PmWiki: FAQ

This FAQ page is currently under construction. Feel free to add more questions (and answers) here. --Pm

Miscellaneous Questions

Q: What exactly is a "wiki"?
A: See Wiki Wiki Web for a description. Wikipedia [] also has an excellent article at Wikipedia:Wiki.

Q: Where can I practice editing?
A: The usual place to practice editing is in the Wiki Sandbox.

Q: How can I list pages in a specific group?
Use the Search Wiki to search for "<GroupName>/", this will list all pages in that group.

Q:Is there a way to get a complete count and listing of all of the Wiki Words on a Wiki or in a work group? Can the index be listed in chronological and/or alphabetical order? That way you could make a "glossary" and an "index".
A: See above on how to make listings of Wiki Words. The chronological/alphabetical order will probably require some changes to the PHP code, but it surely can be done.

Q: How can I list all pages?
Use the Search Wiki to search for "/", this will list all pages.

Q: How do I edit a page?
You can click on the link labelled Edit at the top/right part of the page, or at the bottom/left of the page. Yet another alternative is to add ?action=edit to the URL.

Q: How do I create a new page?
There are several ways. One way is to edit a (any) page where you create link to the new page, and then click on the question mark at the end of the link (ex:(A New Page)?). Another way is to manually type in the URI of the new page ex: and then click on the question mark after the text Describe (A New Page)?. A third way is to manually type in the URI of the new page and append ?action=edit (ex: See also PmWiki.Creating New Pages.

Q: Where can I send bug reports and fixes?
A: For now, the best place to inquire about bugs is on the pmwiki-users mailing list []. If you want to report a bug but don't want to subscribe to the mailing list, you can send bug reports to .

Related FAQs

Q: What other FAQs are there that concerns Pm Wiki?
A: This FAQ [] [] is intended for new users of Pm Wiki at that site.

Markup Questions

Q: How can I do the equivalent of target="new" in a link?
A: Use %newwin% before your link, as in: If you want to have the link appear in a named window, you can use %target=windowname%. (See Wiki Styles for more details.)

Q: How can I put the equivalent of an HTML "anchor" (<a name='...'>) in a page?
A: Use the markup [[#anchor]].

Q: How do I create a link to an anchor?
A: For an anchor within the same page, one can use [[#anchor link text]]. To link to an anchor within another page, use either PageName#anchor or [[PageName#anchor link text]].

Q: Is there a tag allowing HTML, JavaScript, or PHP to be embedded in wiki markup?
A: Not in PmWiki's default configuration, as this can introduce all sorts of security and markup problems that PmWiki tries to avoid. More details and discussion on this topic are available in the Pm Wiki Philosophy, as well as PmWiki.Audiences. It is also possible for WikiAdministrators to add Local Customizations that enable embedded HTML (and possibly other language content) within wiki pages.

Q: Why does the attribute "height=100%" not work within [[table]] markup, while "width=100%" does?
A: "height" is not a valid table attribute for HTML.

Q: Is it possible to have a "Table of Contents" automatically generated for a wiki page from the page headings?
A: Not at present.

Administrative Questions

Q: How can I find pages with links to non-existent pages?
A: See the refcount.php script that comes with the PmWiki distribution, also briefly described at Available Actions. It'd be nice if someone could create a (Ref Count)? page to describe this feature.

Q: Is there a way for "normal users" to restore deleted pages?
A: No, at present this can only be performed by the Wiki Administrator. Pm can create an "undelete" command as a (Cookbook)? script if one is desired.

Q: Everything has been working fine, but suddenly I'm getting errors regarding incorrect file permissions. Help!
A: If everything had been working previously, then chances are that someone or something has changed file ownerships or file permissions on the page files in your wiki.d/ directory. Try adding the line include("scripts/fixperms.php"); to your local.php and see if that fixes the problem. Read the beginning of the fixperms.php script itself for more details about what it does/how it works.

Q: Does PmWiki allow for nested or hierarchical WikiGroups?
A: No, WikiGroups can only contain WikiWords and Free Links, not other WikiGroups.

Q: How can I move or rename all of the pages in one group to another group?
A: Due to the file structure in PmWiki's wiki.d directory, you will have to rename the files by hand. Of course, you could automate sthis with software, e.g. a little Unix shell script could do the trick.

Q: Is it possible to have an unpassworded page within a password-protected group (or a unpassworded group within a password-protected site)?
A: Set the page (or group) password to be "nopass" (see PmWiki.Passwords).

Q: How do I change the time zone that PmWiki uses for formatting dates and times?
A: To have PmWiki use U.S. Central Time, place a line like putenv("TZ=CST6CDT"); in your local.php file (see Local Customizations). For other timezones, replace the CST6CDT with the appropriate specifier for your time zone. (Does anyone know a reference to the full listing of codes?) See

Q: I'm seeing error messages like "Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at ...)" -- what do I do?
A: Make sure there aren't any extra blank lines or characters at either the beginning or end of your local.php file.

Q: How do I eliminate "pmwiki.php" or "?pagename=" from the (UR Is)? to my PmWiki installation?

Q: How does PmWiki handle concurrent edits (multiple people editing the same page at the same time)?
A: At present, it doesn't--if two or more people attempt to edit the same page at the same time, then whoever hits "Save" last will determine the page contents. However, the other edits aren't completely lost--they will still appear in the page's revision history. There has been a lot of discussion on the pmwiki-users mailing list [] about ways to handle this, but so far it hasn't appeared to be a big enough issue to require immediate resolution.

Recently added questions (and perhaps also answers)

Q: Can I upload files? How?
Yes, but it has to be enabled in the configuration. See Uploads.

Q: How can I make a link to an uploaded file?
Use the directive Attach:<file>.

Q: How can I make an Attach:-link appear as something else?
Write something like this: [[Attach:<file> link text]].

Q: What special information pages are there on this site?
<ThisGroup>.Recent Changes, Main.All Recent Changes, <ThisGroup>.(Recent Uploads)?, (Main.All Recent Uploads)? and maybe more?

Q: "Is there anything to activate before using the (Page Revision)? function?" In my Wiki it doesn't work. - I ran into the same Problem. :-(

Q: Is there a way to modify the display formatting so that items in numbered sub-lists display the numbers of all their 'parents'? e.g.
  1. first item
    1. first sub-item, should be labelled 1.1
    2. this should be 1.2

Q: What should I use as the username/login identifier on password-protected pages?
A: Anything will work--PmWiki's authentication mechanism doesn't make use of usernames, just passwords.

pmwiki.php code questions

Q: What is the purpose of the SDV() function in PmWiki scripts?
A: SDV() stands for "set default value" -- it assigns a value to a variable only if that variable doesn't already have a value. Pm created this function as a shortcut to avoid always writing PHP if statements.

Other questions

Q: What about copyrights for material on this site?

Q: How many pages can a PmWiki handle (without getting slow)?
A: See PmWiki.Size for a discussion of size/performance limits in PmWiki.

Questions related to Installating PmWiki

Q: Following your Installation instructions, I'm stuck from step 5 and onwards. First time execution of pmwiki.php presents me with error that it cannot access the indicated file (The requested URL was not found on this server. ). Then, assuming step 5 only creates directory wiki.d I do that myself, followed by a chmod 777 on wiki.d (cannot perform a chmod 2777). Then still nothing, same error. Reading further and deeper in various config-files it suggests to add the umask(0) statement in the local.php file. Error message changes into: The server encountered an internal error or misconfiguration and was unable to complete your request. I think something is wrong with permissions and the way php is being handled. Suggestions?

If your server is running Apache 2.0, you probably need to add the "Accept Path Info On" statement to your web server configuration (from step #4 of the Installation instructions. If your server is running something else, or you're still getting this error, try doing "$EnablePathInfo=0" in local.php and see if that resolves the problem. Or send email to .
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Page last modified on January 20, 2004, at 04:59 PM