Coevolving Innovations

… in Business Organizations and Information Technologies

A federated wiki site on cPanel

Since my cPanel shared hosting provider supports node.js hosting, installing a federated wiki site beside the usual Softaculous packages is an option. The app requires node.js, and there is a variety of ways to deploy that.

In 2014, I had installed a federated wiki site on Openshift, but then didn’t maintain it as other priorities surfaced.  The site is now available at http://wiki.coevolving.com, and the prior content has been restored.

The installation isn’t a one-button procedure.  However, an administator comfortable with opening an SSH terminal onto your shared hosting account should be able to follow the steps below.  (If you have problems, the federated wiki community hangs out in a room on matrix.org).

A. Creating a Subdomain

(1) Through your browser, from cPanel … Domains … , create a Subdomain.

  • As an example, I can create a Subdomain wiki in the Domain coevolving.com, that will actually be stored in my Home (Document Root) as a wiki.coevolving.com directory.

Subdomain_CreateASubdomain

B. Installing Federated Wiki

(2) From cPanel … Software … Setup Node.js App.

  • In the Web Applications list, Create Application.  As an example, set:
      • Node.js version: 10.11.0
      • Application mode: Production
      • Application root: wiki.coevolving.com
      • Application URL: wiki.coevolving.com
      • Application startup: app.js
  • (If you leave the Application startup field blank, app.js automatically fills in as the default)

NodeJs_CreateApplication

  • At this point, the node.js environment is not yet activated, as the package.json has not yet been downloaded, and the Run NPM Install button is greyed out.

WebApplications_EnterToTheVirtualEnvironment
(3) Open a terminal to your account.  Through a browser you could navigate to cPanel … Advanced … Terminal ; the more technically proficient will already know how to log in via SSH.

cPanel_Advanced_Terminal

(4) Download the current version of the federated wiki code, unzip it, and place it into a directory so that it can be installed with npm.

  • Change into the directory.  Transfer the current version of the fedwiki repository from the Github site to your host (curl option-L will redo the request if the location has changed; -o specifies the output file name).
cd wiki.coevolving.com 
curl -L https://github.com/fedwiki/wiki/archive/master.zip -o wiki-master.zip
  • List the file to ensure it’s downloaded (ls -lh gives a long, human-readable list).  Unzip it into a directory (unzip options -uo extracts newer versions of files already in the current directory and creates any files not already there; -d . specifies the target directory as the current directory) .
ls -lh wiki-master.zip 
unzip -uo wiki-master.zip -d .
  • List the directory to ensure that the wiki-master directory was created properly (and the package.json is in place).  Copy the contents from that now-unpacked directory up one level into the current direction (cp  -r recurses directories, -f forces overwrites; -p preserves datestamps; -v gives verbose information;).
ls
cp -rfpv wiki-master/* .

(5) If you had previously backed up a federated wiki, the content could now be restored.  Upload the file, and unpack the archive.

tar -xvpf archive_wiki.tar.gz
  • … with  tar options -x (extract); -v (verbose); -p, (preserve-permissions) ; -f  (file-archive).

(6) Personalizing the federated wiki requires (i) specifying where the data will be stored; (ii) setting up security; and (iii) setting up the site owner name.  For a single (or small number) of users, the friends plugin can invoked with the editing of config.json.

  • If a directory where the content will be stored hasn’t already been defined, create one, e.g. wiki.
mkdir wiki
  • Configure to use friends security, by editing a sample config.json …
cp config.json config-old.json
nano config.json
  • … with an initial config.json template that looks like …
{
"data": "....",
"security_type": "friends",
"cookieSecret": "some long random string (not this!!!!)",
"session_duration": "14"
}
  • … and can be modified to become …
{
"data": "/home/coXXXXXX/wiki.coevolving.com/wiki",
"security_type": "friends",
"cookieSecret": "my_cookieSecret_of_choice",
"session_duration": "14"
}
  • As a precaution, make a backup the new config.json:
cp config.json "$(date '+%Y-%m-%d')_config.json"
  • Configure the site with your own user name, by editing a sample owner.json
cp wiki/status/owner.json /wiki/status/owner-old.json
nano wiki/status/owner.json
  • … with an initial owner.json template that looks like …
{
"name": "Koheni",
"friend": {
"secret": "some long string that you use to reclaim write access"
}
}

