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Converting to oddmuse

[RollingPool page on the new OddMuse version]

I am working on transferring KayakWiki from usemodwiki to oddmusewiki. Let's do the discussion about the conversion here at KayakWiki/Talk. BTW, the conversion is not a given. If people don't like it we could decide not to change.

I have set up a version of this wiki [here]. There are issues with it. Whenever I try to edit the HomePage it has an error which locks further editing and I need to unlock. But, take a look at it, try it out, see what you think. It has several features that will help with the spam problem.

Take a look at the new version, try making changes. If you end up doing something that seems to lock up the new site go to [the Administration page] and hit [Unlock Wiki]. -- Nick Schade

Nick- I took a quick peek at the Odd Muse wiki. Is there a document that explains how to format copy in this wiki? It looks like a lot of the old formatting doesn't translate. - Mike Scarborough

For more information about formatting see [OddMuseWiki Text Formatting Rules]. Yes, some of the old formatting does not translate. It possible that with a few changes to the configuration I may be able to make something that currently does not work, function again. Take a look through the OddMuseWiki? site to learn more. I haven't had a chance to read through everything yet. If you see something you would like implemented, let me know. -- Nick Schade

We need <BR> tags and horizontal lines (----) enabled for quite a few of our pages -- Nojer2 - 8th Feb 2005

I've looked around to see how to turn these on, but don't find it. Can you point me to it. Nick Schade

Hmmm yeah I can't edit the homepage either. it says No revision at /usr/www/users/guille/kayakforum/cgi-bin/Owiki.pl line 2490.. What does 'No revision' mean? -- Nojer2 - 7th Feb 2005

I really don't know what the 'No Revision' error is all about. If someone has a chance to seek some tech support on this, I would appreciate it. Nick Schade

I have [posed the question].... wooh Alex Schröder came back with a very fast response. He needs to know more from you though Nick. You'll have to chat to him directly on that [comments page], about how you did the migration. -- Nojer2 - 8th Feb 2005

OK I have a suggestion for you Nick. Try deleting 'HomePage' all together, and then we can just re-create it. Normal oddmuse [Page Deletion] involves editing the page, so that's not going to work. You will have to follow the instructions for 'Immediate Delete': Remove the page file in the page directory, remove the keep files in the keep directory, and remove the pageidx file to force Oddmuse to refresh its index file. -- Nojer2 - 10th Feb 2005

I've deleted all the HomePage files. With further testing it appears that the problem is a result of the SubPages?. When I try to edit any page that had a subpage on the old version, I get an error in the new version. This means I will need to go through and delete the subpages from the new version to eliminate further problems. -- Nick Schade

Aha. Those subpages are the problem huh? Look on the [Migrating From UseMod] page. The 'No more subpages' section gives you a sequence of commands to run (ls and rmdir). cd to the directory within oddmuse installation where the .db file are. The sequence of commands will rename all subpages to be normal pages e.g. Ditch Kit/Compass becomes Ditch KitCompass. Not ideal naming, but over time we will be able to clear it all up (particularly as oddmuse supports page deletion). -- Nojer2 - 11th Feb 2005

I was aware of the recommended way of renaming everything. I just haven't had the time to do it yet. I'm currently occupied building a kayak, I'll try to get to this as soon as I can. -- Nick Schade

The biggest downside [of oddmuse] is kayakwiki is currently using sub-pages and it looks like a time consuming process to eliminate them. Any suggestions? -- Nick Schade

There's 148 subpages, of which 49 are Talk pages. Not impossible to convert by hand, but a little tedious. -- Nojer2

If someone wants to take on the task of reworking the subpages we could go ahead with the upgrade. -- Nick Schade.

The talk pages could be done with the [Comment Pages feature]. The features are all there. But how do you make the transit? -- Manni

Comments pages! Looks like a nifty module. It enforces a naming convention for the comment pages, similar to our old /Talk convention, but not the same (since there's no sub pages). So you would need to install this module first, before we try to move the talk page information across. I think this module is a good idea. what d'you reckon Nick? -- Nojer2 - 7th Feb 2005

Comments are now turned on. -- Nick Schade - 7th Feb 2005

The HomePage coloured boxes (inspired by the [wikipedia main page]) are made with <TABLE> tags which I'm guessing most wiki engines won't allow. Even the later versions of usemod don't allow them. Oh well. Looks like we'll have to have a more boring homepage after an upgrade. If it blocks most of the spam, then I'm all for it! -- Nojer2 - 4th Feb 2005

