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TWiki Webmaster Reference (ver. 01 Sep 2001)

This page contains all documentation topics as one long and complete reference sheet. Use the extended menu below to jump directly to sections. Doubleclick anywhere on-screen to return to the top of the page.

(You can also browse the TWiki reference as individual pages from the full topics menu.)

Note: Read the most up to date version of this document at http://TWiki.org/cgi-bin/view/TWiki/TWikiDocumentation

Related Topics: TWikiWeb?, TWikiHistory, TWikiPlannedFeatures, TWikiEnhancementRequests


Note: Included topic TWikiImplementationNotes? does not exist yet


Note: Included topic TWikiInstallationNotes? does not exist yet


Note: Included topic TWikiUpgradeNotes? does not exist yet


Note: Included topic TWikiAuthentication? does not exist yet


TWiki Username vs. Login Username

This section applies only if your TWiki is installed on a server that is both authenticated and on an intranet.

TWiki internally manages two usernames: Login username and TWiki username.

  • Login username: When you login to the intranet, you use your existing login username, for example pthoeny. This name is normally passed to TWiki by the REMOTE_USER environment variable. TWiki uses this name internally to log topic changes. Login usernames are maintained by your system administrator.
  • TWiki username: This is your name in WikiNotation, for example PeterThoeny, recorded when you register in TWikiRegistration; doing so also generates your personal home page in the Main web of your TWiki site.

TWiki can map the intranet username to the Wiki username automatically, provided that the Login username and Wiki username pair has been entered in the TWikiUsers topic. This happens automatically when you register.

NOTE: To correctly enter a WikiName - your own or someone else's - be sure to specify the Main web in front of the Wiki username: write Main.WikiUsername or %MAINWEB%.WikiUsername. This assures that the name will be linked automatically to the Main web, where user home pages are stored, even if the text is entered in a different web.

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 30 Jan 2003


TWiki Access Control

Restricting read and write access to topics and webs, by Users and groups

TWikiAccessControl allows you restrict access to single topics and entire webs, by individual user and by user Groups, in three areas: view; edit & attach; and rename/move/delete. Access control, combined with TWikiUserAuthentication, lets you easily create and manage an extremely flexible, fine-grained privilege system.

An Important Control Consideration

Open, freeform editing is the essence of WikiCulture - what makes TWiki different and often more effective than other collaboration tools. For that reason, it is strongly recommended that decisions to restrict read or write access to a web or a topic are made with care - the more restrictions, the less Wiki in the mix. Experience shows that unrestricted write access works very well because:

  • Peer influence is enough to ensure that only relevant content is posted.

  • Peer editing - the ability for anyone to rearrange all content on a page - keeps topics focussed.

  • In TWiki, content is transparently preserved under revision control:
    • Edits can be undone by the TWikiAdminGroup (the default administrators group; see #ManagingGroups).
    • Users are encouraged to edit and refactor (condense a long topic), since there's a safety net.

As a collaboration guideline:

  • Create broad-based Groups (for more and varied input), and...
  • Avoid creating view-only Users (if you can read it, you should be able to contribute to it).

Authentication vs. Access Control

Authentication: Identifies who a user is based on a login procedure. See TWikiUserAuthentication.

Access control: Restrict access to content based on users and groups once a user is identified.

Users and Groups

Access control is based on the familiar concept of Users and Groups. Users are defined by their WikiNames. They can then be organized in unlimited combinations by inclusion in one or more user Groups. For convenience, Groups can also be included in other Groups.

Managing Users

A user can create an account in TWikiRegistration. The following actions are performed:

  • WikiName and encrypted password are recorded in .htpasswd if authentication is enabled.
  • A confirmation e-mail is sent to the user.
  • A user home page with the WikiName of the user is created in the Main web.
  • The user is added to the TWikiUsers topic.

Users can be authenticated using Basic Authentication (htaccess) or SSL (secure server). In either case, TWikiUserAuthentication is required in order to track user identities, and use User and Group access control.

The default visitor name is TWikiGuest. This is the non-authenticated user.

Managing Groups

Groups are defined by group topics created in the Main web, like the TWikiAdminGroup. To create a new group:

  1. Edit TWikiGroups by entering a new topic with a name that ends in Group. Example:
    • SomeGroup
  2. Set Preferences for two Variables in the new group topic:
    • Set GROUP = < list of Users and/or Groups >
    • Set ALLOWTOPICCHANGE = < list of Users and/or Groups >
    • The GROUP variable is a comma-separated list of Users and/or other Groups. Example:
      • Set GROUP = Main.SomeUser, Main.OtherUser, Main.SomeGroup
    • ALLOWTOPICCHANGE defines who is allowed to change the group topic; it is a comma delimited list of Users and Groups. You typically want to restrict that to the members of the group itself, so it should contain the name of the topic. (This prevents Users not in the Group from editing the topic to give themselves or others access. For example, for the TWikiAdminGroup topic write:
    • Set ALLOWTOPICCHANGE = Main.TWikiAdminGroup

Restricting Write Access

You can define who is allowed to make changes to a web or a topic.

Deny Editing by Topic

Denying editing of a topic also restricts file attachment; both privileges are assigned together.

  • Define one or both of these variables in a topic, preferably at the end of the page:
    • Set DENYTOPICCHANGE = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWTOPICCHANGE = < list of Users and Groups >

  • DENYTOPICCHANGE defines Users or Groups that are not allowed to make changes to the topic, with a comma-delimited list. Example:
    • Set DENYTOPICCHANGE = Main.SomeBadBoy, Main.SomeBadGirl, Main.SomeHackerGroup

  • ALLOWTOPICCHANGE defines Users or Groups that are allowed to make changes to the topic. It is a comma delimited list of Users and Groups. Example:
    • Set ALLOWTOPICCHANGE = Main.SomeGoodGuy, Main.SomeGoodGirl, Main.TWikiAdminGroup

  • DENYTOPICCHANGE is evaluated before ALLOWTOPICCHANGE. Access is denied if the authenticated person is in the DENYTOPICCHANGE list, or not in the ALLOWTOPICCHANGE list. Access is granted in case DENYTOPICCHANGE and ALLOWTOPICCHANGE is not defined.

Deny Editing by Web

Restricting web-level editing blocks creating new topics, changing topics or attaching files.

  • Define one or both of these variable in the WebPreferences topic:
    • Set DENYWEBCHANGE = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWWEBCHANGE = < list of Users and Groups >

The same rules apply as for restricting topics, with these additions:

  • DENYTOPICCHANGE (in topic) overrides DENYWEBCHANGE (in WebPreferences)
  • ALLOWTOPICCHANGE (in topic) overrides ALLOWWEBCHANGE (in WebPreferences)

Restricting Rename Access

You can define who is allowed to rename, move or delete a topic, or rename a web.

Deny Renaming by Topic

To allow a user to rename, move or delete a topic, they also need write (editing) permission. They also need write access to change references in referring topics.

  • Define one or both of these variables in a topic, preferably at the end of the topic:
    • Set DENYTOPICRENAME = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWTOPICRENAME = < list of Users and Groups >

  • DENYTOPICCRENAME defines Users or Groups that are not allowed to rename the topic. It is a comma delimited list of Users and Groups. Example:
    • Set DENYTOPICRENAME = Main.SomeBadBoy, Main.SomeBadGirl, Main.SomeHackerGroup

  • ALLOWTOPICRENAME defines Users or Groups that are allowed to rename the topic. It is a comma delimited list of Users and Groups. Example:
    • Set ALLOWTOPICRENAME = Main.SomeGoodGuy, Main.SomeGoodGirl, Main.TWikiAdminGroup

  • DENYTOPICRENAME is evaluated before ALLOWTOPICRENAME. Access is denied if the authenticated person is in the DENYTOPICRENAME list, or not in the ALLOWTOPICRENAME list. Access is granted in case DENYTOPICRENAME and ALLOWTOPICRENAME is not defined.

Deny Renaming by Web

You can define restrictions of who is allowed to rename a TWiki web.

  • Define one or both of these variable in the WebPreferences topic:
    • Set DENYWEBRENAME = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWWEBRENAME = < list of Users and Groups >

The same rules apply as for topics, with these additions:

  • DENYTOPICRENAME (in topic) overrides DENYWEBRENAME (in WebPreferences)
  • ALLOWTOPICRENAME (in topic) overrides ALLOWWEBRENAME (in WebPreferences)

Restricting Read Access

You can define who is allowed to see a web.

Deny Viewing by Topic

ALERT! Technically it is possible to restrict read access to an individual topic based on DENYTOPICVIEW / ALLOWTOPICVIEW preferences variables, provided that the view script is authenticated. However this setup is not recommended since all content is searchable within a web - a search will turn up view restricted topics.

Deny Viewing by Web

You can define restrictions of who is allowed to view a TWiki web. You can restrict access to certain webs to selected Users and Groups, by:

  • obfuscating webs: Insecure but handy method to hide new webs until content is ready for deployment.
  • authenticating all webs and restricting selected webs: Topic access in all webs is authenticated, and selected webs have restricted access.
  • authenticating and restricting selected webs only: Provide unrestricted viewing access to open webs, with authentication and restriction only on selected webs.

Obfuscate Webs

The idea is to keep a web hidden by not publishing its URL and by preventing the all webs search option from accessing obfuscated webs. Do so by enabling the NOSEARCHALL variable in WebPreferences:

  • Set NOSEARCHALL = on

This setup can be useful to hide a new web until content its ready for deployment.

ALERT! Obfuscating webs is insecure, as anyone who knows the URL can access the web.

