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Any way to eliminate redundancy/weirdness in permalinks (i.e. "forums/forum")?


  • spidersilk
    Member

    @spidersilk

    I’m in the process of converting a standlone BBpress 1.1 installation into the 2.02 plugin version (well, really, recreating it from scratch in the plugin version, because the importer apparently doesn’t work if your blog actually has any users or content).

    And I’ve run into a problem – the default permalink structure for the BBpress plugin is really bizarre. It adds a “forums” slug for the forums area, which is fine and to be expected, but then it also insists on adding an additional “forum” slug before the name of each forum, so that instead of a normal URL like example.com/forums/announcements, you get example.com/forums/forum/announcements, which looks weird and awkward. I tried just removing the forum slug, but that left a double slash in the URL, which my web browser then reduced to a single slash, resulting in a 404 error.

    And for posts within forums, instead of the sort of URL you would normally expect – i.e. for a post in the announcements forum, something like example.com/forums/announcements/welcome, or example.com/forums/announcements/12345 or whatever, you have example.com/forums/topic/welcome – there doesn’t appear to be any way to associate the posts with the actual forum they’re in.

    Is there any way to fix this? Obviously the “forums/forum” thing is the most important – having the completely useless “topic” slug in the post URLs is annoying and pointless, but the “forums/forum” thing makes it look like I was drunk when I set the forums up or something – I really can’t let it go live with a glitch like that in the URLs. But I’d like to fix the topic issue too if possible. Any ideas?

Viewing 15 replies - 26 through 40 (of 40 total)

  • Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    I forgot to ask, @johnjamesjacoby or @netweb is there a ticket in trac right now to fix this issue? If not, can you please create one?

    thank you!


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    sorry to bother others on the thread but I’m trying to contact @hillofbeans (is there a way to pm? or something?)

    thanks!


    HillofBeans
    Participant

    @hillofbeans

    Hi @Asynaptic I’m subscribed to this thread.


    lowco2525
    Participant

    @lowco2525

    Has this been fixed yet? Because I cannot find the solution. This fix would improve a lot of aspects of Bbpress.


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    @lowco2525

    No, it hasn’t been fixed yet. In fact, I don’t think there is even a trac ticket!

    But if you read page 1 of this thread you’ll find that it has been an issue with users for more than 7 years and brought up repeatedly.

    There is (was?) even a plugin created to address the issue. The devs did not respond when I asked whether this plugin addressed the issue and if so, would it be incorporated into core.

    It seems that development for bbPress has basically stalled on all fronts:

    http://www.ohloh.net/p/bbpress/commits/summary

    look at the graph of commits! files modified in past 30 days: 14/month (avg for past year: 35 files per month) so dev activity has fallen by more than 50%

    lines modified on avg per month in past year? 21,876
    lines modified on avg for previous month? 21 (no not a typo, just 21)

    I think this is because most of the same team works on both buddypress and bbpress and they have been paying attention to buddypress – which is fantastic! don’t get me wrong :) but this means that bbpress development has been on ice basically.

    Personally I think this issue should be the highest priority because there is nothing more fundamental than permalinks. And there is nothing more wrong than the way permalinks are being done right now with bbpress.

    And don’t forget, this issue has been an ongoing thorn in the side of users for 7+ years and there was an attempted solution in the form of a plugin.


    lowco2525
    Participant

    @lowco2525

    Wow, that’s crazy. This is a must fix!! Honestly.


    Trifon
    Participant

    @tieptoep

    The anwser is actually quite simple… And has been the same all these years.
    Uncheck “Prefix all forum content with the Forum Root slug (Recommended)” under Settings > Forums > Forum Root Slug.
    This gets rid of the /forums/ part and leaves you with the usual /forum and /topic slugs which are prefixed to forums and topics respectively.

    The reason for this “sectioning off forums” is to prevent conflicts with pages. Which it does pretty well, and due to the simpleness of the solution, will probably not be “fixed”. You could submit a ticket on trac, argue your case and submit patches if you want it changed though.


