User talk:Lotroadmin/Archive 5

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White Squirrel Page Issue

Anyone know figure the Skill Information Icon for White Squirrel comes back showing the Blue Beetle?


Editing the page does not mention the Blue Beetle anywhere?

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sucamarto (Contribs • User Talk) at 18:38, 9 March 2016‎.
All fixed -- the page White Squirrel contained an error - the disambig entry said Blue Beetle.
| disambigpage = Blue Beetle
| name = White Squirrel
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 01:48, 11 March 2016 (UTC)

Captcha being phased out

Hi, I am totally new here, just created an account. Noticed at the account creation, that the captcha server inserts a warning that the service will be terminated October 6th, so in three days! Don't know it this is already known, or where to look for it. So I hope this is the right place to tell someone ... Thanks! - Chirp (talk) 12:36, 3 October 2014 (UTC)

Thanks Chirp! Long live the Cats and Dogs!!!
I've changed the CAPTCHA to contain a few random questions so hopefully this will do the trick in fighting off those spambots. --Lotroadmin (talk) 03:34, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

What a

So, wow, the last upgrade was a bit rocky... special characters, caching issues, server utilization, and ..... For that I apoligize but we've seem to have recovered. Let me know if there are any outstanding issues. I would like to get back to reviewing the language extensions and will be enabling a few of them briefly. Spam is still an issue, but might be the best we can do for the options we have. Feel free to bring back any topics I just archived or start new ones. --Lotroadmin (talk) 06:05, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Unless you want to find that "bad" userid in the long list.... :) I haven't seen anything else problematic lately.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 14:42, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Promotion & your request

Hey there :) First, thanks for the promotion -- a neat surprise in the morning. Second, you asked me to send you a private message -- which I can surely do, but to be honest I am unsure of two things: what should that message say, and, where can I send one? Did you maybe refer to ChatZilla? Sorry if there is an obvious solution I simply seem to be missing -- it's still pretty early in the morning in my time zone.^^ --Tharondir (talk) 07:30, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Simple way -- in the left hand column, under "Tools" -- "Email this user"
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 14:40, 27 June 2014 (UTC)
I see. Thanks for the heads-up :) --Tharondir (talk) 16:14, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

Hi, thanks for the promotion too, always a pleasure to contribute when available! :) -- Goingbald (talk) 15:07, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

Questions about Template: Reputation Item

A slight poke, would this be better served or achieved on the template talk page itself? I have no issue using my talk page to discuss issues, but I would hate to archive this valuable exchange,when it would be better service on the template talk page. --Lotroadmin (talk) 06:05, 2 July 2014 (UTC)
Discussion moved to Template_talk:Reputation_Item#Questions_about_Template:_Reputation_Item
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 11:55, 2 July 2014 (UTC)

New Template or Mod of existing Item Template needed?

Moved to Talk:Lotro-Wiki Contributors' Corner.

When are pages containing transclusions updated

Ok, this is technical question -- When does cache update happen?

If you move a page, for example -- The Vinyards of Lórien to The Vineyards of Lórien -- which contains many references -- both direct and transcluded.

When you look at "What links here" -- the direct references change when you edit their respective pages to contain the correct entry.

However, the various transcluded pages, after you have changed the source page, do NOT update in the "What links here" list.

The "trick" I have used is to simply do a "null edit" -- edit the page then save it without changing it.

"Obviously," this is some kind of cache issue. Will those pages EVER update "automagically" or only if they are ever edited?

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 02:23, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
It's not a caching issue, but it has to do with how many "jobs" are in the job queue. When you update a template or an article any page with a dependency the "null edits' are queued into the job queue. A change to a template might spawn tens of thousands of jobs, which clearly can't update all pages at once. The job queue is throttled such that it doesn't overload the server, but does chugs along until it's caught up. I noticed there were about a thousand jobs in the queue when I got the notification of you post. This is rather light compared to a template change. I've kicked off a script that rushes through the job queue, so all should be well.
--Lotroadmin (talk) 02:39, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
If you want to force the page to refresh faster, you can go manually by adding ?action=purge at the end of the URL, I have it as a reminder at top of my user page. :) -- Goingbald (talk) 03:47, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Changing usernames

Hey, I was thinking of changing my username to my in-game main's name (Balorgor). Is there any way I can do that, or is that just not possible? SjsharksBoy (talk) 23:44, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

It's possible, all i need to do is install an extension and the new username needs to be available (which it is). Let me know of a day that you won't be using your account and I will change it and send you an email when completed. The extension is suppose to migrate all of your edit history, etc. --Lotroadmin (talk) 05:22, 11 July 2014 (UTC)
Thank you very much! I won't be on my account from the 12th of July until the 21st, so pick any day you want. :) And it's very nice that all of my edit history and other things will be saved. SjsharksBoy (talk) 05:28, 11 July 2014 (UTC)
Neat! I didn't think this was something that could be done as simply as that. You're a good man, Charlie Lotroadmin. :) Sethladan 21:24, 11 July 2014 (UTC)
From this day forth, I say you shall be called Balorgor! user and talk pages have been migrated, edit history has been migrated but not your signature/discussions. you might tweak your signature to have the old and new name --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:45, 14 July 2014 (UTC)

Awesome, thanks! :) Balorgor (talk) 01:31, 20 July 2014 (UTC)

graphic glitch again: "error creating thumbnail

Another strange one.

See: Essence

Attempting to tranclude the tooltip using: {{:Item: Light Nadhin Shoulders (rare-95)}} yields

However, {{:Item: Light Nadhin Shoulders (rare-95)|mode=imlink}} or {{Reward| Light Nadhin Shoulders (rare-95)}} both work as expected

The icon involved was newly uploaded.

