Help:Reference guide

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This is a single-page reference guide for Nottinghack Wiki. If you are looking for an introduction, please see the tutorial on using the wiki.


About this Wiki

Nottinghack Wiki is powered by MediaWiki, the software used by Wikipedia. The main sources of documentation are:

This reference guide was based on the public domain Project:PD help.


Basic Markup

Description You type You get
Italic text
two aprostrophes for ''italic'' text

two aprostrophes for italic text

Bold text
three aprostrophes for '''bold''' text

three aprostrophes for bold text

Bold and italic
five aprostrophes for '''''bold & italic''''' text

five aprostrophes for bold & italic text

Escape wiki markup
<nowiki>no '''''markup'''''</nowiki>

no '''''markup'''''

Some HTML tags are allowed by MediaWiki (full list).

Description You type You get








Monospaced text
<code>Source code</code>


<tt>Teletype text</tt>

Source code


Teletype text





Size adjustments
<big>Larger text</big>

<small>Smaller text</small>

<small>Small text with <big>larger text</big> inside</small>

<small><small>Really small text</small></small>

Larger text

Smaller text

Small text with larger text inside

Really small text

<code>code sample</code>

code sample

Old-school font styling
Note Note: This is deprecated, so use CSS styling instead.
<font color="green" size="4" face="serif">Big Green Serifs</font>

Big Green Serifs

CSS styling
<span style="color:green; font-size:large;
font-family:serif">Big Green Serifs</span>

Big Green Serifs

<abbr title="World Taekwondo Federation">WTF</abbr>


Cite an author
Note Note: This is often used with a blockquote, shown in #Other section formatting.
<cite>John Doe</cite>

John Doe

Highlight text that has been inserted into a document.
This text <ins>has</ins> been corrected.

This text has been corrected.

Refer to a variable in a computer program
The variable <var>foo</var> has not been initialised.

The variable foo has not been initialised.

Formatting Pitfalls

Beware the unexpected results shown below.

Description You type You get
Overlapping HTML is invalid
Note Note: Results will vary between browsers.
Avoid <b>overlapping <i>html</b> tags</i>.

[invalid HTML output]

Multiline HTML formatting
Avoid <b>multiline

html</b> formatting tags.

[invalid HTML output]

Wiki markup spanning paragraphs
Avoid '''''multiline

wiki''''' markup.

Avoid multiline

wiki markup.

Multiline wiki markup
Avoid '''''multiline
wiki''''' markup.

Avoid multiline wiki markup.

Overlapping wiki markup
Note Note: This is valid, but can be confusing.
Basic '''overlapping ''wiki''' markup'' works OK.

Basic overlapping wiki markup works OK.


An HTML symbol entity is a sequence of characters that produces one particular character. For example, &euro; produces the Euro symbol "" and &trade; produces trademark symbol "". HTML symbol entities are allowed in MediaWiki and are sometimes used in advanced editing for two main reasons: to insert characters not normally available on keyboards and to prevent the parser from interpreting and displaying HTML tags and symbols:

&amp;euro; → &euro;
&lt;span style="color:green;">Green&lt;/span> → <span style="color:green;">Green</span>

The following is a list of characters that can be produced using HTML symbols. Hover any character to find out the symbol that produces it. Some symbols not available in the current font will appear as empty squares.

HTML Symbol Entities
Á á Â â ´ Æ æ À à Α α & Å å Ã ã Ä ä Β β ¦ Ç ç ¸ ¢
Χ χ ˆ © ¤ ° Δ δ ÷ É é Ê ê È è Ε ε Η η
Ð ð Ë ë ƒ ½ ¼ ¾ Γ γ > Í í Î î ¡ Ì ì Ι ι
¿ Ï ï Κ κ Λ λ « < ¯ µ · Μ μ  
¬ Ñ ñ Ν ν Ó ó Ô ô Œ œ Ò ò Ω ω Ο ο ª º Ø ø Õ õ Ö
ö Φ φ Π π ϖ ± £ Ψ ψ " » ® Ρ ρ
Š š § ­ Σ σ ς ¹ ² ³ ß Τ τ Θ θ ϑ Þ þ ˜
× Ú ú Û û Ù ù ¨ ϒ Υ υ Ü ü Ξ ξ Ý ý ¥ ÿ Ÿ Ζ ζ

Mathematical formulae

Formulae can be written in TeX using <math> tags. See wikipedia:Help:Displaying a formula for details.

Description You type You get
The equation of mass-energy equivalence
<math>E = mc^2 \,\!</math>

<math>E = mc^2 \,\!</math>

The convolution theorem states that...
<math> \mathcal{F}\{f * g\} = k\cdot \mathcal{F}\{f\}\cdot \mathcal{F}\{g\}</math>

<math> \mathcal{F}\{f * g\} = k\cdot \mathcal{F}\{f\}\cdot \mathcal{F}\{g\}</math>


In some situations you may want to sign your name or indicate when a change was made. You can do this easily using the tilde character (~) as shown below. This is particularly useful on talk pages.

Function You type Automatically susbstituted wiki code You get
Full signature (recommended)

[[User:Username|Username]] 12:34, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

Username 12:34, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
Signature alone


Timestamp alone
12:34, 1 February 2008 (UTC) 12:34, 1 February 2008 (UTC)


Section formatting can only be used at the beginning of a line. Note Note: Spaces at the start of a line are significant.


