A few sites have recently reported getting a “404”, or “Page not found” error when trying to access individual posts or leave comments. In every case this has been easily fixed, and it’s something any Administrator can do.
What’s causing it? (You can skip this if you just want to know how to fix it!) Administrators may have noticed that under Settings they can choose various formats for their site’s links. The default setting is
http://www.edubuzz.org/myedubuzzsite/?p=123, but other choices include:
- Day and name: http://www.edubuzz.org/myedubuzzsite/2012/04/30/sample-post/
- Month and name: http://www.edubuzz.org/myedubuzzsite/2012/04/sample-post/
- Numeric: http://www.edubuzz.org/myedubuzzsite/archives/123
- Post name: http://www.edubuzz.org/myedubuzzsite/sample-post/
The part of WordPress which handles this needs to translate whichever of these “virtual” URLs it’s given, and find the actual “physical” location for posts, pages and any uploaded files they use. If this process is disrupted, the site will not be able to find posts and pages and will return the “Page not found” error.
There appears to be a “glitch” with WordPress in this area, but it very seldom causes trouble. On this occasion, we may be seeing some sort of issue arising from ongoing software upgrades.
How can I fix it? The good news is that the fix is a typical, quick, “switch it off and switch it on again” process. Here’s what Administrators need to do:
- Log in and go to Settings / Permalinks. (Permanent is the term for the “permanent link” for posts etc.)
- Note the setting in use, e.g. “Month and name”.
- Click to choose the Default setting, and click Save.
- Click back to the setting noted earlier, e.g. “Month and Name”, and click Save.
- Test to confirm links are now working.