This thread is resolved. Here is a description of the problem and solution.

Problem: The user wants to change URL format from Language name added as a parameter" to "Different languages in directories". The client is concerned about SEO drawbacks and if it will affect custom coding or translations already made Solution: Changing URL format does not affect custom coding or already made translations. However, it might affect SEO. Relevant Documentation:

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This topic contains 17 replies, has 2 voices.

Last updated by emilieD-5 1 year ago.

Assigned support staff: Oscar Miras.

Author Posts
March 18, 2019 at 8:45 am #3366823


Hi there

I would love to change my URL format from "Language name added as a parameter" to "Different languages in directories" as this looks nicer in the URL... I just want to know if and what this change will affect (custom coding / seo / trasnslations already made... )
Can I just change this or rather not? What would be the best way to change it?
Thanks a lot.
Milie Del

Tell us what you are trying to do?

Is there any documentation that you are following?

Is there a similar example that we can see?

What is the link to your site?

March 18, 2019 at 11:26 am #3368649

Oscar Miras


Thank you for contacting the support team.

You can safely change this setting. No custom coding / translations will be affected.

Regarding SEO, it is true that eventually Google may end up by redirecting users to broken links to your site, in case it has already stored in cache some of your site URL links. If you are familiar with Google Search Console, you can manually delete the URL links of your Website that Google has already cached: hidden link

Another option is to use a plugin to manage site redirects and prevent users from visiting broken links:

The best way to change this setting is to go to WPML > Languages > Language URL format. Then, select the option “Different languages in directories” and click Save button.

Please notice that, after saving this setting, a message will be displayed, suggesting that you should re-save the site permalinks. We recommend you to do it.

Related documentation:

Do not hesitate in contact us if you need further help.

Best regards,

April 22, 2019 at 4:34 pm #3657059


I'm not sure when it started, but wpml stopped functionning correctily altogether.
Following your previous instructions, I managed to change the translated page structures.
Shortly after, translations stopped working and now I continuously receive the following message in the admin toolbar :

WPML is missing some records in the languages tables and it cannot fully work until this issue is fixed.

Following these instruction does not change anything. I would like to repair it without having to rewrite all the website translations.

April 23, 2019 at 8:46 am #3660887

Oscar Miras

Welcome back,

I'm afraid that it did not work for you.

It seems that this ticket has been marked as resolved.

Could you confirm if you are still facing the issue or it is solved?

Thank you,

April 23, 2019 at 8:50 am #3660937


Yes, I thought everything went well.
Sadly few days ago, I realized this was not working
Thank you for your help !

April 23, 2019 at 9:21 am #3661307

Oscar Miras


You are very welcome.

I'm going to ask you to try some of our troubleshooting options. But first of all, please, confirm that you have a full backup of your site. This is mandatory before trying them.

When that is confirmed, go to WPML > Support. In the line "For advanced access or to completely uninstall WPML and remove all language information, use the troubleshooting page."; click in "troubleshooting" link.

Then, perform these operations:

1) Click on "Clear the cache in WPML ".
2) In case it is available, click "Clear language information and repopulate languages". Before doing that, you must click in the checkbox above, as displayed in the screenshot.

Let me know if this fixed the issue or you need further assistance.

Best wishes,

April 26, 2019 at 5:13 pm #3692579


Hello and thank you for your help,

Unfortunately, that didn't work.
Here is a screenshot of my troubleshooting page. The clear cache section is not available as you can see.

April 29, 2019 at 7:45 am #3700681

Oscar Miras


I have noticed that your WPML Plugin is a little bit outdated. This could be the cause of why the troubleshooting options are not displayed. Could you update it? Besides, you should install WPML String Translation to properly make your plugin work.

To do so, go to Plugins > Add New, and open “Commercial” tab. Check both plugins and then scroll a little bit down. Check the “Activate after download” option and click Download.

Now, try to reach the troubleshooting options mentioned in my last reply and try to click them.
Please, share with me your results.

Thank you for your collaboration.

April 29, 2019 at 5:40 pm #3705891


I just did the update of all the modules.
Unfortunately, this didn't seem to work. I still don't get the "Clear language information and repopulate languages" option.

It looks like the setup has been reset also, based on the second message "WPML String Translation is enabled but not effective. Please finish the installation of WPML first."

Anything I can do to fix this issue ? it's getting problematic as my website looks poorly (posts displayed in double & broken links) & I'm approaching peak season.

For instance, what would happen with the reset option ? What does that mean in terms of rebuilding the website for french & english language ?

April 30, 2019 at 10:06 am #3710251

Oscar Miras


I'm sorry you are facing this inconvenience.

Going for the "reset" option will reset completely your WPML installation. It means that you will lose any translation already done. In addition, WPML will look as it were the first time you install it. In some cases, it is a good option it is a good way to solve many issues but you have to be aware that you will have to configure WPML again and translate everything again. Nevertheless, I can guide you through this process.

In case resetting WPML is not an option for you, I would like to have a look at the issue in your WordPress installation so I'm going to request you temporary access to your site.

In case you go for this option, please, make sure you have a full backup of your site before granting me access. The best way to do it is to create a new user with administrator privileges and share with me the credentials in the provided boxes.

Kind regards,

May 2, 2019 at 6:35 am #3722099

Oscar Miras


I'm afraid these credentials are not working.
Please, check them again and make sure that you have not checked the option "Send the new user an email about their account”.

Thank you,

May 3, 2019 at 7:36 am #3731589

Oscar Miras


Thank you, now I could access to your site.

I have found out that the WPML installation has not been finished. Please, complete ii before proceeding. To do so, simply click in WPML and follow the setup steps.

Then, try to change the option to "Different languages in directories" and check if it works.

Please, let me know your results.

Best wishes,

May 8, 2019 at 7:48 am #3764351


Dear Oscar,
The installation was finished before - the plugin has worked very fine for 9 months. But since I made the change into url format, everything went broken...
(I just don't understand why since I asked before to the team at WPML if this was a non risky operation)

May 8, 2019 at 7:55 am #3764373


Dear Oscar,

I completed the steps and went to "Different languages in directories" and made the changes.
Translations seems to be back ! yay

I still do receive this message in my wordpress dashboard though :

"WPML is missing some records in the languages tables and it cannot fully work until this issue is fixed. Please go to the Troubleshooting page and click on "Clear language information and repopulate languages" to fix this problem. This warning will disappear once this issue is fixed."

Thank you for your help

May 8, 2019 at 3:11 pm #3768275

Oscar Miras


I'm glad that you got your translations back.

Please, I would like to point out that we always ask for the user to perform a full backup of the site at the hosting level. Most of WPML operations are safe but things always can go wrong, mostly because there are so many different configurations regarding servers and plugins that we can't cover all scenarios.

I've removed the message as it looks to be a false positive. After reloading your backend administration, the error message does not show up.

I hope I was able to help you. In case you have further question do not hesitate to ask, I'll be happy to help.

Kind Regards,