On Mon, 26 Dec 2011 18:00:24 -0800, Forest ForTrees
Hello, I run IT for a small nonprofit that just
purchased a VPS to speed
up our wiki. This being our first VPS, we are starting completely fresh,
and are trying to find the current “best in class” software to start
with. I was wondering if people could provide feedback on the software
stack we are planning on using.
First, the 30,000 foot view:
* MediaWiki 1.18
* PHP 5.3.3, Apache 2.0.63, and MySQL 5.0.92, and CentOS 5.7
* APC 3.1.9 (current) with $wgMainCacheType = CACHE_ACCEL;
* Varnish 3.0.2
* Our wiki gets about 25,000 pageviews per month, mostly from people
who aren’t logged in. The test wiki can be viewed here
Maybe it's just me. But
I think if you're going to the trouble of setting
up a new server it would be best to keep up with the latest security
release of the software you install from the start.
In particular php 5.3 before 5.3.5 (in other words the version you are
running) has a security vulnerability that can affect MediaWiki:
We’re aware that Squid has classically been used my
Wikimedia, but many
sources seem to be saying that Varnish, having been built from the
ground up as a http accelerator is faster. I also found the following
statement in a slide show called “Wikimedia Operations Overview:”
“Currently in development to replace squid for all caching. More
efficient than squid, better able to use resources.”
Wikia is actually using
Varnish live for it's entire wiki farm.
Squid is really just a historical point, WM started using it IIRC at a
point when Varnish didn't even exist.
Overall, our goal is simply to choose the best
software we can find to
provide a good foundation for our wiki. Any feedback would be
In terms of other settings, because our wiki is quite small (600
articles) and because we like being able to mess around in the database,
we are planning on using the MySQL 4.1/5.0 UTF-8 character encoding.
Frankly, we have no idea how to make that call, but the idea of the text
being encoded in a human readable format does seem attractive.
Our binary schema is
really just utf8 in binary columns. So the text
should be perfectly readable unless you've got a crappy user interface
trying to act smart and hiding the contents of the columns from you. Most
of them, for example phpMyAdmin, will include a setting that you can
change to make them display the contents of binary columns. So using
binary really shouldn't be a problem
MediaWiki prefers the binary schema because MySQL's utf8 schemas don't
support characters outside of the BMP. As a result you can have text in
some fancy scripts disappear.
Thanks in advance,
~Daniel Friesen (Dantman, Nadir-Seen-Fire) [http://daniel.friesen.name