User talk:Lotroadmin/Archive

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Thank you :)

  • Thanks for the "promotion" ;) (none to ninja), I'll do my best to keep it up! Tharondir 08:21, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
  • Thank you too for the final promotion, though I'm not sure when I'd do promotions, I'll propose to Rogue whenever it's needed. I'll try to rush the content to update I've accumulated, much to do still! :) -- Goingbald 03:53, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
  • Hey, I'm an admin, hurray! Thank you. --Ravanel 09:37, 6 July 2010 (UTC)
  • Thanks for clearing that up, not exactly one of my brightest moments... *facepalm* I'll make sure not to repeat it, and hats off for the speedy response! --Fingolwë 17:06, 19 February 2011 (EST)
  • Thanks for promoting me to Ninja btw :D --EoD 11:02, 18 March 2011 (EDT)
  • Thank you, for still being around and keeping the wiki alive and kicking :) --Fedaykin (talk) 05:57, 21 August 2011 (EDT)
You welcome! It will be around for many more years. --Lotroadmin (talk) 16:27, 21 August 2011 (EDT)
  • Thanks for the recent promotion(s) :D --Elinnea (talk) 09:06, 5 October 2011 (EDT)

Sphinx Search Feedback

Try out the new search engine today (sept 16th) and let me know what is better or worse compared to the default search engine. --Lotroadmin (talk) 12:19, 16 September 2011 (EDT)

Tyl Annun
Tyl Annûn
The Last Bridge

Not finding Icons...

The Icon (file) Westfold Prospector Recipe-icon.png does not show up in search results if your search string is "Westfold".

Others Boots of the Westfold-icon.png do show up. --Magil

Seems to be working now --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:06, 28 September 2011 (EDT)

Auto completion

  1. Hyphens within a page name doesn't properly work : "One" vs "One-handed" Seems to be working now --Lotroadmin (talk) 22:33, 28 September 2011 (EDT)
  2. Autocomplete doesn't search across all namespaces: i.e. "Item:One-handed" vs "One-handed"

If you type for "One" you get stuff like "One-handed swords", but if you type "One-handed" auto completion only lists wrong results. Just wanted to mention this. --EoD (talk) 12:06, 28 September 2011 (EDT)

There are known issues with auto-complete that the MW folks are working on. One that i'm looking for to search across all namespaces with or without the prefix. There's been a few hacks floating around but they are a performance hit to the server. Lets list these items here and hopefully I can find a resolution or at least make sure a bug is filed within the MW bug database. --Lotroadmin (talk) 13:29, 28 September 2011 (EDT)

New Pages not Appearing in Search

You'll probably see this yourself on the forum soon enough, but Maniax posted something about newly-created pages not showing up in search or autocomplete. Not sure if this is a search thing or something more like indexing, but figured I'd bring it to your attention.

I checked this myself and can't get any of his "... Westfold ..." pages to come up on my search results. Sethladan 13:51, 10 October 2011 (EDT)

Also noted tonight.... "Tâl" as a search string does NOT find the page: Tâl Methedras (nor is it offered as a hint) but does find Tâl Bruinen and Tâl Caradhras as well as pages it should not find, such as :Quest:The Road to Emyn Lûm and Item:Túringor.
The one thing which I note is that the pages being found by search that should NOT be found contain special characters. Implying that the effort to search for/with them is flawed. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC (talk) 21:04, 20 October 2011 (EDT)
I'm beginning to think that I need to set up sphinx in a different way to handle these special characters. My thought has been to convert them a character like "â" to "a" and so on. That seems to be partially working but also seems to make other aspects worth. I will see if i can script up a list of pages (titles) with special characters and try to create a dictionary. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:58, 21 October 2011 (EDT)
Here's a thought...(I haven't played with sort routines for 30+ years now... and don't know Sphinx at all...) you can define the "character set" and "translation table" for the sort sequence ... it's just a table and you plug in the values where you want them to appear. Might be able to define it as Unicode (UTF-8) or (UTF-16) instead of ASCII. A quick look at the docs page implies that the default for charset_type is NOT UTF-8, but rather SBCS.... which might fix the problem itself, hey,I'm optomistic...:) or else you have to bludgeon the Translation table ... charset_table to map "U+00C2 Â c3 82 LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH CIRCUMFLEX" to a lower-case "a".
A full UTF8 table is at: Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC (talk) 01:03, 21 October 2011 (EDT)
Yeah, the language needs to match the database, so UTF8, so that's been defined. The charset_table I think is the problem, it's been defined and tweaked, retweaked, so I think a custom dictionary will be required for this to properly work. A custom dictionary will also help with the "did you mean" spell checker.
I still feel this is better than than the default, but I can convert it back of others wish. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:58, 21 October 2011 (EDT)

