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Artist's impression of the Parsoid HTML5 + RDFa wiki runtime

Parsoid allows an editor to use mediawiki extensions such as Visual Editor.

Technical details[edit]

Parsoid is an application which can translate back and forth, at runtime, between MediaWiki's wikitext syntax and an equivalent HTML/RDFa document model with enhanced support for automated processing and rich editing.

It has been under development by a team at the Wikimedia Foundation since 2012. It is currently used extensively by VisualEditor, Flow, Content Translation and other applications.

Parsoid is structured as a web service, and is written in JavaScript, making use of Node.js. It is intended to provide flawless back-and-forth conversion, i.e. to avoid information loss and also prevent "dirty diffs".

On Wikimedia wikis, for several applications, Parsoid is currently proxied behind RESTBase, which stores the HTML translated by Parsoid.

For more on the overall project, see this blog post from March 2013. To read about the HTML model being used, see MediaWiki DOM spec.

Parsoid setup[edit]

See Parsoid/Setup for detailed instructions.

If you use the MediaWiki-Vagrant development environment using a virtual machine, you can simply add the role visualeditor to it and it will set up a working Parsoid along with Extension:VisualEditor.


See the troubleshooting page.

Contacting us[edit]

If you need help or have questions, you can contact us in #mediawiki-parsoidconnect or the wikitext-l mailing list. If all that fails, you can also contact us by email at parsing-team at the domain.

The Parsoid web API + DOM Spec[edit]

See Parsoid/API for the web API

See Parsoid/MediaWiki DOM spec to make sense of the HTML that you get from the API. This is the wiki content model spec using HTML/XML DOM and RDFa and is designed to be useful as a future storage format.


Development happens in the Parsoid service in Git (see tree). Code review happens in Gerrit. See Gerrit/Getting started to set up an account for yourself.

Running the tests[edit]

To run all parser tests and mocha tests:

npm test

parserTests has quite a few options now which can be listed using node parserTests --help.

Converting simple wikitext[edit]

You can convert simple wikitext snippets from the command line using the parse.js script in the bin/ directory:

echo '[[Foo]]' | node parse

The parse script has a lot of options. node parse --help gives you information about this.

In Ubuntu 13 and 14, node has been renamed to nodejs. There, either create a symbolic link (or equivalent) or type:

echo '[[Foo]]' | nodejs parse

Debugging Parsoid (for developers)[edit]

See Parsoid/Debugging for debugging tips.

Differences compared to the PHP parser[edit]

Technical documents[edit]

Useful links for Parsoid developers[edit]

Useful links for Parsoid deployers (to the Wikimedia cluster)[edit]

See also[edit]