So in a nutshell CirrusSearch is a work alike for MWSearch, the search currently in use on all wikis hosted at Wikimedia.  From the perspective of reader or editor the advantages of CirrusSearch are:
1.  Changes are reflected in search very quickly.  Typically pages update in a few seconds but I'd give templates included in many pages a few minutes to propagate.
2.  Tons better language support.  I have to leave this vague because every time I try to quantify it I find that I've missed something.
3.  Transcluded templates are included in search.  That includes text and categories.

At some point it won't just be a work alike.  All new search work will be done there.  I'm frankly frankly itching to see what searches faceted on category would look like.  At some point we'll implement some kind of interwiki search.  I have no idea what it'll look like though.  In a very real, not marketing speak sense, it is the future of search at WMF and for any other Mediawiki installs that want a really really nice search.

Reading material:
What it does:
Project related:
Minimal extension page:


On Wed, Nov 13, 2013 at 3:30 PM, Luca Martinelli <> wrote:
Sorry Nik, where I could read more about Cirrus Search?


2013/11/13 Nikolas Everett <>

I have three CirrusSearch updates:
1. is now live as a secondary.  You can test it by adding &srbackend=CirrusSearch to the url of the search results page.  If you have any trouble you can send email directly to me or file a bug at

2.  I've scheduled more deployments:
itwiki November 14
plwiktionary November 14
wikimedias November 19
wikimanias November 19
wikisources November 19
wiktionaries November 21
The schedule is here:

3.  Since I haven't heard of any search problems I think it is time to switch the wikis running CirrusSearch as a secondary to primary.  I certainly don't want to break anything but so far it looks like everything is working very well.  So each wiki that has CirrusSearch as a secondary will have a date scheduled to switch it to primary.  If we/you/the community that you represent discover a bug that makes CirrusSearch worse than the current search we'll make sure to deploy the fix plenty of time before the date or we'll push the date back.

I think each wiki deserves two weeks to test Cirrus so I'll schedule the date accordingly.  For nlwiki it'd be 2013/11/28.  For itwiki and plwiktionary it'll be 2013/12/3.

I'd like to switch the wikis that have CirrusSearch as a secondary now to primary on 2013/11/21.  All of them will have had two weeks to try it out by then.

Again, we'll push the dates if we think we'll make the experience worse.


Nik Everett

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Luca "Sannita" Martinelli

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