Another tweak to Sphinx

After some experimentation, I've made some tweaks to Sphinx and the MediaWiki settings. Updates:

  • Search Charset: Only includes characters in use and lower-cases them. Even the special characters with upper and lower case have been lowercased.
    • [UPDATE]I removed the character folding with that would convert a special character to a normal character i.e. "â" -> "a". This has a huge negative effect when searching as it wouldn't check page titles that used them After several tweaks, and untweaks, new tweaks ;), this is now working. Accented characters that map to a, e, i, n, o, u are mapped, any more let me know
  • I've enabled a different suggest mode that seems to be more usable even with the special characters
  • There are also a few configuration issues still lingering
    • All pages need to be updated to be properly index (any wiki botters? can one sign up to add a line (and remove that line) to every page over the next week or two? Please throttle updates, please use a bot account, please only update pages that have been modified before 10/24). Once a page is updated it should be searchable in the next index update.
    • [UPDATE]Auto-completion seems to not work with all special characters. I don't think the MW autocomplete feature is fully understanding the Sphinx charset. I'm still investigating After a few more tweaks, this too seems to be working better.
  • [UPDATE]Increased incremental indexes to top and bottom of the hour (plus a few minutes), full indexes are still nightly. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:30, 26 October 2011 (EDT)
  • [UPDATE]Tweaked full indexing to reduce impact to page load time (less than one second on indexing now vs three minutes delay before) --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:30, 26 October 2011 (EDT)

--Lotroadmin (talk) 20:39, 24 October 2011 (EDT)

Give it a try, other than the autocompletion with certain accented characters, it seems to be an improvement.
Remember pages not included in index just need an update. --Lotroadmin (talk) 00:00, 25 October 2011 (EDT)
Thanks for your hard work on this, I notice some improvement but won't cheer until index is updated in full :) -- Zimoon (talk) 03:12, 25 October 2011 (EDT)

Yet again I notice that pages that was added days ago do not show up in search. Neither in the small box as auto-completion nor using the advanced search page. I cannot tell a date when indexing seems to have stopped, sorry about that. Zimoon (talk) 04:16, 22 November 2011 (EST)

Thanks Zimoon! Should be all good now.. --Lotroadmin (talk) 14:20, 22 November 2011 (EST)

Weird timeouts

I experienced from time to time weird timeouts and resets (from both testwiki as lotro-wiki and at the same time) like

  • Chrome
Error 324 (net::ERR_EMPTY_RESPONSE): The server closed the connection without sending any data.
  • Firefox
The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading.

