Moving UseMod Wikis Lock, Stock, and Barrel

You can have your wiki and move it too. Several times this past year (and well this past week) I have had reason to move an entire UseMod wiki to another server. It is easy and tricky at the same time, and I think I have it all figured out now.

One need was to have copies of the wiki as backups and to run locally from my laptop (I run all my web apps on my personal unix G4 powerbook). This was useful for example, when we presented at the League For Innovation conference in New York City that wanted $700 bucks for an internet connection in the presentation rooms. Zppppppf to that! I just ran the same wiki on our server from my laptop, and as a bonus, I could work on the wiki on the plane flight over.

The other need is moving a wiki to another server. You can pretty much make a copy of the entire wiki directory, and place it elsewhere. The things to watch out for are:

* Update the config file to reflect the file path to the wiki directory.
* Make sure permissions are writable on the wiki directory. There may also be issues of thepage sub directory does not have writable permissions. Permissions will make and break you in unix.
* The latest lesson is to completely delete the users and temp directories. This is the area I am most fuzzy. Until I did this, I was unable to set preferences correctly from the wiki (perl errors on lock files). Deleting these two directories and what they contained cleaned the problems– maybe it was only the temp that needed cleansing. A downside might be that the profiles, accounts, might by munged so users might have to reset their names. We don;t have many users besides myself so far so it may be a bigger issue than I imagine. You may need also to delete any *.lk files in the pages directory. Again, I am not sure.

So I barely know how these really work and what these files do, but I muck around until something good happens. But you can move a wiki and keep it too, and that is a good thing.

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Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.