Disable generating empty index.html pages created for sections

I am using Hugo to create a book site with articles that are grouped by sections, so I have like:

  • content/
    • apples/
      • _index.md
      • green-apples.md
      • washington-apples.md
    • bananas/
      • _index.md
      • african-bananas.md
      • cloned-bananas.md

So I use the _index.md of sections in my book’s homepage template to give “title” and “weight” to each section. For example, content/apples/_index.md reads:

title: About Apples
weight: 10

Just because I have this _index.md, for each section, it creates an index.html page:


I do not want /apples/ or /apples/index.html to work, because I’m directly linking to /apples/green-apples/ from my homepage, and /apples/index.html is just an empty file with no content.

Is there a way to disable generating these empty index.html pages coming from _index.md of sections?

Look for “disableKind” in the documentation.

Thanks for the speedy answer! However doing disableKinds=["section"] is breaking this theme (it returns no value/empty for .Sections):

{{ range  .Sections }}
  {{ range .Pages }}
  <li>><a href="{{ .Permalink }}">{{.Title}}</a></li>
  {{ end }}
{{ end }}

I’m currently relying on the .Sections variable to discover the table of contents from the files in content/.

Disabling this kind and printing {{.Sections}} in the template prints: Pages(0) to the HTML output.

I haven’t tested this myself but how about entering your top level unwanted section URLs as aliases in the _index.md of your nested sections.

Ah, OK. But with Hugo > 0.33 you can do layout: dummy in your “_index.md” file.

Note that “dummy” is just some string I made up now …

1 Like

What’s the reason this would be preventing the index.html from being created? I guess it would help get an empty page, but the file would still exist (and therefore visiting /apples/ would still work).

I suppose you’re suggesting I should redirect /apples/ to /apples/green-apples/ using "aliases", which would still create an /apples/index.html.

The redirection is not quite I’m looking for, I’m trying to not have the index.html in the first place.

Are you asking me? Do you need a reason? It was a practical suggestion. Hugo does no create empty pages when no layout can be found. It is kind of a hack, but you asked for it. I think.


@bep (Apologies, the reply button malfunctioned on me.) By the way, I really appreciate you helping out. I believe it’s not working as you described even though I have hugo v0.37.1.

hugo --debug show that I still get /apples/index.html even though I specify layout:invalid. Log line shows:

DEBUG 2018/03/13 23:01:04 Render section to “/apples/index.html” with layouts [“apples/invalid.en.html.html” “theme/apples/invalid.en.html.html” “apples/apples.en.html.html” […]

Full log message here

I ran a stat on all these files it’s looking up, but of them actually exist: (see output) However, index.html is still being rendered with the default layout as if I didn’t specify the layout: key in the front-matter.

The debug message isn’t telling which layout it has chosen, but none of the listed files exist for sure.