Error pages are quite common and more often than not, one will come across pages which show an error. 404 error pages show up when the page which was searched could not be found. This does not mean that the server was not working. It simply means that the page was either removed or the link does not exist.
• The first four in the error syntax represents a missing page. It could either mean that the page was removed by the client or the link was typed in wrong.
• The zero in 404 indicates a misspelt word or syntax. It could also be a general syntax error.
• The second four in the digits is very specific and relates to some specific problem which may have occurred.
The error page is used when the server is unable to make contact with the client and when it is not sure of the location of the specific page. In typical usage, a page should show the 410 error when it has been removed. But the 404 error is often used in place of this as it has become popular.
Contents Of The Error Page
The error page can be modified to suit requirements and display information about the website. The page can be customized to write down the reason for the error, to cater to the non-technical audience. However, this can only be done if the web host has enabled the feature. In some cases the host may have cancelled the customization option and the standard error display will remain.
Preventing Errors From Occurring
There are a few factors which may prevent the error from occurring. One can take certain precautions and track down the problems.
In case of dynamic pages where the content is often changed the errors are quite common. One can prevent the search engines from indexing such pages and thereby cut the chance of the error occurring.
Another option which you can use to prevent errors from occurring is redirecting. Once you find a page which is constantly showing an error, you can redirect to alternate pages. Once the visitor lands on the error page, he/she will automatically be taken to another alternative page with the information. Redirecting the page is quite easy and this is the most efficient option available for rectifying the errors.
These can be used to keep a track of the problematic error pages. The errors which occur are usually updated into a log and clients can track them continuously as they occur. If the error occurs, proper methods can be used to rectify them.
Most 404 error are usually related to the URL. When one makes a mistake with the URL, the server tends to go into a loop. Sometimes when hyperlinks are inserted into a page this can lead to 404 errors as well. Invalid hyperlinks are one of the most common problems which occur.
The Use Of .htaccess File
These files can be used to manipulate and change the behavior of the server. These files are easy to upload and use. The file can be useful when you are specifying the restrictions of any given directory. It can also be used modifying the error messages which the client wishes to be displayed.
Errors are a common occurrence and instead of being a pain, they can be used as a useful combination tool. Customizing errors pages actually show the customer that the client cares about what the viewer sees.