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mod_rewrite infinite rules?

Posted on 2010-04-07
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
Hi all.

I hope you can help. I'm not sure if this is even possible...

I'm using mod_rewrite to convert this:

www.domain.com/page.php?level1=parent-page&level2=child-page&level3=grandchild-page

into this:

www.domain.com/parent-page/child-page/grandchild-page

using this line:

RewriteRule ^([A-Za-z0-9-]+)/([A-Za-z0-9-]+)/([A-Za-z0-9-]+)/?$ page.php?level1=$1&level2=$2&level3=$3

via an .htaccess file in the website root.

Do any of you good people know of a way I could use this same technique for an unlimited number of levels of sub-pages and sub-sub-pages? In reality, it's unlikely that the page hierarchy will go further than 4 levels deep, but the CMS allows for an endless tree, so I need to accommodate this in the frontend if I can.

Any guidance would be appreciated.
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Question by:capnsplatter
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HackneyCab earned 1500 total points
ID: 30253940
I don't believe it's possible to achieve an indeterminate number of pattern captures using mod_rewrite. The redirect target has to be written explicitly, so there's no way that I know of which would allow you to have &levelX=$X in your target.

I have to say I'd avoid an unlimited pattern like the plague. Every one of those slashes looks like a subdirectory to Google and other search engines, and the deeper a subdirectory is, the lower the value Google tends to attach to its content.
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by:capnsplatter
ID: 32414300
Apologies for the delay responding.

Thanks for your help.

I had a feeling it wouldn't be possible.

I guess I'll just have to limit the number of levels to 3 or 4.
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Expert Comment

by:HackneyCab
ID: 32418468
Yes, I would definitely recommend thinking about a more elegant way to restructure your site (and its URLs). That will keep things simpler, easier to maintain, and better looking from the point of view of visitors, and web crawlers.
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Author Closing Comment

by:capnsplatter
ID: 32772861
Thanks.
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