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Comments on WindowsInstallCookbook. NOTE: Please go to Support and raise a support question if you are having trouble with installing on Windows - this page is just to flag cookbook documentation errors.

I used your cookbook fairly successfully starting on 25 Feb 2002, but it still took me about 12 hours before I had TWiki running happily! (How long would it have taken without your cookbook?!) I ran into a few problems that I will comment on below.

My configuration varied a bit from your instructions, and so I tried to interpret everything in that light. My changes were as follows:

  • I installed Apache to its suggested default directory of "C:\Program Files\Apache Group\Apache".
  • I installed Cygwin in "D:\cygwin"
  • I installed TWiki into "D:\twiki".

First, some feedback on your generally excellent cookbook.

  • In "4. Install Cygwin", I would integrate the "Tips on using the installer" more seemlessly into the instructions. Specifically, I would simply instruct the reader to "Hit the View button..." until the "Full" list is displayed. (I spent some time trying to guess what group each of the packages was in, because I did not read ahead!)
    • Good idea, will do -- RD
  • I think you need to add the following to the list of Cygwin packages to download: unzip, lynx, wget. (I don't know if TWiki requires these, but later in the Perl packages (or TWiki? -- can't remember) setup, the system was complaining that it could not find these packages, and I didn't know if it was safe to ignore these complaints, so I downloaded them.
    • unzip is required (should have spotted that myself!), and wget is probably a good idea - however Lynx gave me annoying pop-up windows complaining about a missing ncurses DLL every time the CPAN script tried it. This may be because I was upgrading an older Cygwin installation though. -- RD
  • In general, in all of the instructions for editing configuration files, I would make it very clear where "Cygwin" paths are required and where "Windows" paths are required. The "Windows" paths should always include the drive letter.
    • I've tried to do this (usually by just saying /twiki or c:/twiki to indicate this) - as long as the pathname variants are built the same way as the examples (e.g. c:/foo) it should all work. -- RD
  • In "Configure Cygwin for binary mode", I think there is a typo. "*mount -b -c cygdrive*" should be "*mount -b -c /cygdrive*".
    • Well spotted, this is already fixed. -- RD
  • In "3. Configure TWiki", for the $pubDir, $templateDir and $dataDir entries, I think you should include the drive letter ("C:" in your configuration). (Not sure if this is really required, but it would help to clarify Windows vs Cygwin paths.) Similarly, should "$safeEnvPath" be Cygwin or Windows?
    • I thought about doing this but I wasn't sure if it would cause problems with Cygwin's binary mode - I think in practice that c:/twiki type paths will be matched to the /twiki mountpoint, which is binmode, and hence all files named c:/twiki/something will be in binmode. It would be a lot simpler to just use Apache on Cygwin, then everything would be a Cygwin path... It would also make it possible to build Apache modules without buying Visual C++ - see TWikiOnCygwin for more on this approach. -- RD
  • The $mailPogram variable should probably be empty or commented out, since your configuration uses Net::SMTP.
    • I have Net::SMTP working fine - the lib/TWiki/Net.pm module actually tests for Net::SMTP being installed at line 4, and uses this without having to unset this variable, although it looks a bit odd. -- RD
  • In "Installing Required Perl Modules" - "install Net::SMTP", move the "Make sure you answer 'Y' to the question..." instruction to the beginning or emphasize it more! (I missed this on the first pass and spent some time pondering how to recover. Finally got it using "force install".)
    • Will do. -- RD
  • For us poor Windows users, editing the configuration files using "nano" is a real pain! It would be most helpful if you could find/recommend/link to a real Windows editor that can correctly handle the Unix-type text files (with LF instead of CRLF line separators). This would also be helpful for ongoing maintenance of the configuration. (Unfortunately, I don't know of such an editor that I can recommend.)

  • Two come to mind, both free and both handle the windows/dos/unix/cygwin transition without trouble. The first is editpad classic. The second is Crimson Editor. Be advised that Crimson Editor is a programming editor, if you want line wrapping you need to do it. A feature I personally like, but is uncommon in editors. Editpad will do this also, but you need to turn "break lines" off.
  • I use Crimson in "real life" because it allows me to remote connect to servers and edit there. -- KurtFingerlow 23 Nov 2002

It would be helpful to add some instructions on how to enable basic authentication, since many in your audience (like myself) may want to turn this on immediately. Most of the time I wasted went into figuring out how to get this working. I tried to follow some instructions on how to do this in the TWiki.TWiki web, but it didn't quite work. After many hours, I figured out that the problem was caused by the following. In the .htaccess file, I initially set:

AuthUserFile /TWiki/data/.htpasswd

instead of

AuthUserFile d:/TWiki/data/.htpasswd

The reason I made this mistake is that I was still confused about where to use Cygwin paths and where to use Windows paths. (If I had installed everything on C:, it probably would have worked with the initial setting!)

  • Everything in the Apache httpd.conf must use Windows paths, since you are installing the Windows version of Apache - see the early section about the Apache vs. Cygwin environments, though this could probably be improved. -- RD

  • Use windows paths yes, but can still use foreward slashes in those paths - and if what you're pointing to is in the same partition, then the drive letter can be omitted too. -- DavidLeBlanc

To contact me for questions or feedback, please use mailto:mwittmann@atsworldwidePLEASENOSPAM.com, since I may not be visiting this page again for a while.

-- MartinWittmann - 27 Feb 2002

RE: Windows editor capable to edit Unix-style files on Windows: I can recommend Multi-Edit, excellent customizable programmer's editor. Not free frown but demo available. smile

-- PeterMasiar - 27 Feb 2002

Thanks for the detailed comments, and I'm glad the cookbook helped - the next step is an installer (there's already a good first cut at one posted by someone else).

I use the PFE editor on Windows, for both DOS and Unix file formats - it's fine for most editing except for hard-core programmers. It's freeware, but no longer developed - http://www.lancs.ac.uk/people/cpaap/pfe/ and also at http://www.winsite.com/. Other freeware editors are listed at http://directory.google.com/Top/Computers/Software/Freeware/Editors/ - not sure which ones support Unix files but JED probably does since it has a Unix version. TextPad is a commercial editor with excellent features, and a free demo with only a slightly annoying nag screen.

I've put in detailed responses above to your other comments.

-- RichardDonkin - 27 Feb 2002

I've implemented most of Martin's comments - the one about making it clear where to use Windows and Unix format paths is a bit harder to implement, but I've put in a section on this near the end, called Next Steps.

-- RichardDonkin - 28 Feb 2002

I'm close to giving up hope on IIS, so I'm testing out Apache with mod_ntlm, instead. I had a few problems with the cookbook:

  • Neither grep rcs-5 /setup.log.full nor man rcsintro worked for me, the former because, I assume, my logs didn't end up where yours did, and the latter because I didn't install man.
    • Did you run this from a Cygwin shell? The first command should always work from a Cygwin shell, as it normally puts the logs under '/' in Cygwin terms, or 'c:/cygwin' in Windows terms. -- [ RichardDonkin ]
  • When I specified c:\apache as the installation directory, Apache installed in c:\apache\Apache. I ended up reinstalling for a different reason, and selected the c: drive from the drop-down instead. That gave me the desired result.
  • It would be nice to suggest a popular timezone or two. Mine is EST5EDT.
    • I have added an example for EST5EDT in comments, showing how this is constructed. -- [ RichardDonkin ]
  • It seems a bit much to backup files that you just got out of a zip archive anyway. I confess, I didn't do it. If I were backing up the production twiki, I wouldn't do it from cygwin (nothing against cygwin - I'd just want the backup a lot farther away from my experiments).
    • Fair point - I was just trying to guard against mistyping the rather complex Perl regular expressions. Backups done within the cookbook are easier to write the recovery steps for - using the Zip file depends on where it is and the tools available. -- [ RichardDonkin ]
  • The cpan section is pretty obscure - some advice on how to tell whether you'd done the configuration correctly wouldn't hurt, even if it's just "edit TWiki/TWikiPreferences then register".
    • These tests are already covered by the testing section at the end of the doc. -- [ RichardDonkin ]
  • My machine didn't have a /c/temp (c:\temp) directory, so I got a check-in error the first time I tried to save a page. Also, rdiff was giving me blank diffs until I made the directory.
    • Will add creating this to the install, though in fact it was already mentioned in the Apache config extract. I'm never sure what the standard temp directory is on Windows - maybe c:\windows\temp? -- [ RichardDonkin ]

At one point, I had a crash (I'm testing this on a bum machine) and IIS started up again after reboot, preventing Apache from running. You might want to mention that the simplest way to get IIS out of your way is to change its port to 8080.