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:20, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Do you have other images with this issue? Error message hints at an unknown RGB profile, which might be possible depending on an image editor settings. But this would be consistent across all images using the same flow. I haven't upgraded the image tools lately, but I will look into it tonight. --Lotroadmin (talk) 18:28, 15 July 2014 (UTC)
Seems like it's working again. Perhaps the update works --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:34, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
I use "Preview" in OSX for the editing/creation/conversion. It's a pretty simple (to use) graphics tool provided by Apple as part of OSX.
The really strange thing was that the same icon appears in the two tool-tips and on the page itself, all of which had no issues, only trying to transclude the page was there an issue.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 21:27, 16 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Just stumbled across another one: File:User-Blake IR-Daeracharn.jpg -- it shows up both here on the File page and on a search. I was searching for "erach" when I hit it.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 21:46, 16 July 2014 (UTC)

On Deleting Recent Changes log Spam Entries

Would restoring a spam page and then deleting it with the Suppress option remove/hide the related lines of the page in the Recent Changes log? I was considering doing it but I want to make sure that it would delete all the lines related to it. Starbursty (talk) 14:55, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

I believe just suppressing the deleted page will hide past history. Another difficult to find option is to suppress the history of certain edits without even suppressing the edit itself. If you have a deleted page in mind, you can link it or email it to me. --Lotroadmin (talk) 17:21, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Special Events on Homepage

The Special Event on the homepage says Summer Festival, even though that finished up a while ago. --Super3588 (talk) 18:21, 15 August 2014 (UTC)

playing with images

Someone asked me something about how MediaWiki compared images to detect duplicates when you do an upload.
  • (This is a separate question for which I have not yet found the answer.)
In hunting for some information, I was reading the MediaWiki Help images page
I noticed a couple of additional parameters documented there compared to our Help:Images#Examples:_Syntax_for_displaying_Images page
So I created a test page: User:Magill/Scratch-1 to see how they worked -- if at all.
Most of them did nothing, pretty much as I expected. However one of them "Frameless" caused the image to be inserted - full size.
So the questions become:
  1. Should these parameters work?
  2. Should our Images (File:) work the same as the MediaWiki description of Images?
  3. Are the "Options" positional or not?
  4. What is happening with Frameless?
  5.  ???
I should add, our reference to the Wikipedia page -- that page indicates that the information is probably out of date... but is yet another syntax.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 18:46, 30 August 2014 (UTC)
You had a typo with the description for the frameless and frame options. The full size image was actually frame and it's to be expected based on this comment found on the image syntax page.
An image with frame always ignores the size specification, the original image will be reduced if it exceeds the maximum size defined in user preferences.
When it comes to syntax, etc, feel free to link the mediawiki page(s) over duplicating pages. I typically reference MW generically unless it's a specific topic, but pagenames/links can change over time so I mostly do the full link on the talk pages. --Lotroadmin (talk) 03:41, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Boy is that obscure! exceeds the maximum size defined in user preferences.
The User Preferences entry under Appearence/Files states: Image size limit: (for file description pages) -- I assume that is the correct reference.
  1. I don't know that I have changed mine, so I assume the default value is 800x600 -- no obvious way to identify the default value.
  2. The parenthetic phrase "(for file description pages)" implies something, but what??? There is no indication that it applies to anything EXCEPT the "File:" page. i.e. no reference to the "frame" parameter of the "File:" command.
  • Can you submit a "request for change" (whatever it is called) to MW to change that to "Image size limit: (for file description pages and the File: command - frame parameter)
Or possibly simply add another line of explanatory text as exists on the first page (User Profile) of Preferences
Is "command" the correct word to describe an element of the Markup?
  • This reminds me -- what does "Restore all default settings (in all sections)" (at the bottom of all preferences pages) actually mean. The implication is that "Sections" apply to those portions of the current page delineated by horizontal lines. But I believe that in fact, it applies to all TABS in Preferences. I think I got caught on that before and have remained "gun-shy" about using it since then.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 19:36, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
Personally I would say avoid the "frame" option, but with the new HTML5 picture tag, I would expect MW to tweak how this works in the future. Nobody wants to maintain a website for various mobile devices size and another for desktop, but for MW that's probably years in the making. Feel free to discuss these issues directly with MW and let me know the talk page, bug id, etc and I can toss in my two cents, but I typically notify them on critical bugs vs anything I feel we can work around. Also I would use the terms markup, elements, syntax, fields, etc over command, but either way I would understand what you meant. The 'restore all defaults' does mean 'all', I do wish they would provide options to restore account settings vs tab settings, but in the end, it's really just a minor annoyance in the grand scheme of MW... --Lotroadmin (talk) 03:53, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

Bad ads

The ad for "Dining Month" -- is generating a link to a phishing site. (It is getting blocked by Safari.) The urls are:

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 19:41, 3 September 2014 (UTC)
I've blocked the base url of rev2pub. I typically ask folks to avoid pasting the URLs on my talk page since search engines bot our talk pages, but feel free to email them to me. As for blocking the add i just need to know the base URL without the http://www. It is really annoying that adsense doesn't do a better job of filtering out the spam advertisements and sadly it's difficult to tell if there is an issue with our web browser, web host or adsense when it comes to the phishing. I've removed java and flash from my critical web browser just because of past phishing scams. As for the web host, i've only installed the bare minimum of linux packages just for that same reason. BTW, I will delete these edits with the URL history for the bad ads. There are only two reasons that the we get spam, 1) search index rankings (results in ad revenue) and 2) NSA encrypted messages... Okay i've watched a few two many spy movies for #2 :), but you got to admit some of the spam is just very well crafted gibberish. --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:07, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

Strange wiki behaviour

Has the Wiki itself been "acting strange" lately?