… and can be modified to become …

{
"name": "daviding",
"friend": {
"secret": "my_write_access_secret"
}
}
  • As another precaution, backup the new owner.json
cp wiki/status/owner.json "$(date '+%Y-%m-%d')_owner.json"

(7) For the cPanel Web Application, the Application startup file is presumed to be app.js.  The downloaded package from Github assumed index.js, so let’s give the environment the filename it expects.

ls *.js
mv app.js app_old.js
cp index.js app.js

(8) With the federated wiki files now in the right position, the cPanel instruction to “Enter into the virtual environment” can be carried out.

source /home/coXXXXXX/nodevenv/wiki.coevolving.com/10/bin/activate
  • The source command is added to the command specified on the cPanel page, otherwise you’ll get the message “‘activate’ script should be sourced, not run directly”.

(9) Returning to cPanel in the browser, reloading the page should now detected the package.json configuration file, and Run NPM Install button should be available.

Run NPM Install button is available

  • Select the Run NPM Install button.  (Running npm install from the terminal doesn’t seem to give the same results, as loading the Welcome Visitors page in a browser will not be properly formatted).

C. Claiming the Wiki Site

(10) In your browser, navigate to your wiki page (e.g. wiki.coevolving.com).  At the bottom of the page, if you hover over the padlock, you should see a popup to “Reclaim this Wiki”

Reclaim this Wiki

  • Selecting the padlock should surface a panel, saying:

Welcome back <<yourname>>. Please enter your reclaim code to reconnect with your wiki.

  • With the “secret” you had entered in owner.json, the padlock icon should show as open.

(11) Your federated wiki should now be available for collecting pages across the federation, and co-editing.

D. Maintaining the Wiki Site

(12) Periodically, it might be prudent to prepare an offline archive of your federated wiki site.  On a terminal, pack a directory into a single file (tar with options -c (create); -v (verbose); -p (preserve-permissions); -z (compress to gzip); -f (filename)).

ls wiki
tar -cvpzf "$(date '+%Y-%m-%d'_wiki).tar.gz" wiki
  • Download a copy of that tar.gz file to your computer for safekeeping.  That backed up wiki directory will include the owner.json.
  • Download a copy of config.json.

My federated wiki site is at http://wiki.coevolving.com.

4 Comments

  • Interesting! Coincidentally, I’m currently setting up a personal wiki on my server that also is taking quite a bit of configuration to setup. Obviously the intent is very different since it’s completely private, but I’ll probably write a post about that soon.

  • Most of the directions for installing the software are applicable to updating to newer releases. To generalize the commands, I’ve changed …

    mv -v wiki-master/* .

    … to …

    cp -rfpv wiki-master/* .

    … so that some directories over properly overwritten.

  • Hi David!
    Thanks for the write up learned a lot even though I am not using CPanel.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • RSS qoto.org/@daviding (Mastodon)

  • RSS on IngBrief

    • The Nature and Application of the Daodejing | Ames and Hall (2003)
      Ames and Hall (2003) provide some tips for those studyng the DaoDeJing.
    • Diachronic, diachrony
      Finding proper words to express system(s) change(s) can be a challenge. One alternative could be diachrony. The Oxford English dictionary provides two definitions for diachronic, the first one most generally related to time. (The second is linguistic method) diachronic ADJECTIVE Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. “diachronic (adj.), sense 1,” July 2023, https://doi.org/10.1093/OED/3691792233. For completeness, prochronic relates “to […]
    • Introduction, “Systems Thinking: Selected Readings, volume 2”, edited by F. E. Emery (1981)
      The selection of readings in the “Introduction” to Systems Thinking: Selected Readings, volume 2, Penguin (1981), edited by Fred E. Emery, reflects a turn from 1969 when a general systems theory was more fully entertained, towards an urgency towards changes in the world that were present in 1981. Systems thinking was again emphasized in contrast […]
    • Introduction, “Systems Thinking: Selected Readings”, edited by F. E. Emery (1969)
      In reviewing the original introduction for Systems Thinking: Selected Readings in the 1969 Penguin paperback, there’s a few threads that I only recognize, many years later. The tables of contents (disambiguating various editions) were previously listed as 1969, 1981 Emery, System Thinking: Selected Readings. — begin paste — Introduction In the selection of papers for this […]
    • Concerns with the way systems thinking is used in evaluation | Michael C. Jackson, OBE | 2023-02-27
      In a recording of the debate between Michael Quinn Patton and Michael C. Jackson on “Systems Concepts in Evaluation”, Patton referenced four concepts published in the “Principles for effective use of systems thinking in evaluation” (2018) by the Systems in Evaluation Topical Interest Group (SETIG) of the American Evaluation Society. The four concepts are: (i) […]
    • Quality Criteria for Action Research | Herr, Anderson (2015)
      How might the quality of an action research initiative be evaluated? — begin paste — We have linked our five validity criteria (outcome, process, democratic, catalytic, and dialogic) to the goals of action research. Most traditions of action research agree on the following goals: (a) the generation of new knowledge, (b) the achievement of action-oriented […]
  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • RSS on daviding.com

