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Friday, May 01, 2015

A Redirected Home Page Lacks Dynamic Sizing

One feature of the Blogger home page, enjoyed by some blog owners, is the ability to explicitly set maximum main page size, for the blog when displayed.

We see an occasional complaint, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue.
I redirected my home page, using a label search - but the display is now way too long! How do I shorten my custom main page?
This blog owner is probably a little disappointed, to discover one tiny limitation, in main page setting.

The "Show at most" setting, in Settings - "Posts and comments" - mirrored by "Number of posts on main page", in "Configure Blog Posts" - lets you set an explicit maximum page size. That setting only applies to the native main page URL - and some blog owners like to customise the main page, using a label search redirect.

When you redirect home page traffic, using a label search, you get a custom home page - but with a fixed size of 20 posts.

You can modify the main page size by a fixed post count.
You can add a URL modifier "?max-results=nn", that will produce a main page that will still be subject to limitation by auto pagination. The "max-results" URL modifier will approximate the explicit main page sizing, and allow a redirected main page.

Here's an example.
For an example, one popular labels search home page redirection uses the "Home" label, to identify all posts that are to be displayed on the home page.
From: / To: /search/label/Home
That will give you a home page of 20 posts, maximum, that can't be changed. If we add
?max-results=10
We can have a home page with a maximum of 10 posts. Just edit the existing custom redirect, in Settings - "Search preferences".
From: / To: /search/label/Home?max-results=10
This will provide a more attractive display, on some blogs.

That tweak is not as versatile as "Show at most" - but it's an improvement.
The above sizing, normally set in the "Show at most" / "Number of posts on main page" option, will provide a replacement for the fixed Posts option - but it won't give you the equivalent of the dynamic Days option. Even so, it is better than some owners who find themselves not able to use a redirected home page, because 20 posts makes the main page too long.

Dude, hit me with a comment!