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HelpContents > HelpForAdministrators > HelpOnConfiguration

This page should help you with configuring an already installed MoinMoin wiki. If you have not installed one yet please go to HelpOnInstalling.


Character Set

Moin uses Unicode internally, and utf-8 for external output and input, like pages, HTML output and translation files. The external character set is defined in config.charset to utf-8. This setting is fine for all languages, as any character can be encoded in UTF-8. You should not change this value, although technically it is possible.

  • <!> Important: to use Unicode values, you must setup a correct coding line in the first line of your configuration file. Check that your editor is configured correctly.

Certain options must use Unicode values. For example, the site name could contain German umlauts or French accents or be in Chinese or Hebrew. Because of this, you must use unicode strings for those items. Unicode strings are defined by prefixing the letter u to the string. Here are some examples:

    # Site name, used by default for wiki name-logo [Unicode]
    sitename = u"Jürgen's Wiki"
    # another example:
    sitename = u'הוויקי של יורגן'

Read the comments in the configuration file - they tell you which options must use Unicode values.


  • You can't mix different encodings in the same file. If your coding line says iso-8859-1, all your characters, the whole file content, must be in that encoding.

  • If you use utf-8 encoding (or plain ascii), you don't have to use unicode strings, moin will decode your string correctly for you.

International Setup

The default configuration file shipped with moin uses iso-8859-1 coding. This is fine for Latin languages like English or German, but not usable for non-latin languages. If you want to have non-latin characters in your configuration items, use utf-8 coding for the config file.

Set the first line of all configuration files to this line:

# -*- coding: utf-8 -*-
  • /!\ You need a text editor being capable of (and also really using) utf-8 encoding for editing the config files.

Values using unicode strings (international users might want to change them):

  • sitename
  • logo_string
  • page_front_page
  • navi_bar
  • page_category_regex
  • page_dict_regex
  • page_group_regex
  • page_template_regex
  • page_license_page
  • page_local_spelling_words
  • acl_rights_default
  • acl_rights_before
  • acl_rights_after
  • mail_from

For ready made configuration in your language, see ConfigMarket.

Customization of user preferences

You can predefine, disable or remove several options on the UserPreferences page, see HelpOnConfiguration/UserPreferences.

Configuring a single wiki

If you run a single wiki, you should not copy the file into your configuration directory (remove it and the .pyc file, if it is there). Without farmconfig, moin uses the default usually is located besides your moin.cgi driver script. If you need to make a custom install, it can be located anywhere, but you must add the path to the directory where it is located to your Python system path in your server script. See the "System Path Configuration" section in your server script.

General notes on wiki/ structure:

# -*- coding: iso-8859-1 -*-

from MoinMoin.config.multiconfig import DefaultConfig

class Config(DefaultConfig):

    sitename = u'MyWiki'   # u means that it will be converted to Unicode
    interwikiname = 'MyWiki'
    data_dir = '/where/ever/mywiki/data/'
    underlay_dir = '/where/ever/mywiki/underlay/'
    # More settings follow...
  • First, you must define the coding of the config file. The default setting is suited for Latin ("western") languages only, for international setup, read section #intsetup. If you don't define the coding, you can't use non-ascii characters.

  • Next we import moin's internal default configuration. The default configuration includes values for all options, so we don't have to define all values, just what we want to customize.
  • Then we define a new configuration class called "Config" and inherit all settings from the default configuration we imported. Note that the class name must be "Config".
  • Next lines are the configuration options for the Config class. Note that each line must be indented by 4 spaces, tabs are not allowed. Moin will not run if you use wrong indentation.
  • A common configuration item is sitename - in most cases you don't want your wiki to have the default "Untitled Wiki" name. You can define any name you like in any language, but before you do that, read section #character-set.

  • If you followed the install instructions, the wiki will run without any other change, but you might want to change some values, like data_dir, data_underlay_dir acl_rights_before and more. For most cases, setting all the values in the supplied file is enough.

  • Anything we do not define simply stays at moin's internal defaults which we inherited from DefaultConfig.

Configuration of multiple wikis

The moinmoin wiki engine is capable of handling multiple wikis using a single installation, a single set of configuration files and a single server process. Especially for persistent environments like twisted, this is necessary, because the twisted server will permanently run on a specific IP address and TCP port number. So for virtual hosting of multiple domains (wikis) on the same IP and port, we need the wiki engine to permanently load multiple configs at the same time and choose the right of them when handling a request for a specific URL.

