How to Fix Broken Permalinks in WordPress

How to Fix Broken Permalinks in WordPress

Running into “404 Page Not Found error when accessing your website? You probably have an issue with broken permalinks. In this article, we will help you find the culprit behind this error and provide you with a comprehensive guide on how to fix it.

Various causes may trigger broken permalinks on your website.

  • New plugin installation. The new plugins you install may interfere with your .htaccess file.
  • Restoring a backup or migrating WordPress. You recently restored a backup or switched your site to a new domain or server.
  • Updates. Problems with incompatibility after updating plugins, themes, or WordPress core.
  • Changes in .htaccess file. Updating, or altering your .htaccess file incorrectly.

Here are several methods on how you can fix broken permalinks in WordPress.

The simplest way to deal with this problem is by resetting the permalinks structure:

  1. Navigate to your WordPress Dashboard. Go to Settings > Permalinks.
  2. Select an alternative permalinks structure -> Save Changes. For instance, if you’re currently using the Day and name settings. Change it to something else, like Post name.
    Changing permalink settings in WordPress.
  3. Once done, change it back to your standard structure and hit Save Changes once again.

If you’re still getting a “404 Page Not Found” error, let’s try other remaining methods.

2. Disabling Plugins

Deactivate the most-recently installed or updated plugin that might be triggering the error. Otherwise, you can also remove all the installed plugins altogether:

  1. Go to the Plugins menu in your WordPress dashboard -> Installed Plugins.
  2. Click the Deactivate button next to the plugin’s name.
  3. Once finished, reset the permalinks structure using the previous method.

3. Replacing .htaccess File

In case none of the options solved your broken permalinks issue, the issue can be related to your .htaccess file’s configuration. Thus, you should replace your current .htaccess file with the default one.

In this example, we’ll be using Hostinger’s File Manager:

  1. Navigate to hPanel -> File Manager.
  2. Select your domain and press ​Go to File Manager.
  3. Choose the ​.htaccess ​file​ ​in the ​public_html ​folder.
  4. Right-click and select Rename. Then, change the file name (e.g., .htaccess-error).
    Renaming the .htaccess file in hPanel.
  5. Next, click the New File icon at the top of the page. Don’t forget to name it .htaccess.
  6. Paste the code below in your new .htaccess file.
    # BEGIN WordPress
    
    <IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
    
    RewriteEngine On
    
    RewriteBase /
    
    RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
    
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
    
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
    
    RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
    
    </IfModule>
    
    # END WordPress
  7. Once all is done, Save & Close.
    Editing the .htaccess file in WordPress.

Alternatively, you can also run this process by using an FTP client, like FileZilla

If the problem is not solved, try to remember what actions you’ve taken before the error occurred. If it happened after performing a specific update, then restoring a backup might be a reliable option to get your site up and running.

Conclusion

There are plenty of reasons why you can get a broken permalinks issue in WordPress. The bad news is, your website will be inaccessible and will display a “404 Page Not Found” error.

Fortunately, you can effortlessly handle this problem using these three simple methods:

  • Resetting permalinks structure – configure your built-in permalink settings on the WordPress dashboard.
  • Disabling plugins – deactivate the installed plugins in a few clicks.
  • Replacing .htaccess file – replace the .htaccess file from hPanel or using an FTP client.

We hope that this step-by-step tutorial will help you fix broken permalinks on your WordPress website. If you have any more questions, let us know in the comments section below.

Author
The author

Domantas G.

Domantas leads the content and SEO teams forward with fresh ideas and out of the box approaches. Armed with extensive SEO and marketing knowledge, he aims to spread the word of Hostinger to every corner of the world. During his free time, Domantas likes to hone his web development skills and travel to exotic places.