Writer and Programmer

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is a priority for every website. I am now looking at SEO options in Joomla! One of the most obvious is in the Global Configuration Site tab:

SEO Settings – Search Engine Friendly URLs – choose between ‘no’ and ‘yes’.

A no-brainer, right?

Wrong. I turned it on for www.writerit.com and most of the pages in the site immediately lost their CSS formatting. I didn’t have time to investigate, so I promptly turned it off again.

I have now had a look. There is a simple solution: Enable the second option: ‘Use Apache mod_rewrite’, and rename htaccess.txt in your Joomla! home directory to .htaccess.

A no-brainer, right?

Wrong. When I renamed htaccess.txt all of my pages (including my admin page) went down (and I mean DOWN) with the following message:

“The server encountered an internal error and was unable to complete your request. Either the server is overloaded or there was an error in a CGI script.”

This turns out to be easy to fix. I opened up htaccess.txt and it starts with a piece of advice about commenting out an instruction if .htaccess breaks stuff. I commented out the instruction. All is now well.

In C++ you need to understand all of the low-level implications of every command you use. Web development is computer programming from the opposite direction. Speed is the priority. Implementation details should be invisible if you just want to get a brochureware site up and running in a CMS.

SHOULD be.

2 Responses to SEO friendly URLs in Joomla!

  • Hello, I set the SEO settings to yes for the Search Engine Friendly URLs , but most of my site pages appaer with no template background, only thing I see is my content and my google adsense ads which appaer now, but rarely appaer when my site appaers normal. When I set it back to NO, my website goes back to normal. What can be causing this? I really want to set it the right way.

  • Hi Abdul,

    You need to follow the steps described in my posting

    – Open htaccess.txt in your Joomla! home directory. Read the information at the beginning of it and delete the instruction indicated.
    – Rename htaccess.txt in your Joomla! home directory to ‘.htaccess’.
    – Enable ‘Use Apache mod_rewrite’ in the Global Configuration Site tab.

    Good luck!

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