• This web contains the official documentation of the TWiki Release 01-Feb-2003, code named BeijingRelease. It is a read-only web for reference.
• This release is deprecated, see TWiki-6.0 for the latest release.
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TWiki Installation Guide

Installation instructions for the TWiki 01-Feb-2003 production release. Update notes for the new RCS configuration are marked Dataframework.

These installation steps are based on the Apache web server on Linux. TWiki runs on other web servers and Unix systems, and should be fine with any web server and OS that meet the system requirements. Documentation for other platforms is somewhat limited:

Standard Installation

Request and download the TWiki 01-Feb-2003 distribution in Unix ZIP format from http://TWiki.org/download.html. Please review the AdminSkillsAssumptions before you install TWiki.

Step 1: Create & Configure the Directories

ALERT! NOTE: If you don't have access to your Web server configuration files - for example, if you're installing on an ISP-hosted account, or you don't have administrator privileges on your intranet server - use the alternative Step 1 instead.

  • Create directory /home/httpd/twiki and unzip the TWiki distribution into this directory.
  • The twiki/bin directory of TWiki must be set as a cgi-bin directory. Add /home/httpd/twiki/bin to file /etc/httpd/httpd.conf with only ExecCGI option.
  • The twiki/pub directory of TWiki must be set so that it is visible as a URL. Add /home/httpd/twiki to file httpd.conf with normal access options (copy from /home/httpd/html ).
  • Now add ScriptAlias for /twiki/bin and Alias for /twiki to file httpd.conf .
    ALERT! NOTE: The ScriptAlias must come before the Alias, otherwise, Apache will fail to correctly set up /twiki/bin/, by treating it as just another subdirectory of the /twiki/ alias.
  • The twiki/data and twiki/templates directories should be set so that they are not visible as URLs. Add them to httpd.conf with deny from all.

Example httpd.conf entries:
 ScriptAlias /twiki/bin/ "/home/httpd/twiki/bin/"
 Alias /twiki/ "/home/httpd/twiki/"
 <Directory "/home/httpd/twiki/bin">
    Options +ExecCGI
    SetHandler cgi-script
    Allow from all
 </Directory>
 <Directory "/home/httpd/twiki/pub">
    Options FollowSymLinks +Includes
    AllowOverride None
    Allow from all
 </Directory>
 <Directory "/home/httpd/twiki/data">
    deny from all
 </Directory>
 <Directory "/home/httpd/twiki/templates">
    deny from all
 </Directory>

  • Restart Apache by /etc/rc.d/rc5.d/S85httpd restart .
  • Test that the twiki/bin directory is CGI-enabled by trying visiting it in your browser:
    • Enter the URL for the bin directory, http://yourdomain.com/twiki/bin/.
    • Your settings are OK if you get a message like "Forbidden. You don't have permission to access /twiki/bin/ on this server".
    • Settings are NOT correct if you get something like "Index of /twiki/bin" - recheck your httpd.conf file.

Step 1 for Non-Root Accounts

To install TWiki on a system where you don't have Unix/Linux root (administrator) privileges, for example, on a hosted Web account or an intranet server administered by someone else:

  • Download and unzip TWiki on your local PC
  • Using the table below, create a directory structure on your host server
  • Upload the TWiki files by FTP (transfer as text except for the image files in pub)
TWiki dir: What it is: Where to copy: Example:
twiki start-up pages root TWiki dir /home/smith/twiki/
twiki/bin CGI bin CGI-enabled dir /home/smith/twiki/bin
twiki/lib library files same level as twiki/bin /home/smith/twiki/lib
twiki/pub public files htdoc enabled dir /home/smith/twiki/pub
twiki/data topic data dir secure from public access /home/smith/twiki/data
twiki/templates web templates dir secure from public access /home/smith/twiki/templates

If you are not able to create the twiki/lib directory at the same level as the twiki/bin directory (e.g. because CGI bin directories can't be under your home directory and you don't have root access), you can create this directory elsewhere and edit the setlib.cfg file in the bin directory:

    # -------------- Change these settings if required

    $twikiLibPath = '/some/other/path/lib';   # Path to lib directory containing TWiki.pm

You can also edit $localPerlLibPath in the setlib.cfg file if you are not root and need to install additional CPAN modules, but can't update the main Perl installation files on the server. Just set this variable to the full pathname to your local lib directory, typically under your home directory.

