URL Method is the term used to describe the way a URL is formed. Pligg offers 2 options:
Method 1 = dynamic urls (default)
Method 2 = static urls
Dynamic vs Static urls
Dynamic urls contain variables and are typically seen on database driven sites like blogs and forums. A static url does not contain any variables and does not change. Static urls are easier for your users to read. They are also sometimes ranked higher by search engines.
- Dynamic url: yoursite.com/pligg/story.php?title=storytitle
- Static url: yoursite.com/pligg/news/yourstorytitle
There are two options on the Url Method page in the admin panel. The first is to use dynamic URLs, which will work on all sites. The second option to use static URLs is more search engine friendly and works on most servers.
If you enable Url Method 2 in the admin panel you should see static urls on your site but when you click on an internal link you'll probably get a 404 this page can not be found error. In order to work properly Url Method 2 requires modifications to your .htaccess file so that so that the new friendly urls are properly mapped to the actual files they refer to.
There is a default .htaccess file included in your Pligg installation called htaccess.default that contains a long list of rewrite commands that are meant to get you started. But you will probably need to modify this file in order to get static urls working properly on your site.
Step by Step Instructions
- Check with your host to see if mod rewrite is allowed. If not buy a dreamhost package to help pligg dev.
- Check with your host that Apache is configured to use .htaccess files (AllowOverride All)
- Get the latest htaccess.default from the SVN on sourceforge.
- Edit the file and make changes near the top if your Pligg site does not sit on the root of your domain. For example if you operate Pligg in a subdomain or subdirectory you will need to make edits. The file contains comments that direct you on where to make edits.
- Rename "htaccess.default" to ".htaccess" (no quotes). Note the period in front. That period denotes a hidden file, and may cause it to disappear from some FTP clients. (You might need to enable showing of hidden files or call it by name when downloading).
- Turn on URL Method 2 in the admin panel by going to Admin > Configure > SEO and set the URL Method to 2.
If your Pligg is installed in a subfolder
If Pligg is installed in a subfolder: (ie : yourdomain.com/pligg/) then you will need to modify the RewriteBase in .htaccess:
It's not working. How do I go back?
If this doesn't work, mod_rewrite probably isn't enabled on your webserver. You can go back to the admin panel and set Url Method to 1 again. No harm was done to any files during the instructions above and your site should operate fine without friendly urls.