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Welcome to the Traveller Wiki Administrators page. This discusses the tasks and processes around being an administrator on the Traveler Wiki. If you have been admins on other wiki's you will find we're pretty laid back here, and have a very light touch.
NOTE: If you are not an administrator but have stumbled across this page many of the items discussed here can apply to you. We'd love to have your help in making the Traveller Wiki a more welcoming place. There are a few pages with admin only access, but don't let that discourage you.
This guide has two parts. The first is descriptions of the special pages of interest to the admins. The second is a guide to admin duties.
This section is a description of the Special pages. These pages serve as the configuration and internal reporting on the Wiki itself. Each page has a purpose for understanding and making the wiki better.
These are the links in the Maintenance reports, Lists of pages, Media reports, and High use pages sections. These reports serve to highlight use of the wiki in various ways. I would recommend looking through each of the reports to understand them, and again at various times to see how things have changed.
Of the various reports, the most important ones for keeping the wiki operating cleanly are:
- Double redirects: The wiki does not handle a redirect page pointing at another redirect page. This report list these for fixing.
- Uncategorized pages: Pages without a category can be harder to find.
The design of MediaWiki's user management is self-supporting. Users should need little or no help in managing their accounts. The only administrative tools here are
- Special:Block : Block users from editing, including their IP addresses.
- Special:Unblock : Reverse the setting above.
There is more about the abuse filter in the spammer section below. Otherwise the useful tools here are:
- Special:Statistics : Gives some high level statistics about the state to the Traveller Wiki. Note: The statistics were reset when we moved the wiki from Wikia.
- Special:Version : Gives the version information about the server, tools, mediawiki itself, and the list of extensions we have installed and configured.
Cargo section has the workings for the Cargo tables. You can review the data in the tables and there are two forms for querying data from the tables. Sematic forms I have found them difficult and confusing to manage, therefore have never used them. If you can figure it out, more power to you.
The only real administrative job on the wiki is manage the occasional spammer.
The Traveller wiki uses a multi-layer approach to preventing spam and badly mangled pages from showing up in the wiki. This section describes each of these tools for your consideration.
- DNS Blacklist. This uses a cached query to two of the better known real time DNS black hole list of known bad spammer IPs. Anyone attempting to edit the wiki from one of these known lists is automatically blocked. This requires no administration on our part.
- User Throttle. This tool prevents people from automatically creating user accounts quickly. Currently this is configured for a maximum of one per minute and a limit of 2 per 5 minutes.
- QuestyCaptcha. This is the tool that asks the question for the user about Traveller when you create an account. Currently there are 11 different questions. As an administrator you can create an account without having to answer any of the questions. This would allow you to create an account for someone else if they are having problems answering the questions presented.
- Title blacklist. MediaWiki:Titleblacklist which prevents users from creating new pages with bad names. Currently this black list is empty.
- Abuse Filter. This is the current prime reason we have very little spam in the wiki. This tool works by applying a heuristic (a small program) against each edit to the wiki. It currently has 18 rules. These include things like anonymous users creating or editing pages with external URL or large pages with no wiki content. There's one listing a number of drug names, and a couple with automated messages left by some spammers attempting to be clever. There is a Log of items the the abuse filter has trapped.
- Administrative bans. This is the final layer. About once a month or so, some spammer testing their tools manages to mangle their way through the abuse filter and leave some random text on a page. The rule is to revert the content or delete the page and ban the IP address for a month.
The first few months of the Traveller Wiki on the travellerrpg.com site were a little rough dealing with spammers. But once the QuestyCaptcha and the Abuse Filer tools were installed, configured, and running, the spammer's attempts dropped off to almost no visible changes.