Simple Machines Forum.If you’re like me and added a Simple Machines Forum to a pre-existing website that is already grounded with a www prefix, then you might have some trouble while installing the Pretty URL mod for your SMF forum. The problem I had was that all the urls worked perfectly fine except for the board and topic urls. These urls didn’t have a www prefix in front of them and these are pretty important urls, so I want to make sure they also have a www prefix in front of them for SEO purposes.

The reason why this is an issue to begin with is because it matters for search engine page rank. You see,


are two completely different urls as far as the search engines are concerned, so you don’t want part of your website to have a www prefix and another part of your website to now have a www prefix. The search engines will treat these as two separate websites which in the long run will end up losing you traffic in the future. I know you don’t want this. I found a solution for you.

The first thing I would recommend before installing the Pretty URL mod is to make sure you specified your Forum’s URL properly. This isn’t a necessity, but it might help resolve the issue before it even starts. Go to Admin, Configuration, then Server Settings. Once you’re there, make sure your forum’s url starts with http://www.

Simple Machines Forum server settings for url.

After you have specified this, go ahead and install the Pretty URL mod if you haven’t already.

The next step is fun. You get to go to your hosting account and mess around with your MySQL database settings. Once you get logged into your database from your hosting account, find the smf_settings table. Browse that table until you find the pretty_root_url row. If the url doesn’t have a www prefix, go ahead and add it. This should make all your urls rewritten with a www prefix.

Simple Machines Forum settings for Pretty urls mod.

Once you got that taken care of, you’re going to want to check the smf_pretty_urls_cache table. Browse this table and make sure all urls with no www prefix are changed to urls with a www prefix. Depending on how big your website is, this can be a very daunting task. Don’t mess with the tables that have ‘B in front of them. Only the urls that don’t have a www prefix are the ones you’ll need to worry about.

There you have it. This should solve your problem. You can take a look at my simple machines forum site to see that all the urls are directed properly.

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