Adding (Limited) Pagination to Hugo

This is probably only going to be useful to a limit audience but I thought I'd share. When converting my site from WordPress to Hugo I discovered that the built-in pagination support was a bit problematic for my site. Why? I have a large amount of content and at the default page size, I ended up with over five hundred pages of - well - pages.

To me - the solution was simple. Just get rid of the pagination. Frankly, I rarely "page back" to see older content. Heck, I rarely visit a blog's home page anyway. I'm typically on a blog because of a Google search result. Recently though I found myself trying to get links for my own content from a week or so ago and wanting to do a bit of paging. I did some basic research into how I could add pagination, but only for a limited subset of my content, say five pages or so. This is how I did it.

First, I edited the main pagination partial. My copy was blank as I didn't want pagination at all, so I copied the version from my theme and added a bit of logic.


{{ if lt .Paginator.PageNumber 5 }}
    <nav id="page-nav">
    {{ if or (.Paginator.HasPrev) (.Paginator.HasNext) }}
        {{ if .Paginator.HasPrev }}
            <a class="extend prev" rel="prev" href="{{.Paginator.Prev.URL}}">
                « {{with .Site.Data.l10n.pagination.previous}}{{.}}{{end}}
            </a>
        {{ end }}
        {{ if .Paginator.HasNext }}
            <a class="extend next" rel="next" href="{{.Paginator.Next.URL}}">
                {{with .Site.Data.l10n.pagination.next}}{{.}}{{end}} »
            </a>
        {{ end }}
    {{ end }}
    </nav>
{{ end }}

Even if you've never seen Go templates and Hugo before, you can probably figure out what's going on here. My change was literally just the IF condition wrapping the logic. I chose 5 as the total number of pages but you could use any number here.

The next change was in the article_list partial. My code was initially this:


{{ range first 10 (where .Site.Pages "Type" "post") }}

Again - I assume if you've never seen Go/Hugo before you can guess as to the logic here. The default code uses pagination and had looked like this before I removed it:


{{ $paginator := .Paginate (where .Site.Pages "Type" "post") }}
{{ range $paginator.Pages }}

So my goal was to bring pagination back, but to limit it to the subset of posts that would be covered by the 5 pages of content I wanted to support. Here is what I came up with:


{{ $paginator := .Paginate ((first 50 (where .Site.Pages "Type" "post"))) }}
{{ range $paginator.Pages }}

Obviously that's a bit of a hack. In theory I could use a site-wide variable and handle both parts dynamically, but for now, this is what worked for me.

Actually, it didn't quite work. It seemed fine when I tested, but when I generated my static output, I was getting a huge amount of additional pages due to pagination. I posted on the forums and actually got support from the developer who implemented pagination for Hugo. That's what I call good support!

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