Google returns this URL as a top hit (for "addon-sdk widget"): https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/latest/packages/addon-kit/docs/widget.html It currently has a 404. The current URL appears to be: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/latest/packages/addon-kit/widget.html (note "/docs/" in the first URL) There should be redirects from the first URL to the second. Another example 404 URL from a Google search: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/latest/dev-guide/addon-development/annotator/widget.html I'm not sure what this URL should point to. I believe these are recent regressions.
What is recent is that https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/1.6/packages/addon-kit/docs/widget.html would have worked on Monday, but won't work today. But I would expect that a link that uses "latest" would have been broken since bug 699551 landed. In particular, see bug 699551, comment 6. But since you've raised this the day after we changed the online docs quite a lot (the fix for bug 779590 has us only keeping the last 3 versions of the docs, and that went up yesterday), maybe I'm wrong about that :(. Either way. I'd say there are a couple of things we could do: * ask Google to reindex our site: a lot of these pages are very old, and we have just removed a lot of old content. I'm pretty sure we can do this, but I don't have the power to, myself. * build a table of redirects for old pages. For the API reference docs, we could fix most 404s by redirecting any requests of this form: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/<version>/packages/<package_name>/docs/<page> to: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/latest/packages/<package_name>/<page> - that is, redirecting all versions to "latest" and dropping the second "docs". For other docs, like the "annotator" example you pointed to, it's more complicated, but still doable. Ian, does this sound like it would fix your case? Jeremy, is this something you could help us with? I could build a list of desired redirects for all old pages, if you could (1) implement them, and (2) ask Google to reindex the site.
People could be linking from elsewhere, and you lose SEO juice if you just abandon pages, so redirects should be a priority. Given that there's a lot of rearrangement I would also suggest scanning the logs for 404s to see if there's other patterns that should be redirected. Also the 404 page is bare, and could use some helpful content (but please don't make it a redirect to the main doc site!)
Alternatively, I could extend what I've done for versions 1.10 and 1.9, where there's a little banner pointing people at the most recent version: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/1.9/packages/addon-kit/page-mod.html ...or a note pointing people at the index page, if the page no longer exists in the new version: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/developers/docs/sdk/1.9/packages/api-utils/message-manager.html For pages referenced with a version number, do you think this is better than a straight redirect? (It seems to me that it is clearer.) We would still redirect any pages referenced using the "latest" alias that have moved.
I'd like to close this bug, since: (1) it's not, apparently, practical to have redirects for these pages (see bug 820897, which is closely related to this one) (2) those pages don't any longer show up in Google search results (3) we've now got a more helpful 404 page
Priority: P1 → --
Status: NEW → RESOLVED
Last Resolved: 5 years ago
Resolution: --- → WONTFIX
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