Authenticate all Webs and Restrict Selected Webs

Use the following setup to authenticate users for topic viewing in all webs and to restrict access to selected webs:

  1. Restrict view access to selected Users and Groups. Set one or both of these variables in its WebPreferences topic:
    • Set DENYWEBVIEW = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWWEBVIEW = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Note: DENYWEBVIEW is evaluated before ALLOWWEBVIEW. Access is denied if the authenticated person is in the DENYWEBVIEW list, or not in the ALLOWWEBVIEW list. Access is granted in case DENYWEBVIEW and ALLOWWEBVIEW is not defined.
  2. Hide the web from an "all webs" search. Enable this restriction with the NOSEARCHALL variable in its WebPreferences topic:
    • Set NOSEARCHALL = on
  3. Add view to the list of authenticated scripts in the .htaccess file.

HELP This method only works if the view script is authenticated, which means that all Users have to login, even for read-only access. (An open guest account, like TWikiGuest, can get around this, allowing anyone to login to a common account with, for example, view-only access for public webs.) TWikiInstallationGuide has more on Basic Authentication, using the .htaccess file.

Authenticate and Restricting Selected Webs Only

Use the following setup to provide unrestricted viewing access to open webs, with authentication only on selected webs:

  1. Restrict view access to selected Users and Groups. Set one or both of these variables in its WebPreferences topic:
    • Set DENYWEBVIEW = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Set ALLOWWEBVIEW = < list of Users and Groups >
    • Note: DENYWEBVIEW is evaluated before ALLOWWEBVIEW. Access is denied if the authenticated person is in the DENYWEBVIEW list, or not in the ALLOWWEBVIEW list. Access is granted in case DENYWEBVIEW and ALLOWWEBVIEW is not defined.
  2. Hide the web from an "all webs" search. Enable this restriction with the NOSEARCHALL variable in its WebPreferences topic:
    • Set NOSEARCHALL = on
  3. Enable the $doRememberRemoteUser flag in lib/TWiki.cfg as described in TWikiUserAuthentication. TWiki will now remember the IP address of an authenticated user.
  4. Copy the view script to viewauth (or better, create a symbolic link)
  5. Add viewauth to the list of authenticated scripts in the .htaccess file. The view script should not be listed in the .htaccess file.

When a user accesses a web where you enabled view restriction, TWiki will redirect from the view script to the viewauth script once (this happens only if the user has never edited a topic). Doing so will ask for authentication. The viewauth script shows the requested topic if the user could log on and if the user is authorized to see that web.

ALERT! Authenticating webs is not very secure, as there is a way to circumvent the read access restriction. It can be useful in certain situations - for example, to simplify site organization and clutter, by hiding low traffic webs - but is not recommended for securing sensitive content.

Hiding Control Settings

TIP To hide access control settings from normal browser viewing, place them in comment markers.

<!--
   * Set DENYTOPICCHANGE = Main.SomeGroup
-->

The SuperAdminGroup

By mistyping a user or group name in the ALLOWTOPICCHANGE setting, it's possible to lock a topic so that no-one can edit it from a browser. To avoid this, you can create Web-based superusers:

  • Set the $superAdminGroup variable in lib/TWiki.cfg to the name of a group of Users who are always allowed to edit/view topics.
$superAdminGroup = "TWikiAdminGroup";
  • The default setting is not to have superusers.

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 04 May 2002
-- TWiki:Main.MikeMannix - 12 May 2002


TWiki Templates

Definition of the templates used to render all HTML pages displayed in TWiki

Overview

The new modular template system offers flexible, easy control over the layout of all TWiki pages. The master template approach groups parts that are shared by several templates - like headers and footers - in a common file. Special variables allow individual layouts to include parts from a master template - variables are mixed with regular HTML markup for template-specific content. Templates are used to define page layout, and also to supply default content for new pages.

Major changes from the previous template system

Where the old templates were each complete HTML documents, the new templates are defined using variables to include template parts from a master file. You can now change one instance of a common element to update all occurrences; previously, every affected template had to be updated. This simplifies the conversion of templates into XHTML format, and provides a more versatile solution for templates and for TWikiSkins. The new system:

  • separates a set of common template parts into a base template that is included by all of the related templates;
  • defines common variables, like a standard separator (ex: "|"), in the base template;
  • defines variable text in the individual templates and passes it back to the base template.

How Template Variables Work

  • Special template directives (or preprocessor commands) are embedded in normal templates.
  • All template preprocessing is done in &TWiki::Store::readTemplate() so that the caller simply gets an expanded template file (the same as before).
  • Directives are of the form %TMPL:<key>% and %TMPL:<key>{"attr"}%.
  • Directives:
    • %TMPL:INCLUDE{"file"}%: Includes a template file. The template directory of the current web is searched first, then the templates root (twiki/templates).
    • %TMPL:DEF{"var"}%: Define a variable. Text between this and the END directive is not returned, but put into a hash for later use.
    • %TMPL:END%: Ends variable definition.
    • %TMPL:P{"var"}%: Prints a previously defined variable.
  • Variables live in a global name space: there is no parameter passing.
  • Two-pass processing lets you use a variable before or after declaring it.
  • Templates and TWikiSkins work transparently and interchangeably. For example, you can create a skin that overloads only the twiki.tmpl master template, like twiki.print.tmpl, that redefines the header and footer.
  • HELP Use of template directives is optional: templates work without them.
  • ALERT! NOTE: Template directives work only for templates: they do not get processed in topic text.

Types of Template

There are three types of template:

  • Master Template: Stores common parts; included by other templates
  • HTML Page Templates: Defines the layout of TWiki pages
  • Template Topics: Defines default text when you create a new topic

Master Templates

Common parts, appearing in two or more templates, can be defined in a master template and then shared by others: twiki.tmpl is the default master template.

Template variable: Defines:
%TMPL:DEF{"sep"}% "|" separator
%TMPL:DEF{"htmldoctype"}% Start of all HTML pages
%TMPL:DEF{"standardheader"}% Standard header (ex: view, index, search)
%TMPL:DEF{"simpleheader"}% Simple header with reduced links (ex: edit, attach, oops)
%TMPL:DEF{"standardfooter"}% Footer, excluding revision and copyright parts
%TMPL:DEF{"oops"}% Skeleton of oops dialog

HTML Page Templates

TWiki uses HTML template files for all actions, like topic view, edit, and preview. This allows you to change the look and feel of all pages by editing just a few template files.

Templates are stored either in the twiki/templates directory or in user topics. As an example, twiki/templates/view.tmpl is the template file for the twiki/bin/view script.

HELP Templates can be overloaded by individual webs.

HELP TWikiSkins can overload the standard templates.

TWiki uses the following search order to determine which template to use:

If a skin is specified If no skin is specified
templates/%WEB%/script.skin.tmpl templates/%WEB%/script.tmpl
templates/script.skin.tmpl templates/script.tmpl
data/%WEB%/SkinSkinScriptTemplate.txt data/%WEB%/ScriptTemplate.txt
data/TWiki/SkinSkinScriptTemplate.txt data/TWiki/ScriptTemplate.txt
Legend:
script refers to the script name, e.g view, edit
Script refers to the same, but with the first character capitalized, e.g View
skin refers to the skin name, e.g dragon, pattern
Skin refers to the same, but with the first character capitalized, e.g Dragon
%WEB% refers to the current web

Additionally (and primarily for use in %TMPL:INCLUDE{}%) the template name may be a wiki topic name, specified as Web.Topic, in which case the search is:

If a skin is specified If no skin is specified
templates/web/Web.Topic.skin.tmpl templates/web/Web.Topic.tmpl
templates/Web.Topic.skin.tmpl templates/Web.Topic.tmpl
data/Web/Topic.txt
If Web is not specified in the INCLUDE, it defaults to TWiki, and the search to the first type.

Special variables are used in templates, especially in view, to display meta data.

Template Topics

Template topics define the default text for new topics. There are three types of template topic:

Topic Name: What it is:
WebTopicViewTemplate Error page shown when you try to view a nonexistent topic
WebTopicNonWikiTemplate Alert page shown when you try to view a nonexistent topic with a non-WikiName
WebTopicEditTemplate Default text shown when you create a new topic.
All template topics are located in the TWiki web. The WebTopicEditTemplate can be overloaded. When you create a new topic, TWiki locates a topic to use as a content template according to the following search order:

  1. A topic name specified by the templatetopic CGI parameter.
  2. WebTopicEditTemplate in the current web
  3. WebTopicEditTemplate in the TWiki web

Edit Template Topics and Variable Expansion

The following variables get expanded when a user creates a new topic based on a template topic:

Variable: Description:
%DATE% Current date, e.g. 28 Nov 2020
%USERNAME% Login name, e.g. jsmith
%WIKINAME% WikiName of user, e.g. JohnSmith
%WIKIUSERNAME% User name, e.g. Main.JohnSmith
%URLPARAM{"name"}% Value of a named URL parameter
%NOP% A no-operation variable that gets removed. Useful to prevent a SEARCH from hitting an edit template topic; also useful to escape a variable like %URLPARAM%NOP%{...}%
%NOP{ ... }% A no-operation text that gets removed. Useful to write-protect an edit template topic, but not the topics based this template topic. See notes below. Example:
%NOP{
   * Set ALLOWTOPICCHANGE = Main.TWikiAdminGroup
}%

Notes:

  • Unlike other variables, %NOP{ ... }% can span multiple lines.
  • The scan for the closing }% pattern is "non-greedy", that is, it stops at the first occurance. That means, you need to escape variables with parameters located inside %NOP{ ... }%: Insert a %NOP% between } and %. Silly example: %NOP{ %GMTIME{"$year"}%NOP%% }%.

