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When to redirect

Webmasters need to set up redirections to prevent broken links

  • when one or more individual pages are moved and/or deleted and/or changed name
  • when an entire website is relocated or closed

Individual page redirection

When only a limited number of pages need to be redirected and an exact mapping of the old address to the new one is necessary, the redirection should be handled at the level of the individual page.
In this case, the page (or pages) at the old address is replaced by a new page (or pages) which contains a link to the desired page at its new location. This new page also contains a standard message indicating "The File you accessed does not exist anymore".

Site relocation

Site relocation is the act of moving a whole website from one place to another, in other words: the base address of the website is changed. In general, such a move goes together with a complete overhaul of the website, so that most of the pages are changed or at least change name. In this case, it is impossible to map individual old pages to their corresponding new equivalents and a general redirection will be implemented at the level of the server. Access to any pages at or below the old address of the home page of the website in question is automatically redirected to the home page of the new website.

Types of redirection

Redirections in the Europa Web Publishing Platform

Handled by the Content Management System (Drupal) at a page level and within the same instance, either automatically when a page is updated or after being set manually by an editor.

Flexible redirections

Service provided by DG Informatics to redirect users from pages which do not exist. Does not work with dynamic pages.

See documentation on flexible redirections

User-end redirections

Implemented by inserting the following html in your page:

<meta name="robots" content="noindex, nofollow">
<meta http-equiv="refresh" content="5;url=http://xxx.xx/xxx/xxx">

Where '5' indicates the number of seconds before redirection occurs, and the url is the target to which the user should be redirected.
This type of redirect should not be abused. If you have multiple pages to redirect, consider a server-side redirection (see also How to Request a Redirection)

Redirection by the application

In this case the redirection is handled by the application code.

Redirection from an external site

It is not possible to set up within Europa a redirection from an external site to Europa. If a website, developed and hosted outside the institutions, cannot, for whatever reason, be maintained any longer, redirection will have to be set up on the external server.

How to create redirection pages

Site relocation

    1. Arrange the physical transfer of the pages from the migrating website to their new location.
    2. Issue a redirection request indicating the old address to which references are received, and the new address to which these references are to be forwarded.

Individual page redirection

    1. Replace the previous content by producing a new page containing the desired redirection message plus a link to the desired page at its new address.
    2. Proceed with the transfer to the production server of the new content, and the old page content at the new location.

How to request a redirection

Redirection for static websites

When requesting a redirection to relocate an entire website, please send an email to Comm Europa Management with the following information

    • the old address to which requests are received
    • the new address to which these requests are to be forwarded
    • the name of the person in charge of the web section located at the new address
    • the justification of your request
    • the expiration date of the redirection
      • If pages moved or deleted = max. 1 year,
      • only with good justifications (for instance, legal reasons) = max. 5 years.

Redirection for dynamic websites

When requesting a redirection to relocate an entire website, please contact your IRM:

• Ask to create a Redirection via a JASSPR ticket.
• Provide the old address to which requests are received.
• Provide the new address to which these requests are to be forwarded.

Redirects, backups, removal of transformed HTML sites

Contact and support

If you require further assistance, please contact:

Comm Europa Management

European Commission
DG Communication 
Unit B.3 
Europa Web Communication 


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The Europa Web Guide is the official rulebook for the European Commission's web presence, covering editorial, legal, technical, visual and contractual aspects.
All European Commission web sites must observe the rules and guidelines it contains.
Web practitioners are invited to observe its contents and keep abreast of updates. Read more.