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I have an incognito browser window open that is logged into Programmers, but not to StackOverflow. I have a separate browser window that is logged into all SE sites. (If you must know, my StayFocused time is expired so I'm using an incognito window to access Programmers)

I clicked on an inbox notification from my incognito browser for a comment reply on a SO question that has been closed as a duplicate, however clicking the link takes me to the linked duplicate question instead of the comment reply on the closed question (it also looks a bit funny to me, as the ads are suppressed but space is still blocked out for them).

enter image description here

The exact link my Inbox gives me is

If I use this in my regular browser window, it gets translated correctly into How to automatically resize a font for a given height and width for a image (e.g. .jpeg)

But if I use this in my incognito window that isn't logged into SO, it gets translated to WPF 4: Grow/Shrink TextBlock (Font Size) based on available space

This does not happen with other SO inbox notifications from the incognito browser window, so I'm assuming it has something to do with the question being closed as a duplicate.

Soooo I figured I'd be a good citizen and report it as a bug :)

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Unless I'm misunderstanding the situation, that is by design I believe. – Bart Jan 31 '13 at 20:41
So, installing a productivity app just to circumvent it? It's time we had a talk. – mikeTheLiar Jan 31 '13 at 20:42
@Bart Hrrmm why would it be by-design to give you a comment notification that doesn't take you to the post the comment is on? – Rachel Jan 31 '13 at 20:42
I believe non-logged-in users are automatically redirected to the duplicate when visiting a link to a closed-as-dupe question. Is that not the situation here? – Bart Jan 31 '13 at 20:43
@mikeTheLiar You should have seen how much time I spent on SE sites before I installed it... :) It really does help me keep track of how long I spend on non-work sites, even if I do bypass it some days to get work-related answers from other SE sites, or decide to come in early to work on stuff and want to spend a little extra time on SE during the day to make up for it. – Rachel Jan 31 '13 at 20:47
@Bart Technically yes, but the /posts/comments/# route probably should probably check if that redirect is going to occur in advance and send a no-redirect flag when necessary, since obviously you don't get where it intended you to go in this case. – Tim Stone Jan 31 '13 at 20:47
This seems a little edge-casey. This would happen for any notification that would link you back to that post. If you're not logged in, it's going to redirect you, and I don't see coding in checks to determine if it was a notification or whatever the case to be valuable in the long-run. The only viable solution here is login and view it. However, I do think the behavior is a little confusing. There should be some sort of small notice outlining "You have been redirected here from another question. Please login to avoid this." or something. – animuson Jan 31 '13 at 20:48
@TimStone That sounds entirely reasonable...I hate reasonable.... ;) – Bart Jan 31 '13 at 20:49
@TimStone: As far as I'm aware, the noredirect URL flag doesn't work for duplicate redirects for unauthenticated users. As well, how would the system know before-hand that you're not currently logged in on the other site? – animuson Jan 31 '13 at 20:49
@animuson I think the important factor with this link is it is a link for the comment, not for the post. Links to comments should not redirect you to another post that doesn't contain that comment :) – Rachel Jan 31 '13 at 20:50
@Rachel: What if it was a notification that someone edited your answer to the question? It would still redirect you to the other post which doesn't have your answer. There are more use-cases than just comments here. – animuson Jan 31 '13 at 20:52
@animuson It could be made to, surely. All the system has to know when you hit the /posts/comments/# route is that the question it will redirect to is closed in such a way as to cause a redirection, and then instead serve up the flagged URL appropriately. Since that route is used for viewing comments, it "knows" if you're hitting it it should make a best-effort to get you to the comment. – Tim Stone Jan 31 '13 at 20:52
@TimStone: It does seem to work. I suppose they could just always append a noredirect to those links. Is there any real harm in that? Seems like adding a check is a waste of effort for such a slim-occurring scenario. – animuson Jan 31 '13 at 20:55
@animuson Yeah, that seems fine too. I didn't know if there was any potential downside to throwing that flag on when it wasn't necessary, but I can't think of why there would be. This is a bit of an edge case, but I don't think it's too much effort to eventually resolve either. – Tim Stone Jan 31 '13 at 20:56
There are a few edge cases where the automatic redirect is confusing, e.g. also when linking them from a meta site. I proposed to disable it for users with a referrer from an SE site, which should get rid of the edge cases. These edge cases are rather rare, but they are quite confusing when they happen. – Mad Scientist Jan 31 '13 at 21:30
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Starting with the next build, we'll start appending the "noredirect=1" magic slug to items in the inbox.

This will suppress most of the redirects that could happen when coming from a link in the inbox.

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