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Search engine/migration issue

David Bryce

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Hi, guys - 

My forum (forums.musicplayer.com) was migrated over from UBB Central in January. 

This was posted in April by one of our members:


My biggest concern is that I'm not sure the conversion was complete. Numerous times, I've used Google to find something here, and if it's a really old result (like, more than 10 years ago), the google result will not successfully link to the forum, and even trying to find the post with the forum's own search facility (based on the piece of the result I was able to find from the google search) fails to bring up the post. So it seems like either some of the old stuff still isn't here, or still isn't being found by the site's own search (and if you can't find it, it might as well not be here).


...and replied to by another member:


Yeah, my posts go back only to 2008 or so. First three years are missing.


In May, the first poster followed up with a bunch more helpful feedback :



I just did this google search:




I clicked the second one, and got "Sorry! The page you requested does not exist"


so then I tried search for that thread using this forum's search function, using the same search phrase (18 hits, but not that one), and the thread title "Old DX7 patches in a modern rig" (no hits)... that one is only from 2016, and it doesn't appear to be here.


I've run into this enough times to be fairly certain that a lot of old content did not survive the transition to the new platform. Sometimes I was able to see it via google's cache, but sometimes not (and I suspect that, the more time goes by, the less likely the cache "trick" is likely to work). This one was an example of one where the cache option was gone as well.


I don't know that there's any fix for this, or even if there is, what herculean effort might be required to fix it (and what else could go wrong in the process!). I remember that someone maintained a "backup" of the old site, in case it went down. I wonder if it might make sense (and be feasible) to activate that backup site, leave it up in a "read only" format (no new posts), as an archive where we know we could find all the old content.



The forum's own search facility cannot locate posts that Google says are there. It seems that the import of old messages to the new site was incomplete and a good number of messages are missing. Ideally, that could be fixed, but I'm guessing that could be complicated, to essentially re-do the import of the old messages in some way that fixes the problem (which also means first figuring out what went wrong the first time), without risking the new messages in the process... It would be great if it were do-able, but if not, as I said, getting the old site up elsewhere as a read-only archive would at least give us access to all those old posts. (And eventually google would find them there as well.)


I have not experienced any inherent problem with "ubbthreads" links. And if you look at my screenshot above, both search results are ubbthread links... the first one works, the second one does not. Maybe ubbthreads is a factor, or maybe it's not, but either way, some stuff is not accessible, and that inaccessibility does not simply correlate to the presence of ubbthreads. And not only does that other hit ("Old DX7 patches in a modern rig") not resolve from clicking the google search result, but worse, trying to then locate that post with this forum's own Search function also fails, which means that either the post did not survive the transition, or, if it did, it has not been indexed by the site's search function (and if you can't locate it through any internal or external search, even if it's technically there, it might as well not be, because there's no way to get to it).


And again, this is not a one-off, I've hit this problem numerous times, and I can provide more examples of failed searches for old content, if it will help.


...and now I'm told it's getting worse:


Things have taken a turn for the worse. The thread "old dx7 patches in a modern rig" still doesn't show up in a forum search but now it ALSO doesn't show up in a Google search, I guess it has been absent from the site long enough that it has been removed from Google's index of the site, and I imagine others will follow if they haven't disappeared already. As I said, this had bitten me numerous times, there appears to be a significant amount of old content that has been lost in the transition to the new format.

What do I do about this?






Edited by David Bryce
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It can take Google MONTHS to recrawl and re-search your site. I did a domain change in March and while it was picked up pretty quickly there are still literally more than 50% of items that have not been re-indexed yet. Google says they do this to prevent them from overloading your site. 

Don’t use Google for searching content on your site. Use the IPB site search function for now until Google picks up more. You can monitor progress of what Google finds in the Google Webmaster Search Console. 

Edited by Randy Calvert
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Do you have an example URL which you can provide us? Following a few old URLs I found on Google, the redirects from the converter are working without issue:


Example URL: https://forums.musicplayer.com/ubbthreads.php/topics/3094625/best-way-to-get-fm-dx-in-a-rack


It may be the user itself does not have access so if it comes to that we may need to know the user's display name.

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