Usually during saving pages. The job queue was almost empty. Is that a known issue? --EoD (talk) 19:41, 7 October 2011 (EDT)

This is not getting better, I actually have the feeling that it's getting more severe. Is that related to my (heavy) javascript editing on coords.js? --EoD (talk) 10:18, 8 October 2011 (EDT)
Yesterday I experienced lots of timeouts giving just a white page, sometimes with a stub at the top, and sometimes where the skin did not load properly so the page rendered in most basic old html style. No idea what that was. FF 7.0.1. --Zimoon (talk) 10:44, 8 October 2011 (EDT)
Seems like there's several issues with the Chrome browser, but those issues normally reported that Firefox worked. As for the job queues, I can't see how this would remotely impact editing especially since it's throttled to 10 page views per job. The only possible setting that I can consider causing timeouts assuming it's apache or mysql related are connection times outs. Which I haven't changed in months. What I might suggest is to try https over http and see if that makes a difference with editing. (I have to do that at work to avoid IT's proxy settings) Next time you are on IRC send me an email so we can look further into this. --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:13, 9 October 2011 (EDT)
Ok, I will. I was at my privte network without any proxy server or other special routing (at least not intentionally). --EoD (talk) 03:42, 9 October 2011 (EDT)
Can editors please report their browser, version and whether or not they see this issue while editing: Thanks --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:15, 9 October 2011 (EDT)
I'm using Chrome 14 (secondary) and 15 (main), Firefox 7 (secondary) and 8 (main). --EoD (talk) 03:42, 9 October 2011 (EDT)
Mac OS X Lion 7.2 with Safari 5.1 6 meg DSL Line via Cavalier Telephone here from Philadelphia, PA EDT... probably right next to the server. A pretty typical traceroute from me to lotro-wiki:
 lotroadmin is hiding this from the search engines :) --~~~~
The other day (maybe Thurs or Fri 6 or 7 October --I forget, might have been Saturday, was actually in chat almost the whole day), there was an issue with response from the server... reportedly a DoS attack against Have not seen any problems since then except the usual "midnight slog." Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC (talk) 15:42, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
EoD mentioned that the tooltips now use the api.php file, perhaps the new method requires longer timeout settings. I will increase tonight on the server and we can see if that helps. Also I will research MW with any issues using the api.php file. --Lotroadmin (talk) 16:05, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
Timeouts increased, let me know if that improved things --Lotroadmin (talk) 00:02, 11 October 2011 (EDT)
Guessing this improved? --Lotroadmin (talk) 00:49, 26 October 2011 (EDT)

Categories, another take

I once before posted about categories and suggested some improvements. And again I apologize some bad wording where my tongue in my cheek did not come across alright. Now I shortly give it another go, with examples that speak for themselves, and comments on pros and cons.

Yesterday I did Hill and its sub-landmarks. Have a look at its quests. It is an area so perhaps quests must not contain "level" and "involving", but I might be mistaken on that necessity and believe in democracy. But if that example is OK, have a look at the code and see how it uses the <categorytree> feature.

Today I did the Horsefields. Because almost all quests relate directly to the area itself and not the landmarks it is better to have the more information for quests. Look at the code and see how it transcludes from Category:The Horsefields Quests. The same goes for NPCs which transcludes from Category:The Horsefields NPCs (remember that usually areas do not list NPCs, only if they are not bound to landmarks within the area).


  • When adding a quest it suffices to update the category page once, and it goes into any using pages. Which means that editors with short memory (like me) have it the easier.
  • At a category, differences are most easily spotted; we are humans and we forget, but comparing the listed quests at a category with those at its "page-section" is done in a minute.
  • If same-info is used at several articles it is less copy&paste when transcluding, doing that from category or articles equals.
  • Updating landmarks this way is done in a snap, see below though.


  • We must add quests, NPCs, whatever, to the proper category when adding or updating articles.
  • Right now too many articles are in a too wide category for this to be useful right away. Landmarks, creatures, and other items are categorized at a too a wide region level.
  • <categorytree> does not afford us with more than in the example, a list of what is in its subdirectory, for good or for bad (see 1) below). Perhaps somebody find out how to tweak that, if possible.
  • What takes time updating locations are not themselves but all quests and NPCs that are off, but as soon as their categories are done, see above.
  • What takes time updating locations is to find creatures and stuff that are not in narrow categories (and remember that what-links-here is bloated ;)).

