Book tool/Help/Books/Frequently Asked Questions

Other languages:
Printed PediaPress books of Wikipedia content.

Questions about printed books


How do I order a book?

 1) Click on „Order Book"  2) Book gets loaded by PediaPress  3) Choose country, get price
 4) View preview  5) Add to cart  6) Enter shipping and billing information

Printed books can be ordered through PediaPress.

Simply click on "Order book from PediaPress" on the Special:Book page. This uploads your book to the PediaPress website.

After choosing the destination country, an approximate number of pages and the price are shown. Title, subtitle and editor can be set or changed here. There is a preview which shows how your selected articles (only the first N pages) will look like in a printed book. (Note: The typesetting of printed books differs from downloadable PDFs, since the page size is A5, not A4, and it includes additional features like a table of contents, index, etc.)

At this point, your book can be ordered by adding it to the cart and checking out. Available payment methods are MasterCard, Visa and PayPal. Books are printed within 2-3 business days, and shipping takes another 2-10 days.

How are books manufactured?

Printed Wikipedia-Book by PediaPress

PediaPress uses the TeX typesetting system to generate a digital prepress repro. Books are printed on demand either in the UK or the USA. Books produced by this technique look just like conventional paperback books.

Book specification:

  • Content
    • Table of contents
    • The selected articles
    • Licensing information
    • Index
  • Paper size: A5 (approx. 5.8 in × 8.3 in)
  • Images are printed in greyscale using the highest available resolution
  • Books can contain 50 to 800 pages

There is an example book (PDF) which shows how printed books are typeset.

How much do printed books cost?

number of pages price
100 €8
200 €11
300 €14
400 €17
500 €20
600 €23
700 €26
!!! Exact cost varies from country to country and may fluctuate daily based on currency exchange rates. !!!

Pricing for printed books depends on the number of included pages (see table). The larger the book, the less the cost per page. Shipping costs depend on the shipping destination. To get a detailed quote simply upload your book to PediaPress and select your country and currency.

The Wikimedia Foundation receives 10% of the sale price of each book.

Which shipping options are available?


Books are shipped using a standard shipping option to most countries in the world. Delivery time varies from 2 to 10 working days depending on the destination.

What is PediaPress?

edit is an online service which offers customized printed books from wiki content. The web-to-print service works on any MediaWiki which has deployed the open source Collection Extension. The company actively supports the MediaWiki community and established a long-term partnership with the Wikimedia Foundation[1]. The company was founded in 2007 and is located in Mainz, Germany. For more information see

Questions about PDF exports


Why are articles displayed differently than in the browser?


Books have no scroll bars, while a browser does, so printed content needs to be split up on several pages. To get an acceptable typesetting result, some page elements need to be displayed differently. This may result in some unexpected layouts, especially for tables and parts of wiki articles that use HTML instead of MediaWiki markup.

How can I improve the appearance?


You can edit the wiki articles themselves to make them print better. See Help for Experts for some ideas.

Questions about OpenDocument Text exports


What is OpenDocument Text?


The OpenDocument format (ODF) is an XML based file format originally created and implemented by the office suite. It is a free and open OASIS standard aimed to replace the proprietary Microsoft Word file format.

Storing books in this format is useful if one wants to modify the books. This options allows to generate arbitrarily styled books with additional content. Teachers may find this useful.

Which software is required to open this file?

edit, KOffice/Calligra Suite or others. There also is an ODF-AddIn for Microsoft Word.

General questions regarding the book tool


Where can I find stored books ?


All stored books are placed in Category:Wikipedia:Books. Since this category is growing rapidly, there will soon be a bookshelf which allows to explore the list of compiled and shared books.

How do the exports comply with license requirements?


PDF export

  • link to each article and its version
  • all contributors are mentioned
  • images are linked to their image page on the wiki
    Warning: Authors and licenses of images are not part of the PDF. So these PDFs can not be distributed without further manipulation if they contain images.
  • inclusion of the GFDL (English)

In printed books

  • URL of each article and its version
  • all contributors are mentioned
  • URL of each image
  • all contributors of an image are mentioned
  • license name of the image is mentioned
  • inclusion of the GFDL (English)

Can I use the book tool with my MediaWiki ?


Yes, the book tool is based on the open source project mwlib. The MediaWiki component Collection extension works out of the box with most Mediawikis and the PediaPress service.

How can I hide the "Create a book" portlet?


The ID of the <div> element is p-coll-create_a_book (in all languages). To hide the box, insert the following text to your Special:MyPage/monobook.css:

#p-coll-create_a_book { display: none; }

Which known limitations exist?


Skin support


The tool currently only works with the "Monobook" and "Modern" skins. There is a simple workaround: switch to Monobook when creating books.

Book size


Currently books can not contain more than 500 articles. Please keep in mind that generation of large PDFs can take a long time and results in high server load. Dividing article collections into multiple books might be a solution.

Printed books currently support no more than 800 pages (not articles!).

Rule of thumb: Printed books (A5) have approximately 2 times the number of pages than the PDFs (A4) have.

Infoboxes and large tables


Infoboxes and other large tables are printed at full page size, not "floated" to the side as on the Web. This is a result of the limited size of A5 paper: if the infobox was shrunk to fit, the text within would be illegible.



CSS and HTML used in the wiki markup are only partially evaluated when generating PDFs. Templates can be adjusted for print to avoid some of the problems, see Help for Experts for details.

TeX formulas


Due to technical limitations Math-tags are rendered as raster images and not in print-quality.

Where to report bugs and give general feedback?


Bugs, feature requests and questions are best reported at the Book_tool/Feedback-page.