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From "Dennis E. Hamilton" <>
Subject RE: [wiki] Migration - A TerryE Clipping Collection [LONG]
Date Thu, 08 Sep 2011 02:43:42 GMT

I would follow Terry's advice and bring over the MediaWiki as close to as-is as we can make
it, when we are ready to substitute for the one running beneath  What works
for me is that the attention to risk management and especially removing front-loading from
the project appeals to me.  It is the agile principle of first doing the least that could
possibly work.

Terry indicated that installing MediaWiki could be a stopgap.  Having brought over the platform
and the content secures ease for review and migration to Confluence in a careful way without
concern for the lights going out underneath

Anything that can help to simply rehost and have it on operating sites that
the Apache OOo Podling can maintain and transform seems best.  That is when all of us can
breathe easier.  And the users of will be served and disrupted as little as
possible.  Then we incubate the site and its services along with all other incubation.

The key difficulty in bringing up the wiki completely is the need to upgrade to MW 1.17. 
I'm hoping that there is no rush.  A volunteer able to work through that is needed. 

 - Dennis

PS: I clipped out relevant Terry Notes below:

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of Alexandro Colorado
Sent: Wednesday, September 07, 2011 17:12
Subject: Re: [wiki] Migration - A TerryE Clipping Collection [LONG]

On Wed, Sep 7, 2011 at 6:02 PM, Kay Schenk <> wrote:

> Dennis--
> Thanks very much for sending this. I discovered that Terry had actually
> done a great job of documenting what had already occurred and some thoughts
> on what needed to be done on this wiki page...
> So, I took the liberty of documenting where we are now -- also exploring
> Confluence.

I also have not kept up with the discussion but reading Terry's comments
there seem to be a very huge task to migrate out of Mediawiki. However then
I see that "due to lack of Mediawiki support - we are moving to Confluence".
Isnt this exactly what Terry describe why would this be difficult to do?
I also don't see any support for confluence products to match what mediawiki
had. At least any solutions to keep the functionality for their content.

