REAAA Knowledge-Hub Manual

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REAAA Knowledge-Hub Manual v1.pdf




When the first time user accesses the REAAA Knowledge-Hub (K-Hub), the user is required to log in as shown on the screenshot above. Click “Log in” on top right link to authenticate.



User need to key in the “Username” and “Password” given by REAAA administrator in order to proceed to the K-Hub frontpage.



When viewing any page on a REAAA Knowledge Hub Wiki (K-Hub), you'll find four main navigation elements:

  1. In the top most right corner you'll find user links; as an anonymous user, you'll see a link to create an account or log in (they are the same page). As a logged-in user you have a collection of personal links, including ones to your user page and preferences.
  2. The navigation menu on the top right gives you access to important pages in the wiki such as Recent changes or Help.
  3. At the below of page header are links (often called tabs) which relate to the page currently displayed: its associated discussion page, the version history, and—most notably—the edit link.
  4. The navigation menu on the lowest section of the article page are links (often called footer links) which also relate to the page currently displayed but with lesser priority navigation such as What links here or Related Changes



Clicking on the REAAA logo brings you back to the main page of the wiki. The links in the navigation section just below will take you to important pages of the wiki. These links can only be configured by site administrators.



The toolbox contains a selection of links which change depending on what type of page you are viewing.

On all pages (except special pages)

  • “What links here” takes you to a special page that lists the pages on this wiki which contain a link to the current page. This is helpful when you are looking for pages of related information. The “what links here” information can also be useful when you are refactoring wiki pages and need to check whether links to this page are still relevant after changes in the current page.
  • The “related changes” tool lists all recent changes in the pages linked to from the current page. Recent changes to all relevant template pages are included in the resulting page list. The "Hide minor edits" option that can be set in the user preferences applies, among other things, to “related changes”.

On all pages (including special pages)

  • “Upload file” displays a special page that allows logged-in users to upload images and other files to the wiki. Uploaded files can be linked from or embedded in wiki pages. Uploading files, viewing files on the server, including them in wiki pages and managing the uploaded files is discussed in the managing files section of this manual. This is not displayed if file uploading has been disabled or not enabled in the first place.
  • The “special pages” tool lists the MediaWiki special pages. In MediaWiki terminology, a “special page” is one that presents information about the Wiki and/or allows access to administration activities for the wiki. For example, a list of users registered with the wiki, statistics about the wiki such as the number of pages and number of page edits, system logs, a list of orphaned pages, and so on. These special pages are commonly generated when the special page is loaded rather than being stored in the wiki database.
  • The function and use of the default special pages can be found in the special pages section of this manual.

Page Tabs


Default page tabs at the top of the page

The page tabs are displayed at the top of the page to the right of the site logo (if using the default Gumax skin). These tabs allow you to perform actions or view pages that are related to the current page. The available default actions include: viewing, editing, and discussing the current page. The specific tabs displayed on your pages depend on whether or not you are logged into the wiki and whether you have Sysop (administrator) privileges on the wiki. On special pages only the namespace tab is displayed.

Default for all users

  • “namespace” (page, help, special page, template, user page etc.)
  • “discussion”
  • “edit” (may read “view source” if anonymous editing is disabled, the page is in the MediaWiki: namespace, or the page is protected)
  • “history”

Extra tabs for logged-in users

  • “move”
  • “watch”

Extra tabs for Sysops

  • “protect”
  • “delete”

Administrators can add or remove tabs by using JavaScript or installing extensions, so the tabs you see may be different depending on which wiki you are using.

User Links

[[Image:]]Default user links at the top right of the page

The user links are displayed at the top far right of the page (if using the default Gumax skin). These tabs allow the logged-in user to view and edit their user page and wiki preferences. Additionally, the user links allow the user to quickly access their contributions to the wiki and logout.

For anonymous users the user links is replaced by a link to the wiki login page or, if enabled, a link to your IP address and your IP address's talk page.


This links to your user page which is where you can put information about yourself, store bits of information you want to remember or whatever else you fancy.

“my talk”

This links to your discussion page, where people can leave messages for you.

“my preferences”

Allows you to change your personal site preferences.

“my watchlist”

A list of all pages that you are watching. Pages can be added to this list by clicking “watch” at the top of the page.

“my contributions”

A list of all contributions you have made to the wiki.

“log out”

Click this link to log out of the wiki.



The quickest way to find information in MediaWiki is to look it up directly. In the top right of your screen there is a search box with two buttons under it labeled "Go" and "Search".

Put your keyword in the searchbox.

  • Go - (or Enter on keyboard) will take you automatically to the article, if it exists.
  • Search - will search the text of all pages on the wiki (with some restrictions, see below).

If you clicked “Go”, or you clicked “Search” and the page you were looking for did not exist, you will be presented with a list of articles that matched your search criteria (or a message that no matches were found).

How it works

Here's how the search works:

  • Only the article content is searched - the page title is ignored.
  • The article content is searched in its raw (wikitext) form - i.e., it searches the text that appears in the edit box when you click “edit”, not the rendered page. This means that content coming from an included template will not be picked up, but the target of piped links will be.
  • Even if you enclose a phrase in quotes, the search looks for each word individually. e.g., if you enter "world war 2" it will return pages that contain "world" and "war" and "2".
  • The search is not case-sensitive, so "MediaWiki", "mediawiki" and "MEDIAWIKI" all give the same result.

Restricting the search


If you click the “Search” button without filling in anything, you will be taken to “Special:Search” which gives you extra searching options (also available from any search results list)

You may find it useful to restrict a search to pages within a particular namespace e.g., only search within the User pages. Tick the namespaces you require for this search.

By default only the namespaces specified in your preferences will be searched. Logged-in users can change their preferences to specify the namespaces they want to search by default. This can be done by selecting and deselecting boxes in the ”search” section of user preferences.

Tracking changes


Recent changes shows the latest changes to pages, file uploads, deletions and page moves

MediaWiki offers a collection of special pages and tools to keep track of what is going on in the wiki. So you can watch for example:

  • recent changes to all pages
  • the revision history: all changes made to one page
  • the contributions of one specific user
  • newly created pages


The most interesting special page is Special:RecentChanges. It displays all edits, file uploads, page moves, deletions and other actions done in the wiki. In the menu on top it offers a collection of links to customize your display: limit the number of changes shown, the number of days or restrict it to edits to a certain namespace. You can also hide edits marked as minor (don't forget that major changes can be flagged by a user as minor anyway).

One line in recent changes consists of several links:

  • “diff” displays the difference to the previous revision of the page,
  • “hist” links to the revision history of the page,
  • the link with the full title of the page brings you to the current version. If the title is in bold, it indicates that it is on your watchlist.

Next is a flag describing the page modification type:

  • “N” denotes a new page,
  • “m” a minor edit,
  • “b” an edit made by a bot.

Following the timestamp, it shows the page size difference to the previous revision, then the user is mentioned, with a link to their user page and their talk page and contributions, or to their talk page only in the case of anonymous users.

Last but not least, there is an edit summary, appearing in italics, if the user submitted one when they made the edit.



Your watchlist is a display for tracking changes, similar to the “Recent changes” display, but limited to showing changes only across your set of “watched” pages. You can see the watchlist display by clicking “my watchlist” link in the top right, however this is only available to users who have registered and logged in.

Before you see anything interesting here, you must add some pages to your watchlist. Do this by navigating to a page which interests you, and clicking the“watch” tab.

The watchlist feature is mainly useful on a very busy wiki where the “Recent changes” display becomes too “high traffic.” On a typical low traffic wiki, you can normally see all of the editing activity across the whole wiki without feeling overwhelmed. On a more busy wiki you will find that many edits are taking place on pages which you personally find less interesting. To help track changes which are more interesting, start watching pages!

Typically you would watch pages related to your interest areas, and also pages where your care most about the content. If you make a significant edit to a page, you might chose to watch the page, to see if there are any follow-up edits for example. Note that there is a “Watch this page” tickbox provided on the editing screen for this purpose.

On the watchlist display, some page names appear in bold. This indicates whether or not you have visited the page to see the change. It's a bit like read/unread emails in an email inbox. The “Recent changes” display will also have some new bold highlighting, but for a different reason. Here bold is just indicating edits to pages on your watchlist.


Editing pages (manually)


By default the editing page is using markup language for filtering and easy to use approach especially for editing content unlike HTML. More in depth details for the syntax can be viewed here



Style & formatting

Fixing mistakes

  • Show preview
  • Testing
  • Reverting edit

Advanced functioning

Editing pages (using FCKeditor)

FCKeditor can be viewed when clicking on “Rich Editor” link on top left of the screenshot.


What is FCKeditor?

FCKeditor is a lightweight text editor to be used in web pages. It provides most of the commonly used functions from desktop editors like Word to the web. By using FCKeditor you can write text, format it, create tables and much more. The editor doesn't need any kind of installation on your computer. The only thing you need to work with FCKeditor is a compatible Internet browser, like Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari or Opera.

Who is FCKeditor made for?

FCKeditor is designed for developers who effectively integrate it in their products.Such products are then used by the so called end users whom this User's Guide is made for.

FCKeditor can appear in many programs which have very different functions and are designed to do different things, but the basis remains the same. You can find FCKeditor in places you would never expect to.

Quick Reference

In this section you can have a quick overview about all functions available in the default FCKeditor toolbar.

Common Toolbar Functions

Toolbar Element Function
[[Image:]] View or edit the document source code (for advanced users). See Source[1]Editor.
[[Image:]] Select a layout template. See Templates
[[Image:]] Cut the highlighted text to the clipboard. See Cut, Copy[2]and[3]Paste.
[[Image:]] Copy the highlighted text to the clipboard. See Cut, Copy[4]and[5]Paste.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Paste the data copied to the clipboard (with or without formatting). See Cut, Copy[6]and[7]Paste.
[[Image:]] Print the current document. See Printing.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Undo or redo the most recent action taken. See Undo[8]and[9]Redo.
[[Image:]] Find a word or phrase within the document. See Find[10]and[11]Replace.
[[Image:]] Find and replace a word or phrase within the document. See Find[12]and[13]Replace.
[[Image:]] Select the entire text in the document.
[[Image:]] Remove the formatting from the highlighted text.
[[Image:]][[Image:]][[Image:]][[Image:]] Applies bold, italic, underscore or strikethrough formatting to the highlighted text.See Text[14]Formatting.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Superscript or subscript the highlighted text.See Superscript and subscript in Text[15]Formatting.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Creates numbered or bulleted lists. See Creating[16]Lists.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Increase or decrease the text indentation.
[[Image:]] Format a block of text to identify quotations (text provenient from other sources).
[[Image:]][[Image:]][[Image:]][[Image:]] Sets the text alignment (left, centered, right or justified). See Text layout and format in Text[17]Formatting.
[[Image:]][[Image:]] Converts or removes the text in hyperlinks. It may also by used to manage file uploads and links to files on the web server. See Links, E-Mails[18]and[19]Anchors.
[[Image:]] Inserts or modifies a link anchor. See Links, E-Mails[20]and[21]Anchors
[[Image:]] Inserts images into the document. See Inserting[22]Images.
[[Image:]] Creates a table with the defined number of columns and rows. See Tables.
[[Image:]] Styles & formatting determine the appearance and semantic value of your document. To remove the applied style select the style name again. See Text[23]Formatting.
[[Image:]] Maximizes the editor size inside the browser.
[[Image:]] Shows information about the FCKeditor.


FCKeditor provides a clean and simple user interface which should be familiar to users who worked on common desktop text editors like.Microsoft Word or Open Office. It consists of four distinct elements:

  • Toolbar - the area at the top of the editor, which contains many different buttons. You will use these buttons to activate the programs functions.
  • Editing[24]Area - the area below the toolbar. This is the place where you type your text in.
  • Context[25]Menu - a menu with functions which appears when you click the right button of the mouse inside the editing area.
  • Dialogs - small windows that appear when some of the functions are activates, used to provide the necessary information to accomplish that function.


The Toolbar is the area in FCKeditor where you can activate most of the editor features. Each button in the toolbar access a different function. There are simple functions for basic text formatting and more advanced features like creation of links and tables.

The FCKeditor Toolbar

To use the buttons in the toolbar you must move your mouse pointer over the button. The button will highlight and a message with the information about the button function will appear. Click on the button to execute its function. With more experience you will have full control over all FCKeditor features and you won't have to read the discription of the buttons. You will just use them intuitively.

Besides the toolbars buttons there are also toolbar combos (drop down boxes). The combos are the white areas with a little arrow on its side. They can be easily accessed by clicking on the white area or the little arrow. Once clicked the menu will expand so you can choose from one of its available options. To execute one of them, simply click on it.

Editing Area

The Editing Area is the space where you will type in your text and format your document.


The FCKeditor Editing Area

FCKeditor can be viewed when clicking on “Rich Editor” link on top left of the screenshot.

If your document will be longer than the available space in the Editing Area, an scrollbar will appear. The scrollbar will allow you to go up and down through your text. You may also move inside the text by using your keyboard keys, for example PAGE UP, PAGE DOWN, HOME, END and ARROW KEYS.

Another important function while editing is the text selection (text highlight). To select the text, press your mouse left button, hold it and go to the direction you want to highlight the text. Just release the button and the text will remain selected.

Context Menu

Once you start working with text, the context menu becomes very useful. It's a menu which will appear when you click the right button of your mouse anywhere inside theediting[26]area or on an existing object.



As it names indicates the menu is context sensitive, which means that the available items depend on the place you click. For example, the following options may appear if you click inside a table:


It's enough to click the menu item to execute its function. Some of the functions maybe disabled. For example, the cut and copy options will be disabled if there is no text highlighted.

Common Tasks

In this section you will find most of the common tasks used in FCKeditor. The instruction how to use them will guide you step by step so your word processing will be easier.

You can access all the common tasks specification from this page as well as from the main page


Internet (the Web) vs Paper

Writing in FCKeditor is as simple as writing on desktop text editors, like Microsoft Word, or Open Office. There is an important difference to be considered though.

Desktop word processors are used to create printed (or printed like) content, limited in physical pages. FCKeditor instead, is usually used to create text to be published on Internet, and to be read by using web browsers. This is an important thing to consider and keep in mind.

The most important thing to consider are:

  • On Internet, pages have no physical limits. They can grow infinitely.
  • The same content can look different on different computers, or different web browsers. Text lines can contain more or less words, depending on the computer features and configurations.
  • User with visual or motorial disabilities may want to read your texts. Keep it in mind, and look on ways to better satisfy their particular needs.
  • Web sites and their pages have severe technical limits. They are created by programmers, using different "computer languages". Those "languages" are powerful on many aspects, but have also limits that are difficult to understand by people used to the flexibility of desktop text processors. With time, you will get used to those limits, and will be able to properly produce quality text that works for the Internet. Don't complain that much with your web developer if things don't work as you would have expected. Try to understand the technical restrictions. You will have an enjoyable writing experience in this way.

The ENTER key

The first thing you should know about editing the text is the usage of the keyboard key ENTER or in some computers called RETURN. If you press the key the editor will create a new paragraph. You can also use ENTER with a combination with the SHIFT key. Pressing the SHIFT+ENTER keys simultaneously will just break the line in the same paragraph. However you must notice that the usage of the key is predefined by the programs developer so it could have different options. If you are not sure how the ENTER key action is defined contact your system administrator to resolve the problem.


As you know the BACKSPACE key is used for deleting mistakes, whole words or whole text. To make it easier their you can use a combination of CTRL and BACKSPACE keys. If you press them at the same time you will erase the whole word which was before the cursor.

Text Formatting

Text formatting determines how your text will look in your document. Making your text look better is very easy using the FCKeditor. We will start the guide through the text formatting with bold, italic, underlined fonts.

Bold, Italic, Underlined and Strike-through

You may also arrange the way you font looks like by choosing whether the font should be bold, italic, underlined or stroked through.

  • To make your font bold press the[[Image:]] on the toolbar.
  • If you want it to be italic press the[[Image:]]on the toolbar .
  • For underlined press the[[Image:]] on the toolbar.
  • And finally to strike a line through the text press [[Image:]] on the toolbar.



If you choose any of this options you will learn that the button on the toolbar will highlight. If you want to disable the function press its button again. Of course you can mix these options as much as you want.



Notice that if you don't switch the underline option off the underline will go between your blanks.



The same thing happens when you use the strike through function.


It is quite easy to make your text looking ugly or difficult to read by making lots of different formatting on it. Styles help on making all formatting uniform in the text. Each style option contains a predefined combination of formatting features, which have been defined by the web site developer. Be sure you have been instructed on how to properly use each of the available styles.

Styles are also a way to combine all the formatting function described in this page. They give you fast access to the common used text formats. For example: you don't have to change the font, its color, its background, its size. You simply peak a style you prefer from the Style menu and start typing.


It is the best way to change the text look.



Text Alignment

A paragraph of text can have its lines aligned to either of the sides of the document, as well as centering on it. You may also force the lines to take the entire space available in the document (like aligning to both sides at the same time).

To align your text at the left side of the editing area, press the [[Image:]] button on the toolbar.



If you want instead to have the text aligned at the right side of the editing area, just press the [[Image:]]button on the toolbar.



In order to align your text at the center of the document, press the [[Image:]]on your toolbar.



The last option is the block alignment. If you want to activate it press [[Image:]] on the toolbar. This function is much similar to the left alignment. You also begin typing from the left side of the screen. The difference instead can be noted when writing several lines of text. Each one will have the same length even though they don't have to have the same amount of words or letters. The lines will just expand and the text will be equally long so that the lines will end in the same place.



Paragraph (Block) Format

Another very important function which you will probably use in your text is the Format menu in the toolbar:


A format is used for organizing your text and to distinguish different parts of your text. For example if you want to start a new chapter or to put different categories and subcategories you use the format menu and choose different headings.



You can see headings also in this guide. Fonts, Layout and format, Styles are all headings used to divide this document into categories.


Fonts are kinds of style of writing. They determine how the letters of your text look like. The most common used fonts are "Times New Roman" and "Arial". They are used in most documents created in the world. You may say that they are very official fonts used in formal documents. If you wish to use a different font you are of course more than welcome to do so. To choose a font you want to type in access the font menu in your toolbar and click on the font you decided to use.




We encourage you to avoid overusing this feature. You can easaly produce a document that looks bad or difficult to read. Give preference to the Styles menu instead, which have been preciselly designed by your web side developer.

Text Size

To change you font size open the "Size" menu in the toolbar. There you will find a range of sizes which were defined by your web site developer. To change the size of your font just choose one of the options.




As you can see you can have a very big variety of sizes.


The other option to make your text look different is changing the text color or its background color.

If you want to change your text color press the text color button [[Image:]]. Several colors will appear in a menu. If you are not satisfied with the colors available in that panel click "More colors...".

To choose the color you want to use, just click on it.




You may also change the text background color using the [[Image:]] button. Again you will find a range of colors the same ones as in the text color. Click on the color you want to choose.



You may also mix the colors of your text and the background.

Subscript and Superscript

Subscript and superscript are usually used for mathematical needs. Subscript is a way to put an index to a letter or to a number. The subscript has a smaller font than the normal text. To activate subscript you must press the [[Image:]] button on the toolbar.



As you can see you can use either a number in a subscript or a text.

The superscript work in the same way as the subscript but instead of placing the index in the bottom you place it in the top. This function is usually used in mathematical equations to write the "to the power of" function. You can access it from the toolbar using the [[Image:]] button



You can also mix these two functions:



Creating Lists

Creating a list is a very easy and intuitive issue. FCKeditor offers two kinds of lists.

Numbered Lists


To create and numbered list press [[Image:]]on the toolbar. The text which was beside your cursor will automatically gain number one on the list.



If you want to set another number below just press ENTER and the next number will appear



You may also highlight the lines you want to be numbered and than press [[Image:]].

If you want to stop Numbered Listing just press the [[Image:]] button again. The function will deactivate.


If you want to change the list properties press your right mouse button any place inside your list. A context menu will appear:


Choose Numbered list Properties.A popup window called "Umbered List Properties" will appear:


Start: the number which you'll put in to this field will determine from which number your list will stat.

Type: you may choose from several options regarding what type of listing you want to use, for example Large Roman Numerals.

Bulletted Lists


It works exactly like the Numbered List but instead of numbers you have dots. To activate/deactivate this function press[[Image:]].




If you want to change the list properties press you right mouse button any place inside your list.A context menu will appear:


Choose Bulleted List Properties. A popup window called "Bulleted List Properties" will appear:


Type: you may select the type of the dots you use in your list.

Links and Anchors


To insert a link to an URL address, anchor or an e.mail press [[Image:]] button on the toolbar. A popup window called "Link" will appear.


Link Type: specifies the type of link you want to put in the document. You can choose from "URL", "Link to anchor in the text". Depending on which option you will choose different options and bookmarks will appear in the window. We will start from the Link Type: URL.

Link Info

If you chose Link Type: URL the same option as in the above picture will appear.

  • Protocol: specifies the type of protocol you want to use for your link. You can choose from "http://", "https://","ftp://", "news://" or "<other>".
  • URL: specifies the address you want your link to refer to.
  • Press "OK" and the link will appear in your document.


To insert an anchor in the text place your cursor before the text or section you want to the anchor to refer and press [[Image:]] button on the toolbar. A popup window called "Anchor Properties" will appear:


  • Anchor Name: specifies the anchor name. You will be referring to this name while linking to the anchor.

Press "OK" and the anchor will appear in your document.

Inserting Images

Inserting Images in FCKeditor is very simple. Just press the [[Image:]] button on the toolbar. A popup window called "Image Properties" will appear. It includes four bookmarks:

Image Info


The first bookmark refers to the "Image Info"

  • Image file name: defines the name of the image.
  • Automatic search result: Result base on Image file name query. Please select the result.
  • Caption: puts the descriptions of the image if you want it to be different than the image name.
  • Width: specifies image width.
  • Height: specifies image height.

Pressing "OK" inserts the image with the specified properties.


Creating a table

If you want to create a table in FCKeditor you must press the "Insert/Edit Table" [[Image:]]button on the toolbar.

After that a popup window called "Table Properties" will appear.