All other variables are unchanged, e.g. are carried over "as is" into the new topic.

Template Topics in Action

Here is an example for creating new topics based on a specific template topic:

  • New example topic: (date format is YYYYxMMxDD)

The above form asks for a topic name. A hidden input tag named templatetopic specifies ExampleTopicTemplate as the template topic to use. Here is the HTML source of the form:

<form name="new" action="%SCRIPTURLPATH%/edit%SCRIPTSUFFIX%/%INTURLENCODE{"%WEB%"}%/">
   * New example topic: 
     <input type="text" name="topic" value="ExampleTopic%SERVERTIME{$yearx$mox$day}%" size="23" />
     <input type="hidden" name="templatetopic" value="ExampleTopicTemplate" />
     <input type="hidden" name="topicparent" value="%TOPIC%" />
     <input type="hidden" name="onlywikiname" value="on" />
     <input type="hidden" name="onlynewtopic" value="on" />
     <input type="submit" value="Create" />
     (date format is <nop>YYYYxMMxDD)
</form>

The edit scipt understands the following parameters, typically supplied by HTML input fields:

Parameter: Description:
topic Name of topic to create. Can be set in a text field, or is set programmatically (e.g. with a sequential number)
onlywikiname If set, TWiki will complain if the topic name is not a WikiWord
onlynewtopic If set, TWiki will complain if a topic of the same name already exists
templatetopic The name of the template topic, e.g. topic used to copy the initial content
topicparent Sets the parent topic
TopicClassification Assuming the template topic has a form with a field called "TopicClassification", it will set the value of the field
contenttype Optional parameter that defines the application type to write into the CGI header. Defaults to text/html. May be used to invoke alternative client applications
anyname Any parameter can passed to the new topic; if the template topic contains %URLPARAM{"anyname"}%, it will be replaced by its value

TIP TIP: You can use the %WIKIUSERNAME% and %DATE% variables in your topic templates to include the signature of the person creating a new topic. The variables are expanded into fixed text when a new topic is created. The standard signature is:
-- %WIKIUSERNAME% - %DATE%

Templates by Example

Attached is an example of an oops based template oopsbase.tmpl and an example oops dialog oopstest.tmpl based on the base template. %A% NOTE: This isn't the release version, just a quick, simple demo.

Base template oopsbase.tmpl

The first line declares a delimiter variable called "sep", used to separate multiple link items. The variable can be called anywhere by writing %TMPL:P{"sep"}%

%TMPL:DEF{"sep"}% | %TMPL:END%
<html>
<head>
  <title> %WIKITOOLNAME% . %WEB% . %TOPIC% %.TMPL:P{"titleaction"}%</title>
  <base href="%SCRIPTURL%/view%SCRIPTSUFFIX%/%WEB%/%TOPIC%">
  <meta name="robots" content="noindex">
</head>
<body bgcolor="#FFFFFF">
<table width="100%" border="0" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="0">
  <tr>
    <td bgcolor="%WEBBGCOLOR%" rowspan="2" valign="top" width="1%">
      <a href="%WIKIHOMEURL%">
      <img src="%PUBURLPATH%/wikiHome.gif" border="0"></a>
    </td>
    <td>
      <b>%WIKITOOLNAME% . %WEB% . </b><font size="+2">
      <B>%TOPIC%</b> %TMPL:P{"titleaction"}%</font>
    </td>
  </tr>
  <tr bgcolor="%WEBBGCOLOR%">
    <td colspan="2">
      %TMPL:P{"webaction"}%
    </td>
  </tr>
</table>
--- ++ %TMPL:P{"heading"}%
%TMPL:P{"message"}%
<table width="100%" border="0" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="0">
  <tr bgcolor="%WEBBGCOLOR%">
    <td valign="top">
      Topic <b>%TOPIC%</b> . {
        %TMPL:P{"topicaction"}%
      }
    </td>
  </tr>
</table>
</body>

Test template oopstest.tmpl

Each oops template basically just defines some variables and includes the base template that does the layout work.

%TMPL:DEF{"titleaction"}% (test =titleaction=) %TMPL:END%
%TMPL:DEF{"webaction"}% test =webaction= %TMPL:END%
%TMPL:DEF{"heading"}%
Test heading %TMPL:END%
%TMPL:DEF{"message"}%
Test =message=. Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah...

   * Some more blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah...
   * Param1: %PARAM1%
   * Param2: %PARAM2%
   * Param3: %PARAM3%
   * Param4: %PARAM4%
%TMPL:END%
%TMPL:DEF{"topicaction"}%
Test =topicaction=:
[[%WEB%.%TOPIC%][OK]] %TMPL:P{"sep"}%
[[%TWIKIWEB%.TWikiRegistration][Register]] %TMPL:END%
%TMPL:INCLUDE{"oopsbase"}%

Sample screen shot of oopstest.tmpl

With URL: .../bin/oops/Sandbox/TestTopic2?template=oopstest&param1=WebHome&param2=WebNotify

testscreen.gif

Known Issues

  • A drawback of referring to a master template is that you can only test a template from within TWiki, where the include variables are resolved. In the previous system, each template was a structurally complete HTML document with a .tmpl filename extension - it contained unresolved %VARIABLES%, but could still be previewed directly in a browser.

-- TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie - 30 Jun 2004
-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 15 Aug 2004
-- TWiki:Main.MikeMannix - 14 Sep 2001
-- TWiki:Main.DavidLeBlanc - 11 Mar 2002


TWiki Skins

Skins overlay regular templates with alternate header/footer layouts; topic text is not affected

Overview

Skins are customized TWikiTemplates files. You can use skins to change the look of a TWiki topic, for example, the layout of the header and footer. Rendered text between header and footer does not change. You can also use skins to define an alternate view, like a view optimized for printing.

Defining Skins

Skin files are located in the twiki/templates directory and are named with the syntax: <scriptname>.<skin>.tmpl. For example, the Printable skin for the view template is view.print.tmpl.

Use the existing TWikiTemplates (like view.tmpl) or skin files as a base for your own skin, name it for example view.myskin.tmpl.

Variables in Skins

You can use template variables, TWikiVariables, and other predefined variables to compose your skins. Some commonly used variables in skins:

Variable: Expanded to:
%WIKILOGOURL% Link of page logo
%WIKILOGOIMG% Image URL of page logo
%WIKILOGOALT% Alt text of page logo
%WEBBGCOLOR% Web specific background color, defined in the WebPreferences
%WIKITOOLNAME% The name of your TWiki site
%SCRIPTURL% The script URL of TWiki
%SCRIPTSUFFIX% The script suffix, ex: .pl, .cgi
%WEB% The name of the current web. Note: It is recommended to URL-encode the variable in form actions with %INTURLENCODE{"%WEB%"}% for proper handling in an internationalized environment
%TOPIC% The name of the current topic. Note: It is recommended to URL-encode the variable in form actions with %INTURLENCODE{"%TOPIC%"}% for proper handling in an internationalized environment
%WEBTOPICLIST% Common links of current web, defined in the WebPreferences. It includes a #GoBox
%TEXT% The topic text, e.g. the content that can be edited
%META{"form"}% TWikiForm, if any
%META{"attachments"}% FileAttachment table
%META{"parent"}% The topic parent
%EDITTOPIC% Edit link
%REVTITLE% The revision title, if any, ex: (r1.6)
%REVINFO% Revision info, ex: r1.6 - 24 Dec 2002 - 08:12 GMT - Main.guest
%WEBCOPYRIGHT% Copyright notice, defined in the WebPreferences
%BROADCASTMESSAGE% Broadcast message at the beginning of your view template, can be used to alert users of scheduled downtimes; is set in TWikiPreferences

The "Go" Box and Navigation Box

The %WEBTOPICLIST% includes a "Go" box to jump to a topic. The box also understand URLs, e.g. you can type http://www.google.com/ to jump to an external web site. The feature is handy if you build a skin that has a select box of frequently used links, like Intranet home, employee database, sales database and such. A little JavaScript gets into action on the onSelect method of the select tag to fill the selected URL into the "Go" box field, then submits the form.

Here is an example form that has a select box and the "Go" box for illustration purposes. You need to have JavaScript enabled for this to work:

Bare bones header for demo only
Welcome | Register | Changes | Topics | Index | Search | Go

Using Cascading Style Sheets

Although work is underway at TWiki:Codev.CssClassNames, the regular templates files currently do not use style sheets. Many skin developers, however, choose to use them; it helps in separating style from content.

Example: To use a style sheet for the broadcast message, add this to view.myskin.tmpl:

<style type="text/css">
.broadcastmessage {
    background: yellow; display:block;
    border-style:solid;border-width: 2px;border-color:red;
}
.broadcastmessage strong {color: red}
</style>

Then add a div tag to the %BROADCASTMESSAGE% variable located after the #PageTop anchor or after the opening form tag:

<div class="broadcastmessage"> %BROADCASTMESSAGE% </div>

Attachment Tables

Controlling the look and feel of attachment tables is a little bit more complex than for the rest of a skin. By default the attachment table is a standard TWiki table, and the look is controlled in the same ay as other tables. In a very few cases you may want to change the content of the table as well.

