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Link checking

As of May 2009 we are running an experimental link check in the early hours of each morning. To enable it you must create a world-readable file called linkcheck.txt in the directory you wish to be checked. For a sensibly indexed directory a single linkcheck.txt file will link-check that directory and all of its sub-directories.

linkcheck.txt has the usual sidebar-like syntax in that options consists of a word followed by a colon, everything else is taken to be a URL to be excluded from the check.

Example minimal linkcheck.txt file

mailto: a.n.other@exeter

# URLs not to check
Details of any broken links will be emailed to a.n.other@exeter (assumed to be you!). If there are no broken links no email is sent. You must specify an email address for the check to run.

Other options

depth: n
# Only check links to depth n with respect to this directory.
# (I believe this refers to the number of links a page is
# away from the original, not the directory depth.)

# For links of the form:
# check that "fragment" exists (should this be the default?)

# Only run on the morning(s) specified.

verbose: n
# Verbosity: by default the link-checker runs in quiet mode
# (no error, no email), if n is omitted or zero, it runs
# in standard mode, otherwise runs in verbose mode.

# Disables the link check

When you first create the file I would advise deliberately creating a broken link in one of your web pages just to check it is behaving as you would expect.


The link checker is a slightly modified version of the publicly available W3C linker checker.

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