WordPress gallery can’t save or link to external URLs
UPDATE: Several years have passed and this problem still exists. However now there is a nice simple plugin that fixes it. It's called WP Gallery Custom Links. It's working for me. Hopefully it will for you too. I updated the first of the three images in my broken example gallery to an external URL as a test.
Sorry about this lame-o post right in the middle of my blog, but this is a bug that's best documented with a post so's the WordPress folks can see what's going on.
I'm running the current version of WordPress here (3.1.3 as of this writing)
I, and many, would like to be able to insert a gallery of pictures into our posts and specify external links for each picture in the little gallery-editor that comes with WordPress. The problem used to be that WordPress users could not make the Save function work, the Link URL wasn't being saved in the editor. That problem is documented in the WordPress bug-tracking system as problem number 13429 .
Sergey came up with a work-around plugin that people can add to their WordPress which solves part of the problem. Downloading and enabling this temporary plug-in indeed fixes "I can't save external URLs in the gallery editor" problem. I've linked all of the images on this page to three of my domains (www.geezercast.com, www.kz0c.com and www.bar.com) to illustrate the problem as it stands right now.
If I add all the images individually, they will all point at external URLs, like this;
BUT that's not what people want to do -- they want to be able to post the whole gallery (in this case all three images) at the same time, and have the thumbnails in the gallery point to external links, not to the image file or an attachment page. I'll insert the gallery this time, using the "attachment page" option as an example. What people want to happen is exactly what happened above -- 3 pictures pointing, in this case, to geezercast.com, kz0c.com and bar.com. What happens instead is this;
Changing that "Attachment page" to "image file" option just makes the thumbnails link to the images. So in neither case can a person use the WordPress gallery to link a series of pictures to external URLs.
So this may be a combination of a bug and a feature. The "can't save Link URLs" problem is solved with Sergey's little shim, and will hopefully be released into the production release soon. But the real problem, "I can't point gallery-thumbnails at external URLs," still exists.
Any chance that we could get that ability in the normal gallery? The hack wasn't hard, but it's pretty intimidating for "normal" users and seems like an easy add-on to the existing Gallery function.