What's a permalink?

  • OK, can somebody please tell me what the "permalink" button (as seen in the upper right corner of just about everything, including this post) is for and what on earth can I do with it?
    Does it have magical properties that I dare not meddle with, or is it there just to be that enigma in the upper right corner that we must all ponder? 8|
    Thanks, Rob

  • This link is a permanent link to the corresponding post. On entering a thread a user might use a direct thread link, e.g. What's a permalink? because he accessed the thread from the board list. On the other hand the user could have entered the post by using a last post/first new post link. Those link types do not point to the same post over time, so if you want to link to a particular post you have to use this link. For a example, if I want to to show your post to a buddy I should give him the permanlink because the last post/first new post link is not pointing to your post as soon as I have submitted this post :)

  • The permalink always links to that specific post.

    For example: The link to this thread would be:


    So, if i wanted to link to Hawkes post, i could just give someone that link and tell him that the post i'm referring to is the second one. But what if the post is cut out and inserted in another topic? (As a moderator, you can move between topics). Then my link would be useless.

    But, if i gave you the permalink of hawkes post, thats this one:


    you would alway get to hawkes post. It would simply not matter in which thread that post currently is.

    Moreover, this is a hyperlink to the 5th post of a thread in the off topic area:
    when did you start using WBB?
    Your browser should not only open the thread an the correct age, but automatically scroll to the correct post. So you do not have to search the fith post, your browser will automatically scroll and the fith post will be in your viewport asap.

    "A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP" — Leonard Nimoy

  • Thanks Guys:
    OK, I think I understand.
    So if I were creating links between the profile/content page of a photograph in the Gallery and posts (or threads) in a forum, then the "permalink" would be a
    good way to do it.

    In the profile/content section, I noticed a difference between the "Link" in the Share box at the bottom right of the page and the permalink:

    Link == http://whatever website/index.php?page=UserGalleryPhoto&photoID=4 
    Permalink == http://whatever website/index.php?page=UserGalleryPhoto&photoID=4#profileContent

    Is the "#profileContent" at the end of the permalink just a comment, or does it have any significance?

    I also couldn't help noticing that all my Links are processed by PHP:

    http://whatever website/index.php?page=UserGalleryPhoto&photoID=4

    (this is also the case with links to forum threads on my system)
    While the ones you list are just a directory path:


    is there a reason for this difference I should be aware of?

    Thanks, Rob

    Edited 3 times, last by robert ().

    • Official Post

    Is the "#profileContent" at the end of the permalink just a comment, or does it have any significance?

    The content after the hash ("#") tells the browser to jump to a specific section. In case of the user profile the section "profileContent" is the container right below the user data, this way your browser will load the page and scrolls down so you can directly view the image. If you omit the hashtag the page would fire up but you have to scroll down yourself. Like Netzwerg said before, the hash tells the browser which part of the page he should focus.

    While the ones you list are just a directory path, is there a reason for this difference I should be aware of?

    Both links are the same, but the "directory path" is just simulated. In real it points to index.php?page=Thread&…, this is done by the search engine optimization (SEO) plugin which rewrites links to be better readable. After all you can treat this as a cosmetic change, there's clearly no technical difference between both.

    To given an example, the following links will both point to the same page and the same image:

    If you open the second link your browser will be redirected to display the first link, but they're still pointing to the same location.

    Alexander Ebert
    Senior Developer WoltLab® GmbH

  • Thanks Alex:
    OK, this is good to know. I suppose I'll have to look at that SEO plugin when I get the time.

    Thanks again, Rob