Headings of different levels are created by surrounding the line with equal signs (=).

== Level 2 ==
=== Level 3 ===
==== Level 4 ====
===== Level 5 =====
====== Level 6 ======
Note Note: Level 1 is automatically generated for the page title and is not appropriate within the body of articles.

For each heading in the wiki article an HTML anchor is automatically created. That makes it possible to create links to section headings. An article with 4 or more headings automatically shows a table of contents.


MediaWiki generally ignores single line breaks and joins consecutive lines of text together. To start a new paragraph, leave an empty line. To create a wide paragraph break, leave two empty lines. You can force a line break inside a paragraph with the HTML tag <br />.

Description You type You get
Single line breaks are ignored
This text is joined
together as if it
were a single line.

This text is joined together as if it were a single line.

Empty lines define paragraphs
Note Note: Two empty lines give a larger paragraph break.
First paragraph.

Second paragraph.

The third paragraph will <br /> break in the middle.

First paragraph.

Second paragraph.

The third paragraph will
break in the middle.

Other section formatting

Description You type You get
Bullet list
* Start each line
* with an [[Wikipedia:asterisk|asterisk]] (*).
** More asterisks gives deeper
*** and deeper levels.
* Line breaks<br />don't break levels.
*** But jumping levels creates empty space.
Any other new line ends the list.
  • Start each line
  • with an asterisk (*).
    • More asterisks gives deeper
      • and deeper levels.
  • Line breaks
    don't break levels.
      • But jumping levels creates empty space.

Any other new line ends the list.

Numbered list
# Start each line
# with a [[Wikipedia:Number sign|number sign]] (#).
## More number signs gives deeper
### and deeper
### levels.
# Line breaks<br />don't break levels.
### But jumping levels creates empty space.
# Blank lines

# end the list and start another.
Any other new line also
ends the list.
  1. Start each line
  2. with a number sign (#).
    1. More number signs gives deeper
      1. and deeper
      2. levels.
  3. Line breaks
    don't break levels.
      1. But jumping levels creates empty space.
  4. Blank lines
  1. end the list and start another.

Any other new line also ends the list.

Definition list
;item 1
: definition 1
;item 2
: definition 2-1
: definition 2-2
item 1
definition 1
item 2
definition 2-1
definition 2-2
Mixture of different types of list
# one
# two
#* two point one
#* two point two
# three
## three sub 1
### three sub 1 sub 1
## three sub 2
  1. one
  2. two
    • two point one
    • two point two
  3. three
    1. three sub 1
      1. three sub 1 sub 1
    2. three sub 2
A programmer started to cuss,
Because getting to sleep was a fuss.
As he lay there in bed,
Looping ’round in his head,
Was: while(!asleep()) sheep++;
-- <cite>Author unknown</cite>

A programmer started to cuss,
Because getting to sleep was a fuss.
As he lay there in bed,
Looping ’round in his head,
Was: while(!asleep()) sheep++;
-- Author unknown

text above
text above
text below
text below

text above text above


text below text below

Preformatted text
Note Note: This way of preformatting only applies to section formatting. Text formatting markup is still effective.
 Start each line with a space.
 * Text is '''preformatted''' and
 character formatting is effective.
Start each line with a space.
* Text is preformatted and
character formatting is effective.
Completely preformatted text
<pre> Text is '''preformatted''' and
''markup'' '''''is''''' not effective.</pre>
 Text is '''preformatted''' and
''markup'' '''''is''''' not effective.
Syntax Highlighting for code
<syntaxhighlight lang="cpp">#include <iostream>
using namespace std;
int main (int argc, char** argv) {
    cout << "Hello World!";
    return 0;
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;
int main (int argc, char** argv) {
    cout << "Hello World!";
    return 0;
A useful error message for syntax higlighting
Note Note: When an invalid 'lang' is used, the error message lists the available languages. Also see [1].
<syntaxhighlight lang="-"></syntaxhighlight>
Horizontal rule
Text above
Text below

Text above

Text below

Old-school centered text
Note Note: This is deprecated, so use the css method instead.
text above<center>centered</center>text below
text above
text below
CSS method to center text
text above<div class="center" style="width:auto;
margin-left:auto; margin-right:auto;">centered</div>
text below
text above

text below

<!-- This is a comment -->
Comments are only visible
in the edit window.

Comments are only visible in the edit window.


There are three sorts of links:

  1. Internal links to other pages in the wiki.
  2. External links to other websites.
  3. Interwiki links to other websites registered to the wiki in advance.

Internal links

To add an internal link, enclose the name of the page you want to link to in double square brackets. The first letter of the link is automatically capitalized and spaces are replaced with underscores.

Note Note: A red link indicates that the target page does not exist yet.
Description You type You get
An internal link
A piped link
[[NottingHack|different text]]
different text
Word-endings are 'blended'










Link to an anchor on the current page
[[#See also]]
#See also
Link to an anchor from different text
[[#See also|different text]]
different text
Link to the current page's table of contents
Link to the top of the current page
Setting an internal link anchor
Note Note: Omit the "optional text" for invisible anchor.
<div id="NameOfAnchorHere">optional text</div>
optional text
Link to an anchor at another page
[[Help:Images#See also]]
Help:Images#See also
Shortcut to hide a namespace

See the pipe trick.