The format of standard attachment tables is defined through the use of special TWiki template macros which by default are defined in the templates/twiki.tmpl template using the %TMPL:DEF macro syntax described in TWikiTemplates. These macros are:

Macro Description
ATTACH:files:header Standard title bar
ATTACH:files:row Standard row
ATTACH:files:footer Footer for all screens
ATTACH:files:header:A Title bar for upload screens, with attributes column
ATTACH:files:row:A Row for upload screen
ATTACH:files:footer:A Footer for all screens
The format of tables of file versions in the Upload screen are also formattable, using the macros:
Macro Description
ATTACH:versions:header Header for versions table on upload screen
ATTACH:versions:row Row format for versions table on upload screen
ATTACH:versions:footer Footer for versions table on upload screen

The ATTACH:row macros are expanded for each file in the attachment table, using the following special tags:

Tag Description
%A_URL% URL that will recover the file
%A_REV% Revision of this file e.g. "1.1"
%A_ICON% A file icon suitable for representing the attachment content
%A_FILE% The name of the file
%A_SIZE% The size of the file
%A_DATE% The date the file was uploaded
%A_USER% The user who uploaded it
%A_COMMENT% The comment they put in when uploading it
%A_ATTRS% The attributes of the file as seen on the upload screen e.g "h" for a hidden file

Note: it is easy to change the look and feel for an entire site by editing the twiki.tmpl template file. However, to simplify upgrading, you should avoid doing this. Instead, write a skin-specific template file e.g. attach.myskin.tmpl and use %TMPL:INCLUDE{attach.myskin.tmpl}% to include it in each of your skin files. As long as it it included after twiki.tmpl, your macro definitions will override the defaults defined there.

Packaging and Publishing Skins

See TWiki:Plugins/SkinPackagingHowTo and TWiki:Plugins/SkinDeveloperFAQ

Browsing Installed Skins

You can try all installed skins in TWikiSkinBrowser.

Activating Skins

A skin can be activated in two ways:

The ?skin=name URL parameter overrides the SKIN Preference value.

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 25 Jul 2004
-- TWiki:Main.CrawfordCurrie - 30 Jun 2004


TWiki Variables

Special text strings expand on the fly to display user data or system info

TWikiVariables are text strings - %VARIABLE% - that expand into content whenever a page is rendered for viewing. VARIABLES are replaced by data, either user-entered or automatically generated by TWiki (like the date, or the current username). There are predefined variables, and Preference variables that you can configure. You can also define custom variables, with new names and values.

Notes:

  • To leave a variable unexpanded, precede it with an exclamation point, e.g. type !%TOPIC% to get %TOPIC%.
  • Variables are expanded relative to the topic they are used in, not the topic they are defined in.

Predefined Variables

Most predefined variables return values that were either set in the lib/twiki.cfg file, when TWiki was installed, or taken from server info (like current username, or date and time). Many of the variables let you format the appearance of the display results.

  • TIP Take the time to thoroughly read through ALL preference variables. If you actively configure your site, review variables periodically. They cover a wide range of functions, and it can be easy to miss the one perfect variable for something you have in mind. For example, see %INCLUDINGTOPIC%, %INCLUDE%, and the mighty %SEARCH%.

This version of TWiki - 04 Sep 2004 $Rev: 1742 $ - expands the following variables (enclosed in % percent signs):

ATTACHURL -- full URL for attachments in the current topic

ATTACHURLPATH -- path of the attachment URL of the current topic

BASETOPIC -- base topic where an INCLUDE started

  • The name of the topic where a single or nested INCLUDE started - same as %TOPIC% if there is no INCLUDE
  • Syntax: %BASETOPIC%
  • Related: BASEWEB, INCLUDINGTOPIC, INCLUDE, TOPIC

BASEWEB -- base web where an INCLUDE started

  • The web name where the includes started, e.g. the web of the first topic of nested includes. Same as %WEB% in case there is no include.
  • Syntax: %BASEWEB%
  • Related: BASETOPIC, INCLUDINGWEB, INCLUDE, WEB

DISPLAYTIME -- display time

DISPLAYTIME{"format"} -- formatted display time

  • Formatted time - either GMT or Local server time, depending on setting in TWiki.cfg. Same format qualifiers as %GMTIME%
  • Syntax: %DISPLAYTIME{"format"}%
  • Example: %DISPLAYTIME{"$hou:$min"}% expands to 08:41
  • Related: DISPLAYTIME, GMTIME, SERVERTIME

ENCODE{"string"} -- encodes a string

  • Syntax: %ENCODE{"string"}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "string" String to encode required (can be empty)
    type="entity" Encode special characters into HTML entities, like a double quote into &#034; URL encoding
    type="url" Encode special characters for URL parameter use, like a double quote into %22 (this is the default)
  • Example: %ENCODE{"spaced name"}% expands to spaced%20name
  • Related: URLPARAM

FORMFIELD{"format"} -- renders a field in the form attached to some topic

  • Syntax: %FORMFIELD{"fieldname"}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "fieldname" The name of a TWiki form field required
    topic="..." Topic where form data is located. May be of the form Web.TopicName Current topic
    format="..." Format string. $value expands to the field value "$value"
    default="..." Text shown when no value is defined for the field ""
    alttext="..." Text shown when field is not found in the form ""
  • Example: %FORMFIELD{"ProjectName" topic="Projects.SushiProject" default="(not set)" alttext="ProjectName field found"}%
  • Related: SEARCH

GMTIME -- GM time

GMTIME{"format"} -- formatted GM time

  • Syntax: %GMTIME{"format"}%
  • Supported variables:
    Variable: Unit: Example
    $seconds seconds 59
    $minutes minutes 59
    $hours hours 23
    $day day of month 31
    $wday day of the Week (Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat) Thu
    $month month in ISO format Dec
    $mo 2 digit month 12
    $year 4 digit year 1999
    $ye 2 digit year 99
    $tz either "GMT" (if set to gmtime), or "Local" (if set to servertime) GMT
    $iso ISO format timestamp 2020-11-28T08:41Z
    $rcs RCS format timestamp 2020/11/28 08:41:33
    $http E-mail & http format timestamp Sat, 28 Nov 2020 08:41:33 GMT
  • Variables can be shortened to 3 characters
  • Example: %GMTIME{"$day $month, $year - $hour:$min:$sec"}% expands to 28 Nov, 2020 - 08:41:33
  • Related: DISPLAYTIME, GMTIME, SERVERTIME

HOMETOPIC -- home topic in each web

HTTP_HOST -- environment variable

ICON{"type"} -- small icon of common attachment types

  • Small 16x16 pixel icon of common attachment types. Specify file type only, file name, or full path name
  • Syntax: %ICON{"type"}%
  • Samples: bmp, doc, gif, hlp, html, mp3, pdf, ppt, txt, xls, xml, zip
  • Example: %ICON{"pdf"}% expands to
  • Related: TWikiPreferences, FileAttachments, TWikiDocGraphics

INCLUDE{"page"} -- include other topics or web pages

  • Syntax: %INCLUDE{"page" ...}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "SomeTopic" The name of a topic located in the current web, i.e. %INCLUDE{"WebNotify"}%  
    "Web.Topic" A topic in another web, i.e. %INCLUDE{"TWiki.SiteMap"}%  
    "http://..." A full qualified URL, i.e. %INCLUDE{"http://twiki.org/"}%
    Note if the URL resolves to an attachment file on the server this will automatically translate to a server-side include.
     
    pattern="..." A RegularExpression pattern to include a subset of a topic or page none
    rev="1.2" Include a previous topic revision; N/A for URLs top revision
    warn="off" Warn if topic include fails: Fail silently (if off); output default warning (if set to on); else, output specific text (use $topic for topic name) %INCLUDE- WARNING% preferences setting
  • Related: BASETOPIC, BASEWEB, INCLUDINGTOPIC, INCLUDINGWEB, IncludeTopicsAndWebPages, STARTINCLUDE, STOPINCLUDE,

INCLUDINGTOPIC -- name of topic that includes current topic

  • The name of the topic that includes the current topic - same as %TOPIC% in case there is no include
  • Syntax: %INCLUDINGTOPIC%
  • Related: BASETOPIC, INCLUDINGWEB, INCLUDE, TOPIC

INCLUDINGWEB -- web that includes current topic

  • The web name of the topic that includes the current topic - same as %WEB% if there is no INCLUDE.
  • Syntax: %INCLUDINGWEB%
  • Related: BASEWEB, INCLUDINGTOPIC, INCLUDE, WEB

MAINWEB -- name of Main web

METASEARCH -- special search of meta data

  • Syntax: %METASEARCH{...}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    type="topicmoved" What sort of search is required?
    "topicmoved" if search for a topic that may have been moved
    "parent" if searching for topics that have a specific parent i.e. its children
    required
    web="%WEB%" Wiki web to search: A web, a list of webs separated by whitespace, or all webs. current web
    topic="%TOPIC%" The topic the search relates to current topic
    title="Title" Text that is prefixed to any search results empty
    default="none" Default text shown if no search hit empty
  • Example: %METASEARCH{type="topicmoved" web="%WEB%" topic="%TOPIC%" title="This topic used to exist and was moved to: "}%
  • Example: You may want to use this in WebTopicViewTemplate and WebTopicNonWikiTemplate:
    %METASEARCH{type="parent" web="%WEB%" topic="%TOPIC%" title="Children: "}%
  • Related: SEARCH

NOTIFYTOPIC -- name of the notify topic

PLUGINVERSION -- the version of the TWiki Plugin API

PLUGINVERSION{"name"} -- the version of an installed Plugin

  • Syntax: %PLUGINVERSION{"name"}%
  • Example: %PLUGINVERSION{"DefaultPlugin"}% expands to 1.021
  • Related: PLUGINVERSION, WIKIVERSION

PUBURL -- the base URL of attachments

  • Syntax: %PUBURL%
  • Expands to: http://fpmac116.usc.es/twiki/pub
  • Example: You can refer to a file attached to another topic with %PUBURL%/%WEB%/OtherTopic/image.gif
  • Related: ATTACHURL, PUBURLPATH, SCRIPTURL, FileAttachments

