How to Change & Reset Permalinks in WordPress

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In this post learn about how to update & reset permalinks structure in WordPress.

WordPress permalinks are the permanent links or URLs for your posts and pages. Using custom permalinks can improve search engine optimization (SEO) and make a website’s URL more attractive for searches. Broken permalinks can also cause ‘Page not found’ errors on your WordPress site.

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To update, activate or reset permalinks in WordPress, follow the instructions provided below.

Update Permalinks

Update Permalinks in Dashboard

You can activate and update permalinks through the WordPress Dashboard in order to have SEO friendly URLs.

  1. You should always backup your site before making any changes.
  2. Log in to WordPress.
  3. Go to Settings > Permalinks
  4. Choose the permalink structure you prefer, or create a custom one. 
    Note: OPTIONAL: You can also create a structure for your categories and tags.
  5. Click Save Changes.
  6. The URL on your website’s pages should display the permalink settings you selected.
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Update WordPress Permalinks in the database

You can update WordPress permalinks through the database instead of using WordPress Dashboard.

  1. You should always backup your site before making any changes.
  2. Log into the database via phpMyAdmin. 
    Note: In cPanel Hosting, you must select the database for your WordPress site in the left-hand column before proceeding to the next step.
  3. Click on the wp_options table.
  4. Locate the permalink_structure entry under the option_name column. You may need to navigate beyond the first page of entries.
  5. Click the Edit button.
  6. Under the option_value field for this entry, add the permalink structure that you want to use.
  7. Click Go.
  8. The URL on your website’s pages should display the permalink settings you selected.
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Reset Permalinks

Reset Permalinks in Dashboard

If your WordPress permalinks are broken, or your pages display a Page Not Found (404) error, you can use the steps below to reset the permalinks in WordPress.

  1. You should always backup your site before performing any troubleshooting.
  2. Log in to WordPress.
  3. Go to Settings > Permalinks.
  4. Change the permalink structure to Plain.
  5. Click Save Changes.
  6. The URL on your website’s pages should display the permalink settings you selected.
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Reset WordPress Permalinks in the Database

If necessary you can reset WordPress permalinks to their default setting within the database.

  1. You should always backup your site before performing any troubleshooting.
  2. Log into phpMyAdmin. 
    Note: In cPanel Hosting you must select the database for your WordPress site in the left-hand column before proceeding to the next step.
  3. Click on the wp_options table.
  4. Locate the permalink_structure entry in the option_value column.
  5. Click the Edit button.
  6. Under the option_value field for this entry, remove the text and leave it blank.
  7. Click Go.
  8. The URL on your website’s pages should display the default permalink settings for WordPress.

In these ways you can change & reset permalinks structure in WordPress.

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