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ALERT! NOTE: This is a DistributionDocument. Please help maintain high quality documentation: This is a wiki, please fix the documentation if you find errors or incomplete content. Put questions and suggestions concerning the documentation of this topic in the comments section below. Use the Support web for problems you are having using TWiki.

Managing Webs

Adding, renaming and deleting webs are all web-based operations.


A TWikiSite is divided into webs; each one represents one workspace, one area of collaboration. Each web is a container for topics. Each topic is a container for page content and attachments. Administrators can add/rename/delete webs.

Namespace and URL

The name of the web and topic is represented in the page URL. For example, http://twiki.example.com/do/view/Sandbox/WebNotify tells us that we view topic WebNotify located in the Sandbox web.

TIP Tip: The URL of a web's homepage ends in /WebHome by default. The name of the homepage topic can safely be omitted to make for shorter and more legible links. For example, http://twiki.example.com/do/view/Sandbox links to the homepage of the Sandbox web.

Choose Web Template

New webs are based on a web you specify. There are two types of webs you can use to create a new web:

  • Use a specially designed TemplateWeb. This is an invisible web that begins with an underscore "_" character (for example _default).
  • Use an existing web as a template web. This may be useful if you already have a web that you would like to use as a starting point.

In either case all topics in the template web will be copied into the new web. Make sure to verify that your new web has all the custom modifications that you desire. Any settings defined in the form below will automatically be set in the WebPreferences of the new web.

Adding a New Web

Create a new web by filling out this form.
ALERT! Note: Keep the number of webs to a minimum! Don't create a new web for each little project. Cross-linking topics is easier, and searches are faster, if there are only a few larger webs. You can organize content within a web using categories, TWikiForms and FormattedSearch.
Name of new web: The name must start with an upper case letter, followed by upper or lower case letters or numbers. Specify a short name to avoid long URLs.
Based on web: Select a TemplateWeb.
Web color:
Select color for the new web, shown in the list of webs.

Note: Use a light color within the top 1/4th area of the center square depicting the saturation/luminance gradients.
Site Map: Yes   No Include this web in the site map

Enter a short description of the web. Write [[Web.TopicName][title]] instead of just TopicName if you include links. This description will be used in the SiteMap.
Hidden: Yes   No Specify if you want to exclude the web from a "search all webs" search. This will not prevent users accessing the web, it will simply hide it from searches. Use access control if needed.


  • You must have ROOTCHANGE access to create a top-level web (one with no parent)
  • Only the person who created it has permission to change the WebPreferences in the new web

Hierarchical Webs

You can only create hierarchical webs (webs within webs) if the {EnableHierarchicalWebs} setting in configure is enabled. Hierarchical webs are currently disabled. Without this setting, TWiki will only allow a single level of hierarchy. With it, you can use multiple levels, like a directory tree, i.e. webs within webs.

TIP Note: You might not need hierarchical webs. TWiki topics already have a parent/child relationship within a web, which is shown in the breadcrumb. Try to keep the number of webs to a minimum in order to keep search and cross-referencing simple. TWiki runs faster if hierarchical webs are disabled.

You can create hierarchical webs via the Adding a New Web form above, by using a slash- or dot-separated path name which is based on an existing web name in the Name of new web: field.


To create a sub-web named Bar inside a web named Foo, use Foo/Bar or Foo.Bar as the new web name in the form above.

Sub-web Preferences are Inherited

The preferences of a sub-web are inherited from the parent web and overridden locally. Preferences are ultimately inherited from the TWiki06x00.TWikiPreferences topic.

Example Preference Inheritance for Sandbox/TestWeb/SubWeb.SubWebTopic topic:

  1. TWiki06x00.TWikiPreferences site-wide preferences
  2. Sandbox.WebPreferences inherits from and overrides settings in TWiki06x00.TWikiPreferences
  3. Sandbox/TestWeb.WebPreferences inherits from and overrides settings in Sandbox.WebPreferences
  4. Sandbox/TestWeb/SubWeb.WebPreferences inherits from and overrides settings in Sandbox/TestWeb.WebPreferences
  5. Sandbox/TestWeb/SubWeb.SubWebTopic inherits from and overrides settings in Sandbox/TestWeb/SubWeb.WebPreferences


The PatternSkin indicates sub-webs by indenting them in the sidebar relative to their level in the hierarchy. The SiteMap shows a list of webs; sub-webs are separated by dots, such as Web.SubWeb.SubSubWeb.

