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Previous discussion was archived at Talk:VisualEditor/Archive 1 on 2015-09-01.

Ciencia Al Poder (talkcontribs)

I have Visual Editor and for some reason it generates "dirty diffs" when saving pages on unrelated changes. For example, a user may edit only a single paragraph, but VE removes all "non-significant" white space from tables, headings and lists, in all the page that hasn't been touched.

See this diff as an example.

I though the problem was that I didn't update Parsoid since the last MediaWiki upgrade, but that's not true, because I'm using the latest version available on Debian: 0.10.0all

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Weird. Can you reproduce this on a smaller, simpler page? (The point is to see that it happens on a page that you know doesn't contain any unusual wikitext or HTML.)

Ciencia Al Poder (talkcontribs)

Yes, try this test page. You can change something on the first paragraph and see the resulting diff on preview

Just to give more information, I also have RESTBase installed

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Special:Version says that your version is a couple of months older than the most recent... but I'm not sure that's the problem. I think that if there had been whitespace changes like that across all the wikis, that someone would have been complaining.

@Cscott, do you have any thoughts about what to check?

Cscott (talkcontribs)

It sounds like "selective serialization" isn't enabled, which is the feature which specifically prevents dirty diffs. I think RESTBase is required to enable selective serialization, so that may be the first thing to check.

Ciencia Al Poder (talkcontribs)

I have RESTBase installed. Is there anything I can do to debug if selective serialization is not working or failing? logs? network traffic between RESTBase and Parsoid?

Ciencia Al Poder (talkcontribs)

I only had to uncomment this line from config.yaml:

       # Use selective serialization (default false)
       useSelser: true

Too bad nobody here was able to suggest such a simple change (and zero documentation about it!) </rant>

Copy and Paste a Table from Microsoft Excel

Marc-André Aßbrock (talkcontribs)

I tried to copy and paste a table from LibreOffice Calc into the VisualEditor and I was very happy that it works.

However, I can't copy tables from Microsoft Excel into the VisualEditor. I tried it on our own installation, as well as on The result was the following: The text of all the cells was written in one line. The columns were separated by two spaces, the lines by four spaces.

While searching on the internet I got the impression, that other people successfully copied from Excel to the VisualEditor.

My questions are: Does it in principle work? And if it works in principle: What is the trick to make it work?

Thanks in advance for any answer.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hmm. It works in principle, but whether any given spreadsheet/any given version works... I don't know. Were you able to test a very small table (just a few cells, with no fancy formatting)?

In the meantime, have you considered exporting it as a .csv file? You can drag-and-drop .csv files into the visual editor, and it will convert them to tables for you.

ESanders (WMF) (talkcontribs)

We use HTML to paste from spreadsheets. To see what HTML Excel is producing, you can paste into the right side of this: which will help us investigate. You can also do the paste with the developer console open (F12) and see if there are any errors listed. (talkcontribs)
Reply to "Copy and Paste a Table from Microsoft Excel"

middle-click-paste in VisualEditor on Chrome/ium not working

Summary by
CrankyAlias (talkcontribs)

Under Linux desktops it is normal to mark any text with the mouse and then insert it anywhere with the center button (wheel) of the mouse.

If you now have the VisualEditor open in Chrome or Chromium and want to insert marked text with the "middle-click-paste" function, the cloud symbol will always appear instead of the text: ☁

Normal copy / paste works as desired.

Under Firefox the problem is not present.

Btw. the problem is also present in THIS editor. ;)

System: Debian buster

Mediawiki: 1.33

VisualEditor: 8c9c37e

ESanders (WMF) (talkcontribs)

This working fine for me on this site, is this just an issue in 1.33?

Reply to "middle-click-paste in VisualEditor on Chrome/ium not working"

Visual Editor Toolbar is overlaps the TemplateData Dialog

2 (talkcontribs)

Anyone have any clue why the toolbar would be overlapping on top of the TemplateData dialog?

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

On what page?

