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Skins: $wgDefaultSkin
The default skin for new users.
Introduced in version: 1.3.0
Removed in version: still in use
Allowed values: (string)
Default value: 'vector'
'monobook' (1.3.0–1.17.0)
Other settings: Alphabetical | By function


This setting sets the default skin and should be set to the lowercase name of the skin (e.g. 'monobook', not 'MonoBook').

Note that this only sets the default skin. The site renders in this skin to anonymous visitors and to registered users who have not chosen a different skin in Preferences or temporarily overridden the skin. (Use $wgSkipSkins to limit the skins that users can choose in Preferences.)

Changing user preferences when removing a skin[edit]

In versions up to at most 1.11, upon registration the value of $wgDefaultSkin was copied to the user preferences; thus setting $wgDefaultSkin to another skin would not have had any effect on registered users, even if they never changed their preferences. And it did not have an effect on registered users, who did change the skin to use.

When you remove a skin from the list of skins to choose from, use the maintenance script userOptions.phpManual:userOptions.php to make sure that this skin is also not chosen by any user:

php userOptions.php skin --old "monobook" --new "vector"

This will change the skin for all registered users, who have selected Monobook, to Vector.

Available skins[edit]

Several skins are included with the MediaWiki installer tarball (the table below details the versions they were/are available with). You can find more skins in Category:All skins.

The first column gives the ID which should be used to configure this setting, the second gives the name as it appears within the MediaWiki interface and the third indicates the versions of MediaWiki that this skin is available for:

Skins included with the MediaWiki installer tarball
ID Name Versions
standard Classic pre-1.0 – 1.21
nostalgia Nostalgia pre-1.0 – 1.21
cologneblue Cologne Blue pre-1.0+
smarty Paddington before 2003–around 2006??
montparnasse Montparnasse before 2003–around 2006??
davinci DaVinci  ?? – 1.4
modern Modern 1.12+
monobook MonoBook 1.3+
myskin MySkin  ?? – 1.21
chick Chick  ?? – 1.21
simple Simple  ?? – 1.21
vector Vector 1.16+