[Mediawiki-l] Case Study: KDE Userbase wiki

Ingo Malchow imalchow at kde.org
Tue Aug 30 14:24:22 UTC 2011

Hello all,

as it was requested i will write about userbase.kde.org and how we did
and do things there.

First of all, it is part of a wiki farm, we have more than one wiki,
the 3 most important ones being userbase/techbase/community.kde.org .
The intention is to use as much in common as possible, the source is
shared and we use a config switch. Some global config files provide
the parts in common, only things like db credentials, wiki title etc
are done in the specific configs.
We have a svn checkout from the recent branch of MW running, same
counts for the extensions, to make sure we can react quick on wishes
for new enabled extensions.

Of course it is always our wish to provide a custom look to our KDE
sites, hence we developed the theme called chihuahua for our wikis on
our own. Which was probably the hardest part. MW's default theme
vector was long analyzed to see what needs to be done, our designer
did the mockups. Originally we only wanted a left side sidebar, but
after some tests we noticed that can't be it, so we implemented a
sidebar switch, with which you can choose the position of the sidebar
(but only as an easter egg ;) ) As anyone knows, the toughest part was
to make the design look good in any case, when someone adds styles to
a page.

We wanted a multilingual wiki. The way wikipedia does it was not good
enough for us. We wanted pages the same in every language,
content-wise. So our most important extension is the translate
extension (translatewiki.net). We work together with their team,
especially Niklas Laxström. It provides us with anything we need from
a translation, even offline editing, which is very important for our
core KDE translators, as they are used to their po-file tools.
Other important extensions are
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:SphinxSearch (we were already
used to sphinx due to our forum) ,
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:SyntaxHighlight_GeSHi (we have
many code snippets on the pages, so to make it look nice) ,
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:LiquidThreads (many
discussions take place in the wiki, so we can handle them better),
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Extension:OpenID (no explanation needed,
right? :P).
Lately we have now a modified Openid plugin, as KDE provides a single
sign up page, which is based on LDAP. Unfortunately merging existing
accounts into that was not so easy, so we modified the openid

Handling those modifications is not that hard, we recently switched to
a git hosted revision control system. Our developers checkout MW
locally from svn, git merge does the rest quite fine. The server
checks out regularly from KDE's git server.

Hope this gives a nice overview.


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