#REDIRECT [[Main Page]]
Main Page
Link to the current page's talk page
Link to the current page's edit page
[{{fullurl:{{PAGENAME}}|action=edit}} Edit]
Link to a subpage
Link to a subpage without the leading slash
Link to a category page
Link to an image or a file
Link to the user's user page
Additional wiki markup is permitted in link titles
[[#top|'''<del>rich</del>''' ''link text'' here.]]
rich link text here.

Links to section headings

You can link directly to headings within a wiki page. MediaWiki automatically creates an HTML anchor with the same name as the heading.

Description You type You get
Links to section headings
[[#External links|Links]]

[[#Table pitfalls!]]


#Table pitfalls!

Note Note: If a heading is renamed then any links to that heading will be broken.

External links

Description You type You get
External link
External link with different label
[ MediaWiki]
Numbered external link
External links with file icons.

See currently supported icons.

[ video]<br/>
[ sound]<br/>
[ document]<br/>


External link to the same host
External link to other host passing the pagename{{PAGENAMEE}}
Mailto link
[ email me]
email me
Mailto named with subject line and body
[ info]
Additional wiki markup is permitted in link titles
[ Example '''<del>rich</del>''' ''link text'' here.]
Example rich link text here.

External link icons

Test link Icon Trigger
[3] external-link-ltr-icon.png .external, http://, gopher://
[4] lock-icon.png https://
[5] mail-icon.png mailto:
[6] news-icon.png news://
[7] file-icon.png ftp://
[8] talk-icon.png irc://
[9] audio-icon.png .ogg, .mid, .midi, .mp3, .wav, .wma
[10] video-icon.png .ogm, .avi, .mpeg, .mpg
[11] document-icon.png .pdf, .pdf#, .pdf?

How to avoid auto-links

By default, when you write a URL as is, it will be transformed to an external link. To avoid that effect, put the URL between <nowiki> tags as in:


Interwiki links

Interwiki links are abbreviations for longer URLs. They can link to an external site almost as if they are linking to a page on Nottinghack Wiki. The external website must be registered in advance on the Special:Interwiki page.

Description You type You get
An interwiki link to a wikipedia article.
[[wikipedia:Sunflower|big yellow flower]]

big yellow flower

A similar external link (without using an interwiki link).
[ big yellow flower]

big yellow flower

The pipe trick

The pipe trick is a quick way to abbreviate certain types of links while you are editing wiki text. Once you save the page, the abbreviations are substituted with the full versions of the links. Some examples are shown below and more details can be found in wikipedia:Help:Pipe trick and metawikipedia:Help:Piped link#Pipe trick.

Description You type Substitution You get
Page title with parentheses
[[top (Unix)|]]
[[top (Unix)|top]]


Page title with commas
[[top, unix|]]
[[top, unix|top]]


Page title with namespace


An interwiki link
[[wikipedia:top (Unix)|]]
[[wikipedia:top (Unix)|top]]



Tables can be added to wiki pages using either XHTML table elements directly, or using wikitext formatting to define the table. The benefit of wikitext is that it tends to be easier to see the table structure when editing.

As a general rule, it is best to avoid using a table unless you need one. Table markup often complicates page editing.

Wiki table markup summary

Note Note: The following markers must each start on a new line.
table start
table caption, optional; only between table start and the first table row
table row, optional on the first row
table header cell, optional.
table data cell, required!
table end

These markers can also be used to write several consecutive table cells on the same line:

Start a consecutive table header cell.
Start a consecutive table data cell.

Basic table examples

The following table lacks borders and good spacing but shows the simplest wiki markup table structure.

You type You get
|Ice cream 
Orange Apple
Bread Pie
Butter Ice cream

The cells in the same row can be listed on one line separated by || (two pipe symbols). If the text in the cell contains a line break, use <br /> instead.

You type You get
|Butter||Ice<br />cream||and<br />more
Orange Apple more
Bread Pie more
Butter Ice

Extra spaces within cells in the wiki markup do not affect the actual table rendering:

You type You get
|  Orange    ||   Apple   ||   more
|   Bread    ||   Pie     ||   more
|   Butter   || Ice cream ||  and more
Orange Apple more
Bread Pie more
Butter Ice cream and more

You can have longer text or more complex wiki syntax inside table cells:

You type You get
|Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, 
consetetur sadipscing elitr, 
sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt
ut labore et dolore magna aliquyam erat, 
sed diam voluptua. 

At vero eos et accusam et justo duo dolores
et ea rebum. Stet clita kasd gubergren,
no sea takimata sanctus est Lorem ipsum
dolor sit amet. 
* Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet
* consetetur sadipscing elitr
* sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt
Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet,

consetetur sadipscing elitr, sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt ut labore et dolore magna aliquyam erat, sed diam voluptua.

At vero eos et accusam et justo duo dolores et ea rebum. Stet clita kasd gubergren, no sea takimata sanctus est Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

  • Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet
  • consetetur sadipscing elitr
  • sed diam nonumy eirmod tempor invidunt

Table headers

Table headers can be created by using "!" (exclamation mark) instead of "|" (pipe symbol). Headers usually show up bold and centered by default.