Can you please explain how will you migrate addressing Terry's issues on

>> *** 2011-07-31-13:53 All times PDT (UTC-0700), TerryE - Wiki Size
>> The OOo wiki contains 10,521 content pages and 11.338 uploaded files.
>> These form a critical service to the end-user community.  Note that
>> the cwiki markup format doesn't support many of the MediaWiki
>> specific markups in this content.
>> *** 2011-07-31-14:36 TerryE - Concerns for Conversion to CWiki
>> [T]he challenge here is that the cwiki markup grammer is different to
>> that of mediawiki and largely a functional subset.  Worse, mediawiki
>> supports extensions to allow you to extend this. The OOo
>> implementation currently uses *42* such extensions.  One of these was
>> custom-developed by the German OOo team.  With over 10,000 pages of
>> content, sentencing this lot and even if we establish a migration
>> ruleset to map 90% of the non-conformities, we still looking at a
>> MAJOR project.
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-01-09:53 TerryE - More on Confluence Migration
>> *I* have looked at [migration to Confluence] and it *will* be hard. I
>> didn't say impossible. ... Just look at
>> * *
>> for the volumetrics and MediaWiki extensions used.  If you google
>> "mediawiki confluence migration" then you will see that isn't a
>> trivial exercise even for wiki using standard MW with no extensions:
>> it would involve person-years of effort.  I have suggested ...
>> rehosting but on a sustain basis for the wiki.  I can set all of this
>> up, if agreeable to the project.  It doesn't need further material
>> resources from the Apache team.  This would at least buy us the time
>> to do a proper migration plan and resource it.
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-03-08:07 Terry Ellison - Reaching the Wiki Users, Legal
>> Concerns
>>> [...] Is there a announcement list or some other mechanism to send
>>> an email to every registered wiki user?
>> At a technical level, it's simple to run a query dumping all of the
>> mail addresses of contributors to the wiki.  I've just done a few on
>> my local VM which has a snapshot of  the prod wiki as at Thursday/Fri
>> night IIRC.
>> * There are 34,969 registered users.  Of which * 3,675 have made
>> contributions.  There is no need to contact those who haven't * 3,623
>> have registered email addresses and have made 182,677 contributions *
>> 52 have no registered email addresses and have made 153 contributions
>> (prob dating back to the early days when email registration and
>> confirmation wasn't mandatory
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-04-01:36 Terry Ellison - Moving the WIki "As-Is" for Now
>> I am working with the rest of the project to migrate the forums and
>> the wiki "as-is" for now.
>> .  As far as the wiki goes in the medium to longer term, the project
>> may decide to move some material to cwiki, but this is work in
>> progress.
 [ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-08-02:22 Terry Ellison - Derisking Migration/Staging -
>> Separating Infrastructure/Platform and Content
>> Thank-you all for your replies so far.  I will work through and
>> respond to individual points in thread at the appropriate branch, but
>> here I just wanted to propose that we divide the Wiki migration into
>> two separate but task areas:
>> * Migration of the infrastructure service.  What drives this is if
>> Oracle decides, say, that the current hardware is being turned off on
>> the XXth of Aug, then we need to move the service to a box in
>>  The issues here are largely technical heavily involve
>> the infrastructure team.  We need to be able to move quickly on this
>> and few of the DL contributors have strong opinions here. They just
>> want the 'magic to happen'.  Yes, there are a few decisions to be
>> made, but the questions are a little esoteric for most DL members.  I
>> offer to continue to lead this work area.
>> * Migration of the wiki content / policy.  Here we have a range of
>> widely and strongly held views and the DL seems to be acting as a
>> debating shop without convergence to consensus on some points. This
>> debate could still be continuing in 3 months time as far as I can
>> see.  I don't want it to get in the way of infrastructure migration
>> -- except when /absolutely/ necessary.  It also makes sense to break
>> this task area further if this means that we can make progress in
>> some areas, even if stalled in others.
>> but from an infrastructure viewpoint I don't really care this
>> branding process can be encapsulated and detached.
>> * We make the pre-prod wiki available to the "branding team" * The
>> branding team agree and implement the branding changes that the
>> project wants to have in place for cut-over day.  In practice this
>> could involve the creation or modification of content in the Main,
>> File, MediaWiki, Wiki and Template Namespaces * I can
>> use standard MW audit functionality to capture a list of all such
>> pages, and then standard MW export functionality to create an XML.GZ
>> dump of this work. * We then import the "live" wiki as part of
>> cut-over. * I then reimport the above XML.GZ to reapply the branding
>> changes to the migrated wiki.
>> ... [M]y suggestion is to keep the infrastructure and content issues
>> separate.  I can lead on the first.  We need someone who can lead on
>> the second. His or her strengths should be that he/she has experience
>> of delivery -- that is can make things happen -- and has a good
>> working knowledge of more advance MW features such as templates, etc.
>> I would think that either Drew or TJ would be well qualified, but
>> that is only my personal suggestion.
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-08-03:33 Terry Ellison - Risks of Changing DBMS along
>> with Migration
>> There are two factors against an early move to PostgreSQL:  (i) The
>> MediaWiki cavaets on its use (here
>> <>  and as all
>> experienced Wikipedian's do look at the associated talk page here
>> <>; this has a
>> couple of interesting references which cookbook the conversion).
>> (ii) The extra work involved. This is not only the D/B migration, but
>> also a MW version upgrade 15.1 ->  17.
>> To be honest I am uncomfortable doing this as part of this immediate
>> "continuity of service" migration.  My suggestion is that if the
>> wiki looks as if it is going to have a long term place within  the
>> project then we should revisit this as part of an in-service
>> improvement program in, say, 6-12 months.
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-10 15:12 Terry Ellison TEST/PRE-PRODUCTION WIKI INSTANCE
>> Just a quick update on progress on the wiki instance.  This is now up
>> in preprod mode  on the subdomain ooo-wiki.  This is based on a
>> snapshot taken at 4am yesterday morning.  The server needs further
>> tuning, but functionally its there.  We do have some outstanding code
>> issues (due to a change in the functionality of the PHP
>> routine*call_user_func* between Version 5.3 and 5.2 which is not
>> backwards compatible.  I'll sort this out tomorrow).
>> Also note as per my previous email, all existing account have had
>> there passwords mangled, so access is guest-mode only at the moment.
>> Feel free to have a look, but updates and no service commitments
>> yet.
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-11-01:38 Terry Ellison, BREAKAGE IN SEPARATING WIKI FROM
>> OO.O
>>> I found one bug: On the wiki left side lowest frame where store
>>> links for other languages main pages, the links points to
>>>, not to the
>> You are correct, and in fact there are a lot of references to
>> * in the content.  However, there isn't a production
>> instance and there little point in changing these until (1) we agree
>> what such "dirty" references are going to be changed to, and (2) we
>> cut over for real.  Remember that any changes that we made on this
>> instance will be lost when we bring over the live [database].
[ ... ]

>> *** 2011-08-25-08:59 Terry Ellison, REQUEST FOR BASELINE AGREEMENTS
>> TO MOVE AHEAD [abridged 2011-09-08T02:33Z by dh]
>> *    The prod wiki is v1.15.1 that at an N-3 major release level
>> (that's 30 months old: two major and 10 minor revisions behind the
>> current supported).  This also runs on PHP 5.2.0.
>> [...]
>> The PHP 5.3 introduced extra checking to remove an area of tolerance
>> the PHP 5.x<3 allowed.  This was to do with when and how parameters
>> can be passed by reference under curtain circumstances.  So moving a
>> code base from 5.2 to 5.3 involved a lot of work identifying and
>> eliminating this mis-codings.  This was done by the MediaWiki team in
>> MW v1.16.  I had planned to move to MW v1.15.5 (the last stable
>> 1.15.x) as our baseline and I've done this work integrating it with
>> Apache Traffic Server (ATS) and our LAMP stack.  This is stable and
>> performant enough to show that we are good.  However, I have only
>> identified and bug-fixed the main path 5.2->5.3 coding issues.
>> During my testing I have subsequently discovered others and there are
>> undoubtedly more to find.  I've also discussed this with the MW devs
>> on the MW IRC channel.  Given this, the consensus in the @infra team
>> (me included) is that we should bite the bullet now and move to
>> current MW 1.17.0 even given the extra work. There are some
>> performance risks associated with MW 1.17.0 which we need to
>> mitigate.  However, given that we've already got a complete
>> LAMP+ATS+MV in an ESX hosted VM performing like a dingbat, we really
>> only face the 1.15.5 ->  1.17.0 issues in this step.
>> * *DECISION*: Upgrade the ooo-wiki MediaWiki(MV) + all extensions to
>> MW v1.17.0.
>> * *DECISION*: I have agreed with infrastructure that we will keep 1
>> core on "standby" so we can up the VM to a 2-core VM if we are
>> seeing unacceptable performance problems with one-core.
>> * *DECISION*: We will cut over the wiki and the forums with the
>> content as-is and implement branding and access control changes
>> within the a.o infrastructure when volunteers come on-stream to
>> resource this.  This is the standard "transfer then clean-up"
>> approach adopted when a migration is time critical.
>> [ ... ]
>> *     We have some further caching tweaks on the interaction of the
>> MediaWiki [application] with the ATS HTTP reverse proxy cache, but
>> these are probably nice-to-have than essential.  More to the point
>> these need to be done on a system will production load patterns.
>> * *DECISION*. We will defer such tuning until post go-live.
> --
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> MzK
> "There's something about the sound of a train
>  that's very romantic and nostalgic and hopeful."
>                               -- Paul Simon

*Alexandro Colorado*
** EspaƱol
fingerprint: E62B CF77 1BEA 0749 C0B8 50B9 3DE6 A84A 68D0 72E6

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