Simple URL Shortening Solution Using Redirect Pages

Dmitri Popov

Productivity Sauce

Sep 21, 2012 GMT
Dmitri Popov

Using an application like YOURLS, you can host a link shortening solution on your own server. But if you need to maintain only a handful of shortened URLs, installing a full-blown URL shortening application is overkill. Instead, you can use a dead-simple solution based on HTML pages containing the REFRESH metatag. For example, to set up a shorter link to my Wikimedia Commons gallery, I created the following HTML file and saved it as a gallery page on my server:

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
<meta http-equiv="refresh" content="0;url="></head>
Redirecting... Click <a href="">here</a> if nothing happens.

Now, instead of typing the URL, I use a shorter one: Creating redirect pages manually can quickly become a nuisance, so I wrote a dead-simple shell script for that:

echo "Short name:"
read shrt
echo "URL:"
read url
cat redir.tmpl | sed 's/URL/'$url'/' > $shrt

The script uses the redir.tmpl file as a template, where the actual URLs are replaced by the URL placeholder.

comments powered by Disqus
Subscribe to our Linux Newsletters
Find Linux and Open Source Jobs
Subscribe to our ADMIN Newsletters

Support Our Work

Linux Magazine content is made possible with support from readers like you. Please consider contributing when you’ve found an article to be beneficial.

Learn More