Reply to "Visual Editor Toolbar is overlaps the TemplateData Dialog"

Backreferences for regular expressions

DonBarredora (talkcontribs)

Can I make a backrefence to a captured group when using the search and replace function?

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I don't think I understand this question. Do you have a diff, or can you show me in wikitext what you want to do? (If you start typing <pre then this discussion tool with automagically guess that you want to add some code to the page. But visit my user talk page if it's easier to post the wikitext there.)

DonBarredora (talkcontribs)

Suppose I enter the following regular expression in the search box:


I would like to know if it's possible to reference that captured group in the replace box, like:


Thank you.

Jdforrester (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Yes, captured groups are referenced using $1, $2, etc.. (talkcontribs)

That's what I wanted, thanks for the help.

ESanders (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Param _website_ is undiscriminating?

Omotecho (talkcontribs)

(Originally posted on other page and moved to this page.) @PPelberg (WMF), hello, AHollender (WMF) pointed me to your attention on this subject.

Could we remove “website” param from the cite-web template auto-generate feature on mobile visual editor? Maybe it is not working best when the auto-generating cite-web template is picking up “website” param. It picks up both the root part of the url, and as the publisher or the parent directory of the webpage displayed, but for me the choice is not predictable.

In jawp, people find it annoying when I add/did not empty the “website” param, especially when I apply mobile VE and my edits add any root address of the webpage; example a) is accepted as: website= Wikimedia; example b) is not appreciated/requested to omit values if

I support that “website” param is useful when it indicates that the website publisher and the actual child webpage producer/director have meaningful relationship, like a film festival committee as a 3rd-party organizer commissioned by a local government.

May I remind you that I am a strong supporter of mobile visual editor and can’t wait to see auto-generating function fir web citing to Desktop. But at the moment, I don’t have any page to point editors to when they are unhappy with “website” parameters.

Timid resolution would be to request that “website” param will be an option that I will add, but the system does not autofill value. Do you think it will be agreeable for single-byte language wikis?

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

@Mvolz (WMF), this sounds like a Citoid question.

It might be possible to solve it merely by changing the TemplateData at the local wiki. Parameters are only added if they're marked as "suggested" or "required" by that community.

Mvolz (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Yup, it's a citoid question. If you would like to no longer add the website parameter, that would be something you would discuss with other community members on the Cite web template. ( and reach a community decision about. If the community decides they no longer want it added automatically on Cite web, then it can be removed in the template data of the Template here:

It's true that often the website param is effectively "useless" and just the root URL, when we do not have a specific Zotero translator for the website. However, sometimes it isn't, so never adding it isn't a great solution. And in formal citation styles i.e. APA, MLA this parameter is required, no matter how useless it may be. But again, it's a community decision :).

It is possible to improve the data quality of this parameter in Zotero as well, but a better universal website translator is somewhat stalled there. Hopefully it will eventually be merged though!

Omotecho (talkcontribs)

@Mvolz (WMF), thank you for crystal clear explanation and mapping the possibilities and solution threshold. As this issue was pointed to me on jawp, I will go back and see if it would be a major issue to target among jawp editors in line with your advise, especially as I myself need to read what Citoid is. I will catch up with what Zetero is as well, before reaching out to see how jawp editors appreciate website parameter. As we are using double byte writing system, a separate issue but some expects to see either website or publisher be autogenerated in double byte/Japanese writing system, noting it a nonsense to output with roman/single byte characters; a native editor scripts website params manually for native readers using double bytes.

@Whatamidoing (WMF), thank you to pointing where my inquery belongs, and while not the main topic here, but the background of the issue above makes me doubt if understanding Citoid / formal citation ie APA, MLA, comprehended/digested extensively on jawp, partly due to, in general, the act/concept of citing itself could be the best asset any Japanese high school or university grads learn through wikipedia as a reader/editor. Even making footnotes nor listing sources nor references in APA/MLA style were, and still are, the skill you lack as a college graduate if you are not a science or philosophy major.

