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Here are some quick instructions on how to download and install PmWiki. Improvements to these instructions would be greatly appreciated. If you encounter problems during installation process take a look at TroubleShooting .

Windows/IIS users may wish to take a look at InstallationWin32? for more help with installation.

1. Download the latest version of PmWiki from

2. Extract the tar image using "tar zxvf pmwiki.tgz" (note that the tar file has to be extracted with the proper permissions set... see the note at the end of this page for more.). This will create a pmwiki-x.y.z directory which contains the PmWiki software. Rename this directory to "pmwiki" by executing "mv pmwiki-x.y.z pmwiki" . The files in this directory include:

    COPYING            The GNU General Public License
    README             A small intro file
    local/             A directory for local configuration scripts
    pmwiki.php         Main PmWiki script
    pub/               Directory of publicly accessible files
      css/             Directory for generic .css files
      skins/           Directory of layout templates
    sample-config.php  A sample configuration file
    scripts/           Some scripts that extend the possibilities of PmWiki
    wikilib.d/         Directory containing some default PmWiki files

These files need to be placed where they can be accessed by a web server (e.g. in a public_html directory of some sort).

3. Temporarily change the permissions on the directory containing pmwiki.php directory to 2777. In Unix this is normally done by changing to the directory containing pmwiki.php and executing "chmod 2777 ." (note the dot at the end). This will (1) make the directory writable so the web server can create the data directory it needs for the wiki files, and (2) preserve group ownership of the directory so the installer account can manipulate the files created in this directory.

If you have installed PHP as a CGI and running it through suexec, you must ensure that the directory has 755 (drwxr-xr-x) permissions. Otherwise, suexec will refuse to run the script. (On Apache this problem manifests itself as an Internal Server Error 500 and "Premature end of script headers" in the error log.) Also, you may have to add execute permissions to the scripts: chmod ugo+x *.php scripts/*.php

Note for Windows IIS installations: You may have to provide IUSR_ write permission on the wiki directory. Note that IUSR_ is not part of 'Everyone'.

If your FTP client does not allow you to set permissions to 2777, perhaps have a look at SmartFTP ( which allows you to do so.

If you use PmWiki with SSL you have to adjust the variable ScriptUrl in pmwiki.php: change 'http' to 'https'.

4. If you're running Apache version 2.0.30 or later, you may need to set the AcceptPathInfo directive to "on" for the pmwiki.php script. This can be as simple as adding
    AcceptPathInfo on
to either the .htaccess file in the directory containing pmwiki.php or the server's httpd.conf file. If changing the httpd.conf file, don't forget to restart Apache to have the change take effect.

For more on this issue, see AcceptPathInfo.

5. Open a web browser to the pmwiki.php script. When pmwiki.php is first executed, it creates the wiki.d directory for holding wiki pages with appropriate ownership and permissions. Once wiki.d has been created, the directory permissions can be set back to 755 or whatever you prefer to use (e.g., execute "chmod 755 .").

6. Installations of PmWiki onto Microsoft Windows platforms will want to look at PmWiki:WinDiff for additional packages to be loaded to enable Page History functionality. If your provider has put you in safe mode?, you can use Cookbook:PHPDiffEngine to enable Page History.

7. Check out InitialSetupTasks for other tasks you may want to perform to begin customizing your PmWiki installation. You might also want to peruse the ReleaseNotes for further information.

(Note: It is important that the tar file (*.tar) is unpacked with the proper permissions set. For *nix operating systems, please check your permission mask by typing umask at the command-line. If it says anything other than "2", you'll need to change the permission mask by typing umask 002 at the command-line. Then unpack the tar file. If you do not do this the pmwiki.php script will not be able to make use of other files in the tree.)

Q. Windows IIS server, I set to IUSER_ all permissions, but there is still a "password required". - jun

Install for Dummies, like me

Mmmm, this is the install I found worked for me, and I'm a complete duffer when it comes to serious stuff. :-)

1) Download latest version of PmWiki.
2) Extract to it's own pmwiki folder on your PC using Winzip - i.e. c:\pmwiki
3) Start up SmartFTP and create a folder called pmwiki where you want it on your host (assuming that you don't want the Wiki in the main root).
4) Change permissions of the folder to 2777 by selecting the folder and pressing F7.
5) FTP upload the contents of the local pmwiki folder to your host server pmwiki folder.
6) Close SmartFTP?.
7) Navigate to and voilá, one Wiki installed.
8) Fire up SmartFTP? again and reset permissions to normal 755 or whatever.
9) Customise, edit, and play around to your heart's content to get it looking as you want using your favourite css layout file and an edited or new pmwiki.tmpl file.
10) I also created a very simple config.php file containing the commands for getting email notifications every time the Wiki is edited and placed it in the host pmwiki/local folder.

That's it.

Maybe I was super lucky, but the whole process above took somewhere around 5 minutes from start (well OK, excluding setting up css, config file and template stuff).

I wonder if I've missed something important and this will get deleted? :-) Oh and by the way if you want to see the result go to the 1 million tracks page and see if it's all right. I'm a complete novice at this and would welcome feedback, guidance and corrections. Oh and please feel free to use the little 'powered by' PM Wiki icon I created.

I guess you were lucky. I tried this on a win2k machine with no luck. OK, I saw the page... but not as I would like it to see. All code no edit things etc. Oh well, keep on keeping on...

Boudewijn Lutgerink
I have three times successfully followed what amounts to your Dummies installation, but using a Linux desktop. I used Visual SlickEdit as my FTP client. I don't have shell access on my host. I so don't know how to upload a directory tree using command line FTP that I don't even know where to look to find the answer.

Tom Holaday
MacOSX? 10.3.5 - Installation was painless. Downloaded the latest pmwiki code, extracted it, renamed the directory to 'pmwiki', and moved into the webserver's document tree. Ran 'chmod 2777 .' in that directory, hit pmwiki.php from the browser, then ran 'chmod 755 .' in the same directory. No issues. Props to the pmwiki team on a clean, simple install!

Installed both using Xitami/WinXP/PHP4.x and Apache/FreeBSD/PHP 4. Worked like a charm every time :-)

Phoebus Dokos

>A little tip for people developing their PmWiki site on Windows and then uploading on Unix. (Applies to Xitami installations but may as well apply to others)

You WILL run into problems (most likely a 500 Error) if you upload your already developed wiki from your local machine to your host. The problem usually lies to the .flock file inside your ../wiki.d/ directory. After doing all the clean up you need to do (chmod etc...) delete the .flock file and you will be good to go. After that proceed as mentioned above.

Phoebus Dokos

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