I want to add a link to Stack Overflow as a "See this for more information". I clicked the "Share" link and put that URL in the comments of my code.

But then I realized, that is not the main URL to the page, which got me wondering if that link will be recycled/deleted eventually.

What is the lifecycle of a "Share" link on Stack Overflow?

1 Answer 1


It never expires.

The link contains your own user ID in addition to the main URL: this is what allows the system to count how many people followed the link, so you can get the Announcer/Booster/Publicist badges.

Here is an answer with details on how share links are built.

A more complete reference on how all Stack Exchange URLs are constructed has been compiled by Glorfindel here (see "questions short form" and "answers short form").

  • 3
    https://<meta if applicable>.<sitename>.com/q/<post_id>/<user_id> for questions, https://<meta if applicable>.<sitename>.com/a/<post_id>/<user_id> for users. And yes, a link without user_id still works, it's only used for referral purposes IIRC. Post_id is unique, so there's no reason to let it expire. It will always point to the same post, even if the post is removed.
    – Mast
    Oct 1, 2019 at 0:23
  • 1
    Of-course, when the question is removed and you don't have sufficient privileges, you'll reach a 404 page instead of the question. If the answer is removed and you don't have sufficient privileges, you'll land somewhere else on that question's page.
    – Mast
    Oct 1, 2019 at 0:24

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