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I want to load the topLinks on a page and use this code:

echo $this->getChildHtml('topLinks');

But this does not work. How can I load the topLinks?

Thanks

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Your question is a little too generic. What block are you working from in your template example? In a default Magento 1.x CE installation, that block is defined in page.xml as part of the header block declaration:

# File: app/design/frontend/base/default/layout/page.xml
...
<block type="page/html_header" name="header" as="header">
    <block type="page/template_links" name="top.links" as="topLinks"/>
    <block type="page/switch" name="store_language" as="store_language" template="page/switch/languages.phtml"/>
    <block type="core/text_list" name="top.menu" as="topMenu" translate="label">
        <label>Navigation Bar</label>
        <block type="page/html_topmenu" name="catalog.topnav" template="page/html/topmenu.phtml"/>
    </block>
...

So unless your block is a direct child of header, you can't access it; at least not by its block alias (as="topLinks")

If your block/template in question is not part of the header block, you can access it by its global name instead from the layout instance:

echo $this->getLayout()->getBlock('top.links')->toHtml();

Depending on where you're doing this, you should get your desired result.

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