Sometimes, a community requests a new wiki to be hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation. If you need to have a wiki hosted by the Wikimedia Foundation, then you need to fill a request at Wikimedia Phabricator. This page includes a few details about how the wiki creation process generally works, and what are the requirements for having a new wiki.
Generally, wikis are not created without a good cause. A wiki is usually created in the following causes:
- new content project approved by the Language Committee
- a recognized Wikimedia affiliate requests a wiki
- a tangible group of Wikimedia users needs a wiki to facilitate collaboration (this includes Wikimedia Stewards, Arbitration Committees, or sysops of a particular project)
Falling into those categories does not guarantee the wiki will be created. The system administrators reserve the right to decline wiki creation request for any reason.
This page includes details on internal Wikimedia wikis only (ie. not content projects). If you are interested in getting a new content project ready, please read Requests for new languages instead.
- Get consensus - is this wiki really needed? What will it be used for? Has the relevant community, arbitration committee, or WMF body, that is responsible for the wiki, agreed to its creation?
- Request a wiki be set up. The route for this is via a request through mw:Phabricator (Wikimedia's task tracker).
- File a task in Wikimedia Phabricator. Please use the dedicated form for wiki creation. (see Guide about Phabricator if you have not used Phabricator before);
- Be sure that the task includes a URL to the local on-wiki consensus, preferably using a permanent link (click the "Permanent link" link in the toolbox, which should make the URL end in
&oldid=...); the page at this URL should also link to the task;
- What domain should the wiki be live at? Note the WMF will not host a wiki at your own domain, instead, you will have to use a subdomain of wikimedia.org (or, in exceptional circumstances, like arbitration committee wikis, wikipedia.org).
- What visibility should the wiki have? (see below for details)
- If the wiki needs special configuration when it is set up, then request that at the same time. Examples:
- Who can read it?
- Who can edit it?
- Is account creation by approval only, or by anybody clicking on "create an account"?
- Is email notification to be switched on? (usually yes)
- Should certain extensions like Translate be switched on?
- Are any special namespaces required? (For example, VRT Wiki might have a namespace for "Response:" and "Response_talk:")
- Are any custom settings for upload needed - for example is upload disabled, or unusual file types allowed?
- Be sure to follow the request on Phabricator and help answer any questions that may come up during the discussion.
Note: If your project will be private or fishbowl (see below for details), you need to provide contact details for your initial bureaucrat (username+email). They will be emailed their initial account credentials, and will be responsible for creating the accounts for others. They will want to test that the basics of the wiki - log in; verify they have bureaucrat rights; verify the correct privacy setting and visibility exists; verify that upload works; verify that editing works. These all require setup at the server end, and once working will continue to work. They will also want to create accounts, and sysop/bureaucrat these as necessary.
For public wikis, please require initial bureaucrat access from Wikimedia Stewards (applies only to special wikis; content wikis are not eligible for a bureaucrat, instead, it will be appointed as the wiki grows).
Congratulations - once your request is reviewed in Phabricator, discussed, and approved - you will have your wiki!
Wiki visibility settings
A wiki can be created with one of the three visibility settings. Frequently, users are confused about what they mean, and if a WMF-hosted wiki can do what they want from it.
- Public wiki: everyone can read and write to the wiki, including anonymous users; same setting as most content projects have
- Fishbowl wiki: everyone can read the wiki content, but only those with an account can edit it
- Private wiki: only people with an account can read or edit the wiki
For fishbowl and private wikis, the wiki accounts are local, not connected to SUL. That means that the sysadmins create an initial account, share its password with the requestor, who will then create accounts for everyone else who needs access.
There are many ways to set up a new wiki when it comes to pages, content, templates, gadgets, etc.
- Templates, gadgets, and more
- See the Starter kit for smaller language wikis for a list of general technical resources and recommendations for new wikis (not only internal wikis). These resources include guidelines on enabling gadgets and bots, importing templates, customizing the main page, configuring a wiki site, etc.
- Pages setup
- Sample pages describe a setup that has been used before and works well. It contains markup that you can copy and paste to create basic pages if needed. Feel free to customize it! Note: Most of this page was written in 2008, so some or all of the information in it might be outdated.
- Main Page privacy
- The Main Page of your wiki is always completely public. It can be seen by anyone, as can any transcluded information templates used on the main page. You also cannot delete revisions from it. So if your wiki is private, you should make your main page a "public" page for anybody, and make the main page point to a secondary (non-public) main page (i.e. Portal) for those people who have a user account on the wiki and can access that secondary main page.