To be able to choose the right config, moin uses config variable wikis located in the file - it simply contains a list of pairs (wikiname, url-regex). Please only use valid python identifiers for wikiname (to be exact: identifier ::= (letter|"_") (letter | digit | "_")* - just try with a simple word if you didn't understand that grammar rule). When processing a request for some URL, moin searches through this list and tries to match the url-regex against the current URL. If it doesn't match, it simply proceeds to the next pair. If it does match, moin loads a configuration file named <wikiname>.py (usually from the same directory) that contains the configuration for that wiki. in the distribution archive has some sample entries for a wiki farm running multiple wikis. You need to adapt it to match your needs if you want to run multiple wikis.

/!\ For simpler writing of these help pages, we will call such a <wikiname>.py configuration file simply, of course you have to use the filename you chose.

Of course you have already adapted the wikis setting in (see above), so we only give some hints how you can save some work. Please also read the single wiki configuration hints, because it explains config inheritance.

We now use the class-based configuration to be able to configure the common settings of your wikis at a single place: in the base configuration class (see for an example):

# -*- coding: iso-8859-1 -*-
from MoinMoin.config.multiconfig import DefaultConfig
class FarmConfig(DefaultConfig):
    url_prefix = '/wiki'
    show_hosts = True
    underlay_dir = '/where/ever/common/underlay'
    # ...
  • Explanation:
    • first we import the default config, like we do when configuring a single wiki
    • now we define a new farm config class - and inherit from the default config
    • then we change everything that our farm wikis have in common, leaving out the settings that they need to be different
    • this FarmConfig class will now be used by the config files of the wikis instead of moin's internal DefaultConfig class, see below:

The configs of your individual wikis then only keep the settings that need to be different (like the logo, or the data directory or ACL settings). Everything else they get by inheriting from the base configuration class, see for a sample.

# -*- coding: iso-8859-1 -*-
from farmconfig import FarmConfig
class Config(FarmConfig):
    show_hosts = False
    sitename = u'MoinMaster'
    interwikiname = 'MoinMaster'
    data_dir = '/org/de.wikiwikiweb.moinmaster/data/'
    # ...
  • Explanation:
    • see single wiki configuration, the only difference is that we inherit from FarmConfig (that inherited from DefaultConfig) instead of directly using DefaultConfig

    • now we override show_hosts to be False - we want it for most wikis in our farm, but not for this one

    • we also override sitename, interwikiname and data_dir (the usual stuff)

Index of all Configuration Options

The following table contains default values and a short description for all configuration variables. Most of these can be left at their defaults, those you need to change with every installation are listed in the sample that comes with the distribution.

Variable name





Class object hook for implementing security restrictions



wiki-wide access control list definition (see HelpOnAccessControlLists)



True to enable XSLT processing via 4Suite (note that this enables anyone with enough know-how to insert arbitrary HTML into your wiki, which is why it defaults to False)



Exclude unwanted actions (list of strings)



If None, send attachments via CGI. Every other value is DEPRECATED.


[moin_login, moin_session]

list of auth functions, to be called in this order (see HelpOnAuthentication and HelpOnSessions)



enable !NoWikiName markup



Path to the farm wide cache directory. New in 1.6.



output formats that are cached; set to [] to turn off caching (useful for development)



Time format used on RecentChanges for page edits within the last 24 hours



If you have gdchart, use something like chart_options = {'width': 720, 'height': 540}



farmconfig: use this domain for the MoinMoin cookie



farmconfig: use this path for the MoinMoin cookie



=0: forever, ignore user 'remember_me' setting; >0: n hours, or forever if user checked 'remember_me'; <0 -n hours, ignore user 'remember_me' setting



Path to the data directory containing your (locally made) wiki pages.



Path to the underlay directory containing distribution system and help pages.



System date format, used mostly in RecentChanges


'%Y-%m-%d %H:%M:%S'

Default format for dates and times (when the user has no preferences or chose the "default" date format)



Default page parser / format (name of module in MoinMoin.parser)



Path to the directory with the Docbook to HTML XSLT files (optional, used by the docbook parser). The default value is correct for Debian Etch.