You type You get
! Item
! Amount
! Cost
Item Amount Cost
Orange 10 7.00
Bread 4 3.00
Butter 1 5.00
Total 15.00

Table captions

A table caption can be added to any table as follows.

You type You get
|+Food complements
|Ice cream 
Food complements
Orange Apple
Bread Pie
Butter Ice cream

Table attributes

The wikitext table markers can accept a space separated list of XHTML attributes. For example, this wikitext will start a row with green text:

|- style="color:green;"

In table cells and captions (| or ||, ! or !!, and |+) the attributes are separated from cell content with a single pipe character (|).

|align="right"|This is a right-aligned table cell.

For the authoritative source on XHTML attributes, see the W3C's HTML 4.01 Specification page on tables.

Attributes on entire tables

Placing attributes after the table start tag ({|) applies attributes to the entire table.

You type You get
{| border="1" align="center" style="text-align:center;"
|Ice cream
Orange Apple 12,333.00
Bread Pie 500.00
Butter Ice cream 1.00

Attributes on cells

You can put attributes on individual cells. For example, numbers may look better aligned right.

You type You get
{| border="1"
|align="right" | 12,333.00
|align="right" | 500.00
|Ice cream
|align="right" | 1.00
Orange Apple 12,333.00
Bread Pie 500.00
Butter Ice cream 1.00

You can also use cell attributes when you are listing multiple cells on a single line. Note that the cells are separated by ||, and within each cell the attributes and cell contents are separated by |.

You type You get
{| border="1"
| Orange || Apple     || align="right" | 12,333.00
| Bread  || Pie       || align="right" | 500.00
| Butter || Ice cream || align="right" | 1.00
Orange Apple 12,333.00
Bread Pie 500.00
Butter Ice cream 1.00

Attributes on rows

You can set attributes for individual rows.

You type You get
{| border="1"
|- style="font-style:italic; color:green;"
|Ice cream
Orange Apple 12,333.00
Bread Pie 500.00
Butter Ice cream 1.00

One-pixel table borders

A one-pixel border can be achieved using separated borders or the collapsing border model.

You type You get
{|style="border-collapse: separate; border-spacing: 0; border-width: 1px; border-style: solid; border-color: #000; padding: 0"
!style="border-style: solid; border-width: 0 1px 1px 0"| Orange
!style="border-style: solid; border-width: 0 0 1px 0"| Apple
|style="border-style: solid; border-width: 0 1px 0 0"| Bread
|style="border-style: solid; border-width: 0"| Pie
Orange Apple
Bread Pie
{|style="border-collapse: collapse; border-width: 1px; border-style: solid; border-color: #000"
!style="border-style: solid; border-width: 1px"| Orange
!style="border-style: solid; border-width: 1px"| Apple
|style="border-style: solid; border-width: 1px"| Bread
|style="border-style: solid; border-width: 1px"| Pie
Orange Apple
Bread Pie

HTML colspan and rowspan

You can use HTML colspan and rowspan attributes on cells for advanced layout.

You type You get
{| border="1"
!colspan="6"|Shopping List
|rowspan="2"|Bread & Butter
|colspan="2"|Ice cream
Shopping List
Bread & Butter Pie Buns Danish Croissant
Cheese Ice cream Butter Yoghurt

Table attributes with CSS styles

CSS style attributes can be added to tables with or without other HTML attributes.

You type You get
{| style="color:green; background-color:#ffffcc;" cellpadding="10" cellspacing="0" border="1"
|Ice cream 
Orange Apple
Bread Pie
Butter Ice cream

Attributes can be added to the caption and headers as follows.

You type You get
{| border="1" cellpadding="20" cellspacing="0"
|+ align="bottom" style="color:#e76700;" |''Food complements''
|Ice cream 
Food complements
Orange Apple
Bread Pie
Butter Ice cream

Accessibility of table header cells

Table header cells do not explicitly specify which table data cells they apply to (those on their right on the same row, or those below them on the same column). When the table is displayed in a visual 2D environment, this is usually obvious. However when tables are rendered on non-visual medias, you can help the browser to determine which table header cell applies to the description of any selected cell (in order to repeat its content in some accessibility helper) using a scope="row" or scope="col" attribute on table header cells. In most cases with simple tables, you'll use scope="col" on all header cells of the first row, and scope="row" on the first cell of the following rows:

You type You get
{| border="1" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="2"
!scope="col"| Item
!scope="col"| Quantity
!scope="col"| Price
!scope="row"| Bread
| 0.3 kg
| $0.65
!scope="row"| Butter
| 0.125 kg
| $1.25
!scope="row" colspan="2"| Total
| $1.90
Item Quantity Price
Bread 0.3 kg $0.65
Butter 0.125 kg $1.25
Total $1.90

Sortable tables

To make a table sortable add class="sortable" as shown below.

You type You get
{| class="wikitable sortable"
|+Sortable table
! Letter !! Number !! Title
| c || 1 || Five
| b || 3 || rows
| e || 5 || of
| d || 2 || text
| a || 0 || here.
Sortable table
Letter Number Title
c 1 Five
b 3 rows
e 5 of
d 2 text
a 0 here.

It is also possible to make some columns sortable and others non-sortable:

You type You get
{| class="wikitable sortable"
|+Sortable table
! Letter !! class="unsortable"|Number !! Title
| c || 1 || Five
| b || 3 || rows
| e || 5 || of
| d || 2 || text
| a || 0 || here.
Sortable table
Letter Number Title
c 1 Five
b 3 rows
e 5 of
d 2 text
a 0 here.