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    @tieptoep thanks but I think you’re totally misunderstanding what I and others are suggesting as a solution. Please stay with me and I’ll explain why.

    To clarify:

    Existing permalinks structure for forum:

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/forum-name/

    and if a sub-forum is created, it would be this:

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/”forum-name”/”sub-forum-name”

    Now, compare this to the proper way to do the permalinks:

    mydomain.com/forums/”forum-name”

    and if a sub-forum is created:

    mydomain.com/forums/”forum-name”/”sub-forum-name”

    And for each thread permalink, this is the way it is right now:

    mydomain.com/forums/topic/”thread-permalink-slug”

    But this puts every single forum outside the universe of their respective forum. That is, every thread exists, as a permalink, without any relevance to the forum that contains it! This is both intuitively wrong and just plain wrong for many many reasons. Threads are link “things” which belong in “boxes” (forums), which then may or may not belong in “bigger boxes” (main forums, if there are sub-forums created).

    Instead, this is the proper way to do thread permalinks:

    mydomain.com/forums/”forum-name”/”thread-permalink-slug”

    and if the thread is created inside a sub-forum:

    mydomain.com/forums/”forum-name”/”sub-forum”/”thread-permalink-slug”

    Of course, the slug forums used above can be changed to “discussions” or any other word. But the main point I’m trying to make here is the relative structure of threads and forums to each other, as well as the excision of the unnecessary …/forums/forum/… double.

    This is wrong, again, for many reasons. Among them, it is inelegant, unnecessary, and it introduces a very deep branch unnecessarily which makes for poor SEO.

    So let’s say you have a forum about social media, under what I and others here are proposing, you would have this permalink structure:

    mydomain.com/forums/social-media/

    and let’s say you had sub-forums for facebook, twitter and linkedin:

    mydomain.com/forums/social-media/facebook

    mydomain.com/forums/social-media/twitter

    mydomain.com/forums/social-media/linkedin

    That makes perfect sense, right? But under the current permalinks structure, it currently is:

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/social-media/

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/social-media/facebook

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/social-media/twitter

    mydomain.com/forums/forum/social-media/linkedin

    See the difference? Now that’s nothing. Wait. Let’s start some threads. Here’s where you will really see even a bigger difference that leaves you scratching your head in befuddlement.

    Let’s say I write a thread in the facebook sub-forum with the heading, “I love facebook!”. In the current permalink structure, it would look like this:

    mydomain.com/forums/topic/i-love-facebook

    Notice that looking at this permalink, you or a search engine, has no idea that it is a topic “inside” the facebook sub-forum, which is itself inside the “social media” forum!

    Instead, for some strange reason only clear to the early developers, the topic is just floating by itself in “topic land” and has no relation whatsoever to “forum land”

    But it should look like this:

    mydomain.com/forums/social-media/facebook/i-love-facebook

    Now this permalink makes sense. For one, it follows the progressive location of the thread. First, it is on the site, second, it is within forums, third, it is in the social-media forum, and fourth, it is within the facebook sub-forum which is inside the social-media forum. And finally, the thread is called “i-love-facebook”.

    Hope that makes things clear why your suggestion of simply removing the /forum/ slug does nothing to actually address what is wrong with the permalink structure of bbPress.


    Trifon
    Participant

    @tieptoep

    @synaptic
    Thanks for the explanation, I must admit that I didn’t read through the whole topic and based my (partial) solution on the prefix slug annoyance. While it works for its intended purpose, I do admit that it is not a very elegant solution.

    The (proper) nesting of forums and topics I do agree on. It works, but it is far from an elegant solution. I too would rather have seen a structure which places topics inside their respective (sub)forums.

    What I do not understand is that if the problem is so widespread, noone has bothered to create a ticket and actually do something about it. Because that is the only way opensource projects work and keep on growing.


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    @tieptoep No problem. I’m glad it is clear now.

    It is way beyond ‘inelegant’. It is beyond baffling why it hasn’t been fixed yet. And beyond frustrating that the devs strongly push back instead of simply acknowledging the issue and working on fixing it.