['Edit', 'Comments', 'Discussion', 'Info', 'Subscribe', 'Quicklink', 'Attachments', 'ActionsMenu']

list of edit bar entries, 'Discussion' is a placeholder for the supplementation_page_name



Editor to use by default, 'text' or 'gui'



Editor choice shown on the user interface, 'freechoice' or 'theonepreferred'



Force using the default editor


{'wiki':"...", 'rst':"..."}

Quickhelp provided at the bottom of edit pages. To customize, specify a dictionary with key matching default_markup (e.g. 'wiki') and give a string value containing wiki markup


'warn 10'

Editor locking policy: None, 'warn <timeout in minutes>', or 'lock <timeout in minutes>'



Default height of the edit box



for use by moin development



List of denied IPs; if an IP ends with a dot, it denies a whole subnet (class A, B or C)



Additional <HEAD> tags for all pages (see HelpOnThemes)


robots: noindex,nofollow

Additional <HEAD> tags for POST requests


robots: index,follow

Additional <HEAD> tags for some few index pages


robots: index,nofollow

Additional <HEAD> tags for most normal pages


robots: noindex,nofollow

Additional <HEAD> tags for requests with query strings, like actions



Allows you to set a specific HTML page title (if not set, it defaults to the value of sitename)



In dialogues, show those wikis at the top of the list.



InterWiki name (prefix, moniker) of the site, or None



Default language for user interface and page content, see HelpOnLanguages!



Ignore user's browser language settings, see HelpOnLanguages!



Do a reverse DNS lookup on page SAVE. If your DNS is broken, set to False to speed up SAVE.



The wiki logo top of page, HTML is allowed (<img> is possible as well) [Unicode]



From: header used in sent mails, e.g. mail_from = u'Jürgen Wiki <>'. See /EmailSupport.



This is the template for the pagename generated by the mail import code. See /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.



Special use, see /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.


['subject', 'to', ]

Where and in which order to search for the target pagename, see /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.



Special use, see /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.



The e-mail address(es) of the e-mails that should go into the wiki See /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.



The secret that matches the configuration file. See /EmailSupport. New in 1.6.



"user pwd" if you need to use SMTP AUTH



IPv4 address or hostname of an SMTP-enabled server (with optional :port appendix, defaults to 25). Note that email features (notification, mailing of login data) works only if this variable is set.



If set to e.g. '/usr/sbin/sendmail -t -i', use this sendmail command to send mail. Default is to send mail by an internal function using SMTP.


['text/html', 'application/x-shockwave-flash', 'application/xhtml+xml',]

"content-disposition: inline" isn't used for them when a user downloads such attachments


['application/x-dvi', 'application/postscript', 'application/pdf', 'application/ogg', 'application/vnd.visio', 'image/x-ms-bmp', 'image/svg+xml', 'image/tiff', 'image/x-photoshop', 'audio/mpeg', 'audio/midi', 'audio/x-wav', 'video/fli', 'video/mpeg', 'video/quicktime', 'video/x-msvideo', 'chemical/x-pdb', 'x-world/x-vrml',]

mimetypes used by HelpOnMacros/EmbedObject


[u'%(page_front_page)s', u'RecentChanges', u'FindPage', u'HelpContents',]

Most important page names. Users can add more names in their quick links in UserPreferences. To link to URL, use u"[url link title]", to use a shortened name for long page name, use u"[LongLongPageName title]". To use page names with spaces, use u"[page_name_with_spaces any title]" [list of Unicode strings]



Default for displaying WantedPages with a question mark, like in the original wiki (changeable by the user)



Pagenames containing a match for this regex are regarded as Wiki categories [Unicode]



list with html fragments with logos or strings for crediting.



Pagenames containing a match for this regex are regarded as containing variable dictionary definitions [Unicode]



Custom HTML markup sent before the system footer (see HelpOnThemes)



Custom HTML markup sent after the system footer (see HelpOnThemes)



Name of the front page. We don't expect you to keep the default. Just read HelpOnLanguages in case you're wondering... [Unicode]



Pagenames containing a match for this regex are regarded as containing group definitions [Unicode]



Custom HTML markup sent before the system header / title area but after the body tag (see HelpOnThemes)



Custom HTML markup sent after the system header / title area (and body tag) (see HelpOnThemes)


["view", ...]

list of icons to show in iconbar, valid values are only those in page_icons_table. Available only in classic theme.



dict of {'iconname': (url, title, icon-img-key), ...}. Available only in classic theme.



Show a license hint in page editor.



