I post at SearchCommander.com now, and this post was published 14 years 2 months 5 days ago. This industry changes FAST, so blindly following the advice here *may not* be a good idea! If you're at all unsure, feel free to hit me up on Twitter and ask.
In WordPress, the traditional behavior of the past few months has been that if you edit the Permalink of a page or post, the old URL will generate a 301 (permanent) redirect to the new URL.
This action follows SEO best practices, and in general it follows anyone’s common sense. It tells search engines that the page has been permanently moved, and it also retains the value of any incoming links that may have accumulated for that URL
However, in WordPress 2.82, something seems to have gone wacky, and those actions are no longer happening.
This first came to my attention when I saw a Tweet by johnandrews saying that he was seeing that the old URL was remaining, and the new URL then 302 redirected to the old one.
He and I chatted a bit about it briefly, so this morning I decided to do a quick test for myself, and went to the one and only 2.82 installation that we have, and I changed the Permalink of the post.
While I did not see the old url remaining as John reported, when running the old URL or the new URL through either of these two server response checkers, I was shown a 302 redirect instead of a 301 and I also noticed that the trailing slash is no longer added.
So, I guess the the moral of the story here is don’t change any URLs if you’re running WordPress 2.82 – and changing URL’s really isn’t all that desirable anyway.
This leaves me to wonder what if editing the entire permalink structure on a new WP 2.82 installation might not be wacky too?
*** Update – Yes, it seems that changing the site permalink structure DOES ALSO generate a 302 from the old URL to the new. What a colossal screwup!
*** Update October 2009 –
Now with a WordPress 2.85 upgrade, I’m seeing 404 errors after changing a URL, so it’s even worse! Unbelievable.