the link you followed has expired

How to Fix “The Link You Followed Has Expired” Error on WordPress

If you are a regular user of WordPress websites or you own one, you must have experienced the “Link You Followed Has Expired” error. This error is prevalent on WordPress websites, and it is distracting when you need to do things fast. If it happens on your website, it may affect your visitors, and some may end up jumping to our competitors’ sites. 

Your visitors will not wait for you to fix this problem so they can navigate your website. That’s why you need to fix it as soon as you realize it occurs on your website. 

Fortunately, the process of fixing this error is easy and straightforward. The only major problem with this error is that this error message doesn’t have any description. That is, it doesn’t provide any information about what causes the error. 

As a beginner, you might find it challenging to fix this problem because you wouldn’t know where to start. This situation is quite common with beginners, mainly because WordPress has many errors that confuse them.

However, you need not worry. We will break down this error for you and explain how you can fix it in simple, easy steps.

Causes of the Error “The Link You Followed Has Expired”

Before you attempt to fix this error, you must understand what causes it. This will help you solve the problem in case it reoccurs in the future. This error mainly occurs when you attempt to upload a plugin or a theme from the control panel. 

Not all files, but it usually occurs when the File you are trying to upload is larger than the limit set by your hosting provider. Hosting companies usually set higher upload limits, but sometimes you may want to upload a file that goes beyond the limit they’ve set. 

If you try to upload such a huge file, the error “The Link You Followed Has Expired” will pop up. The error can also pop up when your hosting provider has set meager upload limits that can not accommodate the theme or plugin you are trying to upload. In this case, the error will occur even if you are trying to upload a file of a reasonable size. 

Another error you can experience with WordPress is the “Maximum Execution Time Exceeded.” This usually occurs when you upload a very large directory or File other than a theme or plugin. These two errors aren’t the same, but they are caused by the same problem, uploading large files. 

Another cause of the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” is the use of an outdated PHP Version or incompatibility of the same. The error “The Link You Followed Has Expired” can occur after migrating to a new PHP version. 

The theme you are using on your website may not be compatible with the updated PHP, bringing the error. In addition to that, the updated serve may lack some PHP modules. This may cause problems with some plugins and cause the error.

How to Fix “The Link You Followed Has Expired” Error?

Since you now know that the error is caused by the upload limit your hosting provider sets, you must have guessed the most probable solution; to increase the upload limit, right? Yes. By increasing the upload limit, you’ll be able to upload your themes, plugins, large folders, and files without a hitch. 

There are several ways of doing this, but you have to be prepared for some little coding. You don’t have to be an expert in coding because we’ll give you the codes so you can copy and paste. 

There are four methods of fixing the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” Error. Let’s look at them one by one.

1. Through functions.php File Editing

By performing some tweaks to the functions.php File, the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” Error can be fixed. Many WordPress experts like to edit this File because it is attached to the WordPress themes. Meaning it can be used to solve many WordPress errors. 

Plan to change your website theme in the future. This method may not be suitable for you because the moment you change the theme, the upload limit will revert to the value set by your hosting provider. 

If you aren’t planning to change your theme, locate its function.php File, then copy and paste the below code lines into it. 

 @ini_set( ‘upload_max_size’ , ‘100M’ );

@ini_set( ‘post_max_size’, ‘100M’);

@ini_set( ‘max_execution_time’, ‘300’ );

Remember to change the values of post_max_size and upload_max_size until they reach the values you need to upload your desired plugin or theme. It would help if you also changed the max_execution_time to match the time you think will be long enough to execute the upload. 

Once you are done editing, you can save the changes. This will resolve the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” Error.

Some issues to take note of in this method

There’s no need to choose very large values. Keep them as low as possible. You need values that are just enough to solve the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” error. For example, if you insert very long execution times, your website will be affected. It will not perform well when you are uploading large files. 

A small upload limit and a short execution time will prevent hackers from uploading large files onto your website. So, keeping low limits is a way of ensuring the safety of your website.

2. Through .htaccess File Editing

Editing the .htaccess File is suitable if you are fond of changing your themes. This File is not part of WordPress, so WordPress will not overwrite it. The .htaccess File resides in the root directory (public_html) of your website, and you can use it to alter some web server characteristics. 

Again, find where this File is, then copy and paste the following code into it. 

php_value upload_max_filesize 100M

php_value post_max_size 100M

php_value max_execution_time 300

php_value max_input_time 300

Just like you did in the above case, change these values until you are sure they can allow you to upload your chosen theme and plugins. Save the changes and test your website. The error “The Link You Followed Has Expired” will be gone.

3. Through the php.ini File

As a beginner, you may find it challenging to locate the .htaccess File. The best way around this is to use the php.ini File instead. This method is also easier than using the functions.php File.

However, it is worth noting that this File will only be available if you are on a non-shared hosting plan. If you are on a shared plan and find this File, you may notice that it can not be edited. So, you’ll have to choose either of the two above methods. Another option would be to create your php.ini File in the root directory. 

Now to the method, locate the php.ini File, then copy and paste the below code lines into it. You can as well paste the code lines in the php.ini File you created.

upload_max_filesize = 100M

post_max_size = 100M

max_execution_time = 300. 

After pasting the code lines, change these values so they can accommodate whatever you want to upload, then click Save. The error “The Link You Followed Has Expired” will be fixed.

4. Upgrading Your Website’s PHP Version

If none of the above methods doesn’t work for you, then it could mean that your website’s PHP is outdated. By updating your website’s PHP, this error will be eliminated. To update the PHP, log into the cPanel, select the latest PHP version, and then set it as your current version. 

Before you update your website’s PHP, it would be necessary to back up your website, just in case things go wrong. You’ll also have to update your WordPress software, the theme, and all the plugins. This is the surest way of ascertaining the updated PHP will be compatible with your updated theme and plugins. You can as well contact your host provider to update your site’s PHP for you. 

Dealing with PHP is a bit of a challenge. You have to keep testing your website whenever you make a change to ensure your website still usually works.

Final Words

As you can see, resolving the “The Link You Followed Has Expired” isn’t as complicated as you might have thought. All you need to do is locate the relevant files, copy and paste the given code, and the error will be gone. 

Doing this for the first time can prove to be a great challenge, but the more you do it, the easier it will become. If you can’t locate these files or you are too busy with other issues, you can hire a WordPress expert to fix this error for you. 

Another way to solve this problem is to contact your hosting provider. Some of these providers might have some restrictions on how you can modify the mentioned files. By contacting them, they can exempt your website from these restrictions.

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