(If you don’t work with links tables such as templatelinks, pagelinks and
so on, feel free to ignore this message)
TLDR: The schema of links tables (starting with templatelinks) will change
to have numeric id pointing to linktarget table instead of repeating
namespace and title.
The current schema and storage of most links tables are: page id (the
source), namespace id of the target link and title of the target. For
example, if a page with id of 1 uses Template:Foo, the row in the database
would be 1, 6, and Foo (Template namespace has id of 6)
Repeating the target’s title is not sustainable, for example more than half
of Wikimedia Commons database is just three links tables. The sheer size of
these tables makes a considerable portion of all queries slower, backups
and dumps taking longer and taking much more space than needed due to
unnecessary duplication. In Wikimedia Commons, on average a title is
duplicated around 100 times for templatelinks and around 20 times for
pagelinks. The numbers for other wikis depend on the usage patterns.
Moving forward, these tables will be normalized, meaning a typical row will
hold mapping of page id to linktarget id instead. Linktarget is a new table
deployed in production and contains immutable records of namespace id and
string. The major differences between page and linktarget tables are: 1-
linktarget values won’t change (unlike page records that change with page
move) 2- linktarget values can point to non-existent pages (=red links).
The first table being done is templatelinks, then pagelinks, imagelinks and
categorylinks will follow. During the migration phase both values will be
accessible but we will turn off writing to the old columns once the values
are backfilled and switched to be read from the new schema. We will
announce any major changes beforehand but this is to let you know these
changes are coming.
While the normalization of all links tables will take several years to
finish, templatelinks will finish in the next few months and is the most
So if you:
… rely on the schema of these tables in cloud replicas, you will need to
change your tools.
… rely on dumps of these tables, you will need to change your scripts.
Currently, templatelinks writes to both data schemes for new rows in most
wikis. This week we will start backfilling the data with the new schema but
it will take months to finish in large wikis.
You can keep track of the general long-term work in
https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T300222 and the specific work for
templatelinks in https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T299417. You can also
read more on the reasoning in https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T222224.
*Amir Sarabadani (he/him)*
Staff Database Architect
Wikimedia Foundation <https://wikimediafoundation.org/>
In 2019, the German-speaking wikis selected “Make working with templates
easier” as the focus area of Wikimedia Deutschland’s Technical Wishes
project. Since then, our team has made improvements in different areas, to
help template creators as well as users of the wikitext editor and
VisualEditor. Our work on this focus area is coming to an end, so I’d like
to summarize what happened and lay out the next steps:
Two changes from our Templates project have been available on all* wikis
for a while already:
A new attribute “suggested values” was introduced to help you clarify
what values a parameter may expect. 
Line numbers are shown in the “Template” namespace when syntax
highlighting (CodeMirror extension) is turned on.  A few wikis have
these line numbers in _all_ namespaces. If you want this for your wiki as
well, please reach out to us.
Several other changes were deployed to a small group in the past months. A
big thanks to Catalan, Turkish, Greek, Malay, Twi, French, Hungarian,
Hebrew, Finnish, Dagbani and German Wikipedia, to English Wikivoyage and
Nauruan Wiktionary as well as Wikitech wiki for testing these changes and
giving feedback to help us improve these projects. These changes are now
coming to more wikis:
Finding and inserting templates will become easier with an improved
search (in the TemplateWizard & in the template dialog of VisualEditor and
New Wikitext mode). 
In VisualEditor, you’ll be able to remove a template from a page via the
context menu, just like removing a table or an image. 
In VisualEditor, the template dialog will become bigger and descriptions
will be more visible. 
When using syntax highlighting (CodeMirror extension)*, matching
brackets will be highlighted  and the color scheme will be updated
for better readability .
The planned deployment date for all of these changes is March 9 (and March
16 on English Wikipedia).
A few weeks later, we’ll be deploying the last improvements from our
For syntax highlighting (CodeMirror extension), a colorblind-friendly
color scheme will be added. You’ll be able to activate it via a user
A range of fundamental changes to the VisualEditor template dialog will
be deployed. They will make it easier to understand what is expected from a
template, to navigate the template dialog, and to add parameters to a
Feedback on all the projects is much appreciated on their respective talk
pages. Thanks a lot on behalf of the Technical Wishes team,
Johanna, Community Communications Technical Wishes
* All improvements in the CodeMirror extension, which provides syntax
highlighting, only apply to wikis that have the extension installed. This
is generally true for left-to-right language wikis, because unfortunately
the extension doesn’t work sufficiently for right-to-left languages yet
The Trainsperiment is complete!