Well, that was the easy part. If I get mod_ntlm working, I'll report back.

-- MaryDeMarco - 17 Apr 2002

Thanks for the detailed comments, I've responded in italics above, with a couple of questions.

If you could confirm whether you have any setting for TEMP or TMP in the Windows environment (either System or User), and what it is, that would be helpful, as it's unclear whether this variable exists by default.

-- RichardDonkin - 18 Apr 2002

C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Local Settings\Temp is where temp is on Windows2000. It varies by login - for security I suppose. There are user enviornment variables for both TMP and TEMP pointing to that directory. There are also system environment variables TMP and TEMP pointing to c:\WINNT\TEMP. As far as I can tell, all the temp files that get created (i.e. by WinZip) end up in the user level temp file. The system temp file seems to contain junk from Internet Explorer. [ DavidLeBlanc 19 Apr 2002 ]

About cygwin: Yes, I used bash, but the machine wasn't entirely clean. I'd installed some basic cygwin commands on it previously, just to show someone how it was done. That's probably the reason my logs were elsewhere.

TEMP and TMP: The system variables are both set to C:\WINNT\TEMP - that's on W2K Server. The user variables are in the user's Documents and Settings somewhere.

mod_ntlm: The module is working like a charm. I'll write something up about it in WindowsInstallModNTLM.

-- MaryDeMarco - 18 Apr 2002

The cookbook was very good, although it did not resolve my particular problem (Perl/CPAN can't install Digest::SHA1, some kind of make/dllwrap error) -- I understand this is outside the scope of the cookbook, but if anyone has a solution...

Also, I elected to use Apache under cygwin instead of the Windows Apache install - I think this actually made things easier, in that you didn't have to worry about using Windows notation (C:\) in any files (apache, twiki, (everything) is installed under cygwin). [who needs Windows?]

again, good work -- ChrisWolske - 07 Jun 2002

Thanks, feedback is always good and positive feedback is even better smile ... I considered using Cygwin Apache for the cookbook, but unfortunately it doesn't seem to start reliably as a service, making it unsuitable for a production system IMO. I do use it on my Windows laptop as it lets me develop for TWiki using basically the same pathnames as a Linux system.

-- RichardDonkin - 08 Jun 2002

Richard, a great piece of work smile In general, my install went according to your plan. However, there were some differences which may be useful to note.

During Cygwin installation, I explicitly chose the files you specify for downloading and deselected the ones not mentioned. I installed on a completely virgin W2K SP2 PC - no previous Cygwin/Apache components installed. Some of the 'standard' commands in the instructions were not installed as part of Cygwin install. "cat" and "head" were not found by bash, and when building Digest::SHA1 I got the following error:

/usr/lib/gcc-lib/i686-pc-cygwin/2.95.3-5/../../../../i686-pc-cygwin/bin/ld: cannot find -luser32

The following modules sorted all of these problems:

  • diffutils (note that diff has been superceded by diffutils) (fixes the "cat" and "head" problems)
  • w32api (fixes the "cannot find -luser32" problem)

Again, Richard, a beautiful guide to installing. Thanks hugely!

-- RossC - June 17 2002

Thanks for the feedback. I'm glad you found the cookbook useful! I'm updating the list of Cygwin packages now. Might be easier if I said to not deselect any packages, but it's good to have the absolute minimal set of packages to reduce disk space requirements a bit.

Could you run a du -k under / in Cygwin, and also under /c/apache? This would help in estimating total disk space requirements for a new installation of TWiki on Cygwin.

-- RichardDonkin - 17 Jun 2002

Some quick feedback, which hopefully hasn't already been mentioned above (haven't read through everything yet).

  • cat is not available with the packages mentioned in your list (unless I missed something). It might be part of textutils or cygutils . Also gzip, tar, and lynx will needed by the Perl module installation , or at least I assume they are needed because cpan asks where they are.

  • In Configuring Twiki you change the rcs path from within-cygwin to without-cygwin notation with no explanation as to why one should ignore the instructions on the previous line. (Ditto for changing the shebang lines later ).
#                   RCS directory (find out by 'which rcs')
$rcsDir           = "c:/cygwin/bin";

-- MattWilkie - 26 Jun 2002

Thanks for the feedback. cat is in textutils according to zcat /etc/setup/textutils.lst.gz | grep cat - will add that package, and gzip and tar. Lynx is not required even though cpan asks about it, I put a comment elsewhere about how it was best avoided since it causes a DLL error when upgrading from older Cygwin versions.

Good point about the RCS path - not sure why it was using c:/ format, but it doesn't hurt so I won't fix this right now. I'd rather avoid making changes that could introduce bugs as I don't have a lot of time for testing.

-- RichardDonkin - 27 Jun 2002

For anyone who is using Cygwin Apache rather than the cookbook's Apache for Windows - a recent version of the Cygwin Apache package (1.3.24-5 perhaps) moved a lot of directories around, e.g. /etc/httpd to /etc/apache and /var/log/httpd to /var/log/apache, so take care to get the pathnames right for your installation. Running httpd -V will show the actual pathnames used by your Apache installation.

Generally, Apache for Windows is better for server installations, I just use Cygwin Apache on my laptop because it lets me run the TWiki scripts unmodified, which is more convenient for development purposes.

-- RichardDonkin - 28 Jul 2002

Howdy, I just installed Twiki on Win2k using the cookbook and it was pretty much trouble free. It took me just a couple of hours. Excellent job! One suggestion I have is that in the list of cygwin prerequisites that you list the apps and the bundle they're contained in. As it is, you have to guess and go looking around to find which bundle contains which app. Not too hard, but I eventually got tired of it and just installed everything. wink

-- MikeSluyter

Hi Mike - not sure I understand exactly what the problem was here. I just checked the cookbook again - the list of Cygwin pre-reqs is a list of Cygwin packages, as it's meant to be. So you can do this to get a list of the packages needed for the cookbook (package list taken from cookbook):

    cygcheck -c bash diffutils gcc grep gzip make nano ncftp pcre perl rcs tar textutils unzip w32api wget

When you're installing using the Cygwin setup program, you can see the packages in alphabetical order (just follow the cookbook instructions exactly) to make it easier to find packages.

-- RichardDonkin - 25 Sep 2002

Great Cookbook smile It took me 8 hours to install TWiki, but now it's great. There are only a few problems, but I'm sure there is somebody out there to help me: When I'm registring a new user, an error occured:

Software Error Can't call method "mail" on an undefined value at ../lib/TWiki/Net.pm line 187.

What have I done wrong?

-- BerndSchiffer - 11 Nov 2002

Hi - glad you like it, though it really needs improvement to get installation down below 8 hours! I'm curious to know how the time breaks down, did any parts take a particularly long time?

Anyway - your mail problem is because SMTPMAILHOST is not defined in TWikiPreferences. See NetSmtpFailsToConnect - the TWikiBetaRelease produces a more sensible error message.

Thanks for reporting this, I have just added a new step 8 that sets this variable.

-- RichardDonkin - 12 Nov 2002

Hi Richard. The 8 hour border I have reached is because I haven't been working with cygwin or cpan or perl any time before. Everything about this was new to me, so I wanted to understand every change I made to my system. This Cookbook is already great smile

The mailproblem was solved in minutes - thanks to your advise, it was really helpful! Step 8 is okay smile

Now that I had time to play with my Twiki-Installation there's another problem occured: I wanted to reduce the access to my Twiki, described in TWikiUserAuthentication, with .htaccess. When I wanted to edit a page now, the system will ask for my login an pw, but it won't accept my entries. the .htpasswd is right, and when I register with another username a new user with pw is written down in the .htpasswd. What have I done wrong? (I'm using apache 2 (!) instead of 1)

-- BerndSchiffer - 20 Nov 2002

Your authentication problem is probably due to the use of Apache 2 - other people have had problems with this on both Windows and Linux, see the Support web for some recent questions. I suspect code changes in register will be needed, e.g. to generate MD5 format password entries. Try asking on one of the Apache 2 pages in Support to see if anyone has a patch to fix this already. Or you can just install Apache 1.3, which will definitely work (Apache 2 isn't tested with the cookbook of course).

-- RichardDonkin - 21 Nov 2002

I'm running Apache 2.0.43 on Win XP. I keep getting the message:

Insecure directory in $ENV{PATH} while running with -T switch at ../lib/TWiki/Store.pm line 948.

I've tried restricting all permissions under cygwin, and setting the files readonly under windows, but I still have the problem. Anyone knows a workaround?

-- PhilippeVanpeperstraete - 28 Nov 2002

Hi - have a look at AnotherInsecureDirectory and InsecureDirectory which may help, by setting permissions on the Cygwin bin directory - this seems to be happening a lot, so please log a question under AskedQuestions, using the SupportGuidelines.

-- RichardDonkin - 29 Nov 2002

DavideBaroncelli: wow, for someone not experienced with perl and cygwin your guide is wonderful. But how difficult this is, if compared with the relative easyness of installing java web applications! I have found a couple of problems with your pieces of advice about modules to install in Cygwin: for some reason, the CPAN utility kept failing, so I tried direct installation of modules downloaded from CPAN as I had done for a Solaris installation. It seems that gcc needs the cygwin module "binutils" (containing as.exe). Moreover, the perl Makefile.PL initially failed because all the files under /usr/bin had 700 chmod rights: they need to be set to 755 for the make script to correctly work, and find the location of perl.exe. Please note that after installing binutils and changing the rights on the /usr/bin dir, the cpan utility started working, too (not sure about if both activities were needed for that or not).

-- DavideBaroncelli - 30 Nov 2002

Thanks for the comments - installation could be easier, but a big part of the hassles people have is getting the platform going (Perl, Cygwin and so on). This is analogous to installing a JVM and additional class libraries, which is not that easy in my experience (hassles with CLASSPATH etc). The only way out of this is to write an installer.

I've added binutils to the package list, though I would expect GCC would require this to be installed and thus setup.exe would install it anyway. Are you using Cygwin ntsec mode? If not, I can't see how the directory modes make much difference - unless you have a restrictive umask they should be created as 755 anyway.

-- RichardDonkin - 30 Nov 2002

I agree, installing the platform is definitely hard work: cygwin is good stuff, though, and so is the cpan utility. Actually, after writing my comment I realized that upload was not working for issues that were related to the "Insecure dependency in open while running with -T switch" problem. Again, I do not know what exactly solved the problem, but still I realized that all the perl libraries had 700 mode on, and changed them all. Regarding GCC: no, I installed it today following your guide, and the assembler wasn't installed. NtSec mode? Uh. Don't know. I use the default, I suppose... And please excuse my ignorance, but I do not know what is an umask! smile

-- DavideBaroncelli - 30 Nov 2002

Oh, I see, I have read a little bit about ntsec. It seems I have it turned on, and this is strange, because I have no CYGWIN variable set: well, the doc does not specify if ntsec is by default turned on, but it seems it shouldn't. Anyway, I've found this (here): Permissions: On WinNT with either the ntea or ntsec CYGWIN settings, directory and file permissions may not be set correctly. Since the build process creates directories and files, to be safe you may want to run a `chmod -R +w *' on the entire Perl source tree. This is what I did, and so it has to be related to the "insecure dependency" problem. Hasn't it?

-- DavideBaroncelli - 01 Dec 2002

Thanks for the link - very interesting. In fact, I think it would be better on CygWin to do chmod -w . bin bin/* lib lib/* lib/*/*, when in the /twiki directory. The effect of this is to set the Windows 'read-only' bit on the /twiki directory and on the bin directory and its scripts, and on lib. This should ensure that Perl doesn't complain about write permissions on any directories in either PATH (used for commands) or @INC (the Perl library search path, used to load modules).

I didn't have to do anything to the permissions, so I suspect that your chmod may have created the problem. If you ran it on any other part of your Cygwin directory tree, you should probably do chmod -R -w . on that tree to reverse things. Doing things that are not in the cookbook is not always a good idea wink

-- RichardDonkin - 01 Dec 2002

Copied and pasted the content from Codev web to TWiki web. I also changed all the URLs to make them work when in a distribution, prepending TWiki:Codev. to most of the links.

-- GrantBow - 26 Jan 2003

This cookbook for Windows is a great piece of work, I've installed TWiki and got it running under 9 hours. I have a suggestion for those with problems installing the three modules using cpan and a (security) suggestion for the Apache configuration in the WindowsInstallCookbook.

CPAN, reported errors when using unzip to expand each module after downloading. The error message was "missing file or directory". This had me scratching my head and wondering what to do next. After a couple of hours I found instructions to manually install each module. This page on the cpan site has instructions. Maybe this can be added to the Windows cookbook if cpan errors are encountered.

WindowsInstallCookbook, there should be some additional Apache security configuration to deny direct access to directories. The directories /twiki/data and /twiki/templates are currently eposed to the public when using the WindowsInstallCookbook. The Unix/Linux cookbook instructions for the Apache config eliminates the exposure. Details are in this section fifth bullet point.

-- JeremyWhiting - 26 Feb 2003

Thank you for a great cookbook, it worked very well for me. What a lifesaver!

Just a note, I was installing on a Windows 2000 machine running the Apache installed as part of Oracle. So the Apache service is actually called OracleOraHome81HTTPServer.

With regard to the cygwin installation. It did take some time to locate all the packages, here's the list as I saw it:

  • bash -- Base package
  • binutils -- Devel package
  • diffutils -- Base package
  • gcc -- Devel package
  • grep -- Base package
  • gzip -- Base package
  • make -- Devel package
  • nano -- Editors package
  • ncftp -- Net package
  • pcre -- Libs package
  • perl -- Interpreters package
  • rcs -- Devel package
  • tar -- Base package
  • textutils -- Base package
  • unzip -- Base package
  • w32api -- Libs package
  • wgets -- Web package

If you decide to install the SyntaxHighlightingPlugin, then you can also save time by adding enscript from the Text package to this list.

In the Configure Apache (part 1) section, when adding the lines following the change to the Directory line, you may want to note that the added sections after go after the end of that Directory section, marked with a


In section 5 (Minor changes to TWiki scripts), the line number I found was number 227, and the line was changed to:

$userEntry = $user . ':{SHA}' . MIME::Base64::encode_base64( sha1( $passwd ) );

Finally, in section 8, it took me a while to figure out where I needed to set SMTPMAILHOST. Eventually I found the TWikiPreferences page. For a TWiki novice, which I still am, it would help to point this out.

You may want to add a section pointing out the availability of Skins and Plugins.

-- BernardFarrell - 02 Mar 2003

(Moved Bernard's comments to end - this is the convention on most TWiki pages.)

Re the package finding - if you sort the package names alphabetically using the Setup tool, it's easier to locate them.

If you are using TWikiRelease01Feb2003, the changes to the register script should not be necessary, as this bug was fixed.

I've also updated the SMTPMAILHOST part and the Directory part, and added your name to the contributors list - thanks for the comments!

-- RichardDonkin - 02 Mar 2003

TWikiGuest - 09 Apr 2003 --- jvassar@kcPLEASENOSPAM.rr.com

First, my apologies for asking questions that may have obvious answers to some folk, but they are not very obvious to me.

