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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

This page tries to answer the more common questions you might want answered. Many of the answers refer you to other pages for details.

For frequently requested features, see the PITS pages.

How do I get my question answered?

The quickest and best way is to join the pmwiki-users Mailing List and post your question there. If it really is a frequently-asked question, it will eventually be added to this page.

An alternative way is to leave your question on the Questions page.

What does warning message or error message "xxxxx" mean?

Error/warning questions and answers are on the Error Messages page.

How and why do I use the EditForm feature?

This feature allows an admin to customize PmWiki's edit window. It is active by default in PmWiki version 2 beta 44 or later. Some Cookbook:Skins customize the $PageEditFmt variable which overrides the edit form, making it inoperative.

How do I use passwd-formatted files (like .htpasswd) for authentication?

See Cookbook:AuthUser and Cookbook:UserAuth

Where can I get help with PmWiki? (This is a pretty vague question!)

See this FAQ, Troubleshooting, Error Messages, or try a Search.

I'm getting a lot of spam on my wiki site. How can I password protect the pages?

See PmWiki.Security

How do I create nice tables similar to Product X?

See simple tables and advanced tables.

Why are 'RecentChanges', 'AllRecentChanges', 'RecentUploads', 'AllRecentUploads' editable?

You might want to edit these pages if a spammer creates a page with an unsavory name. To prevent others from editing these pages, insert the following lines into your local/config.php file. Editing then requires the admin password.

## Require admin password to edit RecentChanges (etc.) pages.
if ($action=='edit'
  && preg_match('/\\.(All)?Recent(Changes|Uploads)$/',
  $pagename)) { $DefaultPasswords['edit'] = '*'; }

How do I include special characters on my wiki pages?

Use character codes to insert special characters, such as Copyright (©) and Trademark (® or ™) symbols, that don't appear on your keyboard.

Is it possible to move wiki.d to /tmp/persistent/wiki.d (a new sourceforge rule)?

Sourceforge suggest moving everything to /tmp/persistent/new-folder-of-your-choice and creating a soft link to the new folder on /tmp . It works. See Cookbook:SourceForgeServers

How do I set one Header for all pages/groups?

Add the following to config.php

$GroupHeaderFmt .= "Wikicode or text here";

How do I insert RSS news feeds in PmWiki?

See Cookbook:RssFeedDisplay.

How do I change the Wiki's default name in the upper left corner of the Main Page.

Put the following config.php

    $WikiTitle = 'My Wiki Site';

This appears in the sample-config.php file in the PmWiki distribution. Copy sample-config.php as "config.php" in your local/ directory and edit it.

How do I customize the CSS styling of my PmWiki layout?

See Skins for how to change the default PmWiki skin. See also Cookbook:Skins, where you will find pre-made templates you can use to customize the appearance of your site. You can also create a file called local.css in the pub/css/ directory and add CSS selectors there (this file gets automatically loaded if it exists), or add them in your local local/config.php file by inserting something similar to:

    $HTMLStylesFmt[] = '
      .foo { color:blue; }';

How do I insert pictures on wiki pages?

See Images.

How do I link to an uploaded file from another group?

Use Attach:Groupname/filename.ext

Is it possible to link an image on PmWiki without using a fully qualified URL?

Yes. The general format is Attach:Group.PageName/filename.ext.

How do I change the font or background color of the hints block on the Edit Page?

Add a CSS style to pub/css/local.css: .quickref {background:...; color:... }. The hints are provided by the Site.EditQuickReference page, which is in the PmWiki or Site wikigroup. Edit that page, and change the "bgcolor" or specify the font "color" to get the contrast you need.

How do I make pmwiki.php the default page for a website? Should I rename pmwiki.php to index.php?

Renaming pmwiki.php is not recommended. Instead, create an index.php file that contains the single line:

<?php include_once('pmwiki.php');

You may also want to check Cookbook:CleanUrls.

When I upload a file, how do I make the link look like "file.doc" instead of "Attach:file.doc Δ"?

Use parentheses, as in [[(Attach:)file.doc]]. You can make a configuration change that eliminates the Attach: -- see Cookbook:AttachLinks.

There seems to be a default password. What is it?

There isn't any valid password until you set one. See PasswordsAdmin for how to set an admin password.

PmWiki comes "out of the box" with $DefaultPasswords['admin'] set to '*'. This doesn't mean the password is an asterisk, it means that default admin password has to be something that encrypts to an asterisk. Since it's impossible for the crypt() function to ever return a 1-character encrypted value, the admin password is effectively locked until the admin sets one in config.php.

How can I embed PmWiki pages inside a web page?

Source them through a PHP page, or place them in a frame.

Why does appear to have a directory structure rather than "?n=pagename" in URLs? uses Cookbook:CleanUrls.

Can I remove items from the wikilib.d folder on my site?

Yes, the files in wikilib.d/ can be safely removed. They'll reappear again when you upgrade, however. There's a permanent fix that can be done in a local configuration file (to be written soon in the cookbook). You may find it sufficient to leave the pages there and exclude wiki-related pages from searches.

How do I exclude wiki-related pages from searches?

Try the following in your local/config.php file. See also Cookbook:SearchPatterns.

## Exclude Certain pages / groups from search results.
$SearchPatterns['default'][] = '!\\.(All)?Recent(Changes|Uploads)$!';
$SearchPatterns['default'][] = '!\\.Group(Print)?Header$!';
$SearchPatterns['default'][] = '!^Site\\.!';
$SearchPatterns['default'][] = '!^PmWiki\\.!';

How do I place a string of 10 tildes (~) onto a page?

To get ~~~~~~~~~~, use the following markup:


How do I put a link that will open as a new window?

Use the %newwin% wikistyle, as in:


How do I place a mailing address in a page?

Use the mailto: markup, as in

[[mailto:[email protected]]]

mailto:[email protected]


[[mailto:[email protected] | [email protected]]]

[email protected]

How do I make a WikiWord link to an external page instead of a WikiPage?

Use link markup. There are two formats:

[[ | WikiWord]]



[[WikiWord ->]]


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Page last modified on September 01, 2005, at 05:39 AM