Template:Dead link

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[1] (old link)

Basic Use

The dead link template, like the link template, provides a way to store both the original URL and the URL of an archived snapshot of the page. If the original link dies, changing the word "link" to "dead link" in the "link" template will switch it over to this template, the dead link template, instead. The link will then point to the archived url (if present).

If there is not already an archived snapshot available at the Internet Archive, requesting a snapshot while the link is live may increase the odds that at least one snapshot will be available later if the link dies.

To search for a snapshot of a page or take a new snapshot with minimal clicking, you can add bookmarklets to your browser bookmarks.


  • url (Required if "archive" argument is absent. Optional if "archive" argument is present.) The formerly-live url.
  • archive (Required if "url" argument is absent. Optional if "url" argument is present.) The full url of an archived snapshot of the link.
  • link text (Optional, unnamed argument.) The text that appears on the link (for instance, "Review").

Including the original url but not the archive url is useful to a degree, even for a dead link, because then the template will point the user to an Internet Archive search for the original link (this search may or may not have useful results) and the page will automatically be added to the "New links wanted" category.

Basic Format

{{dead link|url=http://www.original-link.com|archive=http://www.archived-version.com|Link Text}}


{{dead link|url=http://diden.net/~maga/ifrecs.html|archive=http://web.archive.org/web/20110420071659/http://diden.net/~maga/ifrecs.html|Sam Kabo Ashwell's favorite IF}}

The result is

Sam Kabo Ashwell's favorite IF (archived)

which leads to the archived snapshot.

If an Archive Link is Broken

I've come across a few examples of Wayback Machine links that presumably worked at some point, but no longer work because they are now blocked by robots.txt. (See for instance the page on David Samuel Myers.)

In this situation, I've been putting the original URL as the "url" argument, and the broken archive link as the "brokenarchive" argument. The "brokenarchive" argument is not a real argument; it's not recognized by the wiki. But it serves the purpose of allowing us to keep the archive URL in the template for future reference, while also displaying the link as broken. The link will be followed by "(old link)" in red type, like any other broken link without a working archive link, and the page will be added to the "new links wanted" category, neither of which would happen if we used the "archive" argument.

{{dead link|url=http://www.sinc.sunysb.edu/Stu/dmyers/dsm.html|brokenarchive=http://web.archive.org/web/20021015214127/www.sinc.sunysb.edu/Stu/dmyers/dsm.html|Reviews}}