NetBSDPanixOddMuse

Installing an oddmuse wiki on a Panix account

The hosting company for this site, Panix, uses NetBSD as the operating system for all its servers. Since they provide shell services, installing Odd Muse as a wiki is extremely simple. Here is how I did it, and probably how you can do it on pretty much any hosting account that provide shell access.

I have actually been running oddmuse for quite a while on Panix now, but I never got around to writing how I did it: so, here it is, I hope it will be useful for someone else out there...

1. Download the latest version of Oddmuse:

Go to the Odd Muse web site and follow the links! :-)

2. Copy the Oddmuse script:

In every Panix shell account, there is a ~/public_html directory. If it does not exist, create a sub-directory named ~/public_html/cgi-bin and move the oddmuse script there with mv.

Rename the oddmuse script as, for instance wiki.cgi (this is requested by the Panix configuration).

3. Edit the Oddmuse script:

There is a number of changes you need to make to the oddmuse script so that it will work correctly.

First of all, modify the "she-bang" line to make it point on the correct version of Perl :

#!/usr/local/bin/perl5.8.8

Then, configure the different configuration directives to point to the desired path and directory:

$DataDir     = '../wiki/' unless $DataDir;

I have chosen, in the line shown below, to store the wiki in the ~/public_html/wiki directory. This is used by the backup script that I wrote later.

Don't forget to set a password for the administrator of the site! Here is the line to be modified:

$AdminPass   = 'Put your password here' unless defined $AdminPass; # Whitespace separated passwords.

And... That's it! Oddmuse is so easy to install, and a pleasure to use. You should now be able to point your browser to the wiki.cgi URL and get a blank oddmuse homepage.

4. Install the creole module:

The creole module is highly recommended, since it provides a consistent syntax for all pages of the wiki.

First, create a sub-directory within wiki, named: ~/public_html/wiki/modules.

Next, download the latest version of Creole from the following address on the oddmuse web site.

Finally, simply copy the file creole.pl in the ~/public_html/wiki/modules directory.

You should now be able to use Creole syntax to write your wiki pages. Quite useful.

5. Make a backup of the wiki:

Here is the script that I wrote for this, use at your own risk and remember to test and re-test before using it:

#!/usr/local/bin/bash
            
# ###################################################################
# #
# # Short script to backup Panix Wiki
# #
# ###################################################################
# #
# # Gil ANDRE - 2009/09/09 - script works under Panix NetBSD servers.
# #
# ###################################################################
# # 
# # Watch out! This script does no error checking at all!!
# # 
# ###################################################################

backup_file="./backup_wiki_$(date +%F).tar.bz2"
local_gtar=`which gtar`

echo %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%
echo % Creating wiki backup file...
echo %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

cd ~
$local_gtar cvjf ./${backup_file} ./public_html/wiki/*
ls -alhF $backup_file

echo "That's all folks!"
# end of script.

Hope this helps!

UPDATE July 1st 2014: not much to say, except the latest version of Odd Muse requires a change in the directory structure of the wiki itself. The information can be seen at the following page: Oddmuse upgrading issues

See Also: