Issue with client side routes in React

Hi, I’m deploying a React app as a Single Page Application (SPA) in DigitalOcean Apps. React Router works only if the user navigates through the application. If the user enters a specific URL in the browser, the app shows an 404 error.

Is there any way to fix this? Thank you!

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September 11, 2023


Yes, what you’re experiencing is a common issue with Single Page Applications (SPAs) like those built with React Router. When a user tries to navigate directly to a specific URL, the server doesn’t have that route defined, so it returns a 404 error. However, when navigating through the app using React Router, the routing is handled client-side without involving the server.

To fix this on DigitalOcean Apps or most static server configurations, you need to redirect all routes to your index.html file, letting the React app and React Router handle the routing from there.

In the “Routes” section, you will see a list of routes. Add a catch-all route at the bottom:

  • Source: /
  • Target: /index.html
  • Type: SPAs

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