Basically, I've had frequent occurrences lately of "unable to update" a page because of loss of session information.
In the past I've gotten that message when I have been sitting on a page in edit mode for some time (hours, usually) without saving it.
However, lately I seem to be getting it 2 or 3 times an evening, for no apparent reason.
I don't have a clear understanding of the mechanic here, but I assume it has to do with a time-stamp associated with the editing cookie.
(Invariably simply trying to save the page a second time allows the update to happen.)
It could always be related to Apple updates. There was an update to both OSX and Safari on about 19 September.
Current - OSX 10.9.5 Safari Version 7.1 (9537.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 01:38, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
There could be a number of things that cause a session to timeout, but mostly the session is tied to a cookie. The account cookies will naturally expire after 180 days, but restarting or flushing the browser or server cache could cause the session to expire. It's also possible that a change to a template spawned a job on a page you edited and caused a conflict, this would be a rare and difficult to cause but most likely you would have to do a second save. Over the last few days I've been doing minor updates to fix major security issues (bash) which requires restarting a few services, but 99% of the time there no impact or no reported impact. I would assume I caused the issue, and sorry if you lost any edits that were in flight, hopefully your second save trick always work.
There might be a few more security patches over the next few days, but if it happens twice in a day more than thirty minutes apart between saves, let me know.--Lotroadmin (talk) 04:10, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
I've had the same thing happen; hitting "save" again puts the edit through, no loss of data or anything, as Magill says. The template job spawning thing sounds like a likely culprit, at least in my case, since I ran through a bunch of them over the past week adding documentation subpages. Will keep an eye out for if it happens again. Sethladan 05:23, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
Seeing the same behaviour here (and on my own wiki), but I've been seeing this across a number of websites recently. For example my kinship website used to have a cookie that lasted years meaning that I could keep the tab open and stay logged in indefinitely. Now I need to relogin after a short time away from the tab. I tried editing the cookies and examining the expiration time and that wasn't the issue but Firefox still wants to delete them after a short period of time so my guess is this is part of Browser manufacturers ongoing campaign to increase security on the web by forcibly purging cookies. Snarpel (talk) 22:16, 30 September 2014 (UTC)
I would agree there is bug in MW after hitting the session issue today, from what I would consider a rather short edit. I will dig around on this some more to see if it's related the php version or something new to be tuned in MW, but my guess is this will be corrected shortly. --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:40, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

The new CAPTCHA ...

With the new captcha we can create questions that hopefully new users can answer but not the bots. The questions could be just simple 'static' question & answers or something a bit more dynamic where a script can do a calculation, search a file for a word. Unfortunately i picked a few clever but dynamic questions from a blog, which a few were already cracked, and we had a flood of spambots. If you have any good questions we can ask or have ideas for fun dynamic puzzles, feel free to email or add any suggestions below. --Lotroadmin (talk) 16:06, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

So it looks like with this new captcha it takes a good week before the Spammers/NSA can hack the simple question. If any fellow geeks or math majors have fun questions that can be easily scripted let me know. I have so many ways to say "Please indicate the character before the fifth character from this randomly generate string" lol.. I will probably have to break it out to letters vs numbers.... --Lotroadmin (talk) 03:08, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
Recently I got a captcha to solve a simple jigsaw puzzle (scrambled image of a flower, use mouse to move pieces around). But I have no experience with setting up captchas, no idea how well that works. -Laineth (talk) 06:27, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
I did notice a replacement for the cats and dogs, as much as i liked to click on the cats, i guess it's more fitting to require new members to do a puzzle before they can register or upload an URL.. If Questy captcha doesn't work out then that's probably the next one I will try. Thanks --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:28, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

Incomplete blocks?

When I look at the "Recent Changes" I note a string of accounts, obviously created by the same entity, as their ids differ by one character -- Fred81612l being one series. However, apparently only one account actually was used to create a spam entry, so only one of the series was blocked.

My question is -- should we worry about this situation, or is the associated IP block sufficient?
If we blocked blocks of user names, they would just change a letter in the username. There seems to be three types of usernames... these blocks as you noted, the random first and last name combo and random characters. The random characters and these blocks of names are easy to spot as spambot, we still have to wait until they commit spam :) before bringing the hammer down, but i find the blocks of names easy to spot.
There was a period where the confirmedit-asirra blocked all edits with URLs for 'users' until they were promoted.. That was by far the best defense we had against spam, but of course blocked legit users from adding a URL, this mostly impacted the kinships folks. Sadly MW has refused to add this as a basic 'user rights' where you could disable it for the basic user groups. We have another extension called spam blacklist that will block URLs that provides a blacklist and a mediawiki:Spam-whitelist and also uses the blacklist managed by mediwiki. So with the built in 'block' user and their IP address, the spam blacklist that blocks URLs, and the new fancy quest captcha hopefully this will last a few months.
The new trick question of the captcha seems to have done the trick and i'm curious for how long that will list.
--Lotroadmin (talk) 04:21, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

Database query error

Was pruning some redlinks as a mindless chore and happened across one of RTC's talk page archives which is throwing an error "that may indicate a bug in the software": User talk:RingTailCat/Archive2. Going through the page history shows everything fine until 29 March 2013 - the 16 March revision shows without issue.