Step 2: Set File Permissions

  • Make sure Perl 5 and the Perl CGI library are installed on your system. The default location of Perl is /usr/bin/perl. If it's elsewhere, change the path to Perl in the first line of each script in the twiki/bin directory, or create a symbolic link from /usr/bin/perl.
    • IMPORTANT: On ISP-hosted accounts, Perl CGI scripts usually require a .cgi extension to run. Some systems need .pl, the regular Perl extension. Modify all twiki/bin script filenames if necessary.
  • Set the file permission of all Perl scripts in the twiki/bin directory as executable to -rwxr-xr-x (755).
  • To be able to edit the Perl scripts and .tmpl files it is necessary to chown and chgrp -R twiki so all the files have the owner you want.
  • HELP This Guide assumes user nobody ownership for all files manipulated by the CGI scripts (executed by the Web server), and user twiki for all other files. You can:
    • replace nobody with another user if your server executes scripts under a different name (ex: default for Debian is www-data).
      • TIP HINT: Run the testenv script from your browser: http://yourdomain.com/twiki/bin/testenv. It will show you the user name of the CGI scripts, a table listing all CGI environment variables, and a test of your twiki/lib/TWiki.cfg configuration file (you'll configure that in a minute).
    • replace user twiki with your own username
  • Set the permission of all files below twiki/data so that they are writable by user nobody. A simple way is to chmod them to -rw-rw-r-- (664) and to chown them to nobody.
  • Set the permission of the twiki/data directory and its subdirectories so that files in there are writable by user nobody. A simple way is to chmod them to drwxrwxr-x (775) and to chown them to nobody.
  • Set the permission of the twiki/pub directory and all its subdirectories so that files in there are writable by user nobody. A simple way is to chmod them to drwxrwxr-x (775) and to chown them to nobody.
  • HELP The twiki/data/*/*.txt,v RCS repository files in the installation package are locked by user nobody. If your CGI scripts are not running as user nobody, it's not possible to check in files (you'll see that the revision number won't increase after saving a topic). In this case, you need to unlock all repository files (check the RCS man pages) and lock them with a different user, ex www-data, or delete them all - new files will be automatically created the first time each topic is edited. A simple way to change ownership is with a search-and-replace in all files; for example, using perl:
cd twiki/data
perl -pi~ -e 's/nobody:/www-data:/' */*,v

Step 3: Set the Main Configuration File

  • Edit the file twiki/lib/TWiki.cfg, setting the variables to your needs.
    • Set the file extension in the $scriptSuffix variable to cgi or pl if required.
    • RCS - revision control system to store revision of topics and attachments. You can use RCS executables or a version of RCS written in Perl, note that as the time of writing (Apr 2002) the Perl version has not been widely tested, so if you want to put up a live site the RCS executables are recommended.
      • Set $storeTopicImpl = "RcsWrap"; for the RCS executables and make sure RCS is installed. Set $rcsDir in twiki/lib/TWiki.cfg to match the location of your RCS binaries. You can check this by issuing the command rcs at the prompt, it should result in something like "rcs: no input file".
        • Check that you have GNU diff, by typing diff -v - an error indicates you have a non-GNU diff, so install the GNU diffutils package and make sure that diff is on the PATH used by TWiki (see $safeEnvPath in the TWiki.cfg file).
      • Set $storeTopicImpl = "RcsLite"; for the Perl based RCS
  • Security issue: Directories twiki/data , twiki/templates and all their subdirectories should be set so that they are not visible through URLs. (Alternatively, move the directories to a place where they are not visible, and change the variables in twiki/lib/TWiki.cfg accordingly)
  • Test your settings by running the testenv script from your browser: http://yourdomain.com/twiki/bin/testenv. Check if your twiki/lib/TWiki.cfg configuration file settings are correct.

Step 4: Configure Site-Wide Email Preferences

  • From your web browser, edit the TWikiPreferences topic in the TWiki:TWiki06x00 web to set the WIKIWEBMASTER email address, and other email settings required for registration and WebChangesAlert to work:
    • WIKIWEBMASTER should be set to the email address of the TWiki administrator
    • SMTPMAILHOST is typically set on Windows or other non-Unix/Linux systems, where sendmail or similar is not available. When this is set and the Perl module Net::SMTP is installed, TWiki will connect to this SMTP server (e.g. mail.yourdomain.com) to send email for user registration and WebChangesAlerts. If you do have a sendmail-type program, leave SMTPMAILHOST unset so that the external sendmail program is used instead (defined by $mailProgram in TWiki.cfg).
    • SMTPSENDERHOST is optional, and set to the domain name sending the email (e.g. twiki.yourdomain.com). For use where the SMTP server requires that you identify the TWiki server sending mail. If not set, Net::SMTP will guess it for you.
  • You may want to set up other TWikiPreferences later on.