  • Rows: in this field you specify how many rows do you want to have in your table .
  • Columns: in this field you specify how many columns do you want your table to have.
  • Border size: sets the thickness of the tables border.
  • Alignment: specifies the alignment of your table. You can set it to left, center or right.
  • Width: sets the width of you table in pixels or percentage. E.g. if you choose 40 percent the table will take 40% of the editing area width.
  • Cell spacing: specifies how thick will the cells border be.
  • Cell padding: sets the hight of the cell.
  • Caption: specifies the title of your table. The title will appear in the top of the table.
  • Summary: sets a comment on the table. The comment will not appear in the table. It is only for usage.

Not all of the options are required to build a table. You have to fill only Rows and Columns. Rest of the fields are optional and you may use them depending on your needs.

Working with the table

If you created your table you may change its properties. Point your mouse on the table press the right button and a context menu will appear.


In order to change the tables properties press "Table Properties" and a popup window will appear. It's the same windows that you used for creating the table.

If you want to delete you table simply press "Delete Table".

The other three options are Cell, Row and Column. If you point your mouse cursor on one of them a new context menu will appear.



  • Insert Cell Before: inserts a new cell before the cell your cursor is currently in.
  • Insert Cell After: inserts a new cell after the cell your cursor is currently in.
  • Delete Cells: deletes the cell your cursor is in. You may also highlight more cells and than delete them.
  • Merge Cells: merges cells you have highlighted into a one cell.
  • Split Cell Horizontally: splits a cell in two.One cell is split in two columns.
  • Split Cell Vertically:splits a cell in two.One cells is split in two rows.
  • Cell properties: if you click the cell properties a new popup window called "Cell Properties" will appear:


  • Width: sets the cell width in pixels or in percentage of the table width.
  • Height: sets the height of the cell.
  • Word Wrap: turns on/off word wrapping.
  • Horizontal Alignment:determines the horizontal alignment of the text in your cell. It can be set to Left, Center or Right.
  • Vertical Alignment: determines the vertical alignment of the text in your cell. It can be set to Top, Middle, Bottom or Baseline.
  • Rows span: extends vertical rows.
  • Columns span:extends cells on a horizontal row (left and right).
  • Background color: sets the background color of your cell. You can either select a color or type it manually.
  • Border Color: sets the color of your cells border. You can either select a color or type it manually.


  • Insert Row Before: inserts a new row before the row your cursor is currently in.
  • Insert Row After: inserts a new row after the row your cursor is currently in.
  • Delete Rows: deletes highlighted rows or the row your cursor is currently in.


  • [[Image:]]
  • Insert Column Before: inserts a column before the column your cursor is currently in.
  • Insert Column After: inserts a column after the column your cursor is currently in.
  • Delete Columns: deletes highlighted columns or the column your cursor is currently in.

Cut, Copy and Paste


To begin cutting the text you should firstly highlight the fragment you want to cut. After highlighting there are three methods to cut.

  1. by pressing the [[Image:]]button on the toolbar.
  2. by pressing the right mouse button on the highlighted area. A context menu will appear. Choose cut.
  3. by pressing the combination of CTRL+X keys.


You can copy a highlighted area in three ways.

  1. by pressing the [[Image:]]button on the toolbar.
  2. by pressing the right mouse button on the highlighted area. A context menu will appear. Choose copy.
  3. by pressing the combination of CTRL+C keys.


You can paste by pressing [[Image:]]. This option pastes a plain text which you should first paste inside the following box by using the combination of CTRL+V keys.


Find and Replace


To find a phrase/word in the text you should firstly press [[Image:]] button on the toolbar. After that a popup window called "Find and Replace" will appear:


  • Find what: in this field you place the phrase/word you want to find.
  • Match case: if you check this option the program will find only the text with the exact cases like e.g. aLberT
  • Match whole word: if you check this option the program will only look for a whole word. It won't look for a phrase

After deciding what options you want to use just press "Find" and the program will highlight the phrase/word it found. If you press "Find" again the program will find the next phrase/word matching to your request.


To replace a phrase/word in your text press [[Image:]] button on your keyboard. A popup window will appear:


  • Find what: in this field you place the phrase/word you want to find
  • Replace with: in this field you place the phrase/word you want to replace your text with.
  • Match case: if you check this option the program will find only the text with the exact cases like e.g. aLberT
  • Match whole word: if you check this option the program will only look for a whole word. It won't look for a phrase.

If you want to replace only one phrase/word press "Replace". The program will firstly find your text and highlight it. Than you should press the "Replace" button again in order to go on with the replacement.

If you want to replace all the phrases/words press "Replace All".

Undo and Redo


The undo function is very useful in a situation where you have made a mistake and you want to correct it fastly.e.g. you've written your whole text and you have erase it by mistake.

You can activate the undo function in two ways:

  • by pressing the [[Image:]]button on the toolbar.
  • by pressing the combination of CTRL+Z on the keyboard.

After you activate the function it will go to the last thing you have made so for example: you've wrote a whole chapter in your text and you've highlighted it and than deleted it by mistake. You activate the "Undo" function and it goes to the moment when the chapter was highlighted but before the deleting. You may of course go many steps back, not just one step.


The redo function is the exact opposite of the undo function. If you used the undo function and than for any reason decided to go back to the state before the undo you must use the redo function. To activate it press [[Image:]] on the toolbar.


In order to print your document press the [[Image:]]button on the toolbar. A popup window will appear:


In "Name" you can choose which printer would you like to use for printing. You may also define the range of printing. You can print All, print Pages from-to or a selection.You may also define the number of copies you want to print.

Source Editor

FCKeditor offers you a possibility to view to the text you have written in the editing area in the HTML code. In order to view the HTML code press [[Image:]] button on the toolbar.



After pressing [[Image:]] button we can see the HTML code:


If you want to go back to the normal text just press [[Image:]]again.

Editing the code in the HTML language is a very difficult feature and it should only be done by advanced users. If you don't have experience in HTML type the text normally.


Compatible browsers

Windows Mac Linux
Internet Explorer 5.5+ YES N/A N/A
Firefox 1.5+ YES YES YES
Safari 3.0+ YES YES N/A
Opera 9.5+ YES YES YES
Netscape 7.1+ YES YES YES
Camino 1.0+ N/A YES N/A

Incompatible browsers

If you use a browser which is a lower version of the browsers listed in the table above or your browser doesn't appear in the table, FCKeditor will work with limited features or won't work at all. You will only see the editing area where you can write in the HTML code. The toolbar wont appear at all.



If you want to work with all of FCKeditor features install one of the compatible browsers and than run the editor.

Starting a new page

There are several ways to start a new page. These can vary based on the type of page started, as well as the wiki and namespace.

Using Wikilinks

MediaWiki makes it very easy to link wiki pages using a standard syntax (see Links). If you (or anyone else) create a link to an article that doesn't exist yet, the link will be coloured red, like this.

Clicking a red link will take you to the edit page for the new article. Simply type your text, click save and the new page will be created.

Once the page has been created, the link will change from red to blue (purple for pages you've visited) indicating that the article now exists.

Usually this is the best way to create a new page, because it means that right from the start, the page will be linked from at least one other place on the wiki (and typically you will want to mesh it into other related pages later). If you are creating a new page without creating any link to it, you may need to ask yourself:

Does this page really fit in with the topics already covered in the wiki? Also, how are you expecting visitors to find this page? Normally there is no reason to create a page without first creating a red link to it.

From the search page

If you search for a page that doesn't exist (using the search box and “Go” button on the left of the page) then you will be provided with a link to create the new page.

Using the URL

You can use the wiki's URL for creating a new page. The URL to an article of the wiki is usually something like this:

If you replace ARTICLE with the name of the page you wish to create, you will be taken to a blank page which indicates that no article of that name exists yet. Clicking the "Edit" page tab at the top of the page will take you to the edit page for that article, where you can create the new page by typing your text, and clicking submit.

