Help:Administrators' how-to guide
Every founder of a wiki has administrator access on the wiki they founded. Other users may also be granted this access, by the founder, or by another bureaucrat. This page is a basic how-to guide to using your admin powers. This page explains how to carry out sysop actions, and does not cover the policies that you must follow before doing these. Ensure you are aware of the relevant policies on your wiki before doing anything described on this page.
Deleting a page
- Click the delete or delete this page link on the page you want to delete. (If you are using the monobook skin with English as your default language, you can use the shortcut alt+d.)
- You will be shown a page with a box to type in the reason for deletion, and a confirm box. This page will give you a warning if the page has more than one revision in its history. If something looks like nonsense but has a page history, check the history before deleting it! The revision you are looking at could be just a vandalised version of a real article.
- Type your reason for deletion in the box provided. If it is a very short page, the box will contain the page text. For pages that are obviously vandalism, you may wish to leave the full text as the reason. In other cases, you should specify why you are deleting it. (For example, "this page is not about the subject of this wiki" or "this page is a copyright violation".)
- After you have deleted the page, check to see if it has a talk page. If it does, delete this too.
- If the page is being deleted because it should not exist, check that nothing links to it to reduce the chance that it might be created again.
- Follow any other guidelines for deleting pages on your wiki, which may include archiving a deletion discussion.
Deleting an image
- Check that you really want to delete the image! Image deletion is not reversible, so please be careful when doing this.
- Click on the image to be deleted, or follow the image link (for example, Image:Example.jpg), which will take you to the image's description page.
- To delete all revisions of an image, click "delete all revisions of this image" where it appears in the image history. You may also click "delete" at the top of the page the same way you might for an article.
- To delete an older revision of an image, you must click the del link which appears next to that revision of the image.
- If there is more than one revision of an image, clicking the "Delete all revisions of this image" will do exactly that. You cannot delete the most recent one without deleting all older copies as well, and also deleting the image description page. If you would like to delete only the most recent revision, you must revert to an earlier revision first.
- After clicking Delete all revisions of this image, you will see a confirmation screen similar to that used for page deletion. The deletion will be logged at Special:Log/delete. Again, remember that image deletion is not reversible!
- If the image has a talk page, delete this too.
Undeleting a page
Pages can be undeleted for as long as they are in the archive. This archive is occasionally cleared out.
- To restore a page that has not been recreated, look for a message on the page telling you how many deleted revisions there are. To restore a page that has been recreated, this message will appear when you view the page history. (You can also type the full URL to undelete; for example, http://www.wikia.com/index.php?title=Special:Undelete&target=Foo to undelete Foo.)
- Click on this to go to a page which displays the deleted revisions. You can look at each revision separately, and choose whether to undelete all revisions (the default) or selected ones.
- To undelete all revisions, click the restore button which appears on the confirmation page. (Undeletion occurs as soon as you click this; there is no further confirmation screen or a place to type a reason.)
- To undelete only selected revisions, select the revisions you wish restore with the checkboxes next to each revision, and then click the restore button. If you do not undelete all revisions, the log will record how many you did restore.
- To view a deleted page without undeleting it, click on the timestamp of the version you wish to see. This will allow you to view that version of the page without restoring it.
Protecting or unprotecting a page or image
Administrators may protect pages from editing by anyone other than administrators. Please check to see that you are following the wiki's policies! It is a common mistake to protect pages unnecessarily; remember that protection should be used only to stop vandalism or edit wars. Even main pages do not need to be protected unless they are consistently targets of vandalism.
- Click the protect or protect this page link. (If you are using the monobook skin, you can use the shortcut alt+=.)
- If you are protecting an image, click "protect" on the image description page. When an image is protected, both the page and the image are protected. The image description page will be protected, and non-sysops will not be able to revert the image to an earlier version, or upload a new version over it.