Step 5: Finish Up from Your Browser

  • Point your Web browser at http://yourdomain.com/twiki/bin/view and start TWiki-ing away!
    • TIP Or, point to http://yourdomain.com/twiki/ to get the pre-TWiki index.html page, with a link to the view script. Customize this page if you want a public intro screen with a login link, instead of immediately calling up the .htaccess login dialog by going directly to view.
  • Edit the WebPreferences topic in each web, if necessary: set individual WEBCOPYRIGHT messages, and other preferences.
  • Enable email notification of topic changes, TWikiSiteTools has more.
  • Edit the WebNotify topic in all webs and add the users you want to notify.
  • Add the TWiki:Main/PoweredByTWikiLogo to your Main topic.
  • You can add new %VARIABLES%. Define site-level variables in the TWikiPreferences topic. See also: TWikiVariables.

That's it for the standard virgin installation of TWiki. Read on for server-level customization options.

Additional Server-Level Options

With your new TWiki installation up and running, you can manage most aspects of your site from the browser interface. Only a few functions require access to the server file system, via Telnet or FTP. You can make these server-level changes during installation, and at any time afterwards.

Enabling Authentication of Users

  • If TWiki is installed on a non-authenticated server - not using SSL - and you'd like to authenticate users:
    1. Rename file .htaccess.txt in the twiki/bin directory to .htaccess and change it to your needs. For details, consult the HTTP server documentation (for Apache server: [1], [2]). In particular, the following red part needs to be configured correctly:
      Redirect /urlpathto/twiki/index.html http://yourdomain.com/urlpathto/twiki/bin/view
      AuthUserFile /filepathto/twiki/data/.htpasswd
      ErrorDocument 401 /urlpathto/twiki/bin/oops/TWiki/TWikiRegistration?template=oopsauth
      • ALERT! NOTE: If you had to add a .cgi or .pl file extension to the bin scripts, make sure to do the same for edit, view, preview, and all the other script names in .htaccess.
      • HELP The browser should ask for login name and password when you click on the Edit link. In case .htaccess does not have the desired effect, you need to enable it: Add "AllowOverride All" to the Directory [3] section of access.conf for your twiki/bin directory.
        • This applies only if you have root access: on hosted accounts, you shouldn't have this problem - otherwise, email tech support.
      • ALERT! NOTE: In the TWiki distribution package, the twiki/data/.htpasswd.txt file contains several TWiki core team user accounts and a guest user account. You probably want to remove those accounts by deleting the entries in .htpasswd. Do not remove the guest user if you want to allow guest logins.
    2. Copy the TWikiRegistrationPub topic to TWikiRegistration, overwriting old version of TWikiRegistration. Do that by either editing the topics in theTWiki06x00 web, or by renaming the .txt and .txt,v files in the twiki/data/TWiki06x00 directory.
  • Customization:
    • You can customize the registration form by deleting or adding input tags. The name="" parameter of the input tags must start with: "Twk0..." (if this is an optional entry), or "Twk1..." (if this is a required entry). This ensures that the fields are carried over into the user home page correctly.
    • You can customize the default user home page in NewUserTemplate.
  • Register yourself in the TWikiRegistration topic.
    • ALERT! NOTE: When a user registers, a new line with the username and encrypted password is added to the data/.htpasswd file. The .htpasswd file that comes with the TWiki installation includes user accounts for TWiki core team members that are used for testing on TWiki.org. You can edit the file and delete those lines.
  • Create a new topic to check if authentication works.
  • Edit the TWikiAdminGroup topic in the TWiki:Main web to include users with system administrator status.
  • Edit the TWikiPreferences topic in the TWiki:TWiki06x00 web to set access privileges.
  • Edit the WebPreferences topic in each web, if necessary: set access priviliges.

That's it for a basic new web set-up!

Optionally, you can also:

  • Create custom web-specific templates in a new twiki/templates/Someweb directory (otherwise, templates are inherited from twiki/templates).
  • Add TWikiForms for form-based page input that's stored separately from the main free-form topic text.

ALERT! NOTE: User home topics are located in the TWiki.Main web - don't try to move them or create them in other webs. From any other web, user signatures have to point to TWiki.Main web, using a Main.UserName or %MAINWEB%.UserName format. (The %MAINWEB% variable is an advantage if you ever change the Main web name, but the standard Main.UserName is easier for users to enter, which is the bottom line!

TWiki File System Info

See Appendix A: TWiki File System for an installed system snapshot and descriptions of all files in the TWiki 01-Sep-2001 distribution.

-- PeterThoeny - 28 Dec 2002
-- MikeMannix - 16 May 2002

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Topic revision: r53 - 2003-02-02 - PeterThoeny
 
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