PDA

View Full Version : Make a More Functional 404 Error Page



Marincky
03-05-2008, 01:34 AM
There may be other ways of doing this, this may have already been discussed, but for those of you out there who are interested in my way here is a great way to make a far more impressive and practical 404 error page.

When someone types an error on your domain address or maybe clicks on a redundant link that is still on the seacrh engine, they usually get taken to a very informal blank white page that says something like:

404 Error. The requested page cannot be found.

Pretty useless for your potential visitors as they will now bugger off elsewhere!

Here however, is what happens when they click on one of my client's sites on a url that doesn't exist...

http://www.steppin-out.co.uk/pagemadeup.html
(click to see what happens)

This is a much better page for your client to land on than the usual 404 error page.

How to make:

Create your own 404 page by using one of your site pages as the template. In my example above, the error page is basically an exact duplicate of the home page. I have just ammended the top lines to read as it does. You can create a page as you like though.

I named this page custom_page but again, name it what you like and publish it.

Go into your CP and then File Manager.

Look for a file called .htaccess

Open this file up to edit.

If it is blank just add this exactly as it is below and on one line.

ErrorDocument 404 /custom_page.html

It's also a good idea to add the code <meta name="robots" content="noindex"> to the <head> section of your 404 page, so that search engine robots don't add it to their indexes.

(If you named your page anything else but custom_page then just change that in the link above)

save it.

Now see if it works....

Marincky
03-05-2008, 01:51 AM
I forgot to add....

My client above received 845 error page hits in the last 4 days. Visitors coming across standard erro pages are fairly likely to go to another site... Need I say more?

judavvforum
03-05-2008, 05:02 AM
Thanks for that bit of wisdom, Ramsey! It really does make more sense! I didn't even know that we had control of that page!

It's a good day when you can learn something new!

Cheers!

sedona
03-05-2008, 03:16 PM
Thanks for that, Ramsey. Very easy and a valuable addition to any site. When I come across custom 404s where I can navigate back into the site I usually do so, as you say.
CarbonTerry did a tutorial on this subject a while back and I meant to get back to it but didn't. Will be building one today.
Cheers!

Marincky
03-05-2008, 04:40 PM
Thanks for that, Ramsey. Very easy and a valuable addition to any site. When I come across custom 404s where I can navigate back into the site I usually do so, as you say.
CarbonTerry did a tutorial on this subject a while back and I meant to get back to it but didn't. Will be building one today.
Cheers!

Yeah as I said I wasn't sure if someone had touched on this before, but no doubt there are loads of ways, this is just one I discovered that I feel looks good. http://www.vodahost.com/vodatalk/images/icons/icon7.gif

Tom vR
03-05-2008, 05:16 PM
Thanks Ramsey for a great post.

choco777
03-05-2008, 11:33 PM
Nothing in file mgr saying htacess

Marincky
03-06-2008, 02:09 AM
Nothing in file mgr saying htacess

hmmm, I just noticed on the new control panels this file does not show in the file manager, despite being able to see it through ftp manager. You can always create a new file with notepad and call it .htaccess. Then just enter the code I showed above.

Marincky
03-10-2008, 03:23 AM
Nothing in file mgr saying htacess

Click on file legacy manager.

Marincky
03-12-2008, 12:26 AM
Just two little updates to this:

1) If you have more than one domain on an account, this can still be done. Just make a custom 404 page for all sites, make sure they are all named the same and publish them all to their respective domains.

2) Since doing this on all my own sites my Google Adsense revenue has increased by about 25%.

DarrenC
11-10-2008, 07:37 PM
Click on file legacy manager.

Sorry Ramsey I can't find it in here either, is it under a different name or in a folder somewhere?

Darren

DarrenC
11-10-2008, 07:39 PM
Scratch that.. I found it.

Marincky
11-10-2008, 07:47 PM
LOL, I have a feeling in the new CPs you have to tick 'show hidden files' or something like that

DarrenC
11-10-2008, 07:53 PM
Apparently it says I don't have permision to tinker with htaccess on my server, when I clicked on the url at the bottom of this image. I am not sure which one to click on because it looks different the illustration above.

http://dcwebsolutions.co.uk/dccp.gif

Please advise

Thanks

Marincky
11-10-2008, 07:55 PM
If I remember correctly I did just 'edit file'

DarrenC
11-10-2008, 08:24 PM
If I remember correctly I did just 'edit file'

All sorted -- Excellent tip!!

