Wiki on forum

BassMan

Well-known member
Hello,

I'm thinking of implementing some kind of a wiki system on one of my forums. I really like the idea of collaboration.

I'm aware of some 3rd-party add-ons (or maybe I missed some) that implement a wiki or some sort of it to XenForo, but not sure if I'll rely on a 3rd-party add-on for such an important part of the forum. Ideally, XenForo Resource Manager could be extended for collaboration as a wiki system. Now you can add team members, but that is not the same.

Another idea is to add some other wiki (i.e. MediaWiki) on a subdomain, but we all know there's a problem because users will need to register again, maintain another platform, etc.

Just wondering what you use for a wiki (if you use it). We already have a Resource Manager, but need something for the collaboration part to create some kind of knowledge base with help of forum members.

Thank you for your inputs.
 

Forsaken

Well-known member
I was looking at doing something similar with the Resource Manager... But it's really limited and would require cobbling together multiple add-ons, as well as custom development to meet most of what I needed; I ended up going with Showcase, but that's more temporary until I can get what I ultimately want developed (basically something like https://wowhead.com). There is a collaborative resource add-on however.

VaultWiki is the only wiki that integrates fully with XF, but the bugs and occasional security issues prevent me from using it. I think each time I have attempted to use VaultWiki, I have spent more time trying to deal with bugs and testing than anything else.

I considered using this add-on by XFA (https://xenforo.com/community/resources/xfa-document-manual-tutorial-article-writer.4669/), but it has no XF2 version and there are no plans so it's a good thing I decided not to.

MediaWikis lack of integration was one of the reasons I ultimately decided not to use it, though I am also just not the greatest fan of MediaWiki. I tried other software such as DokuWiki and others, but they all have issues with integrating to XenForo, and often didn't have a robust templating/variable system (One of the things I do like about VaultWiki).
 

BassMan

Well-known member
Thank you for your input.

Yes, the Resource manager could be more feature-rich to extend it to act as a wiki. For an official add-on, this could be a potential.

VaultWiki is the only wiki that integrates fully with XF, but the bugs and occasional security issues prevent me from using it. I think each time I have attempted to use VaultWiki, I have spent more time trying to deal with bugs and testing than anything else.
Yes, I've read about this and I won't touch it. Too risky. Need something more long-term stable. An official XF add-on :D


I considered using this add-on by XFA (https://xenforo.com/community/resources/xfa-document-manual-tutorial-article-writer.4669/), but it has no XF2 version and there are no plans so it's a good thing I decided not to.
Interesting.


MediaWikis lack of integration was one of the reasons I ultimately decided not to use it, though I am also just not the greatest fan of MediaWiki. I tried other software such as DokuWiki and others, but they all have issues with integrating to XenForo, and often didn't have a robust templating/variable system (One of the things I do like about VaultWiki).
Yes, they sure do like from ancient times and are not integrated into XF. But you can have a knowledge base there, on a separate platform that is more stable. Of course, it is not ideal and I would really like to avoid it. But as said, I'm not sure I want to rely on the 3rd-party XF add-on. What if the developer stops supporting it? Ok, this can happen to any software, I know, but still. XenForo lacks some official add-ons. Wiki or knowledge base, ticket system, blogs... If XenForo decides to create an official wiki I'm all in. Forums are not just a support platform, but could also be a collaboration platform (something that i.e. social media can't give you easily) and that is another plus for forum software.

Some add-ons here are great, don't get me wrong, but some developers are not responsive or even don't give support, some give up very quickly and go, etc. And a wiki system is not something you can easily turn off if it won't work on your forum anymore.
 

Alpha1

Well-known member
I use Vaultwiki. The functionality is nice. But there are always bugs with every new release. Its not uncommon for a minor release to have 100+ bug fixes and introduce many new issues. I can see how it seems that there are many security issues, but I dont think this is the case at all. The developer is extremely careful to patch up the smallest issues. If you look into the security issues then you will find these are generally of such extremely low severity that IMHO they are not even worth mentioning or labeling those as a security patch.

@expanserpb @hollosch @wolven @mazzly @SeToY
You use Vaultwiki a lot. What do you think about using a wiki for XF?
 

StarArmy

Well-known member
I use Dokuwiki in combination with my Xenforo, but what I'd really like is a single sign on so people can sign into my wiki with their forum account. I really love how pages are stored as plan text and that Dokuwiki's easy to customize. There's some VERY powerful addons (e.g. Struct) for Dokuwiki.
 

beerForo

Well-known member
If you used a forum node for your knowledgebase and had it sorted alphabetically it could work with one of the thread collaboration add-ons.
 

Alpha1

Well-known member
You don't think or you're sure ?
Some seems to be good, but that's true i've not tried them...
This list of 10 wiki plugins for WordPress only contains 1 very basic wiki plugin. The rest are knowledge base plugins. Some quite horrible btw.
 