*** Topic #1 ***

REGARDING page of,


REGARDING section of same said page,

QUOTE..... Pre-requisites and upgrades

You will need to have local administrator rights and to be comfortable with Windows administration.

This cookbook is intended for a clean install, i.e. none of these components are already installed. However, since Cygwin and Apache's installation process is fairly upgrade-friendly, upgrades should work as well - take backups of all your data and config files first, though! .....END QUOTE

What does "- take backups of all your data and config files first, though!" mean? This is a bit cryptic for me, especially for an introduction section. I cannot make sense out of this phrase. This appears to be a warning. Does this mean make backups of your data and config files of your operating system, somethingelse, or both, what?

Unless you are upgrading from a previous apache/cygwin/twiki installation, you probably don't need to worry about backing things up (beyond your normal backup routine). If you are upgrading it is assumed you learned enough from installing the last time to know which things need backing up (e.g. everything you needed to change in order to get twiki to work.) The TWikiUpgradeGuide is a source of further info on this.

*** Topic #2 *** References to Cygwin and Apache are confusing to me. I think these are two seperate programs to be installed. Some places they are referred to as "Cygwin and Apache" and other places they are referred to as "Cygwin Apache". Which is correct?

Plus, despite my reading the WindowsInstallCookbook, TWikiInstallationGuide, TWiki:Codev.WindowsInstallCookbookComments (and the non-Windows stuff) several times, for over two days and trying to analyze its content, it is still confusing. If I am running a Win/95/95/2K environment, is it required that I also need Cygwin and Apache? Do I need one or the other or both of them? I'm sorry, but the provided cookbook text is so heavily commented (and thereby made to be convoluted) I can't tell where to stop and start on this point. The comments are fine, they simply break up the flow of thought so badly, they really complicate the reading, retention and comprehension process of my mind.

On the other hand, on the same page, if you go to the "Installing Components" section, there Cygwin and Apache are obviously two seperate programs. Determining this required a lot of jumping back and forth within the Cookbook to determine this particular point, especially since as a novice I am only remotely familiar with Cygwin (never heard of it) or Apache (heard of the program). Plus, if I am reading between the lines correctly Apache is for Win-X environments and Cygwin is for Unix/Linux environments. Is this a true point? If so this is not a very clear point, especially when some comments treat Cygwin and Apache as being one program. I.e., I ran across the compound name "Cygwin Apache". (That compound name IS DEFINITELY buried in there somewhere, I just can't remember where.) Furthermore, I can not tell how to run Twiki without it being used as a server. I think Apache and/or Cygwin sets your computer up as a server environment in which Twiki can then run on a LAN or an internet webpage, is this correct? Again, determining that point is not totally straight forward for a novice.

_TWiki will run on any combination of Operating System + Perl + Webserver. TWiki requires all three but doesn't care which three. Each permutation has it's own quirks to deal with. Which combination is easiest depends on your personal background and experience. Use the tools you know.

CygWin is a mostly complete port of unix (linux) to Microsoft Windows. It is not advised for Win9x, only NT/2k/XP (it will install but some things just won't work).

Apache is a multi-platform web server. The name is often compounded to denote which platform this particular flavour is. So, for example:

  • Apache-Win32 means a version compiled for ms windows - no other programs need to be installed to use it.
  • Apache-linux means a version of apache compiled for linux. It will only run on a linux machine.
  • Apache-cygwin means the linux version of apache, adapted to the Cygwin unix emulation layer. It will run on Windows only if cygwin is also installed. (The installation program for cygwin will install apache-cygwin as well if that option is selected.) Generally speaking the label cygwin-apache is interchangeable with apache-cygwin.

99.9% of linux machines come with perl preinstalled. Windows does not come with perl so it must be installed seperately. As with apache, there are "native" perl implementations and "emulated" implementations. In the context of twiki the native one is provided by ActiveState and emulated one comes with Cygwin.

*** Topic #3 *** Regarding PERL. Strategy-wise, isn't PERL used for webpage development and that is the only time an administrator would want to use PERL with Twiki? Are there other reasons to use PERL?

TWiki is programmed in perl. It doesn't work unless perl is installed. As a twiki administrator, you personally do not need to "use perl" unless you are modifying (programming) twiki to do something new.

*** Topic #4 *** Regarding "RCS files". RCS files appear to be only accessible by PERL, or at least PERL is the best tool to process or work with RCS files. Is this true? Who would want to work with RCS files? Would RCS files be mostly for webpage or software developers?

RCS is required for TWiki's version control. As with perl, you as an administrator don't need to "do" anything with it. TWiki handles all the RCS commands. As for accessing RCS files (*.txt,v), they are in plain text and you can look at them with any text editor (but don't edit them!).

Thanks for your time & patience.

TWikiGuest - 09 Apr 2003 --- jvassar@kcPLEASENOSPAM.rr.com

You confusion is understandable. I will endeavour to help clarify things a bit. I have interspersed my comments within yours to lessen the need for quoting.

-- MattWilkie - 09 Apr 2003

The revised nutshell summary has been moved to WindowsInstallSummary.

-- MattWilkie - 16 Apr 2003

I encountered an issue having followed the Windows install guidelines. All links to images were broken in the "vanilla" install. With further poking around I found that I could post attachements, but could not retrieve them whether in a SandBox or other Web.

I had Apache log errors similar to the following: -

[Mon Jun 23 14:35:40 2003] [error] [client] c:/twiki/pub/twiki/twikilogos/twikirobot46x50.gif is not executable; ensure interpreted scripts have "#!" first line
[Mon Jun 23 14:35:40 2003] [error] [client] (2)No such file or directory: couldn't spawn child process: c:/twiki/pub/twiki/twikilogos/twikirobot46x50.gif

Wasn't sure what the problem was until I stumbled on a posting containing a different httpd.conf file for the Apache server. The posting had four separate entries for the Twiki directories - as opposed to the one illustrated in the WindowsInstallCookbook. I modified my config file as follows: -

<Directory "c:/twiki/bin">
    AllowOverride All
    Allow From All
    Options  ExecCGI
    SetHandler cgi-script
<Directory "c:/twiki/pub">
    Options FollowSymLinks +Includes
    AllowOverride None
    Allow from all
<Directory "c:/twiki/data">
    Deny from all
<Directory "c:/twiki/templates">
    Deny from all

All my broken link problems were fixed as soon as I had stopped and re-started the Apache service.

-- EddieConba - 23 Jun 2003

A much more stress free alternative is to the approach laid out in this cookbook is to use the TWikiUnixInstaller.

This boils down to:

  • Go to cygwin.com, run the installer, ensuring you install cygwin with Perl, GCC (not GCC-2) Apache, Bash, patchutils, rcs
  • Run the TWikiUnixInstaller - probably in headless/accept all defaults mode.
  • Enjoy.

-- MichaelSparks - 20 Jul 2003

As some people have commented above, installing the platform for TWiki (Cygwin, Perl, GCC, RCS, etc) takes a significant amount of time, not just the actual TWiki installation, but TWikiUnixInstaller should improve the latter. So people who are not already quite familiar with this platform and want to use TWikiUnixInstaller should follow the cookbook up to the point where the TWiki ZIP file is installed, then run TWikiUnixInstaller. I haven't tried this myself, though.

-- RichardDonkin - 28 Dec 2003

I had problems installing TWiki using ActiveState Perl - I couldn't get all paths right. Some tools required cygwin notation, others windows notation - unfortunately for the same path... After switching to cygwin perl it just went fine. Thanks a lot for the WindowsInstallCookbook

-- StefanZumbrunn - 28 Jan 2004

Dear Anyone, The following is what I get when I tried to install Digest::SHA1.