This came up at least once before in connection(?) to a MW upgrade if that helps at all. Sethladan 13:38, 20 October 2014 (UTC)

Putting $wgShowSQLErrors = 1; in LocalSettings.php should cause the actual SQL error message to show Snarpel (talk) 15:47, 20 October 2014 (UTC)
Error: 1267 Illegal mix of collations (latin1_bin,IMPLICIT) and (utf8_general_ci,COERCIBLE) for operation '=' (localhost)
I removed the offending section from that page --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:48, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
I'm guessing this check was added recently as a way to spot spam since one of their tactics is to use multiple character sets to obfuscate URLs. Or just as likely the database is tightening it's reigns on character set violations. If you find other pages with this issue, just list them here or feel free to edit the page and remove the special characters. --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:55, 21 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for squashing that! I don't remember if I even tried to edit the page - I must have, though; I'm not usually that daft... Will keep an eye out for others. Sethladan 13:58, 21 October 2014 (UTC)

"unable to update" problem continues

This problem continues to happen regularly - short edits as well as long ones. I haven not seen any recognizable pattern to them.

I upgraded to Yosemite (OSX 10.10 with a new version of Safari) over last weekend, and that had no obvious effect on things.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 00:36, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for the update, I will dig around some more.... There's been enough updates since this was first reported that I'm guessing a setting needs to be adjusted and not really a MW bug. --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:26, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Ok -- got the answer (I think). This is, I believe, a problem (currently) unique to OSX. A recent discussion about NTP at MacPorts pointed out a problem with Apple's implementation of NTP. It's broken! It seems that it isn't updating correctly - basically allowing time to get significantly out of sync and then "jerking" forward. It is the type of problem which is going to really screw-up anything which depends upon "synchronized time - like cookies. Apple's "broken fix" apparently began with Maverick 10.9 and continues. This is a classic -- fix one thing and break another. The NTP process "eats battery" simply because of its constant communication nature. So Apple came up with a way to cut down on the NTP dialog -- only it doesn't work correctly. I say currently unique to OSX because Linux evidently had a similar problem with NTP which may or may not have been fixed, and the dialog I've seen was aware of that problem, but not its outcome. I don't know how much you know about NTP, but basically, OSX gets out of "skew" to the point where NTP won't pull it back in line, and Apple created another process to do that job. This is one of the more obscure networking issues I've seen over the years -- a serious techie issue.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 00:13, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

From main page Talk

  • Try searching for epic book 13 helm's deep
Result is that broken display again.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:00, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
Snarpel noticed the same thing with the search term "captain emblem". Although he stated it rendered fine on Chrome, I get the odd display on Chrome here (for both search terms). Sethladan 17:12, 23 October 2014 (UTC)
I took a chance and updated sphinx, but that ended breaking the predictive search. I believe the issue is related to sphinx/MW generates the search results. My hunch is that there is a missing or truncated HTML tag in the generate results that either was part of an actual page or of a template. It's interesting that "13 helm's deep" renders fine but "Book 13 helm's deep" doesn't. Anyone with mad CSS probably could spot the issue rather quick and might help narrow down the a fix. --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:24, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Found the problem! If a search result contains an HTML comment early enough in the wikitext, it's possible for the preview text to be truncated before the comment is closed, meaning the entire rest of the search-results page is commented out. Very unexpected behavior - comments should be ignored completely. This does sound like an issue for either the search or MW. (Do "view page source" on these search results as a demonstration...until someone fixes it.) Sethladan 12:59, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
(Okay, since the order of the search results might change, the link I posted might not actually be an error-y page. But if you look at the end of the source HTML for any of the oddly-rendered page, you should see everything commented out beyond a certain point, which breaks closing divs and all that.) Sethladan 16:54, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Talk about obscure issues -- haven't seen one like that since DEC had an issue with the last byte of odd numbered pages in virtual memory causing page faults. (That one was a hardware issue.)
Fantastic sluthing! Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 15:01, 24 October 2014 (UTC)
Well spotted. I edited Escape_from_Darkness, which was the page causing the problem with the captain emblem search, and after removing the comments it no longer causes a problem. You are right about the problem not being limited to Firefox as I originally thought. The reason I did not see it in Chrome or IE was I was not logged in on those browsers so I only got a small number of search results which did not include the offending page. Snarpel (talk) 22:15, 24 October 2014 (UTC)

Nameserver going out to lunch

Beginning last evening around 2100, and continuing today, has come and gone with the Name servers Comcast is using by default.

I.e. Access to the Wiki is failing with "host unkonwn" errors.

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 18:16, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

Is this still a problem with comcast? My router uses one ISP provided DNS and then google's as the backup. Not sure if that will help, but you might try. --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:19, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

I haven't fully explored what is happening. I think the problem is "local" to Comcast, but I don't know. I will be working along with no problems, and then suddenly, I get told the host can't be found. It's clearly a DNS type message, but I don't know if it is local to my local Comcast loop, or if the problem is beyond that. It both "self-heals" and I can power-cycle my router and have it pick up new routes, and it will clear. When it self heals, it seems to take 10-15 minutes, which is what makes me think the problem is local. I don't know how Comcast cascades their DNS look-ups, but I guess I'm going to have to find out. :(
One interesting thing -- is only 2 hops off Comcast's own backbone and a total of only 13 hops away!
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 01:37, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

Are we experiencing periodic, but short, outages

I "think" I have resolved Comcast's nameserver issues, and it was quite local within Comcast. I managed to talk to someone in their tech support who knew what the DNS was :) !
Now what I'm seeing is what seem to be a random "drop-out." Most recent was around 8pm (20:00) tonight.
While before I was seeing significant issues on hops with traceroute within Comcast, this time around I was not getting through to at all.
I'll keep an eye on things and log the times going forward.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 02:22, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
I didn't see anything out of the ordinary in the monitoring charts that would indicate a drop in network traffic or increase of server load. If other websites were working fine, then maybe there was a DNS issue? You might try google's DNS servers if the issue continues. --Lotroadmin (talk) 18:36, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Anything up with server side cache or something?