Marincky
11-10-2008, 08:25 PM
All sorted -- Excellent tip!!

http://www.vodahost.com/vodatalk/images/icons/icon12.gif.. Ya it worked well for me too.

mumu
11-27-2008, 12:37 AM
were do I publish the custom_page right in public_html?

Marincky
11-27-2008, 01:11 AM
yep

onenickol
12-09-2008, 05:49 PM
Yay! Thanks so much for this great tip! I like my new error page!

valwilson
02-05-2009, 12:53 PM
I just discovered this post, but I'm having difficulty with the CP part. Can you explain (to a technophobe!) exactly where I go in the CP, which directory do I open & how I find .htaccess?

Thanks

LadyEye
02-05-2009, 01:21 PM
I just discovered this post, but I'm having difficulty with the CP part. Can you explain (to a technophobe!) exactly where I go in the CP, which directory do I open & how I find .htaccess?

Thanks


You will find the path to your control panel in your voda host registration information .. the email you received when you ordered your hosting account, the one with username and password and your ip publishing address, which you will need to log in below ..

You can log into your control panel at vodahost (http://www.vodahost.com/web-host-server-login.htm) here.

Marincky
02-05-2009, 04:32 PM
Depending on which version of control panel you have, you may need to tick a box which says 'show hidden files' to see the htaccess file. When I wrote this thread this was based on the old control panels.

valwilson
02-05-2009, 08:32 PM
I can't see any box marked 'show hidden files'. When I search for htaccess, the search facility finds it (in public_html), but then when I double click it in the search box, public_html opens, but htaccess is not there. Very frustrating!

Marincky
02-05-2009, 08:36 PM
If you want to email me your CP log-in details I will gladly do this bit for you for free.

valwilson
02-05-2009, 09:58 PM
Thanks , I really appreciate it. I'll email you details now

Marincky
02-05-2009, 10:54 PM
Ok, that's done for you

arialvoyager
03-08-2009, 12:02 PM
thanks marincky for this helpful tip.I just discovered this post now.I even add adsense and a google search box to my 404 page.See the sample here. (http://www.arialvoyager.com/about.html)
Thanks again!!

Marincky
03-08-2009, 03:38 PM
hmmmmm, I wouldn't advise you put Adsense on it as it is an error page. Google will no be best pleased.

Glad you found the tip useful though.

myjaydee
03-20-2009, 04:26 PM
I 've managed to make the 404 page okay and posted to public_html. It works perfectly on the www.maindirectory/anything. But it's really weird when you need to access it from a sub-directory ie www.maindirectory/anything/anywhere only 1 out of four pictures show up - the rest show as broken. Any ideas how I can fix this?

myjaydee
03-24-2009, 11:46 AM
Figured I'd pass bit on as it might help others.

If you use ErrorDocument 404 /not_here.html in the .htaccess the web does not show any pictures, etc as they are not in the same folder.

However if you use ErrorDocument 404 http://www.yourdomain.com/not_here.html it actually redirects to the public_html file.

Don't know if this will be helpful to others, but I think it satisfies my purposes.

Doods
04-11-2009, 10:51 AM
If it is blank just add this exactly as it is below and on one line.

ErrorDocument 404 /custom_page.html

What if it is not blank ? as I have this in the .htaccess file

RewriteEngine on

RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^$
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://mobilemassage.org/.*$ [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://mobilemassage.org$ [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.mobilemassage.org/.*$ [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http://www.mobilemassage.org$ [NC]
RewriteRule .*\.(jpg|jpeg|gif|png|bmp)$ - [F,NC]

Options All Indexes
IndexOptions FancyIndexing

<Files 403.shtml>
order allow,deny
allow from all
</Files>

AliB
10-08-2009, 10:38 PM
What a brilliant tip! Can't believe I actually managed - I'm a complete newbie with all this stuff and bumbling along! It looks great.....THANK YOU