TinyURL is useful web tool, which encrypts a long and unreadable URL, to make it small and easily remember-able URL. It is specially useful, when you send the URL through emails etc. or write a URL in forums or web forms.

For instance a long URL like following,

http://webtoolsandtips.com/tips-on-microsoft/how-to-disable-error-reporting-in-windows-xp/

gets converted into something like

http://tinyurl.com/2do5nx

which is much easier to remember and fit into a given space.

How TinyURL works

Nothing new. When a person clicks a TinyURL, it gets redirected to the actual URL automatically.

Preview a TinyURL

But, using TinyURLs also has a drawback.

Most of the today’s browsers display the link in the status bar, when you hover your mouse over a hyperlink. People gets used to check this before clicking any of the hyperlink on a webpage. This gives them confidence before clicking, that the coming web page will not be a spam or will not be containing a malicious script.

But, when they see a URL, which is cloaked under TinyURL, that confidence is not there, and this can refrain some people to click that link. If somehow, it was possible to know the resulting web page beforehand, people will happily click that link.

How to see the preview of a TinyURL

So, if you wan to enable your readers to see the preview, you just have to include a :preview” before the domain “tinyURL”.

For instance, for a link like http://tinyurl.com/2do5n, if you give the link like http://preview.tinyurl.com/2do5nx

it will open an intermediate page, which will show the actual link to the user.

And if you are the user, and you want to see the actual URL before landing on a page, then you can set a simple cookie in your browser. The procedure is just one click on the “Preview Feature” on the TinyURL.com website.