Table pitfalls!

If you start a cell on a new line with a negative number with a minus sign (or a parameter that evaluates to a negative number), your table can get broken, because the characters |- will be parsed as the wiki markup for table row, not table cell. To avoid this, insert a space before the value (| -6) or use in-line cell markup (|| -6).


Note Note: Images must be uploaded to the wiki before they can be embedded in a wiki page.

Uploading an image

  1. In the sidebar, under “toolbox”, click “Upload file”
  2. Select the “Source filename”
  3. You can fill in the optional “Summary” text. Note Note: This is a plain text summary, not wikitext.

After you upload a file, you will be redirected to the “file description page”. You should edit this page to provide more information about the file. For example, you should explain where you got the file from, and what its copyright status is.

Supported media types for images

The following file formats are supported on Nottinghack Wiki:

  • .jpg or .jpeg : bitmap image compressed in the standard JPEG format (this lossy format is most suitable for photographs).
  • .png : bitmap image in the Portable Network Graphics format (specified by the W3 Consortium).
  • .gif : bitmap image in the legacy Graphics Interchange Format.
  • .svg : scalable image in the Scalable Vector Graphics format (specified by the W3 Consortium).


MediaWiki widgets allow you to embed web widgets into a wiki page. Each widget has its own documentation, which can be found in the list of available widgets.


Pages in MediaWiki are partitioned into 'namespaces', which indicate the purpose of the pages at a high level. Namespaces are specified in page titles by prefixing the page name with "namespace:". For example, the prefix "Help:" in this page's title ("Help:Reference guide") indicates that this page is in the Help namespace.

Note Note: Colons and prefixes can also appear in page titles without indicating a namespace: The page Foo:Reference guide is a page located in the Main namespace, because the namespace "Foo" does not exist. Similarly the page Help:Foo:Reference guide is in the "Help" namespace.

Standard namespaces

These are the namespaces that exist on Nottinghack Wiki. Pages in some namespaces have special properties.

Namespace Purpose Special properties
Media An alias used to link directly to media files.
Special Used to group special pages, reports and interfaces that are generated 'on demand' by MediaWiki and which are not directly editable. Not directly editable
Main This namespace typically contains the bulk of the content pages in a wiki. It has no special properties. However, {{NAMESPACE}} will equal '' on these pages.
Talk Used for discussion attached to the main namespace. It has no special properties.
User Each user has a corresponding page in the User namespace, which is linked to from edit histories, watchlists, recent changes, etc; wherever an individual user is uniquely identified. This page, and subpages of it, can be used by users to record information about themselves or to test and draft new content.
User talk A discussion space associated with the User namespace, mainly used to leave messages for particular users or inform them of discussions that may be of interest to them.
Nottinghack Wiki Normally used for content pages that document the operation and development of the wiki. It has no special properties.
Nottinghack Wiki talk Normally used for discussions related to the associated content pages. It has no special properties.
File Used to store metadata for images, videos, sound files and other media accessed via the Media namespace. Each file has a corresponding page in the File namespace which is often used to hold licensing data. Linking directly to a page in this namespace instead includes the media file inline in the page. See #Images for details of the link syntax. There is an alias "Image" for the File namespace.
File talk Normally used for discussion of the media files. It has no special properties.
MediaWiki Used to hold system messages and other important content.
MediaWiki talk A talk namespace that is normally used for discussions related to the system messages. It has no special properties.
Template Used to hold templates. To facilitate this it has the special property that it is the default namespace for transclusions. When transcluding from this namespace the namespace can be dropped, ie. {{Template:Info}} can be written as {{Info}}
Template talk A talk namespace that is normally used for discussion of the template pages. It has no special properties.
Help Used to hold help files, instructions and 'how-to' guides. It has no special properties.
Help talk Used for discussions related to the help pages. It has no special properties.
Category Contains categories (dynamic lists of other pages). To facilitate this, linking directly to a category page does not output an inline link, but instead adds the page into the associated category page. Adds page to category.
Category talk Used for discussion of the category pages. It has no special properties.


The Nottinghack Wiki uses the following prefixes:

Team: - prefix for volunteer work Teams
Widget: - prefix for Javascript widgets

Talk pages

The MediaWiki namespaces are organised in pairs, with each pair containing a 'subject namespace' and a 'discussion namespace'. Every page in a subject namespace has an associated talk page which can be used to communicate with other users. Talk pages can be accessed by clicking the “discussion” tab at the top of a page. Simply edit the page as normal to add your comment.

User pages

A user page in the User namespace is a page about a member of the wiki. If you have registered, you can create your own user page. Your user page is linked in the top right. Others will see links to your user page from various places which assist wiki collaboration, including the “Recent changes” and “page history” pages. Every user page also has an associated "user talk page". This is a special kind of talk page, for leaving messages directed at a particular user. Also see Wikipedia:User pages.

See also


Categories provide a way to automatically index and navigate between related pages.

Navigating categories

Categories can be navigated in a structured way from Category:Root, or using the flat list of all categories Special:Categories.

