MediaWiki 1.20/wmf1/overview

MediaWiki 1.20wmf1 is the first partial release of MediaWiki 1.20, deployed to Wikimedia sites in April 2012.

The comprehensive list of what's new will be in the release notes. The following is an attempt to provide a useful summary.

User-facing changes edit

New diff styles
The biggest thing you'll notice is the new diff style (example on, designed to improve the experience of colour-blind and vision-impaired visitors.
Improved "show changes" functionality in the MediaWiki namespace
Also, clicking the "Show changes" button when creating a local override for an interface message in the MediaWiki namespace will now generate a diff against the default system message value. When such page is created, the edit box is preloaded with the default value, so it makes sense that the diff is based on that (previously, the "previous" side of the diff was just blank!).
Hiding redirects in page lists
There is a new option on Special:Prefixindex and Special:Allpages to hide redirects (addressing bug 30963).
Redlink customisation preference removed
The preference to display missing links as “link?” (instead of just redlinks) has been removed (bug 27619). the same effect can still be generated via user CSS, however.
  • New edit emails for watched pages will now always provide a link to the edit which triggered the mail (fixing bug 32210). And “Creating” is now given in the page title instead of “Editing” when you are creating a page (fixing bug 22870).
  • Special:Listusers now includes a link to the user's talk page and contributions (bug 12021).
  • When selecting large areas of the page, section edit links and TOC hide/show links are excluded from the copied text on supporting browsers (bug 34445).
  • The deletion log will now be shown on redlinked file pages, if applicable (bug 34863).
  • Two new messages (sharedupload-desc-edit and sharedupload-desc-create) are now displayed when editing the local page for a shared file (bug 18062).

For Power Users edit

We added some features for experienced editors:

  • CSS classes can be used to change the appearance of a verified email in user preferences. (bug 34302)
  • MediaWiki now uses cryptographically random numbers for increased security while generating tokens. (See MWCryptRand.)
  • {{NAMESPACENUMBER}} is now available in addition to {{NAMESPACE}} since the text from {{NAMESPACE}} can change. (bug 34355)
  • #speciale parser function, in addition to the already defined #special parser function, to give the localized, encoded special page name. Useful for use in the param list of fullurl. (bug 23006)
  • The jQuery JSON plugin, which can be accessed from user JavaScript, is now at version 2.3. (bug 34896)
  • Inputbox can now be used to create a new section in the user's own page (i.e. with Special:MyPage and Special:MyTalk) (bug 28019)

Localization edit

MediaWiki supports over 350 languages. Many localisations are updated regularly. Below only new and removed languages are listed, as well as changes to languages because of Bugzilla reports.

  • Localised parentheses are now used in more special pages. (bug 34702)
  • When editing a user Javascript or CSS page on a Right-to-Left wiki the edit box is now Left-to-Right. (bug 34723)
  • Rendering of numbered lists in devanagari numbers is now supported where browser support is available. (bug 13896)
  • Namespace gender aliases have been added for Albanian languages (sq & aln) and Croatian (hr) and Serbian. (bug 34192 and bug 35541)
  • Mizo (lus) language support added.

API and bot-facing changes edit

  • Breaking Change The way page titles are logged in IRC has been changed (bug 30245).
  • There is now an API (action=tokens) just for getting tokens. (bug 27757)
  • meta=siteinfo now includes the maximum upload size. (bug 34316)
  • MediaWiki API intro message about "HTML format" now mentions the format parameter. (bug 34313)
  • Descending order is allowed for list=watchlistraw. (bug 32384)
  • The limits on bkusers (with list=blocks) and on titles (with action=query) is now documented in the API help. (bug 31883)
  • The API now allows the use of pageids to specify pages for editing, protection level changes, or comparisons. (bug 32492, bug 32497, and bug 32498)

Under the hood edit

If you write extensions or administer a MediaWiki installation, here are some things you should be aware of:

