What to do when you get a 404 not found error

A 404 error is an HTTP status code that means the page you were trying to access on a website could not be found on your server.

404 Not Found error messages are frequently customized by individual websites. You can see some of the more creative ones in our presentation of the 20 best 404 error pages. So keep in mind that the 404 error can appear in any conceivable way depending on the website from which it is displayed.

How you can see the 404 error

Here are some common ways you might see the HTTP 404 error:

  • 404 error
  • 404 Not found
  • Error 404
  • The requested URL[URL] was not found on this server
  • Http404
  • Error 404 Not Found
  • 404 File or directory not found
  • HTTP 404 Not Found
  • 404 Page not found

404 Not Found error messages can appear in any browser or operating system. Most 404 Not Found errors are displayed within the Internet browser window just like web pages.

In Internet Explorer, the message The web page cannot be found usually indicates an HTTP 404 error, but a 400 Bad Request error is another possibility. You can check which error IE is referring to by checking 404 or 400 in the title bar.

404 errors received when opening links through Microsoft Office applications generate a The Internet site reports that the item you requested could not be found (HTTP/1.0 404) message within the MS Office program.

When Windows Update throws a 404 error, it appears as a code 0x80244019 or as the message WU_E_PT_HTTP_STATUS_NOT_FOUND .

Cause of HTTP 404 errors

Technically, a 404 error is a client-side error, which implies that the error is your error, either because you typed the URL incorrectly or because the page was moved or removed from the website and you should have known about it.

Another possibility is if a website has moved a page or resource but has done so without redirecting the old URL to the new one. When this happens, you will receive a 404 error instead of being automatically directed to the new page.

Microsoft IIS web servers sometimes provide more specific information about the cause of 404 Not Found errors by suffixing a number after 404 , as in HTTP Error 404.3 – Not Found , which stands for MIME type restriction .

How to fix the 404 Not Found error

  1. Please try again by pressing F5 , clicking/tapping the refresh/load button, or trying the URL again from the address bar.

    The 404 Not Found error can appear for various reasons even though there is no real problem, so sometimes a simple refresh will often load the page you were looking for.

  2. Check for errors in the URL. Many times the 404 Not Found error appears because the URL was typed incorrectly or because the link that was clicked points to the wrong URL.
  3. Move up one directory level at a time in the URL until you find something.

    For example, if www.web.com/a/b/c.htm gave you a 404 Not Found error, go to www.web.com/a/b/ . If you don’t get anything here (or an error), go to www.web.com/a/ . This should take you to what you’re looking for or at least confirm that it’s no longer available.

    If you have made it to the main page of the website, try searching for the information you are looking for. If the site doesn’t have a search function, try navigating to the page you want using category links to go deeper into the site.

  4. Search for the page from a popular search engine. It’s possible that you just have the wrong URL, in which case a quick Google or Bing search will get you where you want to go.

    If you find the page you were looking for, update your bookmark or favorite to avoid the HTTP 404 error in the future.

  5. Clear your browser’s cache if you have any indication that the 404 Not Found message might be yours. For example, if you can access the URL from your phone but not from your tablet, it might help to clear your tablet’s browser cache.

    You may also consider clearing your browser’s cookies, or at least those related to the website in question if clearing the cache didn’t work.

  6. Change the DNS servers used by your computer, but usually only if an entire website is giving you a 404 error, especially if the website is available to those on other networks (for example, your mobile network or a friend on another network). town).

    404’s on a full website are not particularly common unless your ISP or government filter/censor websites. No matter the reason, if this happens, trying another set of DNS servers is a good next step. See our Public DNS Server List for some alternatives and instructions for doing this.

  7. Please contact the website directly. If the page you’re looking for has been removed, the 404 error is completely legitimate and they should be able to tell you. If they have moved to the page and are generating 404’s instead of redirecting visitors to the new page, they will be happy to hear from you so they can go fix it.

    See our Website Contact Information list for links to support-based social media accounts for this site, which you can use to report a 404 error or stay up to date on the status of a problem if it’s widespread. Some websites even have phone numbers and email addresses!

    If you suspect that everyone is getting a 404 error for this site, but aren’t sure, a quick check on Twitter might help clear it up. All you have to do is search Twitter for #websitedown , as in #facebookdown or #youtubedown. Twitter users are often the first to start talking about a website outage.

  8. Finally, if all else fails, wait. No, it’s not fun, but it might be your only course of action, especially if you’re sure the 404 error shouldn’t be occurring (i.e. the page really should be at the URL you have and others are having the same problem and they find it equally strange).

Errors Similar error 404

Some other client-side error messages related to the 404 Not Found error include 400 Bad Request, 401 Unauthorized, 403 Forbidden, and 408 Request Timeout.

There are also various server-side HTTP status codes, such as the popular 500 Internal Server Error. You can see all of them in our list of HTTP status code errors.