Renaming or Deleting a Web

Rename a web via the Tools section in each web's WebPreferences topic. You may delete a web by moving it into a Trash web.


You may only rename a web if you have the following permissions

  • You must be allowed to rename and changes topics in the web you want to rename
  • You must be allowed to rename topics in the parent web of the web you want to rename
  • If the web is a root web (i.e. it has no parent web) then you must have permission to both create and rename root webs. These permissions are controlled by the ALLOWROOTCHANGE preference, which can be set in Main.TWikiPreferences.
  • If you move the web to another parent web you must be allowed to create and change topics in the new parent web.

When you rename a web TWiki will try and update all links that refer to the old web. You should note that links only get updated in topics that you are allowed to edit. If you use access rights in the TWiki installation it is generally best to let an administrator rename webs to avoid too many broken links.

Edit Conflicts

If anyone is editing a topic which requires updating, or which lives in the web being renamed, a second confirmation screen will come up which will indicate which topics are still locked for edit. You may continue to hit the refresh button until an edit lease is obtained for each topic which requires updating (the "Refresh" button will change to "Submit"), or hit "Cancel", which will cancel your edit lease on all affected topics.

Renaming the TWiki06x00 or Main webs

Although technically possible, it is strongly advised not to rename the TWiki06x00 and Main webs. It complicates upgrades, and some extensions may make assumptions on the names of those system webs. For this reason, the rename web link is disabled in the WebPreferences topic in those webs.

HELP Suggestion: Create a web that is the entry point for your TWiki, and change the link of the upper left site logo to that web. Do that with a WIKILOGOURL setting in Main.TWikiPreferences.

If you want to rename the TWiki06x00 or Main webs anyway:

  • Physically move the webs below twiki/data and twiki/pub on the shell level.
  • Change the {SystemWebName}, {UsersWebName} and/or {LocalSitePreferences} settings in the configuration using the configure interface.

Related Topics: AdminDocumentationCategory, AdminToolsCategory

-- Contributors: TWiki:Main/MikeMannix, TWiki:Main/PeterThoeny, TWiki:Main/GrantBow

Comments & Questions about this Distribution Document Topic

When creating new web, can we allow also set page background color, as suggested in InstantEnhancements? And distinguish between page body background, and page header/footer color.

-- PeterMasiar - 16 Jan 2003

Is there a typo under step one above?

Make changes as required, to Newwebname.SomeTopic or better yet, to %MAINWEB%.SomeTopic.

Is %MAINWEB% perhaps meant to be %WEB% ?

-- SueBlake - 19 Jun 2003

No Sue, it's correct as written. Though I did have to read it three times to make sure! The steps outlined are only for the special case of renaming the MAINWEB, which is where the User topics are kept. I made it a subheading so hopefully this is a little clearer.

I also added a note about WebNameAsWikiName. I'm unhappy with the awkward wording, but's it's the best I can do right now.

-- MattWilkie - 27 Jul 2004

I moved Renaming the MAINWEB down below the instructions, so it doesn't look like the following instructions apply only to that.

-- MartinGregory - 19 Aug 2004

* Note: See TWiki:Codev.RenameWeb for some complications

That topic doesn't seem to exist.

-- StevenLumos - 28 Oct 2004

That's was the second plural link to a singular topic name that caused problems in as many days.

-- SamHasler - 29 Oct 2004

Hello! I was searching but I was not able to find: Is there a way to change the starting web?

-- CleberAkira - 09 Nov 2004

I have this in .htaccess:

RedirectMatch ^/$ http://www.example.com/twiki/bin/view/Welcome/WebHome

-- MartinCleaver - 20 Nov 2004

Is the "10 character" limit for a web name still valid? See my question at CreateWebNamesLongerThanTenCharacters.

-- GarethEdwards - 19 Jan 2005

> Note: See TWiki:Codev.RenameWebs for some complications

this topic doesn't exist. Anyone remember where it got moved to?

