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Clean URLs with Hakyll

The URLs generated by Hakyll, by default also include a .html extension. I have never been a fan of this. When things in reality are driven by the Content-Type header, it is absolutely redundant.

Hakyll provides all the utilities with which we can get cleaner URLs, like this page’s. For this, I rely on the fact that most of the web servers automatically serve /foo/index.html for the URL /foo/. To generate clean paths, I define a custom route - cleanRoute:

cleanRoute :: Routes
cleanRoute = customRoute createIndexRoute
    createIndexRoute ident = takeDirectory p </> takeBaseName p </> "index.html"
                            where p = toFilePath ident

This can now be used in in rule definition:

  match "pages/*" $ do
         route   $ cleanRoute
         -- the compiler follows

With this, a path say /pages/about.html will be generated as /pages/about/index.html, hence solving the generation problem. We are only partially done though. The links that Hakyll generates will also include the /index.html suffix in every URL. To get rid of that we define a set of functions:

cleanIndexUrls :: Item String -> Compiler (Item String)
cleanIndexUrls = return . fmap (withUrls cleanIndex)

cleanIndexHtmls :: Item String -> Compiler (Item String)
cleanIndexHtmls = return . fmap (replaceAll pattern replacement)
      pattern = "/index.html"
      replacement = const "/"

cleanIndex :: String -> String
cleanIndex url
    | idx `isSuffixOf` url = take (length url - length idx) url
    | otherwise            = url
  where idx = "index.html"

cleanIndexUrls and cleanIndexHtmls strip out /index.html from all the anchor tags and complete text respectively. These can be used over a page’s compiler like this:

         compile $ pandocCompiler
            >>= loadAndApplyTemplate "templates/page.html" pageCtx
            >>= saveSnapshot "content"
            >>= loadAndApplyTemplate "templates/default.html" pageCtx
            >>= relativizeUrls
            >>= cleanIndexUrls -- cleanup href in all anchor tags.

This functionality is being used by this blog and irneh/workforpizza off which this blog is actually based.