This one's got even me stumped: A category page is up-to-date while logged in, but logging out shows different results. I gave it a couple days to see if the software would catch up or the like, but figured it was time to call in the supervisor. :P Sethladan 21:36, 24 January 2015 (UTC)

I reset the server side cache, it appears to be fixed on the three category pages while logged in vs logged out. We've been running rather smoothly for the last few months, so the gap of updates means that i'm not reseting the cache as often. Perhaps I need to schedule a weekly cron job to do that. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:36, 25 January 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! This is the first I've ever heard of something like this, so I don't know how often we'd need a cache reset. On the other hand, I'd think we want regular visitors (people not logged in) to have access to the latest version of pages, too. You're the one best-suited to decide how aggressive to be with the cache, so...glad you're the boss and not me. :P
Nice to know things have been so smooth lately! Sethladan 01:25, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Another Cache issue

No idea how long this has been this way... just happened to notice it. There seem to be a number of these in random locations. Another one is at Category: Enedwaith Maps

I suspect it may relate to the large size of the original: 1725 x 1825

Annúminas (Terrain Map).jpg -250 px works, but 200 generates: Annúminas (Terrain Map).jpg - Error creating thumbnail: Unable to save thumbnail to destination.

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:37, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
Possibly relevant solution(s) on MediaWiki. Sethladan 18:25, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
This turned out to be a permission issue with the thumbs and I believe this was related to the image issues we had a while back. Go ahead and add append ?action=purge to any other pages where you see this issue to force an update, otherwise it will get queued and eventually fixed. BTW, I've seen pages go blank if you attempt to refresh or preview, but appending ?action=purge seems to work. Thanks for catching this --Lotroadmin (talk) 03:20, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Hurrah! Sethladan 04:24, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Wow!!! That one has been around for quite a while! (July 2012).
Question: Is that Liquid Threads that I see at the Support Desk?
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 17:00, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
I thought that was but could have been. A guess but either it happened when I wiped the thumb cache to force a rebuild when we had corrupt images after the upgrading the webhost, but it could have also occurred during the last MW update. I added a flag in one of my scripts to check that directory, so hopefully this won't happen there again. Yes MW is still using LQT for their support desk... lol --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:23, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

I really think the word spam is misspelled.. it should be spamn

I've noticed an uptick in the spam accounts, thanks to all for blocking them. I will continue to tweak the questions and such, but the volume is low enough this round could be an actual person..... We will see.. --Lotroadmin (talk) 20:46, 10 February 2015 (UTC)

Yet another interesing stats site

I have no idea who this site is, or how accurate. It surfaced in a discussion of the fact that on 22 April, 2015,

  • it was announced that the Russian LOTRO servers would shutdown as of 1 June.

  • Additionally, this site also pointed out that exists.

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:13, 25 April 2015 (UTC)

An old question whose answer I'm afraid I'm remembering backwards - searching for names with special characters

I thought that the new search engine (from several years ago) would find Quest:To Bâr Húrin when "To Bar Hurin" was entered as a search string.
That is not happening.
Am I mis-remembering this, or is it in fact broken.
I know that historically we created a "plain english" page which redirected to the one with the correct diacritical markings - e.g. Lothlorien
And I love the way the search engine asks "Did you mean Beorn" when you search for "Bar Hurin".

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 14:22, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
I wanted to add that I've always used the "old" convention of creating a page without any special characters to redirect users. Since the problem mentioned by Magill is actually wiki-wide, I would either suggest a change in the search-engine if that is at all possible, or a bot such as User:RingTailBot in style to fix all the pages. I am aware that the bot-coding users are all gone, so that would prove an issue.
For reference, the convention of making an additional page to redirect users is mentioned at This page should be changed if the convention proves to be incorrect.
--Freepy (talk) 12:05, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Items and Quests, along with other name spaces, need to be prefixed with the "Item:" or "Quest:" for the auto search feature to work, but they should show up under a normal search if you don't add the Item: or Quest: prefix. This example is interesting as it includes an highly common word "To" and a short word "Bar" which for some reason isn't showing up under normal searches. I've rebuilt the indexes and reviewed the charset_table to make sure the A and U are converted to a normal A and U, so guessing there is a bug with sphinx or a charset issue with the database. I will look into this more, but maybe for that page a redirect is required until i find a solution....
As for adding redirects in general, ideally it's more efficient to have a proper mapping form these special characters to the "normal" character, and mostly I think that works.
We are almost due for a mediawiki update which will allow us to upgrade to a newest version of sphinx and give me the opportunity to review the charset in the database and any new sphinx features.
--Lotroadmin (talk) 04:53, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the info - I've restored the redirect. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:34, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

Attention WikiNerds - World Closures - Gilrain is closing!

Note that Gilrain is one of the EU worlds shutting down.

Many WIKI Editors have accounts on that world.

See: World Closure Announcement - 3 August 2015

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 09:21, 4 August 2015 (UTC)

Warning - stay alert -- The forums at have been hacked

It appears that the main LOTRO forums have been hacked -- apparently all threads spammed.
Posts all seem to have the number "9950620150" in the subject line, apparently from user "asjsnfh"
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 22:55, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

Is DEFAULTSORT valid on this Media Wiki?