Create redirects to your new page

Don't forget to setup redirects when you create a page. If you think another person may search for the page you've created by using a different name or spelling, please create the proper redirect(s). See Help:Redirects

Protecting your new page

Normally a new wiki page can be edited by other people (that is one of the main ideas of a wiki!) However, a sysop could 'protect' the page, if desired, to prevent normal users from editing it.

User pages

MediaWiki allows all logged in users to have a user page. Anonymous users also have user pages, but they will share these with other users of the same IP. This can facilitate communication among participants in the project. If your username is JohnDoe:

User pages are linked to from page histories, recent changes, the list of users and from any page where you sign your name.

Talk pages

There are two types of talk pages – standard talk pages are used to discuss an article, while user talk pages are used to communicate with other users or leave them messages. Every page has an associated talk page, except pages in the Special: namespace. If there is no discussion of a page, the link to its talk page will be red. You can still discuss the page - you will just be the first person to do so.

Accessing a talk page

To access a talk page look for a link labeled Talk, Discussion or Discuss this page. These links will be found either at the top of the page or on the left hand side (near Edit this page).

A talk page adds Talk: to the beginning of the main page's title. If the main page has a prefix then talk is added after this prefix. For example, a talk page associated with the main article namespace simply has the prefix Talk:, while a talk page associated with the user namespace has the prefix User talk:. This article is in the Help: namespace, so the talk page for this article is Help talk:Talk page. The Main Page is in the main namespace (because it has no prefix), so its talk page is simply Talk:Main Page.

After someone else edits your user talk page, the alert "You have new messages" is automatically displayed on all pages you view, until you view your user page.

Using talk pages

You should sign your contributions by typing three or four tildes:

See Help:Automatic conversion of wikitext.

On a talk page, "this page" usually refers to the main page (i.e. the page the talk page is associated with). If the talk page itself is referred to, write "this talk page".

When debating the name of the page or discussing merging it with another page, always mention the current page name. Otherwise after renaming (moving) a page, references to "this page name" become ambiguous.

The "Post a comment" feature allows you to start a new section without needing to edit the whole page. The section header becomes the edit summary when you save the page, so it only needs to be typed once.

The practice of "spamming" – posting similar messages to more than a few users' talk pages, often for the purpose of soliciting a certain action - is discouraged.


Because the wiki software platform provides for a wide range of formatting styles, proper or at least consistent formatting is essential to maintaining readable talk pages.

The reference of a comment is determined by the number of colons (':') in front of it. If a reply is made to a statement, one adds a colon to the number of colons used in the statement being replied to. This style of conversation is easy to read.


How's the soup? --[[User:Bob|]]

:It's great!! --[[User:Lisa|]]

::Not too bad.. --[[User:George|]]

:::I made it myself! --[[User:Bob|]]

I think the soup-discussion should be moved to [[Talk:Soup]].. --[[User:Lisa|]]

:I tend to disagree. --[[User:George|]]

The above will produce this:

How's the soup? --Bob

It's great!! --Lisa

Not too bad.. --George

I made it myself! --Bob

I think the soup-discussion should be moved to Talk:Soup.. --Lisa

I tend to disagree. --George



Categories, a software feature of MediaWiki, provide automatic indexes that are useful as tables of contents.

Together with links and templates they structure a project.


Each of the pages in the Category namespace represents a so-called category, a grouping of related pages, and contain an index for the pages of its category. For example, this page belongs to "Category:English documentation". If you open the "Category:English documentation" page, you will see a link to this page there.

When a page belongs to one or more categories, these categories appear at the bottom of the page (or in the upper-right corner, depending on the skin being used).

The category pages themselves contain 2 parts :

  • at their begining, an optional part may contain text that can be edited, like any other page,
  • at their end, an ever present, automatically generated, alphabetical list of all pages in that category, in the form of links. (In fact, in ASCII order. See Help:Special page).

To assign a category to a page, simply add the link "[[Category:Category name]]" to the page's wikitext. The usual place to add it is at the bottom of the page.

To link a category page within a page as a normal wiki link (without adding the page to the category), prefix the link name with a colon. For example: [[:Category:Not in this category|Display Label]]

New categories can be created before assigning any page to it, in the same way as any other regular page.

Individual wikis may have their own top-level categories, such as w:Category:Contents in Wikipedia.

For a complete list of all categories which have at least one page, see Special:Categories.

For a complete list of all categories, including the ones that don't have any page, see Special:Allpages/Category: (note the colon at the end).

For categories on Meta, see m:Meta:Categories.

Putting an item in a category

A page in any namespace can be put in a category by adding a category tag to the page (by convention, at the end of the page), e.g.:

[[Category:Category name]]

You must substitute the actual name of your desired category in place of Category name. For example, to add an article called "Albert Einstein" to the category "People", you would edit the Albert Einstein article and add "[[Category:People]]" (no quotes) into its page source somewhere.

This will cause the page to be automatically listed on the associated category page, and it will also create a link in the page to the category page. Category pages are always in the namespace "Category". Pages can be included in more than one category by adding multiple category tags. These links do not appear at the location where you inserted the tag, but at the page margin in a fixed place, depending on the skin (the bottom for MonoBook, the upper right corner for Standard).

Category tags may be placed anywhere in the wikitext, but they are typically added near the end. On Wikipedia the policy is that category tags are put after the main wikitext, but before any interlanguage links.

Category links are displayed in the order in which they occur in the wikitext.

Hidden categories

When is put on a category page, that category is not listed on pages in the category. See category:hidden[36]category[37]demo and hidden[38]category[39]demo for an example. However, hidden categories can be made visible by ticking the item Show hidden categories (described by message[40]with[41]id'tog-showhiddencats' (talk)) in the "Misc" section in the user's preference; either way they can be made visible or invisible through CSS (details needed).

The hidden categories that a page belongs to are listed using the label supplied by the message[42]with[43]id'hiddencategories' (talk) when editing the page.

Hidden categories are automatically added to the category specified by the message[44]with[45]id'hidden-category-category' (talk). In this wiki it is Category:Hidden[46]categories. Within the Category namespace, the hidden categories a category page belongs to are listed separately from the standard (non-hidden) categories it also belongs to, using the label specified by the message[47]with[48]id'hidden-categories' (talk). [Seecategory:hidden[49]category[50]demo1.]

For example, suppose a page is categorised under MyHiddenCategory. The page itself does not mention this categorisation unless tog-showhiddencats is true, in which case the listing hiddencategories appears below the standard Categories listing (the specific positioning depends on the skin, obviously).

Within the Category namespace, MyHiddenCat is listed under the hidden-category-category global category. If MyHiddenCat has sub-categories, these will each list MyHiddenCat under the hidden-categories listing, appearing below the standard category listing. If MyHiddenCat is itself categorised under some higher category, the latter lists it without making any particular distinction (that is to say, hidden sub-categories are listed just as if they were standard sub-categories).

Category page

A category page consists of:

  • editable text
  • list of subcategories; how many there are is also displayed; if there are no subcategories the header and count are not shown. With the Category Tree extension, installed on Wikimedia, one can click "+" to see the subcategories of a selected subcategory.
  • list of pages (showing the full pagename) in the category, excluding subcategories and images; if there are none the header is shown anyway."
    • A raw list without links or headers can be obtained with Special:Export.
  • list of image and other media files with thumbnails; the number of files is given and the first 20 characters of the file name are shown, with an ellipsis if that is not the full name; also the file size is shown. As opposed to the second and third section, this section does not have sub-headers per letter.

The items in the lists all link to the pages concerned; in the case of the images this applies both to the image itself and to the text below it (the name of the image).

