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Redirect Helper Lite

Current Version: 1.1.2

22 comments   1287 downloads

Added on November 24th by Erik Reagan

Redirect Helper Lite

Redirecting can be a hairy thing if you don't know how to do it. Redirect Helper Lite is here to make that part of your life easier now. With a few clicks and strokes of the keyboard you can setup simple URL redirects for your ExpressionEngine site. You can also use Redirect Helper Lite to setup and track campaigns that utilize special URLs on your site.

Key Features

  • Easily create redirects for internal URLs
  • Choose between 2 commonly needed HTTP statuses for SEO purposes
  • Automatically fill in your destination URL with the built-in generator (see docs)
  • Setup redirects to external websites
  • Disable a redirect by setting the status to Closed
  • Built-in debugging tag to help track down any issues that may come from redirects

Redirect Helper Lite CP Home Page

Example Usage

New Redirect Screenshot

The most obvious and common usage of this module is to redirect an old link to an updated link. A perfect example is one of my old projects pages that I originally setup when my site was powered by WordPress. The URL at the time was http://erikreagan.com/projects/2008/05/catch-all-php-form-processor but after I migrated my site to ExpressionEngine the URL was http://erikreagan.com/projects/catch-all-php-form-processor/. I setup a simple redirect with this module to take care of the redirection. I use the HTTP Status “301 Moved Permanently” so bots would get the memo as well and indexes would be updated appropriately.

Another use for this module would be for campaigns where you want to track conversion. Every time a redirect is used a cookie is saved. This cookie can be retrieved for a number of purposes. A good example would be sending someone to your website to sign up to win free movie tickets. You may have a radio or tv ad that says (verbally), “visit our website at your tickets dot come slash free tickets to enter to win”. You could setup a different redirect for users who find the free ticket giveaway through the website directly. Another redirect from twitter, and another from Facebook, etc. Then in your form you could get the redirect cookie that is saved and track which campaign brought the most conversions.

Redirect Helper Pro

This module is the “lite” version of a commercial version that will be available this year. The Pro version of Redirect Helper will have many more features aimed toward campaign tracking. It will also make it very easy for clients to add and track these redirects on their own. They won’t need any knowledge of how redirection works on a technical level and you, the developer, will be able to automate pieces and hide pieces from them to avoid confusion. Because of this module having both a free and commercial version the source code will not be available under my GitHub account.

Comments

Hi, very nice module, I will probably buy the commercial version if my tests will have good results…

I’m trying to use it with the Structure module (http://www.buildwithstructure.com) but it seems not working. Do you have any suggestion?
Thanks
Alberto

Alberto on Feb 17th, 2010 at 3:43 am

Hi Alberto

I use this module with Structure on a number of sites and have not found any issues. What exactly is happening? Can you tell me the steps you’ve taken along with the results you are receiving? Let’s continue the conversation in the EE forums on the thread for this module here: http://expressionengine.com/forums/viewthread/136052/

Thanks!

Erik Reagan on Feb 17th, 2010 at 6:02 am

I just tried to upgrade to version 1.1.1 from 1.0, and lost complete access to both the front and back end of my site. It seems that a crucial table was missing. The hosting company was able to restore my previous version, and I lost only one day’s worth of data. I’m guessing that the problem is that I am using EE version 1.6.8 - I certainly won’t try that again!

Geoff Bederson on Feb 22nd, 2010 at 8:04 pm

Sorry to hear about your troubles Geoff. I haven’t heard of this happening before. I will try to duplicate the error and see what I find. It is always a good practice to backup your database before performing an installation or upgrade. That said, off hand I don’t know what would have caused this in the module. I’ll let you know what I find. Thanks!

Erik Reagan on Feb 22nd, 2010 at 9:03 pm

I had the same issue as Geoff when trying to install version 1.1.2 on EE 1.6.8. The error said something about a missing table (unfortunately I didn’t take a screen of the error). I was forced to revert back to a previous db backup to get my site running again.

Manoj Thomas on Mar 5th, 2010 at 11:14 am

Geoff and/or Manoj

Did either of you enable the extension without the module being installed? (Working on tracking down the error)

Erik Reagan on Mar 13th, 2010 at 5:12 pm

I received an error using version 1.1.2 - trying to get a property of a non-object.

on line 228, you’re using the $SESS global, but it wasn’t registered in the sessions_start method. I added it to the global list on line 143, but it didn’t work. So I changed line 228 to be $session instead of $SESS ($session is the argument passed into the sessions_start function)

That seems to work, but I wanted to run the solution by you. Am I doing something wrong, or just a bug that slipped into the release?

Jason Hummel on Apr 2nd, 2010 at 9:44 am

Hi there.

I’m looking for something that will help me track clicks *away* from my EE site to other sites - I get the impression this module (like the Referrer Module native to EE) is more for tracking and managing links *into* your EE site.