Adding a page to a category

To add a page to a category, include the following text (where Name is the name of the category). The usual place to add it is at the bottom of the page. You can use several of these tags to add a page to multiple categories.


For a complete list of all existing categories see Special:Categories.

Creating a category page

Pages in the Category: namespace contain:

  • a normal body of text that can be edited, like any other page; and
  • an automatically-generated list of the pages in that category.

If a category is used without creating a 'category page', it will be isolated from others and serve little purpose for organization or navigation. A category page can be created the same way as other wiki pages (see starting a new page); just add "Category:" before the page title.

Managing the category hierarchy

Categories may belong to other categories in a hierarchy. Since category pages are much like any other page, a Category tag may be added to the bottom of a category page. It is a good practice to organize all categories into a hierarchy with a single top level category (we use Category:Root).

For a list of categories that have been used without a category page, see Special:WantedCategories.

Linking to a category

To create a normal wiki link to a category page (without adding your page to the category), prefix the link name with a colon. For example:

[[:Category:Help|Help category]]Help category

Redirect pages that redirect to categories must also use the colon, otherwise they will be added to the category instead of redirecting.

Specifying subsection on category page

By default pages in a category are grouped together alphabetically; by the first letter of the page name. A sort group can be specified using carets ^. For example, Member's Meetings are grouped by Hackspace year. Example wiki markup:

[[Category:Member's Meetings|^Year 4^]]

See also


Subpages introduce hierarchical organization into wiki pages, with levels of the hierarchy separated by slashes (/).

Where it works

By default, MediaWiki's subpage feature is turned off in the main namespace, but can be used on talk pages and user pages. In namespaces where the feature is switched off, any slashes (/) within a page name are simply part of the page name and do nothing special.

How it works

Slashes (/) within a page name break the page into parent and subpages, recursively, e.g.:

Note that the part of page names after a slash is case sensitive. In subpages, a link back to the parent page will automatically appear at the top.

Use of subpages

Some typical uses for subpages are:

  • to create archives of old discussions under a talk page
  • to create scratchpad editing spaces under a user page

Subpages are useful for organising information hierarchically. On the other hand, subpages tend to have a long name that is hard to remember, so it may be more user-friendly to use them as little as possible. You can also organize pages with the category feature, which is more suitable for creating a hierarchical network of information.

See also


MediaWiki templates can be used to include standard messages on several wiki pages. If you change a template then the text will be updated on all of the pages where it is used.

Template creation

Templates are standard wiki pages whose content is designed to be transcluded. You can create them like any other wiki page. Templates follow a convention that the name is prefixed with "Template:".

Using templates

The tag {{Name}} transcludes the content of a template (stored in the page [[Template:Name]]). For example, if you have a page called "Template:Welcome" with the contents:

Hello! Welcome to the wiki.

You can insert the code {{Welcome}} in any other page, and when that page is viewed the text "Hello! Welcome to the wiki." will appear.

An ordinary wiki page can also be used as a template, simply by specifying the full name with the namespace:

  • {{:Pagename}} includes [[Pagename]]
  • {{Foo:Pagename}} includes [[Foo:Pagename]]

Controlling the time of transclusion

You write Effect
{{Name}} Transcludes the content of the template (stored in the page [[Template:Name]]) every time the page is fetched and displayed. If the template is later changed, the transcluding pages will automatically change too.
{{msgnw:Name}} Includes the template in a form that displays it as raw wiki syntax (the way <nowiki> does).
{{subst:Name}} This tag is substituted with the contents of the named template at the time you save the page. The contents can then be edited separately from the original in the template page. Note: don not use this if you want to continually propagate changes from the source template to the pages that reference it.
{{safesubst:Name}} A type of substitution that doesn't break transclusion, see wikipedia:Help:Substitution#The safesubst: modifier.


MediaWiki allows parameters to be passed to a template when it is transcluded. There are three ways to pass parameters: anonymously, by number, and by name.

To pass in anonymous parameters to a template, list the values of those parameters sequentially:

{{Thankyou|all your effort|Joe}}

Inside the template these parameters can be accessed by number:

{{{1}}}all your effort

To pass in parameters by number, identify each parameter when passing it:

{{Thankyou|2=Joe|1=all your effort}}

The third way of passing parameters is by name, instead of numbers.

{{Thankyou|signature=Joe|reason=all your effort}}

Inside the template these parameters can be accessed by name:

{{{reason}}}all your effort

The advantage of using named parameters in your template, besides also being flexible in the order parameters can be passed, is that it makes the template code much easier to understand if there are many parameters.

Default values

It is possible to define default values for parameters in case no value is passed in. The syntax to retrieve a parameter using a default value is:


The default parameter can be ommitted, in which case it defaults to an empty string:


Control template inclusion

Anything between <noinclude> and </noinclude> will be displayed only when the template page is viewed directly.

Possible applications are:

  • Categorising templates
  • Explanatory text about how to use the template.

To give usage information, include an example like this one on the template page:

== Usage ==
{{Thankyou|reason=your reason|signature=your signature}}

The converse is <includeonly>. Text between <includeonly> and </includeonly> will be processed and displayed only when the page is being included. The obvious application is to add all pages containing a given template to a category, without putting the template itself into that category. Notw: When you change the categories applied by a template, the categorization of the pages that use that template may not be updated until some time later.

Organizing templates

For templates to be effective, users need to find them, and find out how to use them. See the list of all templates.