- You will see a confirmation screen. Enter the reason for protection in the box, check the confirm box, and click confirm. This will be logged at Special:Log/protect. (Please check this log occasionally to see if there are any pages where protection should be lifted, as it does not expire automatically.)
- If your wiki has a template that marks the page as protected, place this template on the page. (If your wiki does not have one, consider making one! This is helpful for new editors who may not understand what is happening or how to request that a protected page be changed.)
Unprotection is done in the same way. The "Protect" button now says "Unprotect".
Editing a protected page
Click edit this page in the normal way. The only difference is the warning at the top of the page reminding you the page is protected. Please check whether your wiki has a protection policy before doing this; you should not leave a page locked to administrator editing only unless there is a strong reason for it.
Block a user or IP
Please check whether your wiki has a policy on this! Remember that blocks should be used only to prevent damage to the wiki, and should be used as a last resort.
- Click the block link that appears next to the IP or username in recent changes or go to Special:Blockip.
- If you went directly to Special:Blockip, fill in the name or IP of the user you want to block in the first field.
- Fill in the length of the block in the second field, either from the dropdown menu or, if you select "other", for some other appropriate length according to your wiki's blocking policy. Do not block shared or dynamic IP addresses for a long time (perhaps a week), because the user you wished to block will not be using it for long, but other innocent users may.
- Add the reason for the block in the third field. This reason should explain to the user why they are blocked according your wiki's blocking policy. Remember that other users may be innocently affected by the block and will see this message, so do not put anything offensive, confusing, or vague as the reason.
- Click the block this user button. This will be logged at Special:Log/block and the user will appear in the list of blocked IP addresses and usernames until the block expires.
Unblock a user, IP, or range
- Go to Special:Ipblocklist and find the user you want to unblock.
- If you want to undo an autoblock on a user with the same IP address as a blocked user, you will need to know the number assigned to the block, which will show up in the block message when the user tries to edit. You do not need to know the user's IP address, but simply unblocking the username will not lift the block.
- Click the unblock link next to the user, IP, or range you wish to unblock. If a range is blocked, you need to unblock the whole range. It isn't possible to unblock a specific IP from that range.
- Fill in the reason for the unblock on the confirmation page. This will be logged at Special:Log/block, and the user will be immediately unblocked.
Using sysop revert
Any user can remove vandalism from a page, but administrators have a rollback button to make this easier. To revert the edits of one user to the last version by the previous author:
- Click rollback on the page history, on the user contribution list, or on the diff page. Your revert will be marked as a "minor edit" and given the automatic edit summary Reverted edits by X to last version by Y.
- In cases of large-scale vandalism that floods recent changes, you may use "bot rollback". Add &bot=1 to the end of the URL used to access a user's contributions. For example, http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wiki.phtml?title=Special:Contributions&target=Vandal&bot=1. When the rollback links on the contributions list are clicked, the revert as well as the original edit that you are reverting will both be hidden from the default Recentchanges display.
Merging page histories
Merging page histories is a means of fixing cut and paste moves where the histories do not overlap. This action is not reversible, so please do not attempt it unless you understand the procedure.
- Decide which title the merged article should have. For example, take two pages, "Bird Seed" and "Birdseed". In our example, say it's "Birdseed". Delete the article currently at this title. (You should provide as the reason for deletion "merging page history" or something similar.)
- Move the other page to that new title. (So, move "Bird Seed" to "Birdseed".)
- Delete the page. ("Birdseed"—which had the content you moved from "Bird Seed".)
- Undelete the page. The deleted revisions from both pages will now be available to restore.
Editing the interface
Admins can change the wording of the user interface messages by editing the automatically-protected pages in the MediaWiki namespace. You can see a list of these messages at Special:Allmessages. You can also change the design of the interface, or "skin", at MediaWiki:Monobook.css.
Please note that changing some pages, such as MediaWiki:Monobook.css and MediaWiki:Monobook.js, may make the site unusable, needing help to restore it; please be careful in implementing changes if you are not sure what you are doing.