Manual:Installation guide

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This guide provides instructions on how to install and configure MediaWiki, both manually, and by easier alternatives. Installing more than one wiki and installing existing wikis are also covered. The appendices provide links to more detailed installation notes for specific system configurations and other less common uses of the software.

Upgrade guide

If you are already running MediaWiki, see the Upgrade guide.

Manual installation

Summary

For experienced users, here is the quick version of the installation instructions. Most users (like if you don't know how to install or check for the prerequisite software on your computer) will want to follow the main installation guide.

  1. Check that your system meets the following minimum requirements. (See Installation requirements for more details. Make sure to also check the RELEASE NOTES shipped with MediaWiki for requirements.) You'll need: Image thumbnailing and TeX require additional programs. Parsoid (required by VisualEditor) and other services have their own requirements.
  2. Download MediaWiki (direct link to download the stable release version) and extract the archive to a web-accessible folder on your computer.
  3. Point your browser to the directory where MediaWiki was extracted and follow the link to the setup screen. It should be in the form http://domain/directory/mw-config/index.php. Replace directory with the path to your extracted MediaWiki folder. If installing on a local machine, replace domain with localhost. If you install locally and later want to access your wiki from domain, then you will need to change LocalSettings.php from localhost to domain. If installed on a remote server, replace domain with your server's domain name (eg: www.myserver.com).
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process.

These instructions are deliberately brief. There is a lot that could go wrong, so if in doubt, you are advised to read the full instructions!

Main installation guide

Alternatives to manual installation

If your head is swimming from reading the above — or you feel frustrated, stuck, or lost — this section is for you...

You can avoid manual installation by using a pre-integrated MediaWiki software appliance, hosting services with 1-click installation, or wiki farms.

If you are installing for development or testing, consider using MediaWiki-Vagrant, a set of configuration scripts for Vagrant that automate the creation and update of a virtual machine that runs MediaWiki and your choice of extensions and services.

Official docker images are released on Docker Hub.

You can also use community resources based on platforms such as Docker. This is managed by Jenkins and should be kept up-to-date for some time.

These are community based resources and should always be treated with some measure of caution. Use at your own risk.

  Warning: Programs provided by webhosts to automatically install applications such as MediaWiki can, and frequently do, mishandle the process, resulting in errors and a failure to install MediaWiki. If you encounter this problem, it does not mean that you cannot install MediaWiki; all it means is that you should install manually following these steps. There are benefits to doing this, including more control over where on the server and file path you want to install it, the ability to use a shared database, or the ability to control more features of the wiki during the installation.

Wiki families (multiple wikis)

Main page: Manual:Wiki family

A wiki family is more than one wiki installed on the same computer.

Installing MediaWiki more than once

One approach is to install multiple instances of MediaWiki (such as with a software bundle like the Bitnami MediaWiki Stack) in different directories – one for each wiki. For example, you want an enterprise wiki and a personal wiki, and you want to keep them totally separate.

Multiple wikis with one MediaWiki

You could use a single installation of MediaWiki for multiple wikis, by either:

  1. Using a different database for each wiki. See $wgDBname .
  2. Using a different database prefix for each wiki. See $wgDBprefix .

Installing an existing wiki

Some users wish to install MediaWiki with Wikipedia, Wiktionary, or some other wiki loaded. This is useful for reading offline, for conducting experiments, and for mirroring/forking.

The main (but not necessarily the easiest) method for doing this is to install MediaWiki and then import. See Manual:FAQ#Wiki importing.

(Non-MediaWiki solutions, such as Xowa and Kiwix, can be found at w:Wikipedia:Database download, and are probably the best options).

Start small. It is advisable to try installing a small wiki first, such as the Simple English Wikipedia, as a test run, before loading a big one like the English Wikipedia.

Appendices

Advanced uses

The following pages give instructions about how to install/configure MediaWiki for other, less common purposes.

Advanced configuration

The following pages cover some of the more advanced configuration options:

Installation assistance

System-specific instructions

The following pages give more detailed installation instructions aimed at specific systems. However, by and large Manual:Installing MediaWiki is more up to date, and better written than the per system docs, and as such it is recommended you first consult the main install instructions before looking at a per system installation documents.

Notes

See also