{{DEFAULTSORT:sortkey}} is a MagicWord in MediaWiki:
However, I seem to remember some issue with it not working in this implementation.
See: Template talk:Quest Rep
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 23:52, 15 August 2015 (UTC)


See: Template_talk:Tooltip_Coords#Swirlie - As I mentioned, I have no idea what tech is involved in replacing the swirlie with something slse.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:54, 6 September 2015 (UTC)
Is there not a swirlie image you can update? I assume it's a gif somewhere... --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:11, 1 October 2015 (UTC)
File:Coord_mark.gif is the image; In the javascript as src=""
If the icon is 'updated' will it replace the current gif at /images/e/e5/... and the old one is placed in a archive folder?
If that is the case, then a updating the gif would leave the javascript alone/unedited. Otherwise the script will need to be updated with the new src to the replacing gif which could be more problematic? --Ketrez (talk) 15:08, 2 October 2015 (UTC)

Sorry for the downtime..

i had to do some unexpected maintenance today, but all should be well now --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:10, 1 October 2015 (UTC)

I presume this is a service provider problem, not yours, but -

Just a heads up, it appears that a major push is underway to switch to SHA2 encryption beginning this January.
I have no idea if the Wiki's Service Provider is dealing with this, or if you have to deal with it independently.
An article (admittedly histrionic) from Ziff-Davis on the subject:
From the article it appears that the US is not as much an issue as overseas. Which is to say that Turbine an by extension, the Wiki, may have problems with many users.
Details from Digi-cert on who supports what.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 01:50, 24 October 2015 (UTC)
this is something that I've been meaning to update, and hopefully will have it resolved before thanks giving. --Lotroadmin (talk) 02:07, 24 October 2015 (UTC)

Search engine not seeing special characters again

Apparently the search function is failing to process special characters again. See: User_talk:Agathriel#Naming_redirection_with_Special_Characters

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 23:52, 30 October 2015 (UTC)

Hiding Title When Deleting Pages

Hey Lotroadmin, is there a way to hide the title of the page I'm deleting? Whenever these spam bots make new pages, I can delete the content, but the page name still exists in the log. Balorgor (talk) 00:23, 6 January 2016 (UTC)

Yeah, I took a quick look for that too, but it's rather hard to do it via the wiki. I know I can prune deleted pages and maybe someday I will do that, but if the robot.txt is honored the recent changes page should be blocked. I have two theories on why we get spam, 1) helps with search rankings 2) NSA is sending encoded messages to fellow operatives to order lunch. --Lotroadmin (talk) 01:52, 15 January 2016 (UTC)
Heh, alright then, we'll have to convince the NSA operatives to send their lunch orders on a different site. ;) Balorgor (talk) 01:58, 15 January 2016 (UTC)
Whew...The NSA must have enough lunches for a year now...Let's hope they don't need any more tomorrow! Balorgor (talk) 00:11, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

Contributor's Corner gone

Any idea on how to restore the Contributor's Corner? I am unable to find the deleted version of it... --Tharondir (talk) 20:49, 20 January 2016 (UTC)

Wow what a spam mess.. I think we got it restored.. I hope it's the right version --Lotroadmin (talk) 21:04, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
Yes, that helped. Another thing: to stop the attack, is there a way to disable account creation altogether, for now? --Tharondir (talk) 21:06, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
Attempting to change the key, this is all scripted so they figured out how to do regular expressions. --Lotroadmin (talk) 21:14, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
It seems as if the attack is over. Barny and I have blocked all involved accounts and deleted all spam pages. Thank you for fixing the Contributor's Corner and the Main Page Talk Page. I hope the attack does not continue tommorow... --Tharondir (talk) 22:28, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
The last Usercreation was 15 minute ago. Can you block the Usercreation or Pagecreation for new user? Barny (talk) 22:31, 20 January 2016 (UTC)
I've tweaked the question a little bit, but I will try to make it more random and look into other ways to filter bad creation of pages. --Lotroadmin (talk) 00:11, 21 January 2016 (UTC)
Well my question tweaks didn't help, but i've been adding filters for bad page names. Unless we get another flood of spam, wait for the NSA/MI6 to create that new account and another bad page before blocking them. I can keep adding to the filters. I will be adding two new extensions that will block bad titles and also permanently delete pages. --Lotroadmin (talk) 21:55, 21 January 2016 (UTC)
Gee. It looks like I slept through all the fun :) Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 14:40, 22 January 2016 (UTC)
You did, lol, you even had some edits during the fun. I believe my filters on page names is helping, but hopefully the NSA is looking for another wiki to do their bidding. They have a fair amount IPs they are using to attack the site from, and those IPs are getting blocked, but it's hard to proactively stop this. --Lotroadmin (talk) 18:52, 22 January 2016 (UTC)

Moving a page

Would you please move Update 17.2 - December 17, 2015 to Update 17.1 Hotfix - December 17, 2015? I didn't name it correctly the first time. Banaticus (talk) 00:03, 23 January 2016 (UTC)

I moved it, but this seems actually a duplicate of Update_17.1_Hotfix_2_-_December_17,_2015. Is there a reason why there are two pages? --EoD (talk) 10:06, 23 January 2016 (UTC)
Turbine changed the names of the "patches" ! You have to follow the dates, and then match them to the names which Turbine has defined in the main forum.
I'll take a look at them later.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:43, 24 January 2016 (UTC)

A Patrolling issue



There are a number of "New" pages which do not show up as "patrol-able".