Notice that most cons are related to the current state, not to a future dream-wiki ;)

All in all this can be a small step forward. Please review, meditate, and comment.

1) While categorytree does not afford us with more than a plain list we can use transclusions in several layers. E.g. have a short list at a lowest-level category's "page section" and transclude it on the parent's "page section" and so forth upwards. At each intermediate level, add whatever is unique to that level. Still it is great to be able to transclude small chunks to where we want them. And with small chunks I mean more narrow categories :P
Best regards -- Zimoon (talk) 21:22, 9 October 2011 (EDT)

Hello Zimoon, Have you tried the DynamicPageList? You can use multiple 'category' and 'notcategory' entries to build your lists. Could be a start of a template that looks for intersecting categories. For example with "The Haunted Burrow Quests" list:
category = The Haunted Burrow Quests
category = Quests: Level 5
shownamespace = false
suppresserrors = true
ordermethod = sortkey
order     = ascending
  category       = The Haunted Burrow Quests
  category       = Quests: Level 6
  shownamespace  = false
  suppresserrors = true
  ordermethod    = sortkey
  order          = ascending
category = The Haunted Burrow Quests
category = Quests: Level 10
shownamespace = false
suppresserrors = true
ordermethod = sortkey
order     = ascending
With a good template, you can easily add the list to any page with the following instance:
{{QuestListbyLevel|Bag End Quests}}
{{QuestListbyLevel|Party Tree Quests}}
{{QuestListbyLevel|The Haunted Burrow Quests}}
Template probably could include a collapsible table and other formatting.
As for Quest Category Pages, it's probably best to have an navigation bar that provides other categories which quests are listed. i.e. By Zone, By Level, etc.
--Lotroadmin (talk) 17:06, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
added displays of the code using DynamicPageList above. RingTailCat (talk) 17:37, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
Example (Display bug included :( ):

A Happy Hobbiton

By Hook or by Crook, Lobelia's Fireworks

--Lotroadmin (talk) 18:13, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
This looks really cool, awesome. I have been using wiki for ages but have never ever had to get into the techie part of it. I knew it could be done, somehow, and you prove yourself beyond my expectations :D
What I wanted to prove is just that if we continue to stick to too wide categories, for some subjects, we will continue to struggle. Forget for a second that the above is about quests and NPCs, it is applicable to any area of interest, whether creatures, landmarks, item effects, whatever that justifies the existence of a particular category.
Yes, I understand it has been a bit wild-grown, I moan and do my best with the broom. The rules I mentioned at my talk-page are very real for me, I don't want categories for this or that but when they make sense. Even if that mean minor adjustments or improvements of what we have been working on until now.
I got the message and will register at the forum tomorrow. Which count among the dozens of forums I am registered at I have no idea, more than 25 and less than 50, those used-less-than-10-times uncounted 8)
Now NN from me -- Zimoon (talk) 18:17, 10 October 2011 (EDT)
Not a perfect format, but a start. I will try to see if I can tweak the extension to provide a text prefix instead of the bullet or numbering options.

External images

Have a look at

Do we have enabled to include images from Commons on testwiki and here not? Any reason for (not) doing it? The features looks nice :) --EoD (talk) 12:39, 14 October 2011 (EDT)

I've disabled external images. Gif, JPG and PNG have all had embedded viruses in the past. by requiring images to be uploaded I can use clamav to scan for viruses and protect our users. I believe 1.18 has a commons flag, so I can look into that, but would still rather have images uploaded. --Lotroadmin (talk) 14:32, 15 October 2011 (EDT)
It's kind of like having a room with a white shag carpet and inviting 50 people in for a party on a rainy night -- 49 of them will take their muddy shoes off before walking on the carpet and one will not.
As the various security types put it... a terrorist only has to get lucky once... we have to be lucky all the time. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC (talk) 16:19, 15 October 2011 (EDT)
I thought I had enabled commons fetching before 1.18. Just a wild guess, but I think they also run a virus scan on the commons page (or maybe not), otherwise you could pretty easily infect the whole wikipedia with a few clicks. Anyway, it's your call and I just thought about it while I was trying to clean up the list of uploaded files.
And Magill: lol
--EoD (talk) 12:37, 16 October 2011 (EDT)
The thing about the wiki commons is that i can see it go away or be selective on who it serves.. Granted it's mission is to be there and open for all, but I would rather have the images local. Also it will keep WikiA from data mining this site ;) --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:01, 26 October 2011 (EDT)

You have a new message!

