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Redirect WordPress Individual Category Feeds to Feedburner via HTAccess

Time for another Feedburner redirect tutorial! In our previous FeedBurner-redirect post, I provide an improved HTAccess method for redirecting your site’s main feed and comment feed to their respective Feedburner URLs. In this tutorial, we are redirecting individual WordPress category feeds to their respective FeedBurner URLs. We will also look at the complete code required to redirect all of the above: the main feed, comments feed, and of course any number of individual category feeds. Let’s jump into it..

Initial Setup

As we are redirecting our category feeds to their associated FeedBurner URLs, you will first want to make sure that these feeds exist and are accessible. Once you have the URLs of the FeedBurner feeds for your categories, make a list of their associated WordPress categories for easy reference. In addition to this information, you will need:

  • A WordPress-powered blog (with the required categories)
  • An Apache server with the mod_rewrite module enabled
  • Access to to your domain’s root HTAccess file (or to httpd.conf)

For this tutorial, we will assume the following hypothetical WordPress/Feedburner feed URLs:

  • Main feed:
  • Comments feed:
  • “Business” category feed:
  • “Pleasure” category feed:
  • “Nonsense” category feed:

Redirecting Category Feeds

Here is the generalized HTAccess code that we will be using to redirect our three categories:

# Redirect WordPress Category Feeds to Feedburner
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
 RewriteEngine on
 RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} !^.*(FeedBurner|FeedValidator) [NC]
 RewriteRule ^category/business/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^category/pleasure/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^category/nonsense/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]

That’s the core of this tutorial, right there. The first line checks for the existence of the required Apache module, mod_rewrite, while the second line enables the module (you may remove this line if already included in your file). Then, the third line ensures that the two Feedburner user agents are not redirected. The next three lines each match against a specific category feed URL and subsequently redirect the request to the appropriate Feedburner counterpart. Further, we are using the “No-Case” ( [NC] ) modifier to ensure case-insensitive pattern matching for all directives. Finally, each of the three rewrites is executed as a “Temporary” ( [R=302] ) redirect.

Now, to implement this method, edit the last three lines according to your specific category and Feedburner feed information. Double-check that the changes are accurate. For additional categories, duplicate one of the three RewriteRules and edit as necessary. For fewer categories, simply delete one or two of the last three lines and edit as necessary.

Once you have edited the code to meet your needs, place the entire chunk of code into your site’s root HTAccess file. If your WordPress installation is located in a subdirectory, you may also place the code in the root HTAccess for that subdirectory. In either case, make sure that this code is placed before the default WordPress permalink rules.

Once uploaded to your server, verify functionality by navigating to your redirected category feeds. If everything is place and edited correctly, the redirects should be working and your category feed URLs should be opening their associated Feedburner feeds.

Redirecting Main, Comments, and Category Feeds

Chances are, if you are redirecting your WordPress category feeds to Feedburner, you will also want to redirect your blog’s main feed and comments feed as well. With our category-redirect code in place, we simply need to add two additional lines of code:

RewriteRule ^feed/?.*$     [L,NC,R=302]
RewriteRule ^comments/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]

Edit these two lines of code with your particular feed information and then place them into the category-redirect code as follows:

# Redirect WordPress Category Feeds to Feedburner
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
 RewriteEngine on
 RewriteCond %{HTTP_USER_AGENT} !^.*(FeedBurner|FeedValidator) [NC]
 RewriteRule ^feed/?.*$     [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^comments/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^category/business/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^category/pleasure/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]
 RewriteRule ^category/nonsense/feed/?.*$ [L,NC,R=302]

With that code in place (and properly edited), your server will redirect all requests for your blog’s main, comments, and specified category feeds to their respectively associated Feedburner feed URLs. All other types of feeds (tags, post comments, author feeds, etc.) will not be affected and will appear as normal when requested.


Thanks to Alexander for his question about redirecting category feeds. His code was used as the catalyst for the elaborated techniques presented in this article.

About the Author
Jeff Starr = Web Developer. Security Specialist. WordPress Buff.
Blackhole Pro: Trap bad bots in a virtual black hole.

35 responses to “Redirect WordPress Individual Category Feeds to Feedburner via HTAccess”

  1. Glad I was able to help, thanks for the mention too. :)

  2. Thanks for this; been looking for a method as all the plugins I have tried are unreliable.

    However, I found that after implementing the method it broke my feedburner feeds. What am I doing wrong?

    There was a problem retrieving the feed: com.burningdoor.rsspp.resource.impl.HttpConnectionException: Error getting URL: 400 – Recursive feed redirection error: Are requests for your ‘Original Feed’ address — the feed that FeedBurner is checking for updates — being redirected to your FeedBurner feed? Make sure your Original Feed is provided from a web address that isn’t redirected to FeedBurner.

  3. Web Design Sussex 2009/01/04 3:58 pm

    Thankyou for this article, I finally got my feeds redirecting. I had some major hasslestrying to enable mod_rewrite on my server but got there eventually. Happy new year.

  4. Brass Engraved 2009/01/06 1:03 pm

    Thankyou very much for this, worked like a dream!

  5. Friedbeef 2009/01/08 5:42 pm

    I had trouble getting Feedsmith to work – thanks so much for posting this up! works perfectly (once I remembered to put the code BEFORE my permalinks code :)) Brilliant stuff!

  6. First of all congratulation for such a great site. I learned a lot reading here today. I will make sure i visit this site more often so i can learn more.

  7. UK Web Designer Directory 2009/01/23 6:24 am

    Thanks for this writeup, your method worked almost perfectly except a few modifications to htaccess were required.

  8. @UK Web Designer Directory: My pleasure for the writeup. Glad it is useful for you. Btw, it would be great to hear about the “required” htaccess modifications that you used, especially if they apply to the code in general.

  9. Thanks for this article. But is a 302 really the best way or practical?

  10. Jeff Starr 2009/06/15 6:23 pm

    @Mo: Good question. I have read arguments supporting both 302 (temp redirect) and 301 (permanent redirect). The crux of the argument rests on the fact that Feedburner is a service that processes feeds from an original source. If/when Feedburner ever stops providing the service (and even if they don’t), the feeds will still belong to their respective sources, and thus it is argued that the redirect is in fact “temporary” in nature.

    What are your thoughts on the subject?

  11. thanx for the tutorial.. when i try to add feeds of the category in the feed burner i am getting the following error

    Your feed filesize is larger than 512K. You need to reduce its size in order for FeedBurner to process it. Tips for controlling feed file size with Blogger can be found in Tech Tips on FeedBurner Forums, our support site.

  12. Jeff Starr 2009/06/28 7:56 am

    @Harsha: First, double-check and verify that your feed size is over the limits. Second, how many posts are you delivering via your feed? 512K corresponds to a huge file. If Google is choking on it, chances are other (smaller) services are as well.

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