The first and second list each have a header for each first character, dispensed with if there are no entries for a header. If no headers are desired, use sort keys all starting with a blank space (see also below).

The number of items in each list is shown at the top of each. There are up to 200 items on a page, for the three types of items together. If the category contains more, the first page contains the first 200 items in the over-all order, for example the subcategories, pages and media files with implicit or explicit sortkeys A-C, etc.

On Meta and Wikipedia a redirect to a category shows the editable text only. To get the full page after being redirected, use the link "Image", or "Category", respectively.

On Commons a redirect to a category gives the full page, but not the subcategories and pages in the redirect page (if that is also a category).

Creating a category page

To create a category page, one can e.g:

  • follow an automatically created link to the category page. Putting this code on any page creates the link.

[[Category:Category name]]


  • add a colon in front of the Category tag when you set up the page-creation link, to prevent the software from thinking you merely want to add the page you are working on to the category:

[[:Category:Category name]]

Placing the above text on working page will create the link you can use to edit your category page, and will display the link text as a normal wiki link without adding the page to the category.


Creating subcategories takes only a few additional steps. Adding a category tag to a category page makes the edited category a subcategory of the category specified in the tag.

First create a new category page for the subcategory the same way you would make a regular category. For example, create [[Category:England]]

Then go to the newly created category page and edit it. Add the category tag for the parent category (e.g. [[Category:Country]]) to the page.

Then create a new page with a category link to England. In this example, the England category would then be a subcategory of the Country category.

e.g. adding link to the new page like this...


Now to create a subcategory to subcategory England you need to create a new page with a category link to England wikipage and edit it (the category).

e.g. adding link to the page like this...


For a live example see Category:Demo_1 which is a subcategory of Category:Demo.


Subpages introduce some hierarchical organization into wiki pages, with levels of the hierarchy separated by slashes (/).

Where it works

By default, MediaWiki's subpage feature is turned off in the main namespace, but can be used on talk pages and user pages. See Help:Namespaces. In namespaces where the feature is switched off, any slashes (/) within a page name are simply part of the page name and do nothing special.

How it works

Slashes (/) within a page name break the page into parent and subpages, recursively, e.g.:

  • Help:Subpages - this page
  • Help:Subpages/subpage - child page
  • Help:Subpages/subpage/sub-subpage - grandchild page

Note that the part of page names after a slash is case sensitive including the first letter.

In subpages, a link back to antecedent pages will automatically appear at the top. These links do not appear, however, if the antecedent pages have not yet been created.

Use of subpages

There are various uses for the subpage feature. Some of the typical usages of subpages are:

  • to create archives of old discussions under a talk page
  • to create scratchpad editing spaces under a user page
  • to create other language versions of a document in multilingual wikis

Subpages are useful for organising information hierarchically. On the other hand, subpages tend to have a long name that is hard to remember, so it may be more user-friendly to use them as little as possible. You can also organize pages with the category feature, which is more suitable for creating a hierarchical network of information.

Managing files

If file uploads are enabled, you can upload certain types of files to the wiki. This is particularly useful for uploading images, which you want to place on an article, but you can also upload other types of files.


Upload a file

  1. Prepare the file for upload. Make sure the file is exactly as you want it.
  2. In the sidebar, under “toolbox”, click “Upload file.”
  3. Click “Browse” next to the “Source filename:” to locate the file on your computer (the name of the “browse” button depends on your web browser).
  4. Change the “Destination filename:” to something descriptive, if necessary.
  5. Fill in the “Summary,” if necessary.
  6. Click the “Upload file” button.

If it is a large file, you may need to wait several seconds for the upload to complete.

Using images and file description pages

After you've uploaded a file, you can use it in an article, with some special wiki syntax to create the link. See Help:Images.

Your file gets its very own “file description page” within the File namespace of the wiki. You should edit this page to provide more information about the file. For example, many public wiki projects are quite sensitive to copyright issues, and so you should explain where you got the file from, and what its copyright status is, on the description page. Any other useful descriptive notes could also be added there.

List of files in the wiki

There are a number of special pages to help you view and manage files which have been uploaded. Go to “Special pages” (in the toolbox on the left) and then see...

  • Gallery of new files - If you just uploaded one, you will see it here.
  • File list - Shows all of the files.
  • Unused files - Helps you track down files which might not be needed.

See Help:Special pages for details of the other information available here.

Moving (renaming) a page


Moving (renaming) a page means giving it another name. This is done by using the "move" tab at the top. The tab is not visible if you are not logged in. Then simply enter the new name and click "Move page". Normally you would want to leave the "Move associated talk page" option ticked.

If you move page "A" to a new title "B", this operation will do the following:

Renames the title of page "A" as "B"

Renames all the editing history of page "A" as of page "B" as well

Creates a new page "A", whose content is a redirect to page "B"

The second point is important. By using the "Move" feature, you also move the editing history, which is desirable in most situations. The editing history allows people to see how the contents of the page were built up, and who contributed what. If you move contents around by copying and pasting (not using the move feature), you do not achieve this (see also Help:Tracking changes).

Because the move operation leaves behind a redirect (see Help:Redirects), it should not result in any broken links, however you might want to hunt down pages or other redirects which link in to the redirect, and change their text to link directly to the new title. The "What links here" feature, which can be used through the link in the Toolbox (at bottom of the sidebar on the left) is useful when doing this.

Proposing a move

Deciding on a page title can be a difficult aspect of wiki organization, and one which can often provoke debates. If the move you have in mind is one which might cause upset or could be considered controversial, you should propose the move first. Do this by leaving a note to give your reasons on the talk page. You might also establish a system for labeling the page itself, with a move proposal template, to make everybody aware of your intentions.

Undo a move

As with all wiki editing, a move operation can be reversed (by any user). To reverse a move operation, simply move the page back, e.g. move page "B" back to "A".

The page title "B" will still be left behind, as a redirect from "B" to "A". Any user can remove the redirect and propose that the page be deleted. However the final deletion will require sysop privileges (see Help:Deleting a page).

Moving a page without creating a redirect

Users with the suppressredirect user[51]right can optionally move a page without creating a redirect. This is particularly useful when undoing a move.


Redirects are used to forward users from one page name to another. They can be useful if a particular article is referred to by multiple names, or has alternative punctuation, capitalization or spellings.

Creating a redirect

You may start a new page with the name you want to direct from (see Help:Starting a new page). You can also use an existing page that you are making inactive as a page by going to that page and using the "edit" tab at the top. In either case, you will be inserting the following code at the very first text position of the window for the page:

#REDIRECT [[pagename]]

where pagename is the name of the destination page. The word "redirect" is not case-sensitive, but there must be no space before the "#" symbol. Any text before the code will disable the code and prevent a redirect. Any text or regular content code after the redirect code will be ignored (and should be deleted from an existing page). However, to put or keep the current page name listed in a Category, the usual tag for that category is entered or kept on a line after the redirect code entry.

You should use the 'preview' button below the Edit window, or Alt-P, to check that you have entered the correct destination page name. The preview page will not look like the resulting redirect page, it will look like a numbered list, with the destination page in blue:

1. REDIRECT pagename

If the pagename as you typed it is not a valid page, it will show in red. Until there is a valid destination page, you should not make the redirect.

Viewing a redirect

After making a redirect at a page, you can no longer get to that page by using its name or by any link using that name; and they do not show up in wiki search results, either. However, near the top of the destination page, a notice that you have been forwarded appears, with the source pagename as an active link to it. Click this to get back to the redirected page, showing the large bent arrow symbol and the destination for the redirect.