  • &useskin=default will now always display the default skin. This is useful for users with a preference for the non-default skin to look at something using the default skin.
  • Added TitleIsAlwaysKnown hook which gets called when determining if a page exists.
  • Updated compressOld.php documentation to mention the different usages of -s and -n parameters depending on compression type. (bug 34735)
  • upload_by_url right can be (globally) restricted to given domains to prevent abuse. (bug 32341)
  • The parser itself is now given as an additional argument to ParserMakeImageParams. (bug 23795) **
  • Special:Version has been updated now that we've switched Git. (bug 35649 and bug 35728)
  • generateSitemap.php can now optionally skip redirect pages.
  • The user_token field is now left empty until a user attempts to login and cookies need to be set. (bug 34237)
  • As a result, it is now possible to reset every user's user_token simply by clearing the values in the user_token column.
For PostgreSQL users

And we fixed some bugs... edit

  • The nosummary option is now preserved even when a captcha is shown. (bug 17615)
  • Hash mismatch errors in the DiffHistoryBlob history compression method were fixed. (bug 34428)
  • Query string parameters are no longer lost when returning to a page after logging in. (bug 34521)
  • Show the correct diff when a section edit is rejected by the spam filter. (bug 34929)

And there's more in the release notes.

Updates to extensions edit

As part of this update, a few extensions which are deployed to Wikimedia sites will also pick up some recent changes.


API Sandbox:

  • Added '=' to boolean parameters, needed for POST requests, see [[phabricator:TExpression error: Unrecognized word "bug".|bug BUG 25174]]



  • Fix for bug 33536 - $wgCollectionPODPartners can be set to define alternative or no print-on-demand vendors


  • Fix for bug 33385 - Narrowed down "review right requires edit right" to just checking edit restrictions, which better aligns with the original point of the check, which is to handle "edit wars" and "review wars". This should work better with the Translate extension.
  • Fix for bug 33353 - Sanity check template/file versions to decide if non-current version inclusion cache is outdated. For the current version, this still relies on page_touched. Also improved cache use a bit for when the revision author is an anon.
  • Cleaned up inconsistent checking of 'edit' permissions to determining 'review' permissions. It is now checked for automatic review checks and not just manual review attempts.
  • Call setRelevantTitle() in Special:Stabilization to improve UI context *


  • Attempt to address bug 35547 by making sure data.query.threads[threadId] is defined.


  • Added experimental MathJax rendering support (can be toggled in user preferences), completely disabled by default
  • Fix for bug 31824 - Empty <math> tag gives UNIQ


  • Fix for bug 35214 - Blocked admins should not be able to access Special:Nuke


  • Extended OpenSearchXml to use extracts and images from other extensions such as PageImages and MobileFrontend's excerpt module, both of which produce better results.
  • Fix for bug 35083 - OpenSearchXml first sentences extraction produces bad results. Made extracts at least 100 characters long (configurable).


  • Fix for bug 30725 - A link to the index is missing for single paged documents.
  • Fix for bug 35634 - Links should be coloured only in Index namespace.
  • Fix for bug 34689 - Add step property to the pages tag
  • Fix for bug 34737 - Zoom buttons appear sometimes on the image, sometimes in the toolbar after update to MW 1.19
  • Fix for bug 34942 - Add a show Headers preference. Apply ThomasPT's patch



  • Fix for bug 35511 - Add localized name of Wikipedia in result set


  • Other half of fix for bug 30332 ("API spamblocklist error should provide all blocked URLs").

Upload Wizard:

  • Tooltips displayed when clicking the [?] icons should now work again.
  • Toggle arrows are pointing in the correct direction when using a right-to-left language.

Visual Editor sandbox:

  • Updated to the current contentEditable implementation, which is still very fragile but should provide a better user experience in the long run.


  • Added SVG icon
  • When typing a longer message, the preview button now works without having to click it twice. (bug 35057)


  • Small improvements to special characters toolbar in Arabic (bug 30611) and Hebrew.

See also edit