When Drupal is first unpacked and installed, the URLs the software creates for your site contain a question mark with some other numbers and characters. Not only does this method make the page contents hard to identify to web visitors, but it also makes it difficult for the search engines to crawl and index. Perhaps you have not thought that far ahead yet, but it is definitely wise to think about the future searchability of your site while still in the planning stages.
Luckily, the default Drupal URLs have the ability to be changed, thus creating much prettier and clean looking web addresses. Overall, this will help your web visitors have a better picture of what will be contained within a certain page just by looking at the URL. In addition, the search engines will be more likely to index your pages.
- BEFORE: drupalwebhosting.com.au/drupal/?q=node/655
- AFTER: drupalwebhosting.com.au/drupal/siteconfiguration/cleanurlsdefined/
In order to set up the clean URLs, navigate to the following location:
administer > site configuration > clean urls.
In Drupal 6.x and higher, there is an automatic check to see if your server is compatible with the rewrite capabilities necessary to write clean URLs. If it is, then a checkbox will become active that you can select and save.
Going this far in the process will get your site URLs to looking something like this:
To get the ultimate effect from clean URLs, you will want to also install the Path Module. This will actually create the URLs as in the AFTER example above.
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