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This page explains a former standard procedure, used on Wikimedia wikis, for copying pages from one wiki to another. It is not about a software feature. For a related software feature see Help:Import. See also the help page on interwiki linking and Meta's transwiki log.

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Transwiki refers to copying pages from one wiki to another using the standardized method described below. For the sake of simplicity, the originating and target wikis are respectively called 'original' and 'remote'.

Etymology edit

The word transwiki was coined in late 2003 by Ray Saintonge (see [Wikipedia-l] Transwiki) and officially introduced to the MediaWiki codebase by Brion Vibber in mid-2005 as part of the Special:Import function (see change). The term is intended to avoid ambiguity with English words like transfer.

Procedures edit

Overview edit

The procedure allows users to copy pages to an unfamiliar wiki using a standardised structure. Every Wikimedia project has a "transwiki:" namespace or pseudonamespace,[1] intended as a temporary location for articles moved from another wiki. This namespace allows users to copy pages from the origin to the foreign (destination) wiki, but give foreign users the chance to consider and format them before completing the move. Every transwiki move should be logged in the remote transwiki log, reachable through a redirect at "transwiki". To satisfy the GNU license, a record of contributors to the original page has to be copied over by one of the methods described below.

Create the structure edit

This step is only necessary if the remote wiki doesn't already have a structure. You can check whether the structure exists by going to "transwiki" on the remote wiki; if you are redirected to a log, you can skip this step.

  1. Go to "transwiki" on the remote wiki, and place the following code. 'Project' is a software alias that refers to the project namespace, regardless of the defined name.
    #REDIRECT [[Project:Transwiki log]]
  2. Follow the redirect to "Project:Transwiki log" and create it with the basic template below (tweaking information as relevant). If you don't know the remote language, simply write it in English and a remote user will translate it.
    This is the English Wikipedia's transwiki log. For instructions and details, please see [[m:Help:Transwiki|]] on the Meta-Wiki. Note that users often transwiki articles without knowledge of the correct procedure, so that many transwikied pages may not be on this list; see the <span class="plainlinks">[{{fullurl:Special:PrefixIndex|from=Transwiki:}} list of transwiki: pages]</span>.

Begin transwiki edit

If the import feature is enabled between the originating and remote wiki (and you have access to the restricted feature), see Help:Import. Otherwise, use this procedure to transwiki the page.

  • Note: Some projects provide automated transwiki tools; consider using those instead whenever available.


  1. Unless you have import access, copy and paste the content to "transwiki:pagename" on the remote wiki. Copy the talk page as well if there is any relevant discussion.

Try the following:

  1. On the remote talk page, copy and paste the original page's history log under a new heading (see Talk:Wikistress for an example). This is to adhere to the requirements of Wikimedia's license, which requires that a record be made of all authors. If there are only a few authors, you can note them in your creation edit summary instead.
  2. In the same section, note the original page location (in the edit summary or on the talk page). This allows users to retrieve the original edit history or undelete the original page (for example, to import the edit history).
  3. Go to the remote transwiki log (reachable through the page titled "transwiki", unless the structure needs to be created). Add a link to the original location and one to the new page, along with the default dated signature. For example:
    * Moved [[w:blah]] to [[transwiki:blah]]. ~~~~
    In this example, the message indicates that one is in the Wikibooks and indicates that the page has been transwikied from Wikipedia (w:)
  4. Go to the original transwiki log (reachable through the page titled "transwiki", unless the structure needs to be created). Add a link to the original location and one to the new page, along with the default dated signature. For example:
    * Moved [[blah]] to [[wikibooks:transwiki:blah]]. ~~~~
    In this message of the same example, one is on Wikipedia and indicates that the page has been transwikied to Wikibooks (w:)

Complete transwiki (local users) edit

The rest of the transwiki should be done by remote users. They should consider whether the page matches their inclusion standards, apply any formatting standards, and move it to the appropriate page title. Some users recommend leaving a redirect from the transwiki: title to prevent linkrot.

In case that a transwiki should be merged with an existing page, you may consider merging the edit histories, as described at: MediaWiki Administrator's Handbook: Edit History. Note that this should be done cautiously as it is a manual process and is extremely tedious to undo.

Example edit

  1. Looxix accidentally submits a French article called Lorraine to the English Wikipedia.
  2. Angela notices it, and decides it might be more suitable for the French Wikipedia.
  3. She copies and pastes the content into a new article called transwiki:Lorraine at the French Wikipedia.
  4. She then goes to "Transwiki" on the French Wikipedia (which redirects to "Special:Log/import"; the described procedure does not seem operational [1]; if it would redirect to an editable log page, she would make a record in the log as shown above).
  5. Then the Lorraine article at the English Wikipedia is tagged for deletion by her.
  6. Anthère (a local user) then would go to the fr:Wikipédia:log de transwiki (if it were used as log page) and sees there is an article to work on.

Notes edit

  1. English Wikipedia rarely uses the Transwiki: pseudo-namespace as there isn't much transwikification traffic going to Wikipedia except for interwiki language translations which use a different process.

See also edit