[Moin-user] Beginner's guide: Management of MoinMoin wikis

Thomas Waldmann tw-public at gmx.de
Fri Oct 22 10:26:02 EDT 2010


Hi Ole,

> We're happy users of MoinMoin wikis for a long time now, but when I had to
> upgrade our MoinMoin version recently, I was quite frustrated about how
> difficult it was to find answers to the simplest of questions.

One part of that problem is maybe that docs are too widely distributed
over lots of places (on the moin wiki, in docs/*, on the web).

Another part is that moin is changing rather quickly and docs get
outdated.

Another problem is that some docs are wrong or contain errors.

> I documented all the simple steps of installation, configuration and
> upgrading MoinMoin on our RedHat Linux server in our wiki.  This is the page:
> 
>    https://wiki.fysik.dtu.dk/it/MoinMoin_Wiki

You just added another place. ;)

> I'm sure that MoinMoin gurus will find this information trivial, but I bet that
> most beginners will find lots of hints here that it would take hours to locate
> in http://moinmo.in/ or elsewhere on the web.

Well, maybe all doc related efforts would be more productive if
everybody worked on the same docs/sites, not on lots of different
docs/sites.

Of course docs in general are not trivial, because if one documents on a
beginner level, there is lots of system specific information included
that is different for different systems (and rather unrelated to moin
itself).
E.g. using rpm vs. dpkg, linux vs. windows vs. mac, different web server
software, different setups at different providers, etc.

Thus, our recent approach is that we primarily document moin and don't
care too much about OSes, web server software, how to do basic system
administration task (like changing owner/mode of files), etc.

You see this in moin 1.9 docs a bit (super-easy desktop install docs for
end-users, but for server installation, we require admin knowledge),
maybe we'll get more in that direction for moin2.

Of course, if you have trouble then with apache configuration, the moin
docs won't help you and you will have to learn that apache has docs,
too. Same for linux, for mod_wsgi, for flup, ...

But maybe that strategy helps us to make moin's docs better and more
focussed if we don't try to explain the world.

> I'm offering this "HowTo" information to the web now, hoping that some experts
> on MoinMoin would take a little time to review it and offer me information
> on how to improve it.  So I welcome comments and suggestions.

Well, I had some ideas, but I think I would prefer to have that on the
main site (moinmo.in), feel free to create or, preferably, improve some
existing docs there. Also, maybe don't link to random french wiki sites
if you just want to refer to a system page we deliver with moin (and
have on master18.moinmo.in).

BTW, as a general note, don't expect big changes happening to moin 1.x
releases, development has moved on to work on moin2, which is very
different anyway and will need a docs review / rewrite anyway.

If you like hacking and helping with moin2, feel invited to help that it
gets better / easier to locate docs.

BTW, try to move to 1.9.x soon, the end of 1.8.x is rather near.
The primary change is that it's all based on wsgi then, but if you run
apache, you can use the great mod_wsgi module. Will be faster than your
current cgi based setup also.

Cheers,

Thomas






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