A more helpful "you don't have permissions"-notification?

I run a forum that uses groups and private categories for private discussions. Problem is, sharing links to categories that are visible only to these groups is very problematic as users with insufficient permissions get a generic and unhelpful one line " Oops! That page doesn’t exist or is private." error message.

Is there a way to customize this page to be more helpful, for example explaining that you might need to join a group first or ask permission to join?

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It would leak information to the outside world, in that anyone visiting would now know there is secret content there.

it is possible we could add more info behind a site setting that sites could choose to change if they are not as interested in security… what do you think @sam?

I am not a fan of site settings like this but perhaps just amend the text via admin UI in cases like this?

Then people can add:

Oops! That page doesn’t exist or is private.

Perhaps you need to request membership to a group to gain access. Contact bob@bob.com to correct it.


I think security should not be an issue when the group in question is freely accessible (ie. “anyone can join from the Groups page”) for everyone. In that specific case there could even be “This URL is visible for group Foo members only, do you want to join this group?”-message.

But at the very least allowing some kind of explanatory content to be added would be very welcome.