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Help:Getting Started Tutorial

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Here are a few things you might like to know about creating and editing wiki pages.


Creating Pages

Who can create a new page ?

In order to create new pages in this wiki you need to log in. You need to be a member of the Bushwalk-Tasmania Forum first. Once you have your Forum account, you can apply for Wiki login permission here - Just select Wiki and click Submit.

How do I start a new page ?

Once you have your Wiki user account, you can login and start editing.

OK, now you're in, there are a number of ways to start a new page.

Search Engine

One good way to start a new page is to use the search "textbox" in the top right corner to search for the content you are seeking. For example, search for "startup tutorial" or "getting started". Open a new tab/window and try this now!

Neither of these will return an exact hit, but both will result in a screen with a message:

Search Results
You searched for startup tutorial
There is no page titled "startup tutorial". You can create this page.
For more information about searching Bushwalk Tasmania, see Help:Contents.
Show below 1 result starting with #1.

As you can see, there is no exact match, so you are invited to create the page if you wish. You are also offered a list of near matches. This is a good way to start a page because it allows you to determine if a similar page already exists before you create a new page. You should be careful with any wiki and try not to create duplicate pages that cover the same topic.


A second way to create a page is simply to use the site URL and append the required page title. Our site URL is http://test.bushwalk-tasmania.com/wiki/index.php.

To find or start a page called "getting started" just append "?title=Getting_Started" to the site URL like this http://test.bushwalk-tasmania.com/wiki/index.php?title=Getting_Started. (Try this now!)

You will get a message like

Getting Started
There is currently no text in this page, 
you can search for this page title in other pages or edit this page.

The better choice is to use the search link (see Search Engine above), but you can use the edit link to create a new page.

By using wikilinks

The third way to create a new page is to create a link in one page (current page) that points to a new (as yet non-existent) page. When you save the current page, you will see the link as a red link.

For example, if you typed the following into a page you are editing

For more help see [[Help:tips]].

you will create an internal link to a page called "Help:Tips". The page does not exist, however, the link will still be created and will appear as a red hyperlink when you save the page. If you click the new link you will get the following message.

Editing Help:Tips
You've followed a link to a page that does not exist yet.
To create this page start typing in the box below (see the help page for more info).
If you are here by mistake, just click the browser's back button.

You can either edit and save the new page now, or go back to where you came from.

Editing Pages

How do I link my wiki pages?

One thing that might surprise a new wiki user is that your new page is not automatically linked to other pages in your wiki. The power of wiki is that, like the web, any page can be linked to any other page.

As the Mediawiki Documentation explains there are a number of ways to link pages. Here I'll just demonstrate three important ways to link.

Internal Links

These are links to other pages within your wiki. There are a couple of different ways to create internal links.

The simplest way is to type the name of the page you wish to link to between double brackets. For example:

[[More Tips]] -- will create a link to a page titled "More Tips".

You can do the same thing by typing More Tips and then clicking the Ab button in the toolbar.

You may wish to create a link to a page and not use the page title in the link, but rather use different text. You do this with a piped link. For example:

[[Help:Tips|More Tips]] -- will create a link to a page titled "Help:Tips" but display the text "More Tips".

The third way of linking to another page is to use an "Anchored Link". This is a link to one of the headings on a page, rather than just to the page itself. This is done by separating the page name from the heading name with a "#" in the link text. For example:

[[Main Page#Content]] -- will create a link to the Content heading on the Main Page. (Try it now! Main Content).

You can also create an "Anchored Link" to a heading on the same page. You just need to use the heading name preceded by the "#". For example:

[[#URL]] -- will create a link to the URL heading above.

Anchored links can be written with or without piped links.

For example:

[[#URL|go to URL]] -- will create a piped link to the URL heading above. (Try it now! go to URL).

The section above on starting a new page hopefully highlighted the need to correctly spell links. A misspelled link will potentially result in the user being offered the opportunity to create a new page.

External Links

There are three basic ways to create an external link. The first is to just type the URL on the page. For example:

Typing http://bushwalk-tasmania.com/forum/ will create the link http://bushwalk-tasmania.com/forum/

You create a link to an external page and show text other than the URL by using single square brackets "[" & "]" around the URL of the external page and simple adding the desired text after the URL. For example:

Typing [http://bushwalk-tasmania.com/forum/ Forum home page]
...will create the link Forum home page.