Thank you to all the folks who commented and helped solve blockers—
*together* *we deployed four trains in one week!*
We have another favor to ask: we want to hear what you thought of the
If you have the mental space to take a survey, we'd appreciate it.
- Link: https://forms.gle/8P8BDuUrT1JKtCu36
- Deadline: We'll leave the survey open until *Friday, April 8th*
We'll share what we learn (anonymously) shortly after that!
Tyler Cipriani (he/him)
Engineering Manager, Release Engineering
The MediaWiki Stakeholders will be hosting our monthly meeting tomorrow
and all are invited.
Time: 15:30:00UTC 11:30AM Eastern 8:30AM Pacific 17:30 CEST
Google Meet: https://meet.google.com/mdd-ufhn-ksb
Markus Glaser, of Hallo Welt!, will talk about "Verified content in
MediaWiki with blockchain":
In a project with inblock.io, Hallo Welt! explored the possibilities
of creating a verification chain for content and changes in
MediaWiki. Markus will talk about what they did.
Robert Vogel, also of Hallo Welt!, will introduce the MWStake
Learn about what the MWStake Components are, their origin and
purpose. Robert will share Hallo Welt!'s experience with this
approach and show how MWStake Components can be used in your own
Please join us!
Mark A. Hershberger
On Thursday we will be issuing a security and maintenance release to all
supported branches of MediaWiki.
The new releases will be:
This will resolve four issues in MediaWiki core and also includes some
fixes previously committed to git, including minor security and hardening
patches along with bug fixes included for maintenance reasons. One issue
does not affect MediaWiki 1.35 and 1.36.
In addition to those, these releases will resolve other issues in MediaWiki
core and also include some fixes previously committed to git, including
minor security and hardening patches along with bug fixes included for
We will make the fixes available in the respective release branches and
master in git. Tarballs will be available for the above mentioned point
releases as well.
A summary of some of the security fixes that have gone into non-bundled
MediaWiki extensions will also follow later.
As a reminder, 1.36 is due to become end of life (EOL) in May 2022. 1.36.4
is expected to be the last release for this branch. It is recommended to
upgrade to 1.37, or to 1.38 due to be released in May 2022.
Your friendly neighborhood Hackathon committee is thrilled to announce the
2022 Global Wikimedia Hackathon! We invite you to join us for three days of
collaborating, interactive sessions, and social fun from May 20-May 22. The
Hackathon will be held online and there will be grants available to support
local in-person meetups around the world. You can find more information
about this on our MediaWiki.org page
<https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Wikimedia_Hackathon_2022>, which will
continue to grow over the next few weeks. For more details, read below.
Who: The Hackathon is for anyone who contributes (or wants to contribute
to) to Wikimedia’s technical areas - as code creators, maintainers,
translators, designers, technical writers and other technical roles. You
can come with a project in mind, join an existing project, or create
something new with others. The choice is yours! Newcomers are welcome.
We will send out more information on how to schedule a session in the
program soon. You can also add yourself to the participants list
mention if you would like to help with tasks such as facilitation or
welcoming newcomers. There will be scholarship stipends available- please
stay tuned for more information.
What: A Wikimedia Hackathon <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Hackathons> is
a space for the technical community to come together and work together on
technical projects, learn from each other, and make new friends.
When: May 20-May 22. The schedule will be announced shortly. We are trying
to plan events so that people in all time zones can participate
comfortably. There will be core hours several times a day when most events
will occur, and online social and hacking spaces open 24 hours a day
throughout the three days.
Where: The Hackathon will primarily be held online. However, very soon we
will share an application for local affiliates to apply for grants to host
in-person local meetups. Meetups can be anything from social gatherings
with food, to a party for watching the opening or closing ceremony, to a
pre-event workshop, to renting a venue where people can participate
together in the online event. Grants can range from 500-5000 USD. Stay
tuned for more information!
How (can you help)?:
We are seeking another committee member! The commitment is around 3
hours per week. If you are interested, please contact hlepp(a)wikimedia.org
We have an ideas page.
you interested in? What would you like to see or do in this year’s
hackathon? Please share your ideas with everyone! This is a community
Hackathon and we will work together to put on a great event.
Do you have any accessibility or translation requests? Please contact
Your Hackathon Committee