That said, it is why I am very looking forward to new advanced mobile editing features. As much as you enjoy “freeriding” the citation feature (big “ icon), you will see the _magic_ of autocreate button that only requires to input url. Then, suddenly it challenges you; it says you can create citation from scratch. Take up the challenge, and you come to see there are empty fields/params you might need to fill. I find it a very effective education/learning process which advances your skill as an editor. How I wish I had it when my beaks were very yellow!

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Citoid is the magic auto-creator, and Zotero is one of its servants.

On the single-byte/double-byte question, when you put in a URL, Zotero is often smart enough to find some of the answers in the HTML code at that URL, but it never translates anything.

So as I understand it, if you give the magic citoid button the url, the citoid service sends Zotero to look at the page. Zotero can find the code <title>Example Domain</title> in the HTML for that page, but it can't do much more than that.

Reply to "Param _website_ is undiscriminating?"

Why isn't the VE running on talk pages anywhere?

Summary last edited by Sänger 21:00, 13 July 2016 3 years ago

There won't be any real answer at any time.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

Instead of the normal editing possibilities, on talk pages we are restricted to either only use the wikitext editor, or to this Flow environment, with its massive restrictions on next to everything. Why is the VE not enabled anywhere on talk pages?

Jdforrester (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Hi there. This question comes up a bunch, and has been answered at length a few times before, but I can't find any of those right now, sorry.

The short answer is that VE is a content editor, and is designed to make writing (long-form) content. In dozens of ways, we've optimised it around writing articles for Wikipedia, Wikivoyage and other wikis. The use cases of a semi-free-form-but-with-odd-rules discussion box are fundamentally incompatible. Providing VE for talk pages would mean making massive compromises both on being a good content editor and on being a good discussion editor. It's an anti-pattern, and it's not going to happen.

I know you have a personal animus with Flow, and that's unfortunate, but it's the option available if you think talk pages don't work well (with which I would agree).

Sänger (talkcontribs)

It's just about an editor, the difference between a plain text editor and a wysiwyg editor. There shouldn't be any big difference between editing a text on either the front or the back side of any page. A talk page is as well nothing much different to any other content page, only the content is a bit different.

It's like the difference between old fashioned WordPerfect and the wysiwyg version of the same program. Some prefer the classic mode, some the ve, but the resulting page is just the same.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

Why was this definitely not solved question closed? Your answer was just a straw man, not a real one. It's everything but closed.

Jdforrester (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Sorry, I didn't see a question in your response, just implicit accusations of bad faith and incompetence. :-) If you could re-write one that'd be great, otherwise there's nothing more to say.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

Why isn't the VE running on talk pages?

VE is a text editor, and thus should be fully capable of editing on any page, at least simple talk pages.

Jdforrester (WMF) (talkcontribs)
VE is a text editor,

As I explained, this is not true.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

To just quote the first sentence from the other side:
The VisualEditor project aims to create a reliable rich-text editor for MediaWiki.
So why do I have the impression, that either the other side is plain wrong or your "argument" is just a straw man?

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

The visual editor cannot (abuse HTML definition list formatting to) fake the indentation of paragraphs. Therefore, you are likely to find using it in a talk-page discussion to be frustrating at this time.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

...yet. An editor that's capable of editing tables, using templates, setting references etc.pp. is incapable of abusing colons for indentation? Should I really believe this?

Why do I think of a nice idea to push the software pet project that's not as much liked by the community as by the WMFers?

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I think you may have to wait until phab:T6521 is resolved.

BTW, there are a few wikis that have the visual editor enabled in the Project: namespace, and which also have some discussions in that namespace (e.g., ), and we hear complaints about problems on those pages. I don't think that it would be a good idea to expand the use of the visual editor on such pages at this time.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

You insist without any real merit, that a wikipage is not the same as a wikipage. In principle all wikipages behave in absolutely the same manner, they were edited with exactly the same editor up to some time ago, when you a) tried to get so-called structured discussions, first with Liquid Threads, something that failed, now with a bit different layout system Flow, something that as well is stuck in limbo. But if you discount these, the article page uses the same syntax as the talk page, the user page uses exactly the same syntax as the talk page, with one of two available editors the can be edited in exactly the same way as everything else in the wikiverse. With the other one, the VE, you claim that these exactly same pages are magically somehow different, and one of them can't be edited in a wysiwyg-way.