[cpan install and error msgs deleted, see rev1.56 for removed text]

Thanks and best regards! Yunjun

Hi Yunjun, this is a support issue. You might want to file a new incident at Support.WebHome, but first read through Support.InstallDigestSHA1Fails which sounds very similar to your experience. The resolution of that issue was inconclusive -- fixed for some people but not others.

-- MattWilkie - 16 Mar 2004

Dear Anyone,

probably wrong place to ask....

Is there a twiki-apache-perl-RCS "out of the box"-package for windows? Like LAMP og WAMP solutions.

-- VolkerLapczynski - 04 Apr 2004

If file-uploads don't work, check the permissions of your temp dirs. If you read find_tempdir() in CGI.pm you will see the order in which CGI.pm finds a writable directory, but you'll also see that it will use the TMPDIR environment variable if it exists.

So I did the following:

  • add "SetEnv TMPDIR c:/temp" to the <IfModule mod_env.c> section of httpd.conf
  • chmod 777 c:/temp

-- IwanMouwen - 08 Oct 2004

Is it possible to use IIS for TWiki? I have XP Pro, w/IIS. I can download Apache, but would like to limit the work. Maybe it's easier to install the additional web server, Apache, for TWiki than to try to configure TWiki for IIS.

I apologize if this comment seems infantile. If someone has clarification, I would appreciate it.

-- JimNewbold - 20 Oct 2004

I'm trying to setup TWiki on my local pc at work and noticed a change with the Cygwin installation. On the website you explicitly mention that we must use perl 5.6.1 . However appearently the latest cygwin release only comes with and . So I have not been able to select a version below 5.8 .

I will continue working on the rest of the steps but I will appreciate if someone can shed some light on this potential issue.

-- MetinKadaster - 25 Oct 2004

You should be OK with Perl 5.8 - may as well go for though I haven't tried that, as 5.8.5 is just bug fixes on top of 5.8.3, which I have used for some time now as part of a UTF-8 test TWiki (on Linux).

Apache 2.0 is still worth avoiding but I think Cygwin still includes Apache 1.3 so that should not be a problem.

We should change the TWikiSystemRequirements re Perl 5.8.

-- RichardDonkin - 25 Oct 2004

The Cygwin installer seems to want to install a lot of stuff I'm sure I don't want. The X-windows, Gnome, Expat, many libraries ... I'm sure I don't need the compiler after I've built SHA1. It all takes space! All I want to keep is Perl and VI.

For example, I just got: "This application failed to start because cyggtk-x11-2.0-0.dll was not found". What kind of nonsense is that? Why would I need GTK-X11?

What do I absolutely "must have" and what can I uninstall?

-- AntonAylward - 03 Nov 2004

Here is the list of stuff in my cygwin installation, taken from the logs:


The total space is around 260Mb.

Hope this helps.

-- RafaelAlvarez - 03 Nov 2004

I've attempted to religiously follow the windows twiki cookbook, but despite a few days of experimentation, I can't seem to get past a problem:

When I run the testenv script I get an error which says "since your CGI script is not running as user nobody, you need to change the locks in the *.v RCS files...".

I have triple-checked that these files have "system" in the top, not "nobody", and I am running as user "system" according to testenv.

Any idea what else could be wrong?

Cheers, Gary Watson

I don't think this error message matters - I have the same error on testenv about re-locking, but as long as you use the default Cygwin setup on Windows (I'm now on XP and was on 2000, same on both), you should be fine. Just try doing a topic edit and see if RCS correctly logs the change - I recently re-installed using Cygwin Perl 5.8.5 (new Cygwin download) and RCS works fine.

-- RichardDonkin - 07 Dec 2004


I've had some hard time before I understood that the binaries (starting with testenv) should be readable and executable by the apache user (system?). I had those errors

[Tue Dec 07 19:57:29 2004] [error] [client] c:/twiki/bin/testenv is not executable; ensure interpreted scripts have "#!" first line
[Tue Dec 07 19:57:29 2004] [error] [client] (2)No such file or directory: couldn't spawn child process: c:/twiki/bin/testenv

Then I did a 'chmod a+rx bin/*' and I can execute 'testenv' from the browser. Maybe the user for the executables should be 'system' ?

Best regards, -- JeremiePetit - 07 Dec 2004


I have just installed the latest TWiki release (20040902) on a Windows 2000 system running apache 2.0.46, cygwin 1.5.12, perl 5.8.5-3 and rcs 5.7-2.

The testenv script runs successfully. However, when I call http://myserver/twiki/bin/view/Main/WebHome I get the following error message:
[Tue Dec 14 16:59:04 2004] [error] [client] [Tue Dec 14 15:59:04 2004] view: Insecure directory in $ENV{PATH} while running with -T switch at /twiki/lib/TWiki/Search.pm line 223.
(which is logged in the error log of the apache server).

Can this be related to the apache version? Any idea what can be wrong?

Best regards, -- MichaelSchmidt - 14 Dec 2004

Meanwhile I have set up a second installation based on the cygwin apache server (version 1.3.29). However, this installation shows the same error as described above:
[Mon Dec 20 09:24:44 2004] view: Insecure directory in $ENV{PATH} while running with -T switch at /twiki/lib/TWiki/Search.pm line 223.

Where is the error and how can I get rid of it?

Tanks for any help, -- MichaelSchmidt - 20 Dec 2004

Hi Michael - have a look at these TWiki.org pages that cover similar issues (as suggested in SupportGuidelines, Googling for the error message + TWiki often helps). It's likely to be that the permissions on your PATH setting are too open, as mentioned on those pages. Unfortunately nobody has a recipe for avoiding this yet, hence the cookbook has not been updated.

-- RichardDonkin - 20 Dec 2004

-- MichaelHartrey - 22 Dec 2004

I managed to get Twiki up and running in around 8 hours.

I wasted quite a bit of time with file permissions. I installed everything on my PC for which I have admin rights, but am not the administrator. I found that Apache runs with user "SYSTEM". The owner of the files in my Twiki installation was "michaelh" (my normal PC user). I ended up having to chown the TWiki files/directories to "SYSTEM". Adding group permissions didn't appear sufficient. Additionally I had to change RCS locks from "nobody" to "SYSTEM" (not "system").

I also wasted time when testing my installation - I couldn't get revision numbers to increment after editing a page... I then discovered the meaning of the "release edit lock" check box.

-- MichaelHartrey - 22 Dec 2004

I have one remaining problem. For now I am using basic authentication and have set up the .htaccess file.

I have the line:

ErrorDocument 401 "c:/twiki/bin/oops/TWiki/TWikiRegistration?template=oopsauth"

To attempt to redirect to TWikiRegistration when a user clicks "cancel" at the login box (I've set up edits to require registration).

However, on clicking "cancel" the following is displayed in the browser:


Any ideas?

-- MichaelHartrey - 22 Dec 2004

I think that the ErrorDocument is supposed to be a URL path not a filesystem path - check the comments in the .htaccess file and the main TWikiInstallationGuide docs carefully.

-- RichardDonkin - 22 Dec 2004

Yep - working OK now with: ErrorDocument 401 /bin/oops/TWiki/TWikiRegistration?template=oopsauth

-- MichaelHartrey - 23 Dec 2004

I may be wrong (and I'm not up and running yet) but I don't believe that local admin rights are necessary to get TWiki going. You can install Cygwin 'just for me', and ActivePerl and Apache/Apache2 don't care - while Apache2 won't run as a service, it will still run happily from the command line. The only bit of the process other than this that might cause an issue is setting PERL5SHELL in the system environment. This can be set in the user environment instead, but frankly neither place is a very good one for something that should be specific to the local instance. It's not essential though.

-- IanWells - 02 Feb 2005

I added to the windows install cookbok as proposed in AddingToWindowsInstallCookbook. I hope it works well for everyone. If not, revision control will have to take care of it wink

-- JuditMays - 04 Mar 2005

Lots of water under my bridge. Let me see if I can recount.

First, the cygwin module textutils is now part of coreutils. That should be noted in the cookbook.

