Mike Finds a Problem With WordPress: Overwriting Htaccess Files

April 3rd, 2008 | by Mike |

So up until today, my switch to WordPress from Movable Type was pretty much all gumdrops and handjobs…that is, until my carefully crafted URL translator suddenly stopped working.  

Backstory: When I switched from MT to WP, I had to have my permalinks change.  That sucked, but I got them as close as possible to the old ones and I modified the .htaccess file WordPress had to redirect all old links to a php file that figured out what post they wanted and pushed them to the new link.  It took all of 20 minutes and I completed the switch.  However, somehow through my tinkering with WordPress over the past few days WordPress overwrote my modified .htaccess file.  Suck.  Luckily I was getting traffic from another blog today and I noticed they linked to an article that didn’t make much sense so I looked in to it and noticed that none of the old redirects were working.  Not cool.  To make matters work, my work site died for a short time today too, so its been a really buggy day and I didn’t need this. 

I just got it working again though, and this time backed up my .htaccess changes so I don’t have to rethink it all over again.  That all being said, I hate it when software like this expects that you don’t actually work with your files.  I know the minority of WordPress users don’t go digging around in their .htaccess file, but I think it is common enough that they should either:

  1. Notify you of the pending overwrite, or
  2. Have a smarter .htaccess creator that only replaces their lines and not the whole file.
…all in all, I’m still liking my move to WordPress, and this hit me on a bad day, but still…since this is the version that is downloaded and installed by users, maybe WordPress should think about its power-users just a little more.

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