Hi there :) I like when the wiki page tells me I have a new message. I wish there was a way to flag someone here like it does on Facebook, where if I mention someone along with a link, like writing User:Sethladan on another page besides his talk page, it pops up on his next login "you have a message", the same way it does when I write here on the user talk page. But, alas.

Anyway, that's not why I came here. I thought you might like to see this: User:Adelas/Sandbox-itemboilerplate but especially this: User_talk:Adelas/Sandbox-itemboilerplate because Magill thought you might be able to clarify whether the <!-- is necessary on that page. -Adelas (talk) 01:25, 17 October 2011 (EDT)

Still looking for a solution, but I think an RSS feed of your watch list is the best short term solution. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:21, 26 October 2011 (EDT)
I'm considering adding a new extension called liquid threads that should give you this notification. It's installed on the testwiki for you to try out, visit my talk page there. --Lotroadmin (talk) 20:27, 27 October 2011 (EDT)

Expensive parser function count

We encountered some pages with "too many expensive parser function calls". I don't know much that affects the server's load, but can this number be increased without affecting the server too much?
Currently it seems to be 100 and wikipedia seems to use 500. If not, I will think about rewriting Template:Icon to use less expensive calls. --EoD (talk) 13:45, 18 October 2011 (EDT)

I will bump it up to 500. Guessing #ifexist is at fault here. --Lotroadmin (talk) 18:36, 18 October 2011 (EDT)
I'd been thinking recently about #ifexist and how I used it, and got to wondering what is meant by "expensive parser function." I'm all about keeping things lean and tidy, even if it's such a useful function. Sethladan 18:51, 18 October 2011 (EDT)
Thanks Lotroadmin! If you encounter too much load/mysql queries/etc, don't worry about reducing it. We can try to find a better way of doing it.
@Seth: I guess(!) that it's expensive as it just can't use their provided arguments (like all the other parser functions), but it has to do a (complete?) table lookup to be sure that a page is not existent.
--EoD (talk) 18:55, 18 October 2011 (EDT)
I guess "expensive" just means "more work" in this case. The concrete part of me wants to know that "expensive" means it "costs" five points of processing power while regular parser functions only cost two, or something. :-P From my understanding of this, it does something along the lines of creating a link to the file/page in question and evaluating whether it's a good link or not. Ah, well. Wish there were a way to avoid using it if an icon exists, but that's just getting caught in a circle! Sethladan 19:39, 18 October 2011 (EDT)
The good thing is that these pages get cached for folks not logged in, so the expense here at least is minimal. I reckon it will all be fine. --Lotroadmin (talk) 20:32, 18 October 2011 (EDT)


Why are you making changes like the recent one to Tâl Caradhras to put all the categories on one line.

This saves a trivial amount of space on the page, and it makes the page more difficult to read.

The machine parsing does not care, but it is much harder for us poor humans to process. If you are concerned about trailing blank lines on the page, perhaps there is a better way to resolve this, perhaps by having the software collapse multiple trailing blank lines.

I would very much prefer to see every manual category link on a separate line!