I had everything going in relatively short order until I started using ChartPlugin. Since I didn't have perl's GD module installed, I had to install that; which itself required libgd, libpng, libjpeg, zlib.... After banging my head against the wall trying to build these locally, I finally went to cygwin setup and installed theses libs from there. Not sure to what exent the cookbook should suggest that potential plugin module dependencies should be installed as part of the cygwin set up. But perhaps a note that says to get the libs from cygwin rather than trying to build locally.

Ok, given that, I now had GD.pm in place. But the ChartPlugin still fails. I went and modified testenv to add GD to the optional modules. Still not a lot of information. I then modified testenv to print $@ to get more info. Tells me it can't load /usr/local/perl5/site_perl/5.8/cygwin/auto/GD/GD.dll with the inscrutable error 126 (ERROR_MOD_NOT_FOUND). Still haven't resolved it. Maybe it's a simple permissions problem; maybe not. I've used cygcheck to find the modules that this dll depends on. I've checked permissions; both inside cygwin and at the windows layer. All appears in order. A couple of data points I've found on the web: http://flashexperiments.insh-allah.com/ApacheError126.html and http://www.cygwin.com/ml/cygwin/2003-03/msg01847.html. Both are things I need to dig into.

So, (a) if anyone has suggestions, I'm receptive! And (b), I think the cookbook could use some more on the troubleshooting front to help others tackle weirdness like this. Note; I'm an old unix geek; can't stand these new-fangled windows boxes. But the Man pays the bills, so I uses whats he gives me. So, I'm still learning about how Windows permissions work relative to Unix; and how Cygwin tries to map Windows permissions to Unix. References to materials along this line (again, for troubleshooting) may help as well.

If I actually solve the GD.pm problem, I'll let you know (actually, you'll probably hear my shouts of joy smile

-- SteveAnthony - 09 Mar 2005

Ok, good news and bad news. I was able to get testenv to see the GD module. Had to add c:\cygwin\usr\bin a nd c:\cygwin\usr\X11R6\bin to the windows system environment variable PATH. With that and a reboot, GD.pm is seen. Yay!

Bad news is, now clicking on ChartPlugin hangs. I've seen similar behavior with TWikiFAQ as well. Again, probably a permissions problem, but IWBNI the cookbook had a symptons/solution section.

-- SteveAnthony - 09 Mar 2005

I did experience the same problem as MichaelHartrey (on 22nd Dec 2004): the user name must be "SYSTEM" and not "system", or revisions don't work. I'd suggest to modify the WindowsInstallCookbook so that it advises to set SetEnv LOGNAME SYSTEM in the Apache related section.

-- PascalDavoust - 14 Mar 2005

Steve, do go ahead and update the cookbook re coreutils, this is a Wiki site and it's OK to change the docs after commenting here.

Pascal, feel free to go ahead and change the cookbook re setting LOGNAME to SYSTEM - since two users have had the same problem and this is relatively straightforward.

-- RichardDonkin - 19 Mar 2005

Richard, I'm experiencing the same SYSTEM vs system issues as MichaelHartney and PascalDavoust but had an additional question. I've changed the SetEnv LOGNAME to "SYSTEM". That change is reflected in my bin/testenv results, but the User: field under PATH_INFO still comes up as "system". Is this a problem? Have twiki almost installed except for RCS. Followed the cookbook instructions but testenv just does not want to recognize the rcs user changes AND the relock script just hangs.

-- JeffHsu - 21 Mar 2005

Just read the directions on the top of the page, will also post this to Support.

Do have a comment on the directions. Good stuff all around. In the set permissions section there are directions to set /twiki/data to BOTH 664 and 775.

-- JeffHsu - 21 Mar 2005

Folks: I am a reasonably astute engr./lawyer working as a laywer at a law firm. two engineering degrees and a long history of computer skills. i've been thru this documentation for a while, including other wiki variants, and even a 'free' version precompiled for windows ['projectForum'?]

i would like to end up with the twiki variant, or one similar to variant used by the 'wikipedia' folks, for our use on a major project.

i believe that i could wander thru the windows toolkit/instructions here, and manage to settle into a working environment, eventually. but i have these background questions, and if someone with the skill sets could answer, i would appreciate it. i pose some introduction on our office/needs/setup, and then a few questions

1. our use is internal only, only internal network service will be provided. 2. we own a Win2003 Server box; if i could avoid any of the d/l and installs, i would love to. Our Win2003 has a server, no? Apache would work, but do I need to use it? 2a. The installs, in this cookbook, don't speak of the Win2003 server. Any special hints, speed-bumps i should know about? 3. presumably, there is no "windows" bundled install for any wiki-variant, akin to what i want to end up with, or am i wrong? i am aware of the 'ProjectForum' version, in its free and purchased variants.

My thanks....

-- JohnRuskin - 03 May 2005

The Win2003 web server is called IIS - while some people have managed to get TWiki installed on IIS, it is not as simple as using Apache, for some reason. Have a look at Google:TWiki+IIS for some details, I believe there is a similar cookbook with useful tips.

You would still need to install Perl and the grep, diff and RCS tools, so going IIS does not r emove all the hassle, and in fact may create some... If you have a spare server running Linux or any Unix version (Sun Solaris, IBM AIX, etc) that would be the simplest option of all.

There is a link near the top of the cookbook to an apparently simpler Windows install but I have not tried it.

-- RichardDonkin - 04 May 2005

Richard, thanks. I wandered around the net, yesterday evening, having grabbed a new XP system from the office, and plopped a LAMP [TWS] on, using MediaWiki on top of that. I got it working. So, now, i wonder, what is the functional or other difference between TWiki and MediaWiki. Would you or someone have the answer? I assume that now that I have the LAMP installed on the XP box, i could drop TWiki on it, too. [As an aside, I look at the list on SourceForge, and wonder what the differences are there, too, but will politely restrain from asking that question...]

-- JohnRuskin - 04 May 2005

Mostly MediaWiki is good at letting you create knowledge bases for Internet usage - I haven't played with it a lot, though I do edit Wikipedia sometimes. TWiki is focused on intranet usage and has lots of plugins for specific applications, as well as letting you build your own. The choice of which Wiki to go for depends on what you want to do - if you're on an intranet you should seriously consider TWiki.

-- RichardDonkin - 08 May 2005

This is really a wonderful document to install TWiki on Windows. Really appreciate the effort.

In a similar fashion, is there a good cookbook on setting up the Basic Authentification? I'm using Apache 1.3 and have .htaccess setup done as per the TWikiInstallationGuide. While I'm able to register and view / edit other topics, I get a "View Access Denied" error for TWikiUsers page.

** How can this issue be resolved? ** Also if an user clicks on a valid link, it directly throws this "View Access Denied" error without displaying the login prompt.

-- ShankarGaneshS - 08 Jul 2005

As a Windows XP Home user, I've come across a big stumbling block with not being able to set permissions for a folder as described at WindowsInstallCookbook#Configuring_Cygwin.

The documentation would be improved, I think, by mentioning what alternatives might be possible here. Since it looks like I will probably have to convert my FAT32 root partition to NTFS in the hope that I can then use Cacls.exe to assign permissions, I would like to know in advance if it is necessary or not.

-- GeraldineMcGreevy - 09 Aug 2005

I was able to ignore all the comments about suing windows pathnames (e.g. c:/twiki) and used cywin style instead (e.g. /twiki). I had installed apache 1.3 from cywin's setup.exe. It would surprise me if apache installed this way would care about windows style pathnames. I also didn't bother to edit all the shebang paths in the scripts. Things seem to work fine. Am I missing something or has the cookbook aquired a lot of fluff over the years that could be cleaned out?

-- MarkCornwell - 10 Aug 2005

The WindowsInstallCookbook assumes you'll be using the Windows native Apache. Using the cygwin version is much, much less of a hassle (the configuration is nearly the same as linux/unix)

-- RafaelAlvarez - 10 Aug 2005

RafaelAlvarez nailed it. Most of the WindowsInstallCookbook machinations deal with Windows native Apache.

