FamilySearch Wiki:WikiProject Finding and Fixing broken links using Broken Link Checker
The purpose of this project is to use the Broken Link Checker program to identify broken links and fix the broken links on wiki pages. NOTE:****This extension only works on Chrome browser.
- England Counties and Topics Task List
- Australia State Pages Task List
- Other Countries and Topic pages
- Canada Provinces and topic pages
- State and Topics Task List
- U.S. County Pages Task List
- Beginner Articles
Spreadsheets to use
- Can't find a new link: Spreadsheet
- Link found on more than one wiki page (replace text needed): Spreadsheet
- Unsure about the correct link: Spreadsheet
- Reporting broken links for foreign language websites: Spreadsheet
This project is in two parts:
PART A: Using Broken Link Checker and finding broken links
PART B: How to find the correct links using the Wayback machine on Archive.org
Part A - Finding Broken Links with Broken Link Checker
Step 1 - Add Broken Link Checker to Chrome browser
1. You must have the Chrome browser. If you do not have it on your computer, you can download Chrome from this website.
2. To download, Broken Link Checker by opening your Chrome browser and go to this website: Broken Link Checker
3. Click on button to add the extension to Chrome. 4. Once it's loaded, restart Chrome. (remember that you only need to add Broken Link Checker to Chrome once)
5. Once you are back in Chrome, navigate to the wiki page you signed up to check for broken links.
6. Once on the wiki page, go to the top right hand corner of the screen click on the check mark.
7. A small dialogue box will appear in the top corner and the page will fill with different colors over the links. Be sure to let the program to finish the page before you do anything.
Meaning of links:
- Green: Valid links (link is good)
- Pink: Broken link (you need to fix the link)
- Green: Valid links (link is good)
- Red links on a page (no wiki page) show up as pink and as broken. Just skip these.
- Ignore broken links for FamilySearch.org. They will be fixed later.
- Only concern yourself with pink links on the actual Wiki page. You do not have to worry about links on the left navigation bar or at the top of the page.
- Note that the report may give more broken links than appear pink on the page. Just focus on the evident pink links on content we can change.
- If you find a broken link that is on more than one page, we will have you report it on the spreadsheet. More information is below in Part B. Danielle can do a Replace Text to fix them all at once.
- If the wiki page does not respond when you click on Broken Link Checker red A, try closing Chrome and opening it up again.
Part B - Finding New Link
Once you have found a broken link on a wiki page using the Broken Link Checker extension, use the instructions below to see if you can find the new url for the broken link.
Go to: https://archive.org/web/ This website is called the Wayback Machine. The Wayback Machine contains cached archive versions of websites and what they looked like over time. You will use this to see what the webpage looked like when the old link worked. You will use the old version of the page to help you determine the new URL.
In the Wayback machine URL field, paste in the broken link and press enter.
You will now see a calendar that lists when the webpage was archived. Choose a date that has a blue circle around it to see what the page looked like. It is suggested to try a day in the previous year. If the page shows up as a broken link, then try a date 6 months earlier until you see a web page.
If the Wayback machine does NOT have an original version of the page, try CachedPages.com to see if it contains a copy. Go to: http://www.cachedpages.com/
Delete the http:// in the Enter URL field and paste the broken URL.
- Once you find the old webpage, go to Google and review the page for clues to help you find the current url. Try googling the title of the webpage or taking the beginning portion of the URL to locate a possible page.
- For the broken link: http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/archives/marriage.html from the Wayback Machine you see the words: the name of the website: Illinois State Archives and the database it’s linking to: Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, 1763-1900
- Type in google: Illinois state archives statewide marriage index 1763-1900
- Try out each of the URLS until you find a good match. For this example, the correct match is: http://www.ilsos.gov/isavital/marriagesrch.jsp
- With the correct new URL, go back to the wiki page and replace the broken link with the new one you have found.
- Preview the page to make sure the new link you added works correctly.
If you are unable to locate a new link for the broken URL, put the link and identifying information on this spreadsheet.
If you are not sure you found the new correct link, we can review it for you. Put the information on this spreadsheet and we will check it for you.
If the broken link you have fixed is on more than one wiki page, Danielle can do a Replace Text and fix them all at once. Report the old and new link on this spreadsheet and she will take care of it for you.
If the broken link appears to be in a foreign language, we will instead have a specialist at the library fix this broken link. Report the broken link on this spreadsheet.