By doing this, you can do all the things that any wiki page allows. You can go to the associated discussion page to discuss the redirect. You can view the history of the page, including a record of the redirect. You can edit the page if the redirect is wrong, and you can revert to an older version to remove the redirect.

Deleting a redirect

There's generally no need to delete redirects. They do not occupy a significant amount of database space. If a page name is vaguely meaningful, there's no harm (and some benefit) in having it as a redirect to the more relevant or current page.

If you do need to delete a redirect, e.g. if the page name is offensive, or you wish to discourage people from referring to a concept by that name, then you simply go to the redirect page as mentioned above, and follow the procedures at Help:Deleting a page.

Double redirects

A double redirect is a page redirecting to a page which is itself a redirect, and it will not work. Instead, people will be presented with a view of the next redirect page. This is a deliberate restriction, partly to prevent infinite loops, and partly to keep things simple.

However, you could look out for double redirects and eliminate them by changing them to be 1-step redirects instead. You are most likely to need to do this after a significant page move. Use the "what links here" toolbox link to find double redirects to a particular page, or useSpecial:DoubleRedirects to find them throughout the whole wiki.

A redirect to a page in the category namespace

To prevent a page that redirects to a category from appearing in the category, precede the word "Category" with a colon:

#REDIRECT [[:Category:Glossary]]

Deleting a page

When not to delete a page

Typically you would delete a page if the contents are entirely inappropriate and do not match the purposes of the Wiki. In other situations, you would take a less extreme course of action, for example:

  • The page should have a different title -- See Help:Moving a page
  • The contents should have been placed on a different page -- Add the contents to the other page, and then supply a redirect. See Help:Redirects
  • The contents are already on a different page -- Delete the duplicate content and leave a redirect. That way, the page title, which made sense to somebody, will helpfully redirect to the information. See Help:Redirects
  • The page is out-of-date -- Re-word sentences to be in the past tense, to make the page an historical record. Alternatively, label the information as out-of-date, with a warning notice.

An actual delete is generally necessary only if the title of the page is inappropriate. In other situations, a merge and redirect is more appropriate.

Proposing changes

Deciding on appropriate content/page titles can be a difficult aspect of Wiki organization, and one which can often provoke debates. If the merge or deletion you have in mind is one which might cause upset, you should propose the change first. Do this by leaving a note to give your reasons on the talk page. You might also establish a system for labeling the page with a delete/merge proposal template, to make everybody aware of your intentions.

Unlinking a page

The 'What links here' toolbox feature (bottom of left sidebar) will tell you which other Wiki pages link to the current page. Always use this feature to check before proceeding with deleting. These related pages will need to be edited for their links to reflect the change.

Deletion itself

Normal users cannot permanently delete a Wiki page. This is a deliberate design feature, and is an important part of why wikis work. Every kind of editing operation can be reverted by any other user, and that includes resurrecting deleted content. It doesn't cause significant wasted space; and with nothing but a 'delete' label, the page is effectively deleted anyway.

'Sysop' users are able to delete a page semi-permanently. See Help:Sysop deleting and undeleting. Typically 'sysops' might look for delete labels, and do a proper delete on these pages, after a period of time. If for some reason you need a page to be deleted more quickly than that, you will need to contact a 'sysop' to request this.

Protected pages

A protected page is a page where normal users are prevented from editing and/or moving at all. Only a user with sysop permissions can edit or move a protected page. Likewise only sysop users can protect a page in the first place, or unprotect the page to lift the restriction.

There are several reasons why a particular page might be protected:

  • On public wikis, pages may be protected because they have been repeatedly targeted with vandalism or moved to bad titles, or where it is believed that vandalism or page moves would have a unusually severe impact.
  • On corporate wikis, pages may be protected when they contain statements which have been approved by management, and policy dictates that those statements can't be changed without following a certain approval process.

Page protection limits collaboration on the wiki content, and should be avoided where possible.

For sysop information see Help:Protecting and unprotecting pages


This manual require a lots of syntax knowledge and can be viewed at

Special pages


Special pages are pages that are created by the software on demand. They are located in their own namespace Special: and are not editable directly as other pages.

Some special pages depend on the preferences that have been set by a user, e.g. the number of titles which is displayed on a user's watchlist.

List of special pages

Clicking the link Special:Specialpages will take you to a list of all special pages on a wiki. Such a link is often accessible in the toolbox on the left and panel. Some special pages can be transcluded.

Personal customization



Preferences are settings made by a logged-in user that control that user's account and various aspects of the user's viewing and editing environment.

To access the preferences screen (having logged on), click "My preferences" (at the top of every page with the default skin), or navigate to Special:Preferences.

Along the top of the preferences screen are a number of tabs, which you can click in order to access various groups of settings. Depending on your screen size, you might wish to adjust the "Thumbnail size" (under "Appearance/Files"); this affects the default size at which many images in articles will be displayed. Remember to click "Save" after making changes.

Each Wikimedia wiki, including each language edition of Wikipedia, has separate preference settings. Some details are different at the English Wikipedia. For example, the option "E-mail me when a page on my watchlist is changed" is disabled for performance reasons.

It is not recommended to select "en-GB - British English" at the language option in preferences. Many interface messages have been customized at the English Wikipedia but only for the default selection "en - English". The language option only affects interface messages and not article text.

Detailed help

For detailed information about available preference settings, read Preferences Help at Meta. (Note that preference settings made at Meta do not affect the English Wikipedia, so don't click "my preferences" on the Meta help page if you want to modify your preferences here.)

Wiki administration

Sysops and permissions

The way permissions are set-up on different wikis can vary, but the default MediaWiki installation has several different permissions available; most notably the sysop and bureaucrat permissions.

Soft security - There are no permissions

Wikis are often set up to be freely and openly editable. This means anyone can edit the pages, often without even registering/logging in. This is only possible because wikis offer a unique kind of "soft security". By making it very simple to monitor edits, and revert changes to retrieve an older version of a page, a wiki doesn't need to be very restrictive at all.

There are no permissions. Everyone is an administrator. You don't need permission to edit, and you are encouraged to "be bold", go forth and edit! least that is the theory. In practice MediaWiki software does offer many options related to permissions.


By default MediaWiki provides extra functionality to a group of trusted users called 'sysops' (or known more generally as 'administrators') Most of the time this should go largely unnoticed by the normal users of a wiki community. Everyone can get involved in editing pages, and even undertaking drastic reorganisation of the wiki. The extra powers of a sysop user are intended for use in settling disputes and preventing repeated vandalism.

Who are the sysops?

You can find out who the sysops are at Special:ListUsers/sysop

What can a sysop do?

There are a number of extra features available to sysops. The key ones are as follows:

Protecting and unprotecting pages, and editing protected pages

'Protecting' a page prevents normal users from editing the page at all. There are several reasons why a particular page might be protected. For more information see Help:Protected pages. For sysop information see Help:Protecting and unprotecting pages

Deleting pages, and undeleting.

A page can be deleted semi-permanently, such that it is no longer available (even in the page histories) for normal users. Normal users do not have this power. See Help:Deleting a page. For sysop information see Help:Sysop deleting and undeleting.

Blocking a user or IP address, and unblocking them.

Users can be blocked from the wiki. This is a useful way of keeping out persistent vandals. Users are identified by their registered user name, or by I.P. address, and can be blocked permanently, or just short length of time to give them a "cooling off" period. See Help:Blocking users

Patrolling, and seeing patrolled edits.

This is a way of coordinating with other sysops, to ensure that every edit of the wiki has been checked over by a trusted user. See Help:Patrolled edits


Another level of permissions within a default MediaWiki set-up, is the 'bureaucrat' group.