The hard-coded tables could be replaced or emulated with the [Long Table Markup Extension]. -- Manni

Ah yeah. The administrator can define CSS styles for the boxes too, so should be able to rebuild something pretty similar to what we already have. You should add this module Nick. It says you can just drop the pl file in place. (not there already. I tried it [here]) -- Nojer2 7th Feb 2005

I tried to figure out which module is needed. I think CSS is already a possibility we just need the CSS style file. If there is a module you think we need, point me to it. Nick Schade

Old discussion

If you are looking for suggestions, I am aware of two wiki packages with excellent anti-spam features that are similar to the UseMod? wiki software you are currently using. My first recommendation is [OddMuse]. OddMuse? is written in Perl and its chief advantage for you would be that since OddMuse? is a descendent of UseMod? it directly supports existing UseMod? database page files and UseMod? page markup. Its chief disadvantage is that OddMuse? removes support for hierarchical naming (i.e. all pages like MainPage/SubPage have to be converted to a flat name like MainPage_SubPage.

My second recommendation is [MoinMoin]. MoinMoin? is written in Python and one of its advantages is that its anti-spam feature requires no maintenance on the administrator's part - it is automatically maintained by the MoinMoin? community and then automatically used by all MoinMoin? installations. For you the chief disadvantage of MoinMoin? is the same disadvantage most non-UseMod? derived wikis have, namely that it doesn't have any support for the UseMod? database files. Thus, to use MoinMoin?, you'd have to use something like [WikiGateway] to move the page data from the old wiki to the new wiki.


Richard: I'm glad you were able to help.

Nick: A first step in reducing the amount of spam you have had to see here lately is to somehow prevent search engines from indexing your old revisions or even the complete wiki. You could either patch your usemod script somehow so that it issues the robots metatag accordingly, you could come up with a robots.txt file, or you could even have a .htaccess file that simply denies access to the major search engine crawlers. Spammers find spammable wikis by searching for spam. The more often your wiki is spammed, the more spammers will find you. And, of course, the more spammers find you, the more you will get spammed. I like to compare that to a thermonuclear reaction. The damage isn't quite as bad, but the similarity is obvious.

oddmuse is certainly a good recommendation. They have [detailed instructions] on migrating from usemod. And oddmuse doesn't need to be patched to issue the correct metatags and to block spam. Moreover, it's very easy to install; just like usemod.


I'm in the process of rebuilding my Gentoo system and haven't been able to add much to the site recently but I did come across an article that I thought may be of interest to others: [Which Open Source Wiki Works For You?]

Does anyone here know what wiki software and version this site is running? Also is there a link to the documentation for this particular software?

Tres -- 7 November 2004

Yeah someone else was asking that here: How Does One Edit A Page/Talk. The guy running the webserver is Nick Schade. He's the man to answer this question. My guess is that it's a pretty old perl script wiki. It seems to work OK. If he were to upgrade it, this would probably break any incoming links and lose search engine rankings, unless he just upgrades to a later version of the same wiki system. An upgrade would be nice though, then we'd see nice new features e.g. 'watch' individual pages, and sign your name by typing ~~~~. More importantly some of these newer wikis engines have content blacklist and whitelist functions, which could be used to cut down the Wiki Spam problem we are getting. Suprisingly that article doesn't mention antispam features at all. Anyway I don't think Nick is going to go to the hassle of upgrading any time soon. -- Nojer2 8th Nov 2004

Nick Schade tell's me it's running [UseMod wiki]. In terms of simplicity to install, this is probably the best choice for a wiki system. See some [other people's comments http://www.usemod.com/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?UseModWiki/WhyAnotherWiki]. ...but it does lack some of the features I mentioned. There's some patches available, and also I'm not sure if we're on the latest version (1.0). Might be worth looking into. -- Nojer2 17th Jan 2005

Nojer2, thank you for tracking down the problem that locked up the wiki. I have been neglecting it for a while. I have not kept up on the other options available. We seem to have a spam problem. I would like to see options there are for dealing better with the spam. Any suggestions are welcome. I am not against using a different wiki script, but I would want something that lets us transfer the data from here. Thanks again. Nick Schade Nov. 17, 2005.

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