In addition to the MediaWiki software itself, you need:
- A web server software to serve MediaWiki pages to the web browser.
- PHP to run MediaWiki.
- A database server to store MediaWiki pages and data.
In addition, there are various optional dependencies which are required if you want to use certain advanced features (see below).
If your website is hosted (i.e. you don't have direct control over it) then contact your server administrator or hosting company to ensure these software packages are installed and available.
To run MediaWiki maintenance scripts, you will need command line access.
sudo apt-get install php php-apcu php-intl php-mbstring php-xml php-mysql php-calendar mariadb-server apache2
On other operating systems, use a software bundle like XAMPP from https://www.apachefriends.org to install and configure all of the important packages – Apache web server, PHP, and MariaDB – with only one download. It is available for Linux, Windows, Mac and Solaris. As of January 2021, the latest version of XAMPP includes PHP 8.0 (MediaWiki requires at least 7.4.3).
Alternatively, if you run Mac OS, you can use MAMP, which is the equivalent to XAMPP. MAMP includes the ability to run the Apache web server and a MySQL database. It is available for both Windows and Mac, but is generally used on Mac instead of Windows.
In order to serve wiki pages to browsers, MediaWiki requires some web server software. Often you will not have a choice of which software to use – it will be the one provided by your hosting provider.
MediaWiki is broadly compatible with all major web servers that can invoke a compatible version of PHP. Most installations use the Apache HTTPD web server. nginx (configuration example) is a good choice as well.
PHP is the programming language in which MediaWiki is written, and is required in order to run the software.
- For the latest stable version of MediaWiki, at least PHP 7.4.3 is required. See the page on Compatibility for further information.
- The following extensions are required:
- Note that all of these are enabled in PHP by default.
- If using graphical hosting control panel software such as cPanel, you can often use "Select PHP Version" (PHP Selector) to check and enable extensions. (e.g. error message: You are missing a required extension to PHP that MediaWiki requires to run. Please install: intl)
- On most Debian/Ubuntu-based distros the php-mysql package is required if you want MediaWiki to use MySQL.
- Some features of MediaWiki may require PHP functions that execute external processes, like image thumbnailing, that some cheap hosts usually disable. Please take this into consideration if you plan to install MediaWiki on a shared host.
- MediaWiki extensions may require additional PHP features, e.g. VisualEditor requires libcurl support (php-curl on Debian/Ubuntu-based distros).
If you need to compile PHP from source, then see PHP configuration for compilation options that affect MediaWiki.
MediaWiki stores all the text and data (content pages, user details, system messages, etc.) in a database, which it is capable of sharing with other web-based applications (phpBB, etc.). You will need one of the following database servers to run the latest version of MediaWiki:
Using MariaDB or MySQL is recommended as Wikimedia uses MariaDB. Any other database servers are less tested and you may likely run into some bugs.
The recommended minimum requirements are 256MB of RAM for a single-computer website and 85MB of storage, although this will not suffice for a busy public site or a site with uploading enabled. Some users have reported running MediaWiki on computers with as little as 48MB of RAM.
The install size can be reduced to around 50MB for a developer install and to around 26MB for a non-developer, end-user install. See Manual:Reduce size of the installation.
- ImageMagick or GD is required for Image thumbnailing.
- TeX is required for inline display of mathematical formulae. In most Debian/Ubuntu-based distros, this is in the
- Shell access is required to run Maintenance scripts; upgrading MediaWiki may be more difficult without it.
- Sending email notifications via the server itself requires a message transfer agent (MTA).
- GNU diff3 can be provided to automatically resolve conflicts.
- memcached can be used for object caching.