See also

Magic Words

Magic words are strings of text that MediaWiki interprets as a value or function. Page-dependent magic words will affect or return data about the current page (by default), even if the word is added through a transcluded template or included system message.

Behavior switches

A behavior switch controls the layout or behaviour of the page and can often be used to specify desired omissions and inclusions.

Word Description
__NOTOC__ Hides the table of contents (TOC).
__FORCETOC__ Forces the table of contents to appear at its normal position (above the first header).
__TOC__ Places a table of contents at the word's current position (overriding __NOTOC__). If this is used multiple times, the table of contents will appear at the first word's position.
__NEWSECTIONLINK__ Adds a link ("+" by default) beside the "edit" tab for adding a new section on a non-talk page (see Adding a section to the end).
__NOINDEX__ Tell search engines not to index the page (ie, do not list in search engines' results).


Variables return information about the current page, wiki, or date. Their syntax is similar to templates.

Parser functions

Parser functions have the same syntax as templates. The names are sometimes prefixed with a hash to distinguish them from template page names.

Conditional expressions


This function tests whether the first parameter is non-empty. It evaluates to false if the test string is empty or contains only whitespace characters (spaces, newlines, etc).

{{#if: test string | value if true | value if false }}

This parser function compares two strings and determines whether they are identical.

{{#ifeq: string 1 | string 2 | value if identical | value if different }}

This function evaluates to true if the input string contains an HTML object with class="error", as generated by other parser functions such as #expr, #time and #rel2abs, template and errors such as loops and recursions.

{{#iferror: test string | value if error | value if correct }}

This function evaluates a mathematical expression and returns one of two strings depending on the boolean value of the result:

{{#ifexpr: expression | value if true | value if false }}

This function returns one of two values depending on whether a page exists on the local wiki.

{{#ifexist: page title | value if the page exists | value if it doesn't exist }}

This function compares one input value against several test cases, returning an associated string if a match is found.

{{#switch: comparison string
 | case1 = result1
 | case2 = result2
 | ...
 | caseN = resultN
 | default result0

This function evaluates a mathematical expression and returns the calculated value. See metawikipedia:Help:Calculation for details of operators and constants.

{{#expr: expression }}

URL data

Parser function Input → Output Description
{{localurl:page name}}
{{localurl:page name|query_string}}
{{localurl:MediaWiki}} → /wiki/MediaWiki
{{localurl:MediaWiki|printable=yes}} → /index.php?title=MediaWiki&printable=yes
The relative path to the title.
{{fullurl:page name}}
{{fullurl:page name|query_string}}
{{fullurl:interwiki:remote page name|query_string}}
{{fullurl:Category:Top level}}

{{fullurl:Category:Top level|action=edit}}

The absolute path to the title. This will also resolve Interwiki prefixes.
{{filepath:file name}}
{{filepath:file name|nowiki}}
The absolute URL to the full size media file.
{{#rel2abs: path }}
{{#rel2abs: path | base path }}
{{#rel2abs:.}} → Help:Reference guide
{{#rel2abs:.|Help:Contents}} → Help:Contents
Converts a relative file path into an absolute filepath. In path</path> the following syntax is valid:
  • . → the current level
  • .. → "go up one level"
  • /foo → "go into the subdirectory /foo"

If base path is not specified, the full page name of the page will be used instead.

Date and time functions

Variable Output Description
{{#timel: Y F d, h:i:s}} 2020 June 02, 11:54:01 Displays the current time and date in the local timezone of the wiki. Due to caching, these variables frequently show when the page was cached rather than the current time.

Namespace functions

{{ns:}} returns the localized name for a namespace. {{nse:}} is the equivalent encoded for MediaWiki URLs. It does the same, but it replaces spaces with underscores, making it usable in external links.

Content namespaces Talk namespaces
Usage Output Usage Output
{{ns:-2}} or {{ns:Media}} Media
{{ns:-1}} or {{ns:Special}} Special
{{ns:0}} or {{ns:}} {{ns:1}} or {{ns:Talk}} Talk
{{ns:2}} or {{ns:User}} User {{ns:3}} or {{ns:User talk}} User talk
{{ns:4}} or {{ns:Project}} Nottinghack Wiki {{ns:5}} or {{ns:Project talk}} Nottinghack Wiki talk
{{ns:6}} or {{ns:File}} or {{ns:Image}} File {{ns:7}} or {{ns:File talk}} or {{ns:Image talk}} File talk
{{ns:8}} or {{ns:MediaWiki}} MediaWiki {{ns:9}} or {{ns:MediaWiki talk}} MediaWiki talk
{{ns:10}} or {{ns:Template}} Template {{ns:11}} or {{ns:Template talk}} Template talk
{{ns:12}} or {{ns:Help}} Help {{ns:13}} or {{ns:Help talk}} Help talk
{{ns:14}} or {{ns:Category}} Category {{ns:15}} or {{ns:Category talk}} Category talk