The main thing a bureaucrat can do, which 'sysop' cannot, is promote users to be sysops (and demote sysops to normal users). See Help:Assigning permissions

Protecting and unprotecting pages

Protecting and unprotecting pages is very straightforward, but these operations require sysop permissions.

You can designate a page as a protected page by clicking the 'Protect page' tab, and supplying a comment (a brief textual description of why you are protecting the page).

There are several reasons why a particular page might be protected. On public wikis, a protected page is usually one which has been repeatedly targeted with vandalism, or where it is believed that any vandalism would have an unusually severe impact. On corporate wikis, a page may be protected when the content has been frozen via an approval process. However there are also many good reasons for not protecting pages. As a sysop you must make this choice, and wield your power responsibly.

Sysop deleting and undeleting

Deleting a page is a straightforward operation for anyone with sysop permissions. Users without such permissions can still remove text from wiki pages, or propose/request that a page should be deleted. See Help:Deleting a page.

Before deleting

Sysops should also be aware of the general advice given on Help:Deleting a page (In particular, note that there are many situations where a deleting is too drastic. Often a redirect is more appropriate for example)

Before deleting you could perform various checks:

  • Use the "What links here" tool. This gives an indication as to how important a page is, and what subjects it relates to. Perhaps the page is still linked to prominently from many places. All incoming links will become red links if you proceed with the delete. Ideally all incoming links should be changed/removed, if there is genuinely no need for this page to exist. You could do this work prior to deleting, or ask others in the wiki community to do it.
  • Check the page history and the associated talk page. Who was proposing the deletion? Does anyone disagree? Has it been properly discussed? Did people have adequate time to raise objections? Did somebody vandalise a page, which then led to a deletion proposal?

The care taken over these things might depend on the size of the wiki community, and how clear-cut the case for deletion is. Remember that only sysop users can undo a delete action, so to a normal user the information appears to be lost forever.

Use the 'delete' tab

Sysops should see a 'delete' tab at the top of every page. Click this to delete the page. You will be asked to confirm, and to supply a "Reason for deletion". This is a short textual description of why the page is being deleted. Your action will appear on the recent changes display, and in the deletion log (Special:Log).


To undelete a page you must navigate to the exact page name of the page. You can find this in the deletion log (Special:Log) if you dont remember it.

You should then see a link to "View or restore n deleted edits". Tick the box next to the revision you wish to restore.

Blocking users

Blocking users is an action that sysops can perform upon users or IP addresses to prevent them from editing the wiki.


Blocking users is fairly straightforward, visit Special:BlockIP and follow these steps:

  1. IP Address or username: Enter in the username, IP address, or IP range to block in the "User" field. If blocking a username, make sure to check the spelling since nonexistent users can be blocked as well. Instead of typing this information in manually, it is also possible to click on a "block" link in recent changes, contributions pages, or history pages, which will automatically fill in this field with the appropriate username or IP address. A "Block this user" link is also present in the toolbox when viewing User and User talk pages.
  2. Expiration: Select when the block should expire from the drop-down, or manually type in an expiration time of the block. When manually typing in a time, follow the GNU standard format. The default options in the drop-down may be modified at MediaWiki:Ipboptions.
  3. Reason (optional): The reason selected from the drop-down combined with the other/additional reason specified will be used as the message displayed to the blocked user when they try to edit. The default reasons in the drop-down may be modified at MediaWiki:Ipbreason-dropdown.
  4. Select additional block options (optional): Depending on if a username or IP is being blocked and other options that may have been enabled, some or all of these options will be displayed on the form. Please see Manual:Block[56]and[57]unblock#Configuration[58]settings[59]related[60]to[61]blocking for information of how to enable or disable some of the following options.
    • Block anonymous users only: This option is only available when blocking an IP address. When selected, registered users who try to edit using a blocked IP address will still be able to edit. Otherwise, they will be unable to edit as well.
    • Prevent account creation: Selecting this option will prevent the blocked username or IP address from creating new accounts.
    • Automatically block the last IP address used by this user, and any subsequent IPs they try to edit from: This option is only available when blocking a username. When selected, the user's IP will become "autoblocked" (these show up as numbers such as #17 on the active block list) for a short period of time and any other IP addresses that the blocked user tries to edit from will be blocked as well.
    • Prevent user from sending e-mail: This option is only available when blocking a username. When this option is selected, the user will be unable to use the Special:EmailUser interface.
    • Hide username from the block log, active block list and user list: When selected, the blocked username or IP address will not be added to the block log, the active block list, or the user list. Other users with the ability to view these hidden entries will still be able to see and unblock the username or IP address. This option is not enabled in a default installation of MediaWiki; the person putting the block in place must have the hideuser permission. See Manual:User rights.
    • Watch this user's user and talk pages: When selected, this adds the blocked user's user page and user talk page to your watchlist.
  5. Double-check everything you entered and click on Block this user. A message should appear saying if the block was successful or unsuccessful.


To unblock a username or IP address, go to the active block list and click on the (unblock) link next to the user or IP you wish to unblock. Then, enter in an optional reason and click on the unblock button. A message should appear saying if the unblock was successful or unsuccessful.

What it means to be blocked

Blocked users are unable to edit pages, upload files, move pages, and perform other actions that additional user rights would grant. Effectively, this makes the wiki read only for those users. Sysops or others with access to the blocking and unblocking interface may still block and unblock others (including themselves) while blocked.

Assigning permissions

"Assigning permissions" means granting users extra rights within the wiki software (or revoking these rights). This is done by going to the Special:UserRights page, and adding users into a "group" which has specific rights. The first thing to note however, is that this action requires special permissions itself!


By default, you will need to be a 'Bureaucrat' (in the 'Bureaucrat' group) before you can access the Special:UserRights page. The first user created when setting up a MediaWiki installation is a bureaucrat. Other users can always contact one of the bureaucrats to request a change of permissions. Find out who these people are at Special:ListUsers/bureaucrat. In a small wiki there might typically be only one such user or maybe two.

Promoting users to Sysops and Bureaucrats

The Special:UserRights page allows you (if you have access) to set which groups a user is in. A common task would be to put a user into the 'Sysop' group. This will grant the user various extra rights, such as deleting pages, and blocking users. See Help:Sysops and permissions for more details.

Obviously giving a user such rights implies that you trust the user, both in terms of being non-malicious, and also as somebody with sufficient competence in using the wiki software, and in dealing with the wiki community. People hoping to become sysops should read Help:Sysops and permissions. However it should be noted that actions of a sysop user are (almost) entirely reversible, by other sysop users, and so it can be a good idea to dish out these extra permissions to a number of users in order to

  • spread the workload of day-to-day sysop operations such as blocking vandals and deleting pages.
  • make things more democratic, and decrease any perception of a single dictator running the community
  • allow competent users the power they need to make progress with wiki refactoring.
  • reward valued contributors/community members


If you have many sysops, you may start to need documented processes governing their actions. e.g. when should a page be protected versus leaving it unprotected? You may even reach the point where you need a documented procedure for deciding who gets to be a sysop, and who should have their sysop rights revoked. To manage all of this, you may wish to promote several users into the 'Bureaucrat' group (a smaller number of your most trusted users) to spread the workload managing the promoting/demoting of sysops. On some large wikis, users are voted in by other users before they are granted extra permissions, and sysops have their rights revoked by a committee who investigate accusations of misconduct. Such processes are unlikely to be necessary in anything but the largest of wiki communities.

Other permissions

Beyond promoting/demoting of Sysops and Bureaucrats, you can also allow a user to operate as a 'bot', meaning their edits do not show up on recent changes.

More details regarding User rights management can be referred at Manual:User rights management