Forsaken

Well-known member
I use Vaultwiki. The functionality is nice. But there are always bugs with every new release. Its not uncommon for a minor release to have 100+ bug fixes and introduce many new issues. I can see how it seems that there are many security issues, but I dont think this is the case at all. The developer is extremely careful to patch up the smallest issues. If you look into the security issues then you will find these are generally of such extremely low severity that IMHO they are not even worth mentioning or labeling those as a security patch.

@expanserpb @hollosch @wolven @mazzly @SeToY
You use Vaultwiki a lot. What do you think about using a wiki for XF?
My site has a lot of transactions, so any potential security breach is a big issue. As it is, I am extremely restrictive of which add-ons I will use, or who's add-ons I will use.

I am more willing to drop thousands to have a wiki or similar add-on made than take risks on one I cannot fully depend on.
 

mazzly

Well-known member
I use Vaultwiki. The functionality is nice. But there are always bugs with every new release. Its not uncommon for a minor release to have 100+ bug fixes and introduce many new issues. I can see how it seems that there are many security issues, but I dont think this is the case at all. The developer is extremely careful to patch up the smallest issues. If you look into the security issues then you will find these are generally of such extremely low severity that IMHO they are not even worth mentioning or labeling those as a security patch.

@expanserpb @hollosch @wolven @mazzly @SeToY
You use Vaultwiki a lot. What do you think about using a wiki for XF?
I'm very satisfied with the Vaultwiki experience.. There has been bugs here and there, but when reported the devs have a solution very quickly and usually they tell you which file(s) to edit to get the fix "patched in".

When I was looking for a wiki to use the main goal was to rank for keywords about the characters,places,weapons of the universe for the fantasy forum we're running.

We chose Vaultwiki because it has a good autolinking system that automatically inserting links into threads where words related to the wiki topics are used.. So lets say there are 100+ threads discussing things related to a specific character, then each thread where that character is mentioned, it will link to the wiki page for it.
The search engines understand this to make that wiki page the "main" page for that keyword, and there is less risk that all the threads are competing for the same keyword..
Each wiki pages can also have multiple synonyms, so if there are multiple names for the same character it will "redirect" to the correct page, and the autolinking system also sets links for the synonyms.. This also allows the search engines to understand that all the names are the same page, and will help you to also rank for those keywords.

Setting up a wiki is quite hard to begin with because there are many concepts to handle (at least there was for me when starting), and it will take some planning for how to set up categories to make a good structure..
But after being setup and taken care of writing the wiki pages and making a nice structure, we have seen some quite nice traffic from that..
 

expanserpb

Active member
I use Vaultwiki. The functionality is nice. But there are always bugs with every new release. Its not uncommon for a minor release to have 100+ bug fixes and introduce many new issues. I can see how it seems that there are many security issues, but I dont think this is the case at all. The developer is extremely careful to patch up the smallest issues. If you look into the security issues then you will find these are generally of such extremely low severity that IMHO they are not even worth mentioning or labeling those as a security patch.

This is very accurate.

Frequently a new patch will destroy wiki functionality completely. They'll release a patch where editing a page doesn't even work.

The developer works exceptionally hard to fix the issues as they come in, but it's a lot of work to keep this software up and running.

There are, however, some great features:
  • autolinking from the forum. Where wiki pages have a title, you can set it so that these words in a forum post will autolink to the wiki article and even do a mouseover preview
  • Templating: this has improved a lot and you can have a popup with text boxes to fill out to do things like infoboxes (this is still behind some of the mediawiki functionality that allows you to wysiwyg edit infoboxes etc
  • Users use the same RTE editor for the wiki and the forum
  • Notifications and watching pages all integrated
If I were to start again I would strongly consider trying out the Xenforo > mediawiki bridge functionality.

I'm sure the mediawiki test and release cycle is much more robust than Vaultwiki's.
 

BassMan

Well-known member
Hm, yes, VaultWiki sure does look more advanced and well-integrated, on your site @expanserpb is especially nice and structured, but still, I'm concerned about the bugs and updating. Have a lot to brainstorm...
 

beerForo

Well-known member
Ideally, XenForo Resource Manager could be extended for collaboration as a wiki system. Now you can add team members, but that is not the same.
I agree
 

sixlxvi

Well-known member
Which of the typical wiki features do you need?

You could essentially enable collaborative posts with user groups and node permissions. You could then get creative with prefixes, search forums, tags, etc, to create a main wiki index. Idk.


I have been experimenting with wiki options too. I haven’t really settled on a solution yet because I also feel limited by the same reasons you mentioned.
 

BassMan

Well-known member
You could essentially enable collaborative posts with user groups and node permissions. You could then get creative with prefixes, search forums, tags, etc, to create a main wiki index. Idk.
Yes, that is actually my next step. To explore and find some system with right permissions, etc. Collaboration (in wiki way) is the main feature I would like to get.

But the problem is that with permissions you can not control only first post of the thread, you'll need an add-on for that again.
 
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