In the past Sethladan has managed to identify the issue.

The first one from 20 January is "obvious" the page needing to be patrolled has been deleted.
The next one from 12 January I think was a delete to rename because of the special character.
The last batch from 6 January -- I don't have a clue.

I don't know how to directly access the database, which I think is what Sethladan did to clear them in the past.

Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 18:30, 7 February 2016 (UTC)
Sadly the place to mark a page as patrolled isn't consistent, but you can normally find them if you search for patrol on an unpatrolled page. --Lotroadmin (talk) 19:00, 11 February 2016 (UTC)
  • Whatever you did here cleared or otherwise allowed the previous problem pages to be patrolled.
That said, there is something clearly wrong/broken with the (Patrolling) search mechanics tonight.
Right now, the "Recent Discussions" entry in the left column is displaying Changes related to "Talk Pages Watchlist" -- but that page is suddenly including entries to the Patrol Log, which are not normally present.
Using the search above, I am getting a list of pages which I have patrolled previously. At least as far back as mid January at the moment.
It is almost as if the database is being rolled back, or if a "commit" is not happening. It is very strange.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 01:42, 17 February 2016 (UTC)
I will see what I can find out, but I've been able to find the patrol myself, so i'm curious if the job queue is hiding the patrol text. --Lotroadmin (talk) 06:21, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
In most cases, I can find the Patrol text, but what I'm encountering now is that pages I have patrolled are re-appearing. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 00:33, 20 February 2016 (UTC)
Seems like there is a bug with this version of mediawiki. I've been working getting us to the latest release, but they've revamped most of the settings file and i'm trying to automate it in a way there's little to no downtime when we upgrade. April seems like the right time for me to do the upgrade though --Lotroadmin (talk) 20:50, 21 February 2016 (UTC)

Spam filter

It's good to see that this filter has been added, but as of now, it's keeping me from editing...

see Spam Filter.png

Okay, that should be fixed. --Lotroadmin (talk) 22:56, 19 February 2016 (UTC)

Indeed it is. I salute you sir :) --Tharondir (talk) 23:05, 19 February 2016 (UTC)
Unfortunately, I'm running into some problems regarding the spam filter. It's not allowing me to link to User talk:Ravanel/Archive 2014 and User talk:Ravanel/Archive 2015 on User talk:Ravanel. It's also stopping me from copying the topics "On Spam" and "Legacies and LI Plugin info" from User talk:Ravanel to User talk:Ravanel/Archive 2014. Message is the same as for Tharondir (but in Dutch). There are no external links involved, though. --Ravanel (talk) 00:48, 21 February 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the aid. Spam filter is now stopping me from posting on this talk page, though. --Ravanel (talk) 01:06, 22 February 2016 (UTC)
This actual page or another page? If you can paste the text after "Spam Filter:" shown in the above image, that helps me greatly. --Lotroadmin (talk) 04:56, 22 February 2016 (UTC)
This actual page; out of 4 tries, only the entry above got through. Iirc, the spam filter said it was triggered by "=", so same as Tharondir. Will try to lure out the error message once more. --Ravanel (talk) 11:21, 22 February 2016 (UTC)
OK, so today it's fine. Looks like I can post here again. *glares at spam filter* Will let you know if I get another error message - if it lets me. --Ravanel (talk) 11:25, 22 February 2016 (UTC)
I cleared the server side cache, so hopefully the "=" filter doesn't show it's face for a while. --Lotroadmin (talk) 19:58, 23 February 2016 (UTC)
Lets see if this will post after the cache has been cleared.
Looks like I can post to this page now, but still can't post to the Category talk:Geography page.
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 20:15, 23 February 2016 (UTC)
I'm not certain that I like the idea that this Spam Filter is based on finding words, and in fact only part of words. That tends to generate lots of false positives. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 20:11, 24 February 2016 (UTC)

Spam Filter Editing break because the section was getting too long

It is extremely annoying that this new spam filter will NOT allow one to repost existing pages after making only trivial changes.
Changes which are nowhere near the reason for the rejection.
This has been (for me at least) because the original page contains the word "tec*hnical." - Note that this spelling does not get rejected :)
It is further compounded by the fact that the preview option gives no inkling that the update is about to be rejected!
Do we get any kind of statistics from this filter which indicates how many (and which) pages are being rejected?
From earlier comments it seems clear that there is no log indicating WHY pages are being rejected?
Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 18:05, 2 March 2016 (UTC)
Actually it should be very clear what the word was on why it's being rejected, from the above image the "=" was the reason, which has been removed from the filter. I've removed technical as well, feel free to upload a screenshot of the failure. I'm sorry this filter has been a pain, but it's a few words that this round of spammers. They actually created over 2000 pages this last go around, so its very risky to remove all the words. --Lotroadmin (talk) 00:29, 3 March 2016 (UTC)

Latest World of Warships ad locks up Safari

The most recent World of Warships ad wants you to click on the ad to fire torpedos -- if you don't it completely locks up Safari on OSX. (El Capitan). It takes many tries and repeats of the ad before you can successully x it off! Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 00:50, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

Change My Username

Is there a way to change my username? I've changed the name it displays in my signature to Gestrid, but I would like to change the username permanently to that name. (If there is a way, just remember that I changed my user page to redirect to my character's page. You have permission to change that if it might interfere with the process.) -- Gestrid (talk) 04:31, 24 April 2016 (UTC) Thank you! -- Gestrid (previously Super3588) (talk) 06:03, 24 April 2016 (UTC)

List of Fansites: Spam filter help needed

Hiya. I've recently been busy updating Social:List of Fansites, which was extremely outdated. There is a Social Media section that I wanted to include FB in: it's an important social hub for LOTRO players (especially the server group pages are). Is there any way to circumvent the spam filter, either by making an exception for that particular page or by you posting the text yourself? The text is as follows (but then with FB spelled out):

* FB The official LOTRO account on FB. In addition to following this account, many LOTRO players actively participate in conversations in LOTRO server groups that are founded and moderated by volunteers. Most people use their real life accounts, therefore groups are set to private: only members can see what is discussed within.

