Migrating from old forum, keeping urls the same

Discussions and support about the different URL Rewriting techniques for phpBB.

Moderator: Moderators

Migrating from old forum, keeping urls the same

Postby robbydooo » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:11 pm

Hi Guys,

Im after some help please. I have a forum that I am migrating from a very badly modded PHP Nuke forum.

However I have been set the challenge of keeping all the existing urls the same.

I have installed the advanced mod and got the forum urls to remain the same by updating the cache file. However I also need to keep the topic urls the same.

Am I able to add them to the cache file in the same way as I can the forum urls? Or am I going to have to create my own modded verion :(

Thanks in advance

Rob
robbydooo
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:07 pm

Advertisement

Postby HB » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:23 pm

Why not install the Zero Dup and let it handle redirects? Then your forum can switch URLs with no impact.
Dan Kehn
HB
phpBB SEO Team
phpBB SEO Team
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 2:25 am

Postby robbydooo » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:31 pm

Hi HB,

Thanks for your reply.
We have been told by our SEO team not to redirect old urls to new as this could potentially cause serious negative impact on seo. Apparently theres a fair few cases of forums vanishing off google for over 12 months when people have migrated from different forums.

Although I personally am a bit dubious this would happen having previously moved urls on other sites. I have to stick to their ruling so I need a way of modding the topic urls.

Thanks for you help people.
robbydooo
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:07 pm

Postby HB » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:37 pm

I believe your SEO team is badly misinformed. My site migrated with no measurable change in traffic during the transition. After 2-3 days of higher-than-normal bot activity, all was as before. There are numerous before/after stats from phpBB-seo migrators that echo the same results.

Anyway, would you post some example URLs? Or you can take a look at the code, it's not particular daunting and it's contained in one class (phpbb_seo_class.php, method format_url).
Dan Kehn
HB
phpBB SEO Team
phpBB SEO Team
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 2:25 am

Postby dcz » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:56 pm

robbydooo wrote:Apparently theres a fair few cases of forums vanishing off google for over 12 months when people have migrated from different forums.


I'm pretty sure it was not properly done. Even only migrating from phpBB2 to phpBB3 vanilla (no mod rewrite) is really risky since url do change without redirection, and worst, becomes more complex.

Migrating from phpBB2 url rewritten to phpBB3 url rewritten will most likely imply some redirecting, at least for few urls, but if you had duplicates and go for ours mods, they will be reduced by the zero dupe.

Most common issues when migrating like this are bad redirect (wrong headers, wrong new location or no redirect at all), lasting 404 for new or old urls (bad .htaccess) or bad robots.txt (for example disallowing the old url before the redirection are taken into account by bots), and all these can be fully tested before you go for real so it's only dealing with bad preparation and implementation ...

To my experience, redirecting (http 301) is not risky, it's only something to implement and thus prepare well, all you really want is to switch all the sudden and without hesitation, url should stay as redirected for a while.

We did redirect all the forum URL (both) once already (without any lost in SE's referrals or drop in SERPs), and we are going to do it when converting to phpBB3 once more without fear ;)

But, if you want to keep you current urls, it should be doable in most cases too, as HB said, we need to know a little more about your url standard to tell you more precisely how, it's only that converting to phpBB3 could be a good occasion to end up with even more efficient urls. At least, give a try to our SEO Premod to see what you can do with it, it's installed as fast as phpBB3 and you even have an user-friendly .htaccess generator in acp so ...

;)
Useful links :
SEO Forum || SEO Directory || SEO phpBB || Search
____________________

Liens Utiles :
Forum référencement || Annuaire référencement || Référencement phpBB || Recherche
dcz
Admin
Admin
 
Posts: 21375
Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2006 9:03 pm

Postby robbydooo » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:13 pm

Thanks for you comments guys,

Having previously 301 redirected complete sites structures before to new urls without any negative impact i also take the same view as you do. However that isnt the view of the people above so im going to have to keep the urls the same as they are :).

if there isnt a built in way to modify the post urls like you can the forum urls then I will just mod the seo class. the only issue is the topic id isnt passed into the format url function so I will have to modify it where ever its called to pass that through. That way I can do a lookup against the list of old topic ids and get the url stored in my linker table.

my linker is basically old_topic_id|new_topic_id|old_url

If the topic id exists in the table it will rewrite to the old url, if its a new post then it will use the normal seo rewrite rule.

My only question is what will I have to change to make the urls work when they are clicked on . I am assuming its a different function I will need to mod?

Its not pretty but it will do the job i think!
robbydooo
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:07 pm

Postby dcz » Tue Jul 08, 2008 8:37 am

dcz wrote:But, if you want to keep you current urls, it should be doable in most cases too, as HB said, we need to know a little more about your url standard to tell you more precisely how


It may be a lot easier than you think. But we need to know how you url looks like!
At least :
=> forum url and paginated forum url
=> topic url and paginated topic url
=> post url

The topic url is part of topic url with all settings with our mods, the format_url method is only formatting titles prior to injection in url, the rewriting methods for viewtopic are the one with "viewtopic" in their name.

So you mean that so far, topic urls are stored in DB ?

I don't get why you need the new and old topic id, since topic id is not supposed to change for a phpBB topic, it can only be deleted, but not reused after.

The way to go IMHO would be top either keep the current formatting or go for the new one, mixing both does not seems so wise to me. But if you want to do it, you could only check if the topic id is higher than the last one rewritten following the old standard, since topic_id is a primary key, it can only grow and never can be reused ;)
Useful links :
SEO Forum || SEO Directory || SEO phpBB || Search
____________________

Liens Utiles :
Forum référencement || Annuaire référencement || Référencement phpBB || Recherche
dcz
Admin
Admin
 
Posts: 21375
Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2006 9:03 pm


Return to phpBB mod Rewrite

 


  • Related topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 18 guests