Vigil’s Broken Link Checker Beta Now Available

Vigil is proud to announce the availability of the Broken Link Checker, a tool to scan a website for links that are no longer working. The web is always changing. Websites come and go, articles get moved, and functionality changes. Links you have on your website today might not work tomorrow. Keeping all your links working can be a tedious chore. With Vigil's Broken Link Checker we'll let you know if anything stops working. 

The Broken Link Checker is available today as a beta. You can access the broken link checker here:

Check out your site today, and let us know how well it works, or if you run into any issues. We're constantly working on improving the tool as we prepare for general release, and we'd love your feedback.

Benefits

Links are the cornerstone of the web. Link to anywhere, from anywhere with just a simple URL. Unfortunately, as easy as it is to create links, it is just as easy for them to break. A website might have hundreds, or even thousands, of links. Making sure every single one is still working can take valuable time. Using an automated broken link checker saves you time and money by letting you know when a link has stopped working without all the drudgery.

  • Find a broken link before your users experiences the frustration of trying to follow a link that fails.
  • Search engine ranking can be negatively impacted by broken links. Don't let stale links linger around your site, dragging down your search relevance.
  • Move parts of your site around with confidence. Make a change, and then check your site to make sure everything is still working.
  • Catch issues with backend services that might be auto-generating links within your website. Our broken link checker can scan thousands of URLs easily.

How it Works

Vigil's broken link checker starts when you give us a URL to scan. When you click the scan button, we'll look through the first page for a number of HTML tags: 

A, IMG, SCRIPT, LINK, VIDEO, SOURCE

Each of these tags has an associated URL which we'll grab, and attempt to follow. The scanner is designed to recursively search through a domain. For links that are on the same top-level domain as the original site, the scanner will recursively follow the link and scan for more link tags. For example, if you enter vigil-app.com as the site, and we find a link to vigil-app.com/support, the scanner will download the support page, and scan it for any links, and so on until we've found all the links on vigil-app.com. If we find a link that goes to another website, for example daringfireball.com, instead of downloading that page, we will instead perform a HEAD request, which will let us know if that link is still working. This helps limit the impact of a broken link scan.

Depending on how large your website is, it can take a while to scan. Rather than make you wait around for our scan to be complete, we ask for you email address. When we've completed the check, we'll send you an automated report to your email address, letting you know whether we found any problems.

Features and Cost

During the beta period you can use the Vigil Broken Link Checker for free! Scanning an entire website is a time-consuming task. To conserve resources, we have made it so that a website can only be scanned once every 24 hours by each unique e-mail address. Additionally, the free version is limited to scanning 3 different domains. Each site must be manually entered each time you wish to scan it.

Vigil Professional and Business Users

Remembering to check your site for broken links can be hard, but for Vigil Professional or Business subscribers, we've taken away that worry. You can setup a special broken link monitor that will automatically run every month and send you a report. Visit your Vigil dashboard and click the + button. If you click on the drop-down arrow in the title bar of the dialog box you can change the monitor type to Broken Link Monitor.

If you want to run one-off checks, you can visit the regular Broken Link Check tool page, and use the email address associated with your account. You can run as many checks as you want on as many different domains as you'd like.

Feedback

We're excited to be bringing this new tool to Vigil customers, and we can't wait to get your feedback. Let us know what works well, and more importantly what doesn't. Please forward any comments to us at support@vigil-app.com.