If you are using Cygwin compiled version of Apache you can install it much more along the lines of the normal UNIX install. Right now, I would recommend following the main lines of the normal TWikiInstallationGuide for the install.

Some specific points:

  • Mounting filesystems as binary should no longer be necessary
  • Stick to UNIX style filenames throughout.
  • Better not to coopt DocumentRoot for the /twiki root directory. Putting twiki in /var/www/twiki with apropriate Alias and ScriptAlias works better for a pre-existing site or multi-use web server. Fits well with existing cygwin apache installation conventions.
  • How best to set ownership and permissions will differ a bit from that given in TWikiInstallationGuide I have twiki files owned by SYSTEM at the moment. We lack a user "nobody" on Cywin based systems and I am not entirely sure I want one. Uncertain what is best.
  • Still lack a clearly worked out rationale (or proof) in my own mind as to why my current ownership/permissions setup is correct. Unix security and Cygwin-Windows emulation (immitation) of it are different beasts.
  • Do not use the cygwin apache2 packages. I tried and they don't work. Stick with Aapache 1.3.
I plan to tear out my current installation and re-install everything more along the lines of TWikiInstallationGuide. This what I did first until I ran across some comments int WindowsInstallCookbook about file mounts corrupting RCS file. But after some reflection, I think it should not be a problem with the Cygwin package based Apache 1.3. After I try this out and verify that it works, I would like go pack and make changes to WindowsInstallCookbook to point people down the simpler path.

-- MarkCornwell - 10 Aug 2005

I've moved to using Cygwin Apache myself, since someone pointed out how to get it to start as a service - it was the problems of getting this to work that made me settle on the Windows port of Apache rather than the Cygwin one. There are some comments about this at TWikiOnCygwinApacheScripts. The Apache website warns about some performance overhead, but the ease of installation using Cygwin only may make the Cygwin Apache route more sensible.

Using Cygwin Apache instead of Windows Apache is not exactly following the cookbook - the things to make Windows Apache are therefore not 'fluff' since they are needed for that case.

Why is it no longer necessary to mount filesystems as binary? Is it because the filesystems are mounted binary by default?

Geraldine: you don't need to set permissions at all on FAT32, I believe, because it has no concept of permissions anyway. The cookbook should be updated for this.

-- RichardDonkin - 12 Aug 2005

Under CPAN, it says "Some additional Perl modules are needed, above and beyond the standard modules installed with Cygwin" and also says "you can still install the modules manually". I have firewall issues and need to do it manually. However, it never lists which modules I need to download and install from CPAN. I have all the ones listed in the latest Cookbook alrerady.

-- TsuDhoNimh - 22 Sep 2005

You should only need to install the modules listed in the Cookbook (and also checked by testenv). The CPAN page is not part of the cookbook. If you have problems with installing using the cookbook, please log a SupportQuestion.

-- RichardDonkin - 22 Sep 2005

Richard - I'm going through the steps of http://twiki.org/cgi-bin/view/TWiki/WindowsInstallCookbook, in order, following them explicitly.

QUOTE from section 7: "Some additional Perl modules are needed". The way it is written, it sounds I have to use CPAN to get something that Cygwin does not provide. If I only need the modules listed earlier in the cookbook, why does section 7 (of the cookbook page) even mention CPAN? Or why doesn't it state that CPAN is for "optional" modules such as 'foo' and 'bar'?

-- TsuDhoNimh - 22 Sep 2005

Ah, I see - if you read through section 7, you'll see the following lines from the part where the cpan tool can be used:

cpan> install Net::SMTP
cpan> install Digest::SHA1
cpan> install MIME::Base64

These three modules are the ones you need to install. Feel free to update the manual part of section 7 to mention these explicitly.

-- RichardDonkin - 26 Sep 2005

Ah, I see - if you read through section 7, you'll see the following lines from the part where the cpan tool can be used:

cpan> install Net::SMTP
cpan> install Digest::SHA1
cpan> install MIME::Base64

These three modules are the ones you need to install. Feel free to update the manual part of section 7 to mention these explicitly.

The other way to find out what modules are needed on your particular system is to run testenv.

-- RichardDonkin - 26 Sep 2005

I want to make an autorun cd which install the apache,cygwin and twiki on windows. pls help me............

-- RohitRoy - 29 Sep 2005

Rohit - good idea, but please create a new topic to discuss this properly, maybe CreatingTWikiAutorunCD.

-- RichardDonkin - 29 Sep 2005

I can see this is great software, and its free so I'm in position to complain. But for someone who hasn't had to use Linux or Unix for some years (thank goodness) the installation instructions really are impossible to follow. (I tried. I tried so many times. I gave up.) Is there no chance of a standard set of windows config files that'll just work? Eg Step (1) install XAMPP Step (2) put all twiki files in place Step (3) replace XAMPP httpd.conf with a twiki modified one Step (4) Get going

-- JaneSpiteri - 02 Oct 2005

The cookbook is probably the most proven way to install TWiki. You might want to look at the cookbook summary linked from top of the cookbook, (may be a bit out of date), or try IndigoPerl, or try WindowsModPerlInstallCookbook.

Whichever one you try, please check AdminSkillsAssumptions - debugging any of these installation options does take some background in system admin, so enlisting local help can be a good idea.

Please log any problems that you have over on Support - if you provide enough details someone may be able to help you get going. Or you could just ask on TWikiIRC, where there are usually quite a few people around.

-- RichardDonkin - 02 Oct 2005

The "Setting File Permissions Section" (after TWIKI is unzipped) is difficult for those of us who are not UNIX or LInux gurus. Giving an example of the chmod and chown commands would be helpful. Even the WinWashed can copy and modify a command.

Alternatively, explain what the Wibndows equivalent of the effect of the chmod and chown commands would be.

-- TsuDhoNimh - 17 Oct 2005

On step 4. Install Cygwin, under perl it is not quite clear that versions of perl >= 5.8.5 are OK as per IssuesWithPerl5dot8

-- BruceKrysiak - 09 Nov 2005

Also (see my last comment) textutils are supposedly now replaced by coreutils in cygwin...

-- BruceKrysiak - 09 Nov 2005

TWikiInstallerWindows has a .RAR attachment by TodorCholakov: this contains an exe + a bunch of files for the Nullsoft Installer used to create that EXE.

The aim is a one-click installer to install TWiki on IIS. I have not tried it and I can't vouch for the exe.

Feedback on that topic would be much appreciated.

-- MartinCleaver - 29 Nov 2005

I have installed twiki and I'm testing the predefined enviroment. I can create new users, but when I create a user no enter is written in the .htpasswd file. And I always remain in the GuestUser. I think something is going wrong, but I do not know exactly what.

Feedback on that topic would be much appreciated. Thank you very much.

-- InigoRobredo - 30 Nov 2005

So would there be any problem with me adding some information to the main document regarding installing TWiki on an IIS6 server?

-- BrentTokarchuk - 06 Jan 2006

I think it's best to add IIS6 to other documents, since this one is fairly Apache specific and quite long already - there's already an IIS cookbook for TWiki, why not add to that?

-- RichardDonkin - 06 Jan 2006

I have been tring to install Twiki for several times and get stuck with the permission part (http://twiki.org/cgi-bin/view/TWiki/WindowsInstallCookbook#Edit_Configuration_Files_and_Set).

I am not an expert with chmod nor chown commands and it can be really usefull to add the exact command and agurments so the permission part can be done more easy, and so the twiki installation.

Talking about permissions, when installing twiki in c:\twiki, should a windows user (administrator) have to do something with inherited permission, or addind the IUSR_XXX user somewhere here ? Any comments on this could help also and make the installation more easy. Anyway seems to be a great program, as soon as I can test it :-), and a very nice documentation also !. Great work guys !

-- RomainPelissier - 10 Feb 2006

WindowsInstallCookbook is an excellent resource! As a first time user, here are the places I got stuck on:

Section 5, when editing shebang lines, without prior knowledge of the head command, I couldn't tell if it was head -1 or head -l (One or the letter L). As you can see, in this font, they look about the same.