The site I’m looking to develop is to work as a central community hub for various member organisations - each member has their own page on the EE site that will include links to their Twitter page, Flikr page and/or own websites etc. One of the goals of the site is to promote the members themselves, one way being to direct people to their own sites, Twitter, Facebook group etc.

I was wanting a away to manage / track these conversions from the EE site to the external sites… is this missing the purpose of Redirect Helper?

Andy on May 21st, 2010 at 9:24 am

Hi Andy

The redirection is possible with Redirect Helper Lite but the tracking is not. It will be part of the Pro version and will support tracking from the Control Panel.

Even then I’m not sure that it would do what you need. It sounds like you would want each member to be able to track their individual stats. Is that right?

Erik Reagan on May 21st, 2010 at 9:31 am

Yeh… I mean we could use the Google Analytics Overlay feature to see how many people are clicking on certain links, but having some way to keep it inside EE would be preferable.
I guess similarly using bit.ly URL tracking may also work but it’s still not ideal.

Its just a simple way to see whether users are using the site for the intended purpose - it’s not monetized or anything complicated, more just an indicator that people are using the site for one of its goals.

Andy on May 21st, 2010 at 9:34 am

This is sweet, exactly what I need, any chance of porting to EE 2? I would be more than happy to pay for the pro version.

Jeremiah Calvino on May 31st, 2010 at 7:42 pm

You cannot believe how long ive been googling for something like this. Scrolled through 6 pages of Google results and couldnt find anything. Quick search on bing. There you are!.... Gotta start using that more often Thank you.

Dan Jenning on Jun 21st, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Hi Erik,

I recently used this module on a site and it works great, thanks. Saves having to manually insert the redirects in .htaccess files (which can get in the way of other .htaccess rules too).

Are there any plans for an EE2 version of this at all?

Thanks,

Stephen

Stephen on Sep 5th, 2010 at 10:34 am

If you do not install this correctly i.e. enable the module first (do not enable the extension) you get the MySQL table error - this can be fixed by simply logging into your phpMyAdmin or similar, going to extensions then the redirect helper light table row and setting “y” to “n” for enabled.

Patrick on Sep 8th, 2010 at 9:32 am

Also looking for the 2+ version. Any plans to release one. This looks super handy, but I have been using 2.1 exclusively now. Thanks!

Danielle LeComte on Dec 8th, 2010 at 11:29 pm

Hi Erik,

We’re also using Redirect Helper Lite to keep years of links current. We’re in the process of upgrading to EE 2.1.3 and a 2.x compatible version of this plugin is something we’ll buy immediately. Hope you’ll consider making an upgrade as there’s nothing else out there that does the job. Thanks!

David Lawrence on Mar 30th, 2011 at 8:57 pm

Hi Erik,

I have installed the module and extension. I am able to add a redirect, but it does not work. Instead of getting redirected to my EE page, I am getting an Apache 404 error. Is there additional setup I need to do other than simply installing the module and extension? Also, we have not removed “index.php” from our URLs; could this be a factor?

Thanks,
Bob

Bob Cardenas on May 4th, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Hi Erik,

We fixed the issue I mentioned in a previous post. On our development PCs, we are using EasyPHP for the environment (Apache, MySQL, etc.). Well, it turns out that the default EasyPHP setup does not allow rewrites and we had never corrected this. Here’s how we fixed our issue:

1) In the Apache httpd.conf file, uncomment “LoadModule rewrite_module modules/mod_rewrite.so”

2) In the Apache httpd.conf file, set “AllowOverride All” in the “<Directory “${path}/www”>” section).

These two steps alone did not fix the issue. We also had to fix our .htaccess file. We chose to install the “LG .htaccess Generator” extension and use it to generate our .htaccess settings. The version of Apache we have didn’t like the “Remove IE image toolbar” settings put in by “LG .htaccess Generator”, so we removed those lines.

After restarting EasyPHP, our URL redirects are working fine. Now we can move on to the next strep and update our production environment.

Thanks for the cool plugin.

Bob Cardenas

Bob Cardenas on May 4th, 2011 at 3:19 pm

Thanks for the great module! This makes things very easy. +1 on all the requests to create a version for ee2.x. Also, a note that my first attempts at a single redirect failed, as I was including my renamed index.php in both the string to match and the destination (auto-lookup didn’t find my entries as I do not associate my weblogs with specific paths in their properties, so I was typing in manually). When I tried putting in the full URL as destination, as in a manual 301 redirect, I noticed the module truncated the destination to omit the renamed index.php file, and I was in business. Thanks!

David Fenske on Nov 2nd, 2011 at 4:48 pm

Hey David,

No immediate movement on completing the EE2.x version. We (Focus Lab) have a lot going on currently and until someone decides to commission the module completion, we probably won’t touch it for a few business quarters.

Thanks,
Erik

Erik Reagan on Nov 3rd, 2011 at 7:13 am

My partner and i attempted this yet again today in addition to even though it worked well, it took a little time for once and for all to help down load it. (2 minutes)
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