RingTailCat (talk) 23:10, 24 October 2011 (EDT)

Only forcing a page update.... it's an easy way to cause it. --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:29, 24 October 2011 (EDT)
I noticed something about page updates to make the search function work. It sounds like there should be a feature in the search engine to make it rebuild the entire index, instead of going out and updating every page. That sounds very inelegant. Swapping out the search engine sounds like the common kind of thing that one might want to do on a live system. RingTailCat (talk) 23:44, 24 October 2011 (EDT)
The index builds off of mysql tables, but MW is configured to compress all revisions and that conflicts with sphinx at the moment. This is the main reason why pages aren't showing up in the search index. This should get fixed with future Sphinx/MW/Extensions updates, but something I can't currently implement today. Tweaking each page will cause a new revision, and after the next incremental and full index, the update page should appear in the results. --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:53, 24 October 2011 (EDT)
But the pages which are not showing up, are in fact new or recently updated pages in most all cases; while pages that have not been touched in years routinely show up. Are you saying that the Page indexing mechanism has been broken for quite some time? (maybe since sphinx was installed? not just since 10/24/2011 as you mentioned above.) Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC (talk) 14:50, 25 October 2011 (EDT)
These issue are just with Sphinx, and perhaps we can discuss reverting back to the MW version of search or continue to power through these issues :). Please list the new pages that aren't in the search index. Keep in mind that the index updated at the top of every hour, which is one aspect we have to live with if we want to use Sphinx as the search engine (or any search engine other than mysql). From what I can tell the pages that aren't showing up in the list have their tables compressed based on a MW configuration (did this to reduce mysql memory footprint), this configuration option has been disabled (I will compress old revisions, but those are excluded from the search index). So any new/update pages from the time that I enabled that option are compressed (mid summer) to any pages updated before 10/24 need to be updated for Sphinx to properly index the page. --Lotroadmin (talk) 15:09, 25 October 2011 (EDT)

Following Red Links

I sometimes click a red link to open up an empty page and then create the page. However, doing the same as usual, I ended up with Item:Wild Flower Field (de pagina bestaat niet) today. ("de pagina bestaat niet" is Dutch for "the page does not exist", the message you usually get when following a red link.) Do you know if something recently changed? Or did I just do something weird? --Ravanel (talk) 07:52, 1 November 2011 (EDT)

Yesterday I noticed a dark-red link and followed, ending up at a page with a stub-template (perhaps location-stub). So, was it a red, or a dark-red link? Not that I know something but it may help those that perhaps know? -- Zimoon (talk) 15:21, 1 November 2011 (EDT)
Can we get a screen shot on the next one? The only recent change has been the sphinx search, so maybe it's related to search results and new pages? A screen shot might also help me dig through the MW bug lists. --Lotroadmin (talk) 16:24, 1 November 2011 (EDT)

Including Lotro-Wiki data in LOTRO Plugin


I am the author of the LOTRO Compendium LUA plugin, which is an in game database of questing, deed, items, and crafting information. Our primary source of data is Lorebook, however, this is not always up to date or is sometimes erroneous. I wanted to inquire regarding the use of data from lotro-wiki, particularly for the deed & questing portions. Is this something you are ok with? From our end, we would retrieve the data periodically either via mediawiki's export tool (preferred), or crawl the respective pages, much as google would, and cache them on Compendium's side to minimize bandwidth consumption. Let me know what you think. Thank you for your time.

Lunarwater (talk) 17:41, 20 November 2011 (EST)

Hello Lunarwater,
Nice to meet you!
I don't have an issue you using lotro-wiki data for the LUA plugin so long as you credit lotro-wiki and display the license on the in-game pages viewed. A link to the lotro-wiki's page being shown with the license would be preferred. This would be useful to keep the pages updated in the wiki if possible. As for the export tool, it has been blocked for a few reasons but the main reason now is the excessive load on the webserver it has caused. I would prefer that you crawl, or perhaps we can figure out a happy medium assuming you do the preferred option. Bandwidth consumption and server utilization will be a concern but guessing we can figure that out. From time to time I'm on the IRC channel, so perhaps we can schedule a meeting to discuss any issues you face. I would have to say that the all the editors should be very proud about this request!
--Lotroadmin (talk) 19:50, 20 November 2011 (EST)