to remove the link. For example on my The Really Big List of Social Bookmarking Websites post you can see which social bookmarking sites are no longer available.

The default for link check is every 72 hours. I did not run any kind of test to see what kind of load the plugin puts on the server. Blogs on shared hosting might have an issue with the plugin, so if you install it you might want to increase the number of hours between runs. Something to be aware of if you install the plugin.

Now that I have the list of broken links I guess I need to fix some of them up at least. Check out the WordPress Broken Link Checker plugin, a great weekend WordPress project to improve your WordPress powered website and blog.

Categories: wordpress