Section 5 I also didn't know what expected output to check for, even though it's printed in the cookbook. Might be good to have a line that says, make sure the output of the head command has changed to the new path after running the perl mod.

Section 7, CPAN instructions were clear, but a list of recommended CPAN modules would be extremely helpful. I have had to install modules multiple times because I just find out here and there that I need this one, or that one, or oh by the way, these few are recommended. Any kind of list would be nice.

Section 10, setting file permissions. I have had many many difficulties and errors resulting from incorrect file/directory permissions. This is not because the instructions are wrong, but because they are very difficult to understand as a newbie. Specifically, it's hard to apply the general knowledge conveyed in this section, with only general command syntax, because there aren't specific commands listed. If you don't know how to turn the general command syntax into a specific command, executed from a specific directory, it's rather difficult. It would be VERY helpful for this section to have an example list of commands to execute from each directory that would set the file and directory permissions, groups, and ownerships appropriately.

For example, a list that might start out:

From .../twiki/
1) chmod 755 bin
2) chown SYSTEM */* -R

From .../twiki/data
1) chmod 664 */* -R

Or whatever the actual commands are, etc etc

Otherwise, excellent work in putting this install package together, it has been extremely helpful.

-- JoshuaJohnston - 14 Feb 2006

I am stuck with some permissions issues with cygwin and cannot find any help anywhere which is quite frustrating because I know the power of Twiki and really need to test it. Unfortunatly, I can't use Apache and have to use Windows2003 and IIS6. Because it seems that a lot of users had switch to linux, I could suggest those things for Windows and IIS users :

* Add some Dakar speciphic topics like DakarOnWindows2003AndIIS6 for example * Really give a script or the exact commands to set the permissions in cygwin in the Cookbook.

If some users are interested, we can share our differents experiences on DakarOnWindowsAndIIS to update the cookbook. I know that I am close but to make it work but I really need some help with the permissions part. Don't hesitate to contact me

-- RomainPelissier - 17 Feb 2006

I would suggest starting that new topic, and perhaps also comment on related topics (Google:TWiki+Windows+IIS) linking to that topic. Alternatively, if you can get permission to install VMware Server (which is free), you could just download TWikiVMDebianStable, giving you a TWikiOnLinux on Windows setup that is very easy to get going.

-- RichardDonkin - 18 Feb 2006

I think that it could be better to start some personal topics, not with the names given above because they sounds like more 'official' topics. I prefer to create those instead :

I will give on those topics all my step by step setup and maybe, if I can resolve some issues, those can be part of the official documentation.

Of course, those setups are not bulletproof because I still have some issues but, like always, if other users can share their knowledge I can contribute to the official documentation and help other users that could have the same problems as me.

I hope that the twiki creators could have a look at those and maybe give their opinion on that.

I will work on those topics today. Feel free to help or and comments. Remember that for me, Dakar is still not working the way it should because of some permissions issues that I can't resolve.

Sorry if I create the topics at the wrong place but, I am a very very beginner with twiki :-).

-- RomainPelissier - 22 Feb 2006

Great news ! (sort of ..) I have finally made my doc part for Dakar, please have a look at DakarOnWindows2003AndApache and give your advices and knowledge. For me, Dakar is not working yet but the doc that I have made could be the starting point of the ultimate documentation for installing Dakar on Windows 2003. So, please, help me and other users like me.

Also note that because that my Dakar setup is not working, I will create a support item DakarNotWorkingAsExpected in the support web home that links to the topic DakarOnWindows2003AndApache.

Any comments will be very welcome. Any help will be very very appreciated.

-- RomainPelissier - 02 Mar 2006

I'm just been trying to help someone on TWikiIRC struggle with installing TWiki on windows and i finally mentioned that I had heard that TWikiVMDebianStable was easier. He was like, "What?! Why wasn't this listed on TWiki.org?!" I said i though it was but looking at WindowsInstallCookbook, I don't see mention of it. Seems like it should be mentioned there as an alternative.

-- LynnwoodBrown - 29 Sep 2006

I agree about TWikiVMDebianStable - see the early bolded part of WindowsInstallCookbook that has pointers to TWikiVMDebianStable, which I put there a while ago. I believe the shipped doc also has encouragement to look for the latest docs on TWiki.org.

-- RichardDonkin - 30 Sep 2006

Apache download link should be corrected to


-- SibiJoseph - 01 Mar 2007

Hi all, Can I use different authorization for different Web? Can I use Active directory groups, those already exist under my domain, for accessing Web. Can we set permission like

Set ALLOWTOPICVIEW = domainname\group

or like

<> require group domainname\group </> in .haccess file.

I want to achive that, ThisWeb? is accessed by ThisGroup? only that too belong to winodws/active directory group. I am using SSPI module for authentication. Log on using domain ID/PWD.


-- RahulH - 21 Mar 2007

Sibi, this is a Wiki so please just go ahead and fix the link.

Rahul, this is a general question not specific to TWiki VM, so please create a support question under Support.WebHome.

-- RichardDonkin - 23 Mar 2007

The cookbook points out that Apache recommends editing the http.conf instead of using .htaccess, and then proceeds to use .htaccess! :-). I think that's a mistake, since Apache's recommendation is very strong, "you should never use .htaccess files unless you don't have access to the main server configuration file" (reference). It's for performance reasons. But I also like the fact that using the conf file puts all the directives in one place, which facilitates troubleshooting. I put them in twiki.conf (using the line Include conf/twiki.conf in http.conf).

Also, instead using "deny from all" for the non-web directores (data, lib, locale, templates, tools, working) I just moved the web-accessible directories to their own directory and pointed Apache at that (also suggested by the cookbook).

Here's what my twiki.conf looks like (with mod_auth_sspi for authentication): Show Hide

ScriptAlias /bin   "D:/Dev/TWikiWebRoot/bin"
Alias       /pub   "D:/Dev/TWikiWebRoot/pub"
Alias       /      "D:/Dev/TWikiWebRoot/bin/view"

#rewrite url's for some of the less useful twiki url's
RewriteEngine on
RewriteRule ^/twiki$ /bin/view [R]
RewriteRule ^/twiki/$ /bin/view [R]

<Directory "D:/Dev/TWikiWebRoot/pub/">
   Allow From All

<Directory "D:/Dev/TWikiWebRoot/bin/">
   Options ExecCGI
   SetHandler cgi-script

   <Files configure>
      # Don't use FilesMatch for single files since that uses regular expressions
      Order Deny,Allow
      Deny from all
      Allow from,
      Require user <...me...>
      Satisfy Any

   <FilesMatch "(attach|edit|manage|rename|save|upload|mail|logon|rest|.*auth).*">
      Allow From All
      AuthType SSPI
      SSPIAuth On
      SSPIAuthoritative On
      SSPIOfferBasic Off
      require valid-user

   # ...else... (e.g., view, and /logos)
   Allow from all

On a different topic, I highly recommend the "TWiki for Windows Installer" (at TWiki:Codev.DownloadTWiki) as a quick way get up and running. It uses ActivePerl which is faster than Cygwin, and you avoid the Cygwin permission headaches.

-- SeanCMorgan - 12 Mar 2008

For what it's worth, using TWiki 4.2.4, it does not appear that the ,v files in the data directory are locked by 'nobody'.

-- LairdNelson - 05 Mar 2009

WindowsInstallCookbook guide instructs to edit the Twiki.cfg file placed in c:/twiki/lib directory but i dont see that file anywhere in twiki package. do i need to create that one? please help me

-- DeepakGKumar - 2010-09-04

That document is outdated. I recommend to follow TWiki04x02WindowsInstallationGuide or install TWiki on a Linux system inside a VMware image that runs on Windows.

-- PeterThoeny - 2010-09-05

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Topic revision: r123 - 2010-09-05 - PeterThoeny
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