BTW: Using colons to indent, instead of some software hack created by those many devs paid by content creators and talk page users, is frustrating as well, but you choose to ignore this for quite some time and preferred to create shiny new bling instead of boring maintenance. That's at the core of this, not the proclaimed, but not existing, differences between those pages. And the phab is just a strawman as well, if you mange to get templates programmed somehow, the indentation problem should be non-existing. Unles you deliberately choose not to do something about it, to keep this strawman alive.

MZMcBride (talkcontribs)

Hmmm. Does "support VisualEditor on talk pages" have an associated Phabricator Maniphest task?

I tend to agree with Sänger, though I'd perhaps phrase it this way: VisualEditor should work with all regular (non-Special) wiki pages. This includes user pages, talk pages, portal pages, pages in the MediaWiki namespace, etc. It's an extensible editor that we've already installed and committed to supporting. We've seen time and again that the arbitrary distinction put up between VisualEditor support by namespace is confusing and annoying to users.

I think there are talks about unifying the wikitext and VisualEditor editors. Eliminating or masking the difference between the two or more editors that we have may somewhat neatly resolve this issue.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

To see the result of these "talks", go to Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-betafeatures and enable the "new wikitext mode" beta feature.

NB that it's not really about "unifying the [old] wikitext and VisualEditor editors". This will not merge the code for EditPage.php or Extension:WikiEditor with Extension:VisualEditor. The only thing that's being unified is the user experience, i.e., the user gets VisualEditor's black-and-white toolbar and VisualEditor's built-in tools (such as pasting a URL to a Wikipedia page and getting an internal wikilink instead of an external link) everywhere. There will still not be any visual mode on the talk pages.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

And there is still no believable reason given, why a wikipage is not a wikipage. It's just futile justification lyricism for not wanting to do anything against Flow.

Sänger (talkcontribs)

Short update:

In the current Community Tech survey the VE is used in discussions, so the whole "argument" with the non-suitability was proven as a straw-man by the WMF on one of its own pages, yet they still insist that a wikipage is not a wikipage.

See this archived proposal as an example (and as another attempt to stifle any discussion about VE on talkpages for pure political reasons). Grüße vom Sänger ♫(Reden) 12:26, 3 December 2017 (UTC)

Reply to "Why isn't the VE running on talk pages anywhere?"

Cannot preview templates in Visual Editor

Chowpakhin (talkcontribs)

I have installed the Visual Editor and TemplateData as well as TemplateWizard; however on my wiki the Visual Editor does not show the preview of templates used in all articles. How to solve the problem? Thanks!


Reply to "Cannot preview templates in Visual Editor"

When other extension uses curl_exec, visualeditor throws "Unknown error" when editing article

Kulttuuri (talkcontribs)

Using MediaWiki 1.29.1. I am using extension SlackNotifications. When editing an article, the extension SlackNotifications in the end runs curl_exec($curl_h) which then throws "Unknown error" on VisualEditor's UI. After commenting out the curl_exec($curl_h) in SlackNotifications extension, VisualEditor works fine.

Are there known issues when other extension uses curl and VisualEditor? This is the full code that SlackNotifications extension uses for full curl init and send:

$curl_h = curl_init();

curl_setopt($curl_h, CURLOPT_URL, $wgSlackIncomingWebhookUrl);

curl_setopt($curl_h, CURLOPT_POST, 1);

curl_setopt($curl_h, CURLOPT_POSTFIELDS, $post);

// I know this shouldn't be done, but because it wouldn't otherwise work because of SSL...

curl_setopt ($curl_h, CURLOPT_SSL_VERIFYHOST, 0);

curl_setopt ($curl_h, CURLOPT_SSL_VERIFYPEER, 0);

// Set proