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Unidentified Redirect


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3 replies to this topic

#1 LuvHlpPls

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Posted 20 December 2015 - 08:33 PM

Hi there,

 

I am working on a site for a client by reviewing broken backlinks. I've run a report that shows me pages that are receiving a 404. I grab the URL in question and the browser returns me a default 404 error page. I also ran the URL through a header check and confirmed that the status code is 404.

 

However, it looks like that 404 is doing a meta refresh, as a new URL loads and a page from the site displays after about 2 seconds or so.

 

I used FF and turned off meta refresh to see what happens, and the 404 pages loads as expected and does not refresh. I looked in the source code but there is no refresh directive.

 

I'm a bit stumped on how this is happening and presume it's something server side. 

 

Can you advise how this might be done, or what else I can check to confirm?

 

Thanks



#2 chrishirst

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Posted 21 December 2015 - 07:39 AM

If the redirect or refresh is delayed, it can only be a meta directive or javascript that is producing the effect, though neither of those can send a 404 status code. However given that the status is NOT being generated from a link that is actually on the client's website, ... ... Why does it matter?



#3 LuvHlpPls

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Posted 21 December 2015 - 08:39 PM

I'm not sure it matters at all. The 404 is served, so the status code is received before the redirect. I've just never seen that type of behaviour before. 

 

I did want to ensure that it wasn't detremental.

 

Thanks, as always, for you advice ;)



#4 chrishirst

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Posted 22 December 2015 - 08:57 AM

 

 

The 404 is served, so the status code is received before the redirect.

HTTP:  does not work like that, a redirect AND the status code are one and the same thing. If this is caused by something on the server, you are probably looking for a '404 error' handler document (check .htaccess for Apache or web.config for Windows IIS) that has a javascript window.load(url) or a meta refresh directive, neither of those, based on your description are particularly 'helpful' to real users and should be 'fixed'. For search engines it doesn't matter, their 'bot' will get the 404 response and will leave.






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