I'd like to intercept 404 errors and do some things before to show the 404 error page.

How can intercept the 404 error?

  • Are you getting a WordPress error page or a server one? – s_ha_dum Jul 13 '15 at 15:23
  • Think I'm linking to a post that doesn't exist: I want to intercept that kind of 404. Then, if possible, I'd like to know the passed id or the passed slug and use it to do other things. – Aerendir Jul 13 '15 at 15:25
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    Currently I haven't the error: I'm developing a plugin that has to intercept 404 errors generated by wordpress itself when the url is of a post that doesn't exist. I don't have a real 404 error. I publish a post (call it A) and this post links to the post "B". Post "B" doesn't exist (or is scheduled or only a draft or its link is wrong). I want to intercept the 404 error generated when I go from Post A to Post B. I produce the error linking from Post A to an inexistent post, example.com/?p=1234567890 or example.com/non-existent-post – Aerendir Jul 13 '15 at 15:41
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    The template_include or template_redirect hooks might be useful too. Really, your question/problem is pretty vague at this point. – s_ha_dum Jul 13 '15 at 15:45
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    Maybe it's a vague question, but the point is that i want to intercept the 404 error in a plugin I'm writing: i think is sufficiently complete as request, or not? This is my first plugin, so maybe I'm missing some information... Anyway, I've read that page, but as said, I want to intercept the 404 error in a plugin, don't want to edit a 404 template. I want my functionality be available independently of the theme in use... – Aerendir Jul 13 '15 at 19:14

As was mentioned in a comment, template_redirect would be an appropriate hook for intercepting a 404 before the template is loaded.

function wpd_do_stuff_on_404(){
    if( is_404() ){
        // do stuff
add_action( 'template_redirect', 'wpd_do_stuff_on_404' );

Refer to the Action Reference for the general order of actions on the front end. The main query runs between the posts_selection and wp actions, so that is the earliest you can determine that a request is a 404. The template is then loaded after template_redirect, so it's too late to set headers after that point.

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Using below code you can directly redirect on home page when 404 call, please remove all code from the 404.php file and add below code.

header("HTTP/1.1 301 Moved Permanently");
header("Location: ".get_bloginfo('url'));
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