The third way is to create a numbered link. This is just the URL in brackets without any additional text. You can achieve this by simply typing the URL and clicking the external link button (the map of the world). For example:

Typing [http://bushwalk-tasmania.com/forum/] will create the link [1].
Category Links

This method allows you to link your page to any alphabetical link in the wiki. You achieve this by adding a "Category" link to the bottom of a newly created page. Category links are Internal links preceded by the word "Category:". The colon (:) is important. For Example:

Typing [[Category:Help]] at the bottom of this page 
would add this page to an aphabetised list (index) called "Help".  
This page is called "Help:Getting Started Tutorial" and so, in this example, it would appear on the Help index page under "H".

You could also list this page in the "Help" index under "T" for "Tutorials" by using a piped link. For Example:

Typing [[Category:Help|Tutorial-Getting Started]] at the bottom of this page would add this page to the Help list under "T" with the text "Tutorial-Getting Started".

As with the discussion above on Creating pages if you link to a category that does not exist, the result will be an offer to create a new page (the new category page).

You can read more about Categories at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Categories.
You can read more about Linking at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Links.

Editing and Formatting Pages

How do I edit a page?

Edit a page is quite simple. Navigate to the page, then click "Edit" in the bottom menu bar. You might like to read the notes on editing.

Can I just add discussion comments to a page?

Yes!. That is what the discussion tab is for. Navigate to the page, then click on "Discussion" in the bottom menu bar. This will display a discussion page that is associated with the wiki page you are viewing. To edit the discussion page next click on "Edit" in the bottom menu bar.

If "Discussion" is shown as read, this indicates that the discussion page has not yet been started. Clicking the link will create the page.

How can I format a page in mediawiki?

Wikis use their own formatting. You can read about this at http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Formatting. The following are some formatting tips.

Headings of different levels

Heading are important because they help generate the Content box you see at the top right of this page. A heading is created by placing an equals (=) sign either side of some text. A single = sign either side of the heading creates a Level 1 heading. You shouldn't use Level 1 headings because these are used to title a page.

Two equal signs (==) either side of a heading is a Level 2 heading, three for a Level 3 heading and so on.

bold and italic

bold and italic wiki markup is done with single quotes ('). Two single quotes ('')either side of a word gives italics and three single quotes (''') gives bold. Five single quotes (''''') either side gives both bold and italics.

bullets and numbers

Bulleted lists are created by starting each line with a star *. Sub-bullet points are created by starting each line with two stars (**). For example:

 * bullet 1
 * bullet 2
 **sub bullet 2-1
 **sub bullet 2-2
 ***sub bullet 2-2-1.
will cause

Numbered lists are just the same but you use a # at the start of each line. For Example:

 # number 1
 # number 2
 ##sub number 2.-1
 ##sub number 2.2
 ###sub number 2.2.1.
will cause
  1. number 1
  2. number 2
    1. sub number 2.1
    2. sub number 2.2
      1. sub number 2.2.1

Can I use CSS and HTML to edit a wiki page?

If full html parsing is enabled on the wiki then you can insert arbitrary html into any page by enclosing it in html tags:

<html> html and perhaps embedded css goes here </html>. This isn't available on this wiki at the moment.

And you can use some normal HTML markup too: Typing <b>bold</b> <i>italic</i> <u>underline</u> <sup>superscript</sup>

Will get bold italic underline superscript

You can use <span> </span> with or without style statements. For example, you can change the color of the text on a page by using "span" and "style".

Typing <span style="color:blue;">text</span>
will result the the word text in blue.

Deleting a page

Can I delete a page if I make a mistake?

No. Normal users cannot permanently delete a wiki page.

This is why I began this tutorial be discussing how pages are created. You should be very careful when creating a page and try not to duplicate existing pages. This is why I recommended using the Search engine to look for similar pages before you create a new page.

What if I accidentally create a duplicate page?

When you find that you have created a duplicate page you can do the following:

Firstly consider merging the two pages. To begin this process you would go to the discussion page on the page you duplicated (the one written by another author). Use this discussion page to propose a merger to the other authoring group. If the discussion results in agreement on the merger, you can then reauthor one or the other page. The second page should then be redirected to point to the new merged page. To achieve this enter the following on the page you wish to redirect:

#REDIRECT [[pagename]]
where pagename is the name of the new merged page.

What if I accidentally misname a page?

Renaming a page is achieved by moving the page (its a Unix thing). You use the "move" option in the bottom menu bar to do this.

If you are not the original or sole author of the page, then you should use the discussion page to propose a name change and you should get consensus before moving the page.

Navigate to the page, then click on the "Move" choice in the bottom menu bar. Type in the new page name on the "to new title:" line. Type in your reasons for moving the page, and then click the move button.

Special Pages