-- MattWilkie - 13 Feb 2005

Nowhere, the topic is actually the singular topic name RenameWeb. I assume it worked at some point as a normal plural link (RenameWebs) and someone changed it to an interwiki link (TWiki:Codev.RenameWebs) not realising it broke it. I've changed it to TWiki:Codev.RenameWeb above.

I really need to create a bug report about all the SingularPluralLinkBugs

-- SamHasler - 13 Feb 2005

In the delete web portion, the doc says to edit the WIKIWEBLST variable in TWikiPreferences. However, the definition points you to WEBLIST; which itself is pretty hard to find the definition of; at least with the bit of poking I've done so far. Perhaps a more explicit reference on where to go to edit WEBLIST would be more appropriate.

-- SteveAnthony - 17 Feb 2005

You're right, that is pretty confusing!

WEBLIST is discussed at TWikiVariables#WEBLIST_format_index_of_all_webs

-- MattWilkie - 18 Feb 2005

I was looking in this topic for how to manage permissions for the webs. It seems that nobody actually has permission to create a new web. Where is that documented?

-- DougJohnson - 09 Jan 2006

Preventing new web creation is at the discretion of the site administrator. On TWiki.org only TWikiAdminGroup members can create new webs. It is set in the access control settings in TWikiPrefererences and should be documented in TWikiAccessControl.

-- PeterThoeny - 09 Jan 2006

Does this apply to Dakar? I don't know if its me, but I have a Web I want to delete on my TWiki, and there isn't a 'Tools' link ont the Web's WebPreferences page.

-- EricHanson - 12 May 2006

That's odd. It should be all the way at the bottom. Worst comes to worst you can delete it using the shell, of course.

-- MeredithLesly - 13 May 2006

Your web's WebPreferences topic might have the format/content of a previous TWiki version. Copy over the text from a TWiki 4 version to get the link.

-- PeterThoeny - 13 May 2006

make sure there are no leading spaces on the "Web color" field or else your web will not be created.

-- PedroMJ - 24 May 2006

I tried to change the Main and TWiki webs, had to jump through a few hoops to get it to work. The instructions are correct, the problem is halfway through scripts break, and links don't work. My steps were:

  1. rename the twiki web with the renameweb tool. when you do, copy the link after the 'are you sure?' step, as this link goes missing when you rename the main web
  2. update the configure script so that main matches your new name
  3. run rename on the main web. the 'are you sure?' link breaks, so paste and edit the line from step 1
  4. update the configure script again, replace the main variable with your new name.

-- MattEstela - 09 Apr 2007

How many webs is too many?

-- JordanRyskamp - 24 Apr 2007

n+1 webs would be too many. hehe! (friendly)

-- WillNorris - 29 Apr 2007

See discussion at HowManyTopicsAndWebsCanTWikiSupport and HowManyTopicsAreTooMany. It would be helpful to create a new SupplementalDocument on BalancingNumberOfWebsAndTopics.

Please do not discuss this here; this section is about the documentation of this topic.

-- PeterThoeny - 29 Apr 2007

Hi, is there any alternative to allow non-admin users to manage and create their webs under the permitted web? For instance,
There are some requirement in my organisation to open up this feature for non-admin users to manage their own webs under the PermittedWeb.
Please help and thanks in advanced.

-- DonChai - 26 May 2007

Please ask support questions in the Support web.

-- PeterThoeny - 26 May 2007

Peter, Thanks for your advice! Btw, I have posted a support help request at AllowNonAdminManagingWebs and pending support reply. Have a great day!

-- DonChai - 28 May 2007

When I tried to delete a subweb like SomeWeb/SubWeb via moving it to Trash/SomeWeb/SubWeb, the whole mother web, i.e. SomeWeb was deleted as well. Is this a bug? Or I did something wrong? Thanks.

-- WangMeng - 04 Jul 2008

Looks like a bug. Please file a bug report.

-- PeterThoeny - 04 Jul 2008

Please use the Support forum if you have questions about TWiki features. This comment section is about the documentation of this topic.
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Topic revision: r62 - 2014-12-16 - PeterThoeny
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