    • 2024/06 Moments June 2024
      Summer jazz at the Distillery District, in Washington DC while at the annual systems conference, and then Toronto Jazz Festival
    • 2024/05 Moments May 2024
      Busy May with art university graduate exhibition, travel to UK seeing Edinburgh, Hull, Manchester, London, returning home for wedding in Lefroy, annual cemetery visits with family, and spending time with extended family in from Chicago.
    • 2024/04 Moments April 2024
      Return from visiting family in Vancouver BC, clan events and eldercare appointments
    • 2024/03 Moments March 2024
      More work than play for first part of month, in anticipation of trip to Vancouver to visit family.
    • 2024/02 Moments February 2024
      Chinese New Year celebrations, both public and family, extended over two weekends, due to busy social schedules.
    • 2024/01 Moments January 2024
      Hibernated with work for most of January, with more activity towards the end of month with warmer termperatures.
  • RSS on Media Queue

    • What to Do When It’s Too Late | David L. Hawk | 2024
      David L. Hawk (American management theorist, architect, and systems scientist) has been hosting a weekly television show broadcast on Bold Brave Tv from the New York area on Wednesdays 6pm ET, remotely from his home in Iowa. Live, callers can join…Read more ›
    • 2021/06/17 Keekok Lee | Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 2
      Following the first day lecture on Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 1 for the Global University for Sustainability, Keekok Lee continued on a second day on some topics: * Anatomy as structure; physiology as function (and process); * Process ontology, and thing ontology; * Qi ju as qi-in-concentrating mode, and qi san as qi-in-dissipsating mode; and […]
    • 2021/06/16 Keekok Lee | Philosophy of Chinese Medicine 1
      The philosophy of science underlying Classical Chinese Medicine, in this lecture by Keekok Lee, provides insights into ways in which systems change may be approached, in a process ontology in contrast to the thing ontology underlying Western BioMedicine. Read more ›
    • 2021/02/02 To Understand This Era, You Need to Think in Systems | Zeynep Tufekci with Ezra Klein | New York Times
      In conversation, @zeynep with @ezraklein reveal authentic #SystemsThinking in (i) appreciating that “science” is constructed by human collectives, (ii) the west orients towards individual outcomes rather than population levels; and (iii) there’s an over-emphasis on problems of the moment, and…Read more ›
    • 2019/04/09 Art as a discipline of inquiry | Tim Ingold (web video)
      In the question-answer period after the lecture, #TimIngold proposes art as a discipline of inquiry, rather than ethnography. This refers to his thinking On Human Correspondence. — begin paste — [75m26s question] I am curious to know what art, or…Read more ›
    • 2019/10/16 | “Bubbles, Golden Ages, and Tech Revolutions” | Carlota Perez
      How might our society show value for the long term, over the short term? Could we think about taxation over time, asks @carlotaprzperez in an interview: 92% for 1 day; 80% within 1 month; 50%-60% tax for 1 year; zero tax for 10 years.Read more ›
  • Meta

  • Creative Commons License
    This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
    Theme modified from DevDmBootstrap4 by Danny Machal