Azure MediaWiki Stack Part 1

18 May 2017


Okay, so how did we put this complete NHS HLP wiki instance together? Let’s go through it step by step:

  1. Create a Bitnami account, and go to the console for “Azure Launchpad”
  2. Choose the Bitnami MediaWiki Stack which provides a one-click install solution for MediaWiki (1.28.2)
  3. Choose Basic A0 type with shared virtual core and 0.75Gb of RAM, and select ‘West Europe’
  4. Wait for that to launch

box launching

  1. ssh into the box using the provided password and start the configuration process
  2. edit /home/bitnami/apps/mediawiki/htdocs/LocalSettings.php (I like nano)

a) adjust $wgSitename and $wgMetaNamespace
b) adjust $wgEmergencyContact and $wgPasswordSender to "";
c) set $wgEnotifWatchlist = true; to enable watchlist notifications
d) set $wgUseInstantCommons = true; to allow images from wikicommons
e) disable anonymous edits by adding the following at the end of the file:

  ## Access Options

  $wgGroupPermissions['*']['edit'] = false;
  $wgGroupPermissions['*']['createpage'] = false;

f) add email notification settings (requires azure sendmail addon):

  ## Email notifications

  $wgUsersNotifiedOnAllChanges = array('User', 'Tansaku');

  $wgSMTP = [
      'host'     => 'ssl://',
      'IDHost'   => '',
      'port'     => '465',
      'auth'     => true,
      'username' => '<GET FROM AZURE SENDMAIL ADDON>',
      'password' => '<GET FROM AZURE SENDMAIL ADDON>',

  $wgDefaultUserOptions['enotifwatchlistpages'] = true;

g) consider enabling logging - we did have it working at one point with the following:

  ## Logging

  $wgDebugLogFile = "/home/bitnami/apps/mediawiki/logs/debug-{$wgDBname}.log";

but log file is not being updated at the moment …

  bitnami@bitnami-mediawiki-8a65:~/apps/mediawiki/logs$ ls -la
  total 12
  drwxrwxr-x 2 bitnami root    4096 May  1 10:09 .
  drwxr-xr-x 7 root    root    4096 Apr 28 12:30 ..
  -rw-rw-r-- 1 bitnami bitnami 2006 May  1 15:41 debug-bitnami_mediawiki.log

Was there another setting we missed? Anyway, should be off in production for performance (I imagine)

  1. Add the Cite Extension

## Cite Extension

wfLoadExtension( 'Cite’ );

  1. VisualEditor setup

a) follow instructions at b) wget in extensions directory ~/apps/mediawiki/htdocs/extensions c) add configuration to end of LocalSettings.php

## Visual Editor

wfLoadExtension( 'VisualEditor' );

// Enable by default for everybody
$wgDefaultUserOptions['visualeditor-enable'] = 1;

// Optional: Set VisualEditor as the default for anonymous users
// otherwise they will have to switch to VE
// $wgDefaultUserOptions['visualeditor-editor'] = "visualeditor";

// Don't allow users to disable it
$wgHiddenPrefs[] = 'visualeditor-enable';

// OPTIONAL: Enable VisualEditor's experimental code features
#$wgDefaultUserOptions['visualeditor-enable-experimental'] = 1;

d) add the Parsoid service following these instructions: but note that first we have to install nodejs, which involved pulling in the nodesource:

$ wget -qO- | sudo bash -
$ sudo apt-get install nodejs

and the above worked fine last week, but now I am getting:

sudo apt-get install parsoid
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
E: Unable to locate package parsoid

and now it just worked again … okay … network time outs I guess, but that’s crushed my blog flow. Find out how this continues in part 2

by Sam Joseph