    Unfortunately I’m not a coder and have no idea how to even open a ticket or word it properly in this context. But as a user, it is self-evident that the way bbPress uses permalinks needs fixing.

    Also, through this thread and many others, it is also very obvious that this is a very important and irritating issue that has been brought up going back as far back as 7 years!

    As I mentioned, there is or was a plugin which claimed to fix the issue. I don’t have access to the code and even if I did, there is a chance that the code is now out of date with bbPress’ core development since the plugin would be a few years old.

    All I can do is to clearly state the case for permalinks, their importance and request that it be placed at the highest priority. I hope you and other bbPress users add their voice so that the devs take this seriously.

    Unfortunately, there is no way to prioritize issues in bbPress development. Other projects have a way to measure the community’s voice in terms of what needs to be fixed first. For example, here’s symposium’s page:

    http://www.wpsymposium.com/voting/

    Both buddypress and bbpress need this functionality. Like yesterday. That way issues like this do not fall through the cracks.

    Of course, this is assuming that the dev team is serious about creating a 2 way communication channel with the wider community rather than a 1 way.

    As Matt M. mentioned in a recent video, he measures the success of wordpress in general by how well and fast it reacts to the needs of its community. I would suggest the same applies to bbpress and buddypress.


    Trifon
    Participant

    @tieptoep

    @synaptic
    I’ve taken a look through trac and found a similar feature request (). Could you take a look at it to see if this is similar enough, if not I’ll see if I could open a new ticket to get this to the attention of the developers.


    Trifon
    Participant

    @tieptoep

    https://bbpress.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/2258

    The link disappeared, yay for mobile devices… -_-


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    @tieptoep thanks, I’ve taken a look at the trac and it seems to definitely have to do with permalinks but I’m not sure if the creator of the ticket (alexvorn2) is referring to the same solution as I and others are asking for (see above examples).

    for example, alexvorn2 has this as an example:

    1) pretty url: http://example.com/forum/subforum/custom_topic_title
    structure will be: http://example.com/%forumparentsnames%/%topicname%

    But the second line doesn’t seem to correspond to the permalink structure shown in the first line. Specifically, he seems to have left out the slug for the subforum! Or maybe I’m missing something.

    It is very disappointing to see JJJ throw this in ‘future releases’ which is basically where trac tickets go to die. And to change the priority: “Priority changed from normal to low” and “Severity changed from normal to minor” and ” Type changed from defect to enhancement” when in fact I and many others would argue there is nothing that is, has been and will continue to be the highest priority ticket (until it is fixed) and there is nothing more severe and this is most definitely a defect, *not* an enhancement.

    These changes sadly tells us, the users, just how much we have failed to communicate to the devs (or how much they have failed to actually listen to us – or a combination of both).

    As for attempts to solve this, @dbungard shares some code in the previous page of this very thread. As well, I linked earlier to several other past attempts at the solution. I think user @mr_pelle was the developer of the bbPress nicer permalinks plugin but that was many years ago (3+?) and he doesn’t seem to be active on the forum. As well, the plugin is nowhere to be found.

    There has been no feedback or response from devs on any of this code, even when another user specifically asks for that in the past page.

    This issue is so fundamental to the very core of bbPress functioning that I question whether it is something that can be hacked together with a plugin, bailing wire and a convoluted .htaccess file.


    karivan
    Participant

    @karivan

    Hi,

    I had the same problem when I published a new page called Forum. I also tried to find a solution for this permalink problem and I found the following. Start with simple set up. Make a home page and a forum page. Make sure that the home page is static home page, see settings/reading. Make a forums page and make sure that your forum’s page permalink address just below the title ends /forums. There is also some other combination with those page and menu settings that might work, but it is important to check page and menu settings.


    Asynaptic
    Participant

    @synaptic

    @karivan with respect, I don’t think you are completely grasping what is being discussed here.

Viewing 15 replies - 26 through 40 (of 40 total)

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