Page linked from the license hint. [Unicode]



Name of the page containing user-provided spellchecker words [Unicode]



Pagenames containing a match for this regex are regarded as templates for new pages [Unicode]



List of preset quicklinks which is set for a new user on account creation. Existing accounts are not affected by this option whereas changes in navi_bar do always affect existing accounts. Preset quicklinks can be removed by the user in the userpreference menu, navi_bar settings not.



refresh = (minimum_delay_s, targets_allowed) enables use of #refresh 5 PageName processing instruction, targets_allowed must be either 'internal' or 'external'



Number of hits shown per page in the search results



Path to a file containing global InterWiki definitions (or a list of such filenames)



Disable this option to hide host names and IPs



Enable this option to let the theme display your interwiki name



Disable this option to get login/logout action removed



Disable this option to hide names from the info view and RecentChanges (this was previously done by show_hosts)



1 to show section numbers in headings by default



Shows some timing values at bottom of page - used for development



Show MoinMoin's version at the bottom of each page


u'Untitled Wiki'

Short description of your wiki site, displayed below the logo on each page, and used in RSS documents as the channel title [Unicode]



List of tuples (media, csshref) to insert after theme css, before user css



List of preset page subscriptions which is set for a new user on account creation.



List of trusted user names with wiki system administration super powers (not to be confused with ACL admin rights!). For an example see HelpOnSuperUser. Used for e.g. making full backups, software installation, language installation via SystemPagesSetup and more. See also HelpOnPackageInstaller.



Enable to show supplementation_page_name in theme for each page



default name for supplementation_page



default template for supplementation_page



dict of anti-spam questions/answers, see HelpOnTextChas



group name which members don't get textchas, see HelpOnTextChas



the name of the theme that is used by default (see HelpOnThemes)



If True, do not allow to change the theme



Number of pages in the trail of visited pages



default time zone offset in hours from UTC



A regex of HTTP_USER_AGENTs that should be excluded from logging



lookup table to remap URL prefixes (dict of 'prefix': 'replacement'); especially useful in intranets, when whole trees of externally hosted documents move around



used as the base URL for icons, css, etc. - includes the moin version number and changes on every release. This replaces the deprecated and sometimes confusing url_prefix = '/wiki' setting.



Use 'action' to enable action URL generation to be compatible with robots.txt. It will generate .../action/info/PageName?action=info then. Recommended for internet wikis.



max. number of files which are extracted from the zip file



max. total amount of bytes can be used to unzip files



max. size of a single file in the archive which will be extracted



If set to True user accounts are created automatically (see HelpOnAuthentication).



Sets the default settings of the UserPreferences checkboxes. See /UserPreferences or for the default settings. Example: user_checkbox_defaults = {'edit_on_doubleclick': 0}



a list of checkbox names to be disabled in the UserPreferences. A disabled checkbox is displayed greyedout and uses the default value set in user_checkbox_defaults.



list of checkbox items, see /UserPreferences or



a list of checkbox names to be removed from the UserPreferences. A removed checkbox uses the default value set in user_checkbox_defaults. See /UserPreferences



share user data between multiple wikis. See HelpOnUserHandling



check emails for uniqueness and don't accept duplicates.



a list of form defaults for UserPreferences. See /UserPreferences



a list of form field names to be disabled in the UserPreferences. A disabled field is displayed greyed out and uses the default value set in user_form_defaults. See /UserPreferences



list of userprefs form items, see /UserPreferences or



a list of form field names to be removed from the UserPreferences. A removed form field uses the default value set in user_form_defaults. See /UserPreferences



interwiki name of the wiki where the user home pages are located (useful if you have many users). You could even link to nonwiki "user pages" if the wiki username is in the target URL.



if set, set and use a separate index directory for every wiki distinguished by wikiname; useful for wikifarms to seperate indices (Note: needs rebuilding the index, see HelpOnXapian)



enabling this will instruct the indexer to index all revisions of a page to let users search in their history (Note: needs rebuilding the index, see HelpOnXapian)



enables Xapian search, see HelpOnXapian for more information on the setup



enables stemming of terms in Xapian (Note: needs rebuilding the index, see HelpOnXapian)

Some values can only be set from MoinMoin/config/ (part of the MoinMoin code and thus GLOBALLY changing behaviour of all your wikis), but not from the individual wiki's config - you should only touch them if you know what you are doing:



the encoding / character set used by the wiki <!> Do not change this - it is not tested and we can't support it.


ucs-2 lowercase letters

Lowercase letters, used to define what is a WikiName



a list of smiley markups MoinMoin supports - image and image sizes are defined in the theme code.



umask used by MoinMoin, the default gives rights to owner and group, but not to world.


ucs-2 uppercase letters

uppercase letters, used to define what is a WikiName



additional URL schemas you want to have recognized (list of strings; e.g. ['ldap', 'imap'])

Related Topics

HelpForDevelopers HelpForUsers