PUBURLPATH -- the base URL path of attachments

REMOTE_ADDR -- environment variable

REMOTE_PORT -- environment variable

REMOTE_USER -- environment variable

REVINFO -- revision information of current topic

  • Syntax: %REVINFO%
  • Expands to: r1./usr/bin/rlog -r1.23 '/var/www/twiki/data/TWiki/TWikiVariablesNtoZ.txt,v' 2>&1 - 01 Jan 1970 - 00:00 -
  • Related: REVINFO{"format"}

REVINFO{"format"} -- formatted revision information of topic

  • Syntax: %REVINFO{"format"}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "format" Format of revision information, see supported variables below "r1.$rev - $date - $wikiusername"
    web="..." Name of web Current web
    topic="..." Topic name Current topic
    rev="1.5" Specific revison number Latest revision
  • Supported variables in format:
    Variable: Unit: Example
    $web Name of web Current web
    $topic Topic name Current topic
    $rev Revison number. Prefix r1. to get the usual r1.5 format 5
    $date Revision date 11 Jul 2004
    $username Login username of revision jsmith
    $wikiname WikiName of revision JohnSmith
    $wikiusername WikiName with Main web prefix Main.JohnSmith
  • Example: %REVINFO{"$date - $wikiusername" rev="1.1"}% returns revision info of first revision
  • Related: REVINFO

SCRIPTURL -- script URL of TWiki

  • Syntax: %SCRIPTURL%
  • Expands to: http://fpmac116.usc.es/twiki/bin
  • Example: To get the authenticated version of current topic write %SCRIPTURL%/viewauth%SCRIPTSUFFIX%/%WEB%/%TOPIC% which expands to http://fpmac116.usc.es/twiki/bin/viewauth/TWiki/TWikiVariablesNtoZ
  • Related: PUBURL, SCRIPTSUFFIX, SCRIPTURLPATH

SCRIPTURLPATH -- script URL path of TWiki

SCRIPTSUFFIX -- script suffix

  • Some TWiki installations require a file extension for CGI scripts like .pl or .cgi
  • Syntax: %SCRIPTSUFFIX%
  • Expands to:
  • Related: SCRIPTURL

SEARCH{"text"} -- search content

  • Inline search, shows a search result embedded in a topic
  • Syntax: %SEARCH{"text" ...}%
  • Supported parameters: [1]
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "text" Search term. Is a keyword search, literal search or regular expression search, depending on the type parameter. SearchHelp has more required
    search="text" (Alternative to above) N/A
    web="Name"
    web="Main, Know"
    web="all"
    Wiki web to search: A web, a list of webs separated by comma, or all webs. [2] Current web
    topic="WebPreferences"
    topic="*Bug"
    Limit search to topics: A topic, a topic with asterisk wildcards, or a list of topics separated by comma. All topics in a web
    excludetopic="Web*"
    excludetopic="WebHome, WebChanges"
    Exclude topics from search: A topic, a topic with asterisk wildcards, or a list of topics separated by comma. None
    type="keyword"
    type="literal"
    type="regex"
    Do a keyword search like soap "web service" -shampoo; a literal search like web service; or RegularExpression search like soap;web service;!shampoo %SEARCHVAR- DEFAULTTYPE% preferences setting (literal)
    scope="topic"
    scope="text"
    scope="all"
    Search topic name (title); the text (body) of topic; or all (both) "text"
    order="topic"
    order="created"
    order="modified"
    order="editby"
    order=
     "formfield(name)"
    Sort the results of search by the topic names, topic creation time, last modified time, last editor, or named field of TWikiForms. The sorting is done web by web; in case you want to sort across webs, create a formatted table and sort it with TablePlugin's initsort Sort by topic name
    limit="all"
    limit="16"
    Limit the number of results returned. This is done after sorting if order is specified All results
    reverse="on" Reverse the direction of the search Ascending search
    casesensitive="on" Case sensitive search Ignore case
    nosummary="on" Show topic title only Show topic summary
    bookview="on" BookView search, e.g. show complete topic text Show topic summary
    nosearch="on" Suppress search string Show search string
    noheader="on" Suppress search header
    Topics: Changed: By:
    Show search header
    nototal="on" Do not show number of topics found Show number
    header="..."
    format="..."
    Custom format results: see FormattedSearch for usage, variables & examples Results in table
    expandvariables="on" Expand variables before applying a FormattedSearch on a search hit. Useful to show the expanded text, e.g. to show the result of a SpreadSheetPlugin %CALC{}% instead of the formula Raw text
    multiple="on" Multiple hits per topic. Each hit can be formatted. The last token is used in case of a regular expression ";" and search Only one hit per topic
    separator=", " Line separator between hits Newline "$n"
  • Example: %SEARCH{"wiki" web="Main" scope="topic"}%
  • Example with format: %SEARCH{"FAQ" scope="topic" nosearch="on" nototal="on" header="| *Topic: * | *Summary: * |" format="| $topic | $summary |"% (displays results in a table with header - details)
  • HELP If the TWiki:Plugins.TablePlugin is installed, you may set a %TABLE{}% variable just before the %SEARCH{}% to alter the output of a search. Example: %TABLE{ tablewidth="90%" }%
  • Related: METASEARCH, TOPICLIST, WEBLIST, FormattedSearch

  • [1] Note: The search form uses identical names for input fields.
  • [2] Note: A web can be excluded from a web="all" search if you define a NOSEARCHALL=on variable in its WebPreferences

SERVERTIME -- server time

SERVERTIME{"format"} -- formatted server time

  • Same format qualifiers as %GMTIME%
  • Syntax: %SERVERTIME{"format"}%
  • Example: %SERVERTIME{"$hou:$min"}% expands to 09:41
  • Related: DISPLAYTIME, GMTIME, SERVERTIME

SPACEDTOPIC -- topic name, spaced and encoded

  • The current topic name with added spaces, for regular expression search of Ref-By
  • Syntax: %SPACEDTOPIC%
  • Expands to: TWiki%20*Variables%20*Nto%20*Z
  • Related: TOPIC

STARTINCLUDE -- start position of topic text if included

  • If present in included topic, start to include text from this location up to the end, or up to the location of the %STOPINCLUDE% variable. A normal view of the topic shows everyting exept the %STARTINCLUDE% variable itself.
  • Syntax: %STARTINCLUDE%
  • Related: INCLUDE, STOPINCLUDE

STATISTICSTOPIC -- name of statistics topic

STOPINCLUDE -- end position of topic text if included

  • If present in included topic, stop to include text at this location and ignore the remaining text. A normal view of the topic shows everyting exept the %STOPINCLUDE% variable itself.
  • Syntax: %STOPINCLUDE%
  • Related: INCLUDE, STARTINCLUDE

TOC -- table of contents of current topic

TOC{"Topic"} -- table of contents

  • Syntax: %TOC{"SomeTopic" ...}%
  • Table of Contents. Shows a TOC that is generated automatically based on headings of a topic. Headings in WikiSyntax ("---++ text") and HTML ("<h2>text</h2>") are taken into account. Any heading text after "!!" is excluded from the TOC; for example, write "---+!! text" if you do not want to list a header in the TOC
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "TopicName" topic name Current topic
    web="Name" Name of web Current web
    depth="2" Limit depth of headings shown in TOC 6
    title="Some text" Title to appear at top of TOC none
  • Example: %TOC{depth="2"}%
  • Example: %TOC{"TWikiDocumentation" web="TWiki" title="Contents:"}%
  • Example: see TWiki:Sandbox.TestTopicInclude
  • Related: TOC

TOPIC -- name of current topic

TOPICLIST{"format"} -- topic index of a web

  • The "format" defines the format of one topic item. It may include variables: The $name variable gets expanded to the topic name; the $web variable gets expanded to the name of the web.
  • Syntax: %TOPICLIST{"format" ...}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "format" Format of one line, may include $name and $web variables "$name"
    format="format" (Alternative to above) "$name"
    separator=", " line separator "\n" (new line)
    web="Name" Name of web Current web
  • Example: %TOPICLIST{"   * $web.$name"}% creates a bullet list of all topics
  • Example: %TOPICLIST{separator=", "}% creates a comma separated list of all topics
  • Example: %TOPICLIST{" <option>$name</option>"}% creates an option list (for drop down menus)
  • Related: SEARCH, WEBLIST

TWIKIWEB -- name of TWiki documentation web

  • The web containing all documentation and site-wide preference settings for TWiki
  • Syntax: %TWIKIWEB%
  • Expands to: TWiki
  • Related: MAINWEB

URLPARAM{"name"} -- get value of a URL parameter

  • Returns the value of a URL parameter. Note that there is a risk that this variable could be misused for cross-scripting
  • Syntax: %URLPARAM{"name"}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "name" The name of a URL parameter required
    default="..." Default value in case parameter is empty or missing empty string
    newline="<br />" Convert newlines in textarea to other delimiters no conversion
    encode="entity" Encode special characters into HTML entities, like a double quote into &#034;. This is needed if text is put into an HTML form field no encoding
    encode="url" Encode special characters for URL parameter use, like a double quote into %22 no encoding
    multiple="on"
    multiple="[[$item]]"
    If set, gets all selected elements of a <select multiple="multiple"> tag. A format can be specified, with $item indicating the element, e.g. multiple="Option: $item" first element
    separator=", " Separator between multiple selections. Only relevant if multiple is specified "\n" (new line)
  • Example: %URLPARAM{"skin"}% returns print for a .../view/TWiki/TWikiVariablesNtoZ?skin=print URL. Test this:
  • Related: SEARCH, FormattedSearch

USERNAME -- your login username

VAR{"NAME" web="Web"} -- get a preference value from another web

  • Syntax: %VAR{"NAME" web="Web"}%
  • Example: To get %WEBBGCOLOR% of the Main web write %VAR{"WEBBGCOLOR" web="Main"}%, which expands to #FFEFA6
  • Related: WEBPREFSTOPIC

WEB -- name of current web

WEBLIST{"format"} -- index of all webs

  • List of all webs. Hidden webs are excluded, e.g. webs with a NOSEARCHALL=on preference variable. The "format" defines the format of one web item. The $name variable gets expanded to the name of the web, $qname gets expanded to double quoted name, $marker to marker where web matches selection.
  • Syntax: %WEBLIST{"format" ...}%
  • Supported parameters:
    Parameter: Description: Default:
    "format" Format of one line, may include $name variable "$name"
    format="format" (Alternative to above) "$name"
    separator=", " line separator "\n" (new line)
    webs="public" comma sep list of Web, public expands to all non-hidden "public"
    marker="selected" Text for $marker where item matches selection, otherwise equals "" "selected"
    selection="%WEB%" Current value to be selected in list section="%WEB%"
  • Example: %WEBLIST{"   * [[$name.WebHome]]"}% creates a bullet list of all webs.
  • Example: %WEBLIST{"<option $marker value=$qname>$name</option>" webs="Trash,public" selection="TWiki" separator=" "}% Dropdown of all public Webs + Trash Web, current Web highlighted.
  • Related: TOPICLIST, SEARCH

WEBPREFSTOPIC -- name of web preferences topic

WIKIHOMEURL -- site home URL

  • The base URL of TWiki, is the link of the Home icon in the upper left corner, defined in TWiki.cfg
  • Syntax: %WIKIHOMEURL%
  • Expands to: http://your.domain.com/twiki
  • Related: WIKITOOLNAME

WIKINAME -- your Wiki username

WIKIPREFSTOPIC -- name of site-wide preferences topic

WIKITOOLNAME -- name of your TWiki site

WIKIUSERNAME -- your Wiki username with web prefix

  • Your %WIKINAME% with Main web prefix, useful to point to your TWiki home page
  • Syntax: %WIKIUSERNAME%
  • Expands to: Main.guest, renders as Main.guest
  • Related: REMOTE_USER, USERNAME, WIKINAME

WIKIUSERSTOPIC -- name of topic listing all registers users

  • Syntax: %WIKIUSERSTOPIC%
  • Expands to: TWikiUsers, with Main prefix renders as TWikiUsers
  • Related: WIKIUSERNAME

WIKIVERSION -- the version of the installed TWiki engine

Note: Above text is included from TWikiVariablesAtoM and TWikiVariablesNtoZ

Preferences Variables

Additional variables are defined in the preferences topics:

Variable: Level: What: Expands to:
%ALLOWTOPICCHANGE% (any topic) List of users and groups who are allowed to change the current topic. (More in TWikiAccessControl)  
%ALLOWTOPICRENAME% (any topic) List of users and groups who are allowed to rename the current topic. (More in TWikiAccessControl) TWikiAdminGroup  
%ALLOWWEBCHANGE% WL List of users and groups who are allowed to change topics in the TWiki web. (More in TWikiAccessControl)  
%ALLOWWEBRENAME% WL List of users and groups who are allowed to rename topics in the TWiki web. (More in TWikiAccessControl)  
%ATTACHLINKBOX% SL , UL Default state of the link check box in the attach file page. Check box is initially checked if value is set to CHECKED , unchecked if empty. If checked, a link is created to the attached file at the end of the topic. Value is:  
%DENYTOPICCHANGE% (any topic) List of users and groups who are not allowed to change the current topic. (More in TWikiAccessControl) %DENYTOPICCHANGE%  
%DENYTOPICRENAME% (any topic) List of users and groups who are not allowed to rename the current topic. (More in TWikiAccessControl) %DENYTOPICRENAME%  
%DENYWEBCHANGE% WL List of users and groups who are not allowed to change topics in the TWiki web. (More in TWikiAccessControl)  
%DENYWEBRENAME% WL List of users and groups who are not allowed to rename topics in the TWiki web. (More in TWikiAccessControl)  
%DONTNOTIFYCHECKBOX% SL , UL Default state of the "Minor Changes, Don't Notify" (DontNotify) check box in preview. Check box is initially checked if Set DONTNOTIFYCHECKBOX = checked="checked", or unchecked if empty. Value is:  
%EDITBOXHEIGHT% SL , UL Vertical size of edit box, is 15 15  
%EDITBOXWIDTH% SL , UL Horizontal size of edit box, is 70 70  
%EDITBOXSTYLE% SL , UL Style of text edit box. Set to width: 99% for full window width (default; overwrites the EDITBOXWIDTH setting), or width: auto to disable. Value is: width: 99% width: 99%  
%FINALPREFERENCES% SL , WL List of preferences that are not allowed to be overridden by next level preferences ATTACHFILESIZELIMIT, PREVIEWBGIMAGE, WIKITOOLNAME, WIKIWEBMASTER, SMTPMAILHOST, SMTPSENDERHOST, ALLOWWEBMANAGE, READTOPICPREFS, TOPICOVERRIDESUSER, NOSEARCHALL, ATTACHFILESIZELIMIT, WIKIWEBMASTER, WEBCOPYRIGHT, WEBTOPICLIST, DENYWEBVIEW, ALLOWWEBVIEW, DENYWEBCHANGE, ALLOWWEBCHANGE, DENYWEBRENAME, ALLOWWEBRENAME  
%HTTP_EQUIV_ON_EDIT% SL , UL http-equiv meta tags for edit script.  
%HTTP_EQUIV_ON_PREVIEW% SL , UL http-equiv meta tags for preview script.  
%HTTP_EQUIV_ON_VIEW% SL http-equiv meta tags for view, rdiff, attach, search* scripts.  
%NEWTOPICBGCOLOR% SL , UL Background color of non existing topic. ( UL needs authentication for topic views ) #FFFFCE  
%NEWTOPICFONTCOLOR% SL , UL Font color of non existing topic. ( UL needs authentication for topic views ) #0000FF  
%NOSEARCHALL% WL Exclude web from a web="all" search (set variable to on for hidden webs)  
%RELEASEEDITLOCKCHECKBOX% SL , UL Default state of the "Release edit lock" (UnlockTopic) check box in preview. Checkbox is initially checked if Set RELEASEEDITLOCKCHECKBOX = checked="checked", or unchecked if empty. If checked, make sure to click on Edit to do more changes; do not go back in your browser to the edit page, or you risk that someone else will edit the topic at the same time! Value is:  
%WEBBGCOLOR% WL Background color of web #FFD8AA  
%WEBCOPYRIGHT% SL , WL Copyright notice (bottom right corner of topics) Copyright © 1999-2020 by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors.
Ideas, requests, problems regarding this material Send feedback  
%WEBTOPICLIST% WL Common links of web (second line of topics) Welcome | Register | Changes | Topics | Index | Search | Go  
%WIKIWEBLIST% SL List of TWiki webs (in upper right corner of topics) Main | TWiki | Sandbox  
%WIKIWEBMASTER% SL Webmaster email address (sender of email notifications) , is root@fpmac116.usc.es root@fpmac116.usc.es  

Note: There are some more useful variables defined in the TWikiPreferences like %BR% for line break, colors like %RED% for colored text and small icons like %H% for a HELP Help icon.

Setting Preferences

  • The syntax for Preferences Variables is the same anywhere in TWiki (on its own TWiki bullet line, including nested bullets):
    [multiple of 3 spaces] * [space] Set [space] VARIABLENAME [space] = [value]
    Examples:
  • Set VARIABLENAME = value
    • Set VARIABLENAME = value

Creating Custom Variables

  • You can add your own Preference Variables for us across an entire site or a single web, using the standard Preferences syntax. Whatever you include in your Variable will be expanded on display, exactly as if it had been entered directly. You can place formatted text, page links, image paths.

Example: Create a custom logo variable the TWiki web
  • To place a logo anywhere in a web by typing %MYLOGO%, define the Variable on the web's WebPreferences page, and upload a logo file, ex: mylogo.gif. You can upload by attaching the file to WebPreferences, or, to avoid clutter, to any other topic in the same web, ex: LogoTopic:
    • Set MYLOGO = %PUBURL%/TWiki/LogoTopic/mylogo.gif

-- TWiki:Main.PeterThoeny - 14 Aug 2004
-- TWiki:Main.MikeMannix - 12 May 2002


Note: Included topic TWikiNotificationOfChanges? does not exist yet


Note: Included topic TWikiFormTemplate? does not exist yet


Merged into TWikiMetaData - this topic to be rolled back.


Meta Data Rendering

Various meta data can be stored in topics - MetaDataDefinition

This is rendered using the %META% variable. This is mostly used in the view, preview and edit scripts.

At present support is fairly basic:

Variable usage: Comment:
%META{"form"}% Show form data, see Form Templates
%META{"attachments"}% Show attachments, excluding hidden ones. Options:
all="on": Show all attachments i.e. including hidden ones
%META{"moved"}% Details of any topic moves
%META{"parent"}% Show topic parent. Options:
dontrecurse="on": By default recurses up tree, this has some cost.
nowebhome="on": Suppress WebHome.
prefix="...": Prefix that goes before parents, but only if there are parents, default "".
suffix="...": Suffix, only appears if there are parents, default "".
separator="...": Separator between parents, default is " > ".

Possible future additions:

  • Rendering of form data to alternate formats e.g. bullet lists
  • Specify a template to be used for rendering


TWiki Plugins

Plug-in enhanced feature add-ons, with a Plugin API for developers

Overview

You can add Plugins to extend TWiki's functionality, without altering the core program code. A plug-in approach lets you:

  • add virtually unlimited features while keeping the main TWiki code compact and efficient;
  • heavily customize an installation and still do clean updates to new versions of TWiki;
  • rapidly develop new TWiki functions in Perl using the Plugin API.

Everything to do with TWiki Plugins - demos, new releases, downloads, development, general discussion - is available at TWiki.org, in the TWiki:Plugins web.

Preinstalled Plugins

TWiki comes with a set of Plugins as part of the standard installation.

  • DefaultPlugin: Optionally handles some legacy variables from older versions of TWiki. You can control this option from TWikiPreferences. (Perl programmers can also add rules for simple custom processing.)
  • EmptyPlugin: Is a fully functional module, minus active code; it does nothing and serves as a template for new Plugin development
  • CommentPlugin: Allows users to quickly post comments to a page without an edit/preview/save cycle.
  • InterwikiPlugin: Use it for shorthand linking to remote sites, ex: TWiki:Plugins expands to TWiki:Plugins on TWiki.org. You can edit the predefined set of of Wiki-related sites, and add your own
  • EditTablePlugin: Edit TWiki tables using edit fields, date pickers and drop down boxes
  • RenderListPlugin: Render bullet lists in a variety of formats
  • SlideShowPlugin: Create web based presentations based on topics with headings.
  • SmiliesPlugin: Render smilies as icons, like  :-) for smile or  :cool: for cool!
  • SpreadSheetPlugin: Add spreadsheet calculation like "$SUM( $ABOVE() )" to tables located in TWiki topics.
  • TablePlugin: Control attributes of tables and sorting of table columns

Installing Plugins

Each TWikiPlugin comes with full documentation: step-by-step installation instructions, a detailed description of any special requirements, version details, and a working example for testing.

Most Plugins can be installed in three easy steps, with no programming skills required:

  1. Download the zip file containing the Plugin, documentation, and any other required files, from TWiki:Plugins.
  2. Distribute the files to their proper locations - unzip the zip archive in your TWiki installation directory - if have a standard TWiki installation, this will distribute automatically. Otherwise, place the files according to the directory paths listed on the Plugin top in TWiki:Plugins.
  3. Check the demo example on the Plugin topic: if it's working, the installation was fine!

Special Requests: Some Plugins need certain Perl modules to be preinstalled on the host system. Plugins may also use other resources, like graphics, other modules, applications, templates. In these cases, detailed instructions are in the Plugin documentation.

Each Plugin has a standard release page, located in the TWiki:Plugins web at TWiki.org. In addition to the documentation topic (SomePlugin), there's a separate development page.

  • Doc page: Read all available info about the Plugin; download the attached distribution files.
  • Dev page: Post feature requests, bug reports and general dev comments; topic title ends in Dev (SomePluginDev).
  • User support: Post installation, how to use type questions (and answers, if you have them) in the TWiki:Support web.

On-Site Pretesting

To test new Plugins on your installation before making them public, you may want to use one of these two approaches:

  • Method 1: Safely test on-the-fly by creating separate Production and Test branches in your live TWiki installation.
    • Duplicate the twiki/bin and twiki/lib directories for the Test version, and adjust the paths in the new lib/TWiki.cfg. The following directories are shared: twiki/data, twiki/templates and twiki/pub.
    • Test Plugins and other new features in the Test installation until you're satisfied.
      • ALERT! If you modify topics using the new features, live users will likely see unfamiliar new META tags showing up on their pages - to avoid this, create and edit test-only topics to try out new features.
    • Copy the modified files to the Production installation. You can update a TWiki installation live and users won't even notice.

  • Method 2: List the Plugin being tested in the DISABLEDPLUGINS variable in TWikiPreferences. Redefine the DISABLEDPLUGINS variable in the Sandbox web and do the testing there.

Checking that Plugins are Working on a Live Server

InstalledPlugins shows which Plugins are: 1) installed, 2) loading properly and 3) what TWiki:Codev.PluginHandlers they invoke. Any failures are shown in the Errors section.

A Note on Plugin Performance

The performance of the system depends on the number of Plugins installed and on the Plugin implementation. Some Plugins impose no measurable performance decrease, some do. For example, outsidePREHandler is an expensive callback function, or a Plugin might use many Perl libraries that need to be initialized with each page view (unless you run mod_perl). It is recommended to measure the performance with and without a new Plugin. Example for Unix:
time wget -qO /dev/null http://fpmac116.usc.es/twiki/bin/view/TWiki/AbcPlugin

In case you need to install an "expensive" Plugin and you need its functionality only in one web you can place the Plugin topic into that web. TWiki will initialize the Plugin only if the Plugin topic is found (which won't be the case for other webs.)

Managing Plugins

When you finish installing a Plugin, you should be able to read the user instructions and go. In fact, some Plugins require additional settings or offer extra options that you have to select. Also, you may want to make a Plugin available only in certain webs, or temporarily disable it. And may want to list all available Plugins in certain topics. You can handle all of these management tasks with simple procedures.

Setting Preferences

Installed Plugins can be toggled on or off, site-wide or by web, through TWikiPreferences and individual WebPreferences:

  • All Plugin modules present in the lib/TWiki/Plugins directory are activated automatically unless disabled by the DISABLEDPLUGINS Preferences variable in TWikiPreferences. You can optionally list the installed Plugins in the INSTALLEDPLUGINS Preferences variable. This is useful to define the sequence of Plugin execution, or to specify other webs than the TWiki web for the Plugin topics. Settings in TWikiPreferences are:
    • Set INSTALLEDPLUGINS = DefaultPlugin, ...
    • Set DISABLEDPLUGINS = EmptyPlugin, ...

Plugin execution order in TWiki is determined by searching Plugin topics in a specific sequence: First, full web.topicname name, if specified in INSTALLEDPLUGINS; next, the TWiki web is searched; and finally, the current web.

Plugin-specific settings are done in individual Plugin topics. Two settings are standard for each Plugin:

  1. One line description, used to form the bullets describing the Plugins in the TextFormattingRules topic:
    • Set SHORTDESCRIPTION = Blah blah woof woof.
  2. Debug Plugin, output can be seen in data/debug.txt. Set to 0=off or 1=on:
    • Set DEBUG = 0
  • The settings can be retrieved as Preferences variables like %<pluginname>_<var>%, ex: %DEFAULTPLUGIN_SHORTDESCRIPTION% shows the description of the DefaultPlugin.

Listing Active Plugins

Plugin status variables let you list all active Plugins wherever needed. There are two list formats:

  • The %ACTIVATEDPLUGINS% variable lists activated Plugins by name. (This variable is displayed in TWikiPreferences for debugging use.)
  • The %PLUGINDESCRIPTIONS% variable displays a bullet list with a one-line description of each active Plugins. This variable is based on the %<plugin>_SHORTDESCRIPTION% Preferences variables of individual topics and is shown in TextFormattingRules.

DEMO: Automatically List Active Plugins Using Variables

Using %ACTIVATEDPLUGINS%:
On this TWiki site, the active Plugins are: DefaultPlugin, SpreadSheetPlugin, CommentPlugin, EditTablePlugin, InterwikiPlugin, RenderListPlugin, SlideShowPlugin, SmiliesPlugin, TablePlugin.

Using %PLUGINDESCRIPTIONS%:
You can use any of these active TWiki Plugins:

  • DefaultPlugin: This plugin can be used to specify some simple custom rendering rules. It also renders depreciated *_text_* as bold italic text.
  • SpreadSheetPlugin: Add spreadsheet calculation like "$SUM( $ABOVE() )" to tables located in TWiki topics.
  • CommentPlugin: Allows users to quickly post comments to a page without an edit/preview/save cycle.
  • EditTablePlugin: Edit TWiki tables using edit fields, date pickers and drop down boxes
  • InterwikiPlugin: Link ExternalSite:Page text to external sites based on aliases defined in the InterWikis topic
  • RenderListPlugin: Render bullet lists in a variety of formats
  • SlideShowPlugin: Create web based presentations based on topics with headings.
  • SmiliesPlugin: Render smilies as icons, like  :-) for smile or  :cool: for cool!
  • TablePlugin: Control attributes of tables and sorting of table columns

The TWiki Plugin API

The Application Programming Interface (API) for TWikiPlugins provides the specifications for hooking into the core TWiki code from your external Perl Plugin module. The Plugin API is new to the Production version of TWiki with the 01-Sep-2001 release.

Available Core Functions

The TWikiFuncModule (lib/TWiki/Func.pm) implements ALL official Plugin functions. Plugins should ONLY use functions published in this module.

ALERT! If you use functions not in Func.pm, you run the risk of creating security holes. Also, your Plugin will likely break and require updating when you upgrade to a new version of TWiki.

Predefined Hooks

In addition to TWiki core functions, Plugins can use predefined hooks, or call backs, listed in the lib/TWiki/Plugins/EmptyPlugin.pm module.

  • All but the initPlugin are disabled. To enable a call back, remove DISABLE_ from the function name.
  • For best performance, enable only the functions you really need. NOTE: outsidePREHandler and insidePREHandler are particularly expensive.

Most Plugins use either the commonTagsHandler or startRenderingHandler for rendering tasks:

  • commonTagsHandler: Use it to expand %XYZPLUGIN% and %XYZPLUGIN{...}% variables
  • startRenderingHandler: Use it for your own rendering rules or to overload TWiki's internal rendering like [[links]]

TWiki:Codev/StepByStepRenderingOrder helps you decide which rendering handler to use.

Hints on Writing Fast Plugins

  • Delay the Plugin initialization to the actual function which is handling the tag. This way all the expensive initialization is done only when needed.
  • For example, use an eval block like:
    eval { require IPC::Run }
    return "<font color=\"red\">SamplePlugin: Can't load required modules ($@)</font>" if $@;
  • You could return errors as strings to show what happened
  • You can use a flag to avoid running the initialization twice

Plugin Version Detection

To eliminate the incompatibility problems bound to arise from active open Plugin development, a Plugin versioning system is provided for automatic compatibility checking.

  • All modules require a $VERSION='0.000' variable, beginning at 1.000.

  • The initPlugin handler should check all dependencies and return TRUE if the initialization is OK or FALSE if something went wrong.
    • The Plugin initialization code does not register a Plugin that returns FALSE (or that has no initPlugin handler).

  • $TWiki::Plugins::VERSION in the TWiki::Plugins module contains the TWiki Plugin API version, currently 1.025.
    • You can also use the %PLUGINVERSION{}% variable to query the Plugin API version or the version of installed Plugins.

Creating Plugins

With a reasonable knowledge of the Perl scripting language, you can create new Plugins or modify and extend existing ones. Basic plug-in architecture uses an Application Programming Interface (API), a set of software instructions that allow external code to interact with the main program. The TWiki Plugin API Plugins by providing a programming interface for TWiki.

The DefaultPlugin Alternative

  • DefaultPlugin can handle some outdated TWiki variables, found, for example, in sites recently updated from an old version. Settings are in DefaultPlugin topic. You can also add your own simple custom processing rules here, though in all but very simple cases, writing a new Plugin is preferable.

Anatomy of a Plugin

A basic TWiki Plugin consists of two elements:

  • a Perl module, ex: MyFirstPlugin.pm
  • a documentation topic, ex: MyFirstPlugin.txt

The Perl module can be a block of code that connects with TWiki alone, or it can include other elements, like other Perl modules (including other Plugins), graphics, TWiki templates, external applications (ex: a Java applet), or just about anything else it can call. In particular, files that should be web-accessible (graphics, Java applets ...) are best placed as attachments of the MyFirstPlugin topic. Other needed Perl code is best placed in a lib/TWiki/Plugins/MyFirstPlugin/ directory.

The Plugin API handles the details of connecting your Perl module with main TWiki code. When you're familiar with the Plugin API, you're ready to develop Plugins.

Creating the Perl Module

Copy file lib/TWiki/Plugins/EmptyPlugin.pm to <name>Plugin.pm. The EmptyPlugin.pm module contains mostly empty functions, so it does nothing, but it's ready to be used. Customize it. Refer to the Plugin API specs for more information.

If your Plugin uses its own modules and objects, you must include the name of the Plugin in the package name. For example, write Package MyFirstPlugin::Attrs; instead of just Package Attrs;. Then call it using:

  use TWiki::Plugins::MyFirstPlugin::Attrs;
  $var = MyFirstPlugin::Attrs->new();

Writing the Documentation Topic

The Plugin documentation topic contains usage instructions and version details. It serves the Plugin files as FileAttachments for downloading. (The doc topic is also included in the distribution package.) To create a documentation topic:

  1. Copy the Plugin topic template from TWiki.org. To copy the text, go to TWiki:Plugins/PluginPackage and:
    • enter the Plugin name in the "How to Create a Plugin" section
    • click Create
    • select all in the Edit box & copy
    • Cancel the edit
    • go back to your site to the TWiki web
    • In the GoBox enter your Plugin name, for example MyFirstPlugin, press enter and create the new topic
    • paste & save new Plugin topic on your site
  2. Customize your Plugin topic.
    • In case you plan to publish your Plugin at TWiki.org, use Interwiki names for author names, like TWiki:Main/guest.
  3. Save your topic, for use in packaging and publishing your Plugin.

OUTLINE: Doc Topic Contents
Check the Plugins web on TWiki.org for the latest Plugin doc topic template. Here's a quick overview of what's covered:

Syntax Rules: <Describe any special text formatting that will be rendered.>"

Example: <Include an example of the Plugin in action. Possibly include a static HTML version of the example to compare if the installation was a success!>"

Plugin Settings: <Description and settings for custom Plugin %VARIABLES%, and those required by TWiki.>"

  • Plugins Preferences <If user settings are needed, explain... Entering values works exactly like TWikiPreferences and WebPreferences: six (6) spaces and then:>"
    • Set <EXAMPLE = value added>

Plugin Installation Instructions: <Step-by-step set-up guide, user help, whatever it takes to install and run, goes here.>"

Plugin Info: <Version, credits, history, requirements - entered in a form, displayed as a table. Both are automatically generated when you create or edit a page in the TWiki:Plugins web.>"

Packaging for Distribution

A minimum Plugin release consists of a Perl module with a WikiName that ends in Plugin, ex: MyFirstPlugin.pm, and a documentation page with the same name(MyFirstPlugin.txt).

  1. Distribute the Plugin files in a directory structure that mirrors TWiki. If your Plugin uses additional files, include them ALL:
    • lib/TWiki/Plugins/MyFirstPlugin.pm
    • data/TWiki/MyFirstPlugin.txt
    • pub/TWiki/MyFirstPlugin/uparrow.gif [a required graphic]
  2. Create a zip archive with the Plugin name (MyFirstPlugin.zip) and add the entire directory structure from Step 1. The archive should look like this:
    • lib/TWiki/Plugins/MyFirstPlugin.pm
    • data/TWiki/MyFirstPlugin.txt
    • pub/TWiki/MyFirstPlugin/uparrow.gif

Publishing for Public Use

You can release your tested, packaged Plugin to the TWiki community through the TWiki:Plugins web. All Plugins submitted to TWiki.org are available for download and further development in TWiki:Plugins/PluginPackage. Publish your Plugin in these steps:

  1. Post the Plugin documentation topic in the TWiki:Plugins/PluginPackage:
    • enter the Plugin name in the "How to Create a Plugin" section, for example MyFirstPlugin
    • paste in the topic text from Creating Plugin Documentation and save
  2. Attach the distribution zip file to the topic, ex: MyFirstPlugin.zip
  3. Link from the doc page to a new, blank page named after the Plugin, and ending in Dev, ex: MyFirstPluginDev. This is the discussion page for future development. (User support for Plugins is handled in TWiki:Support.)
  4. Put the Plugin into the CVS repository, see TWiki:Plugins/ReadmeFirst (optional)

Thank you very much for sharing your Plugin with the TWiki community smile

Recommended Storage of Plugin Data

Plugins sometimes need to store data. This can be Plugin internal data like cache data, or generated data for the browser like images. The following is a recommendation where to store the data.

Where to store Plugin Internal Data

In case the Plugin generates data just for internal use, or data which is not specific to a topic, store it in the Plugin's attachment directory.

  • The Plugin's attachment directory is pubdir/Installweb/FooBarPlugin
    • Installweb refers to the name of the web where the Plugin is installed
  • The Plugin's attachment URL is %PUBURL%/Installweb/FooBarPlugin
  • The filename should start with an underscore, followed by an identifier, e.g. _any_name.ext
    • The leading underscore avoids a nameclash with files attached to the Plugin topic
    • Use only alphanumeric characters, underscores and periods to avoid platform dependency issues and URL issues
    • Do not use subdirectories (rename and delete would fail)
  • Use Plugin API functions documented in TWikiFuncModule to ensure portability:
    • Use getPubDir() to get the attachment root directory
    • Use getUrlHost() and getPubUrlPath() to build the URL in case you create content for the browser
    • Use $installWeb to get the name of the web where the Plugin is installed
    • Create the web directory and topic attachment directory if needed
  • Hint: Package the Plugin at least with one file attachment. This ensures that the attachment directory already exists

Where to Store Data for Topics using the Plugin

In case the Plugin generates data which is specific to a topic, store it in the topic's attachment directory.

  • The topic's attachment directory is pubdir/Webname/TopicName
  • The topic's attachment URL is %PUBURL%/Webname/TopicName
  • The filename should start with an underscore, followed by the Plugin name, an underscore and an identifier, e.g. _FooBarPlugin_any_name.ext
    • The leading underscore avoids a nameclash with files attached to the same topic
    • Use only alphanumeric characters, underscores and periods to avoid platform dependency issues and URL issues
    • Do not use subdirectories (rename and delete would fail)
  • Use Plugin API functions documented in TWikiFuncModule to ensure portability:
    • Use getPubDir() to get the attachment root directory
    • Use getUrlHost() and getPubUrlPath() to build the URL in case you create content for the browser

Example code to build the file name:

sub _make_filename
{
    my ( $web, $topic, $name ) = @_;

    # Create web directory "pub/$web" if needed
    my $dir = TWiki::Func::getPubDir() . "/$web";
    unless( -e "$dir" ) {
        umask( 002 );
        mkdir( $dir, 0775 );
    }
    # Create topic directory "pub/$web/$topic" if needed
    $dir .= "/$topic";
    unless( -e "$dir" ) {
        umask( 002 );
        mkdir( $dir, 0775 );
    }
    return "$dir/_FooBarPlugin_$name";
}

-- TWiki:Main/PeterThoeny - 14 Aug 2004
-- TWiki:Main/AndreaSterbini - 29 May 2001
-- TWiki:Main/MikeMannix - 03 Dec 2001


Note: Included topic RenameTopic? does not exist yet


Note: Included topic TWikiAdministration? does not exist yet
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