Thanks for your thoughts in advance! --Ravanel (talk) 11:03, 25 June 2016 (UTC)

See my comments over at the Social Talk:List of Fansites Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:17, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
It turns out that the word F a c e b o o k is explicitly blocked. Wm Magill - Valamar - OTG/OTC - talk 16:34, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
Hey Magill. I'm aware of that! In fact, that's why I was asking Lotroadmin for help. While I do not see much point in having links to it on other parts of the wiki, I think it should be included in this list, because it fits what people might be looking for when reading that article (how to get in contact with other fans). I think it's the place where most people connect over LOTRO apart from perhaps the forum. It's definitely bigger than Twitter.
Now I know just typing FB works, too, I'll just include it like that on the list for now, even though it looks kind of ugly. --Ravanel (talk) 16:57, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
Ravanel, It should work now, if the spambots attack us again, that will probably have to go on the list. It's fine to ask me to remove words from the filter, even if it's just temporary, but at the end of the day, the spambots control what goes on the list... --Lotroadmin (talk) 19:38, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
Thank you. Sorry for having to bother you! --Ravanel (talk) 22:45, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
No worries, and never a bother, im the one that one that should be sorry for not having a better spam filter. --Lotroadmin (talk) 23:07, 26 June 2016 (UTC)
  • Facebook? Where is it blocked? Maybe I can offer some help in preventing spam while not preventing authentic uses? Technical 13 (talk) 20:30, 23 July 2016 (UTC)
It's just Facebook lol.. but it's been removed from heavy hammer spam filter. We had a very fun spam attack a few months back where hundreds of accounts were registered and thousands of pages were added, about have used Facebook in the edit.... --Lotroadmin (talk) 06:21, 24 July 2016 (UTC)

Wiki host

I'm guessing you're the one that hosts this wiki, and as such the one whom I'd have to talk to about adding extensions and adjusting configurations? Technical 13 (talk) 01:47, 20 July 2016 (UTC)

I would be the one, what did you need? --Lotroadmin (talk) 14:16, 23 July 2016 (UTC)
  • There are a list of things to consider.
  • [1] should not be /index.php/$1 -- Wikipedia uses /wiki/$1 and DDOwiki uses /page/$1. In my honest opinion, anything would be better than "index.php".
  • Extension:Purge is nice to make it much easier for people to clear the cache of a page without having to manually append ?action=purge or &action=purge to the URL for a page.
  • Extension:ImageMap allows clickable image maps. This is a nice way to have a map of an area with the ability to click on various points of interest and it take you to the page for that poi.
  • Extension:InputBox works great for adding a specific search box to a page or having the ability to create a new page with a preload and set of specific parameters.
  • Extension:Loops works with the already installed Extension:Variables to be able to process templates with multiple similar parameters or things that can be done repetitively.
  • Extension:SyntaxHighlight makes it much easier to read and process .js and .css pages (and is required for User:Technical 13/Gadget-codeBacklinks.js and User:Technical 13/Gadget-codeAnchors.js to work properly.
  • Extension:Gadgets is a great extension to allow me to move all of the Category:Gadgets I copied over from DDOwiki that I made or modified from Wikipedia into the MediaWiki: namespace and make them easily available for everyone.
  • Extension:Widgets allows administrators (I recommend against a separate "Widget Editor" group and just add the right to admin) to make gadgets to allow walk-through and tutorial videos from YouTube or Twitter feeds or other widgets like the one for [2] available for people to see.
There's probably other stuff that would make great improvements as well. I don't suppose the localsettings.php is available in a private repo on GitHub or something so I can help there with pull requests? Thanks, and I'd love feedback/discussion about any of these. :) Technical 13 (talk) 20:50, 23 July 2016 (UTC)
If we changed the URL to /wiki/ or something like that, would we be able to setup a redirect to fix the inevitable broken links we would cause? -- Gestrid (previously Super3588) (talk) 21:05, 23 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Another thing I just noticed... Special:ListGroupRights shows (all) as not having (edit) but they have (createtalk), (createpage), (writeapi), (editmyoptions), (editmyprivateinfo), (editmyusercss), (editmyuserjs), and (editmywatchlist) of which none of those will work without an account or (edit). Is that as is intended to not allow anons to edit at all? Technical 13 (talk) 21:19, 23 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Found another thing... [4] and [5] that control {{ns:Project}} ( should be Lotro-Wiki (without the .com). Technical 13 (talk) 00:05, 24 July 2016 (UTC)
  • Another question: If Lotroadmin was to implement these things (including changing index.php), would there be any downtime while everything was being done? If so, how much (rough estimate)? One reason I'm asking is, because this is likely the number one wiki about LotRO, we can't just go offline (or put up some maintenance page or something) without warning. It would have to be scheduled, and a rough estimate of when the site would go back up would likely have to be given. -- Gestrid (previously Super3588) (talk) 02:02, 24 July 2016 (UTC)
  • It shouldn't require any downtime. These changes could be implemented on the fly. Technical 13 (talk) 03:12, 24 July 2016 (UTC)