Formatting functions

Usage Input → Output Description
{{lc:string}} {{lc:DATA CENTER}} → data center The lowercase input.
{{lcfirst:string}} {{lcfirst:DATA center}} → dATA center The input with the first character lowercase.
{{uc:string}} {{uc:text transform}} → TEXT TRANSFORM The uppercase input.
{{ucfirst:string}} {{ucfirst:text TRANSFORM}} → Text TRANSFORM The input with the first character uppercase.
{{padleft:xyz|5}} → 00xyz
{{padleft:xyz|5|_}} → __xyz {{padleft:xyz|5|abc}} → abxyz {{padleft:xyz|2}} → xyz
{{padleft:|1|xyz}} → x (first character of the string)
Inserts a string of padding characters (parameter 3) of a specified length (parameter 2) next to a chosen base character or variable (first parameter). The final digits or characters in the base replace the final characters in the padding. The padding string may be truncated if its length does not evenly divide the required number of characters.
{{padright:xyz|5}} → xyz00

{{padright:xyz|5|_}} → xyz__ {{padright:xyz|5|abc}} → xyzab {{padright:xyz|2}} → xyz
{{padright:|1|xyz}} → x

Identical to padleft, but adds padding characters to the right side.
{{plural:2|is|are}} {{plural:0|is|are}} → are
{{plural:1*1|is|are}} → is
{{plural:21 mod 10|is|are}} → are
{{plural:{{#expr:21 mod 10}}|is|are}} → is
{{plural:1|is|are}} → is
{{plural:2|is|are}} → are
Outputs the singular form (second parameter) if the first parameter is an expression equalling one; the plural form (third parameter) otherwise. Plural transformations are used for languages like Russian based on "count mod 10".
{{#titleparts: pagename | number of segments to return | first segment to return }}

{{#titleparts: Talk:Foo/bar/baz }}Talk:Foo/bar/baz
{{#titleparts: Talk:Foo/bar/baz | 1 }}Talk:Foo
{{#titleparts: Talk:Foo/bar/baz | 2 }}Talk:Foo/bar
{{#titleparts: Talk:Foo/bar/baz | 2 | 2 }}bar/baz

Separates a pagetitle into segments based on slashes, then returns some of those segments as output. If the number of segments parameter is not specified, it defaults to "0", which returns all the segments. If the first segment parameter is not specified or is "0", it defaults to "1":

Miscellaneous functions

Managing files and pages

Starting a new page

When a link points to an article that doesn't exist yet, the link will be coloured red. Clicking a red link will take you to the edit page where you can submit the new article. Usually this is the best way to create a new page, because it means that right from the start the page will be linked from at least one other place on the wiki. Normally there is no reason to create a page without first creating a red link to it. An alternative is to search for a page that doesn't exist (using the search box), which will provide a link to create a new stand-alone page.

Copying a page

There is no facility to copy a page in MediaWiki, so you must copy and paste the wikitext. It is not possible to copy the edit history from one page to another.

Moving (renaming) a page

The name of a page can be changed by using the "move" tab at the top. This tab is only visible if you are logged in. By using this feature, you also move the editing history of the page, which allows people to see how the contents of the page were built up, and who contributed what. Because the move operation leaves behind a redirect (see Redirects), it should not result in any broken links, however you might want to find pages which link to the old title, and change their text to link directly to the new title (see Unlinking a page).

Deciding on a page title can be a difficult aspect of wiki organization, and one which can provoke debates. If the move could be considered controversial, you should propose the move first (see Help:Page deletion and redirection).

As with all wiki editing, a move operation can be reversed. To reverse a move operation, simply move the page back to the previous name. If a page is renamed from "A" to "B" and then back to "A", a page with the title "B" will still be left behind, as a redirect from "B" to "A". To remove this page see deleting a page). Alternatively, users with the suppressredirect permission will see the option to move a page without creating a redirect.

Deleting a page

Normal users cannot permanently delete a wiki page. This is a deliberate design feature; every kind of editing operation can be reverted and that includes resurrecting deleted pages. If for some reason you need a page to be deleted urgently, please contact the wiki channel on Slack. For any other deletion that might be controversial or disruptive, you should propose the change first using Template:Delete

Unlinking a page

The "What links here" feature in the Tools (at the bottom of the sidebar) will tell you which other Wiki pages link to the current page. Always use this feature to check before deleting a page. These related pages will need to be edited for their links to reflect the change.


Redirects are used to forward users from one page name to another. They can be useful if a particular article is referred to by multiple names, or has alternative punctuation, capitalization or spellings.

Creating a redirect

You may start a new page with the name you want to direct from (see Starting a new page). You can also use an existing page that you are making inactive as a page by going to that page and using the "edit" tab at the top. In either case, insert the following code at the very start of the Edit window for the page:

#REDIRECT [[pagename]]

where pagename is the name of the destination page. There must be no space before the "#" symbol. Any text before the code will disable the code and prevent a redirect.

Double redirects

A double redirect is a page redirecting to a page which is itself a redirect, and it will not work. Instead, people will be presented with a view of the next redirect page. This is a deliberate restriction, partly to prevent infinite loops, and partly to keep things simple. Double redirects should be eliminated by changing them to be 1-step redirects instead. Use the "what links here" toolbox link to find double redirects to a particular page, or use Special:DoubleRedirects to find them throughout the whole wiki.

A redirect to a page in the category namespace

To prevent a page that redirects to a category from appearing in the category, precede the word "Category" with a colon:

#REDIRECT [[:Category:Glossary]]

See also

System Information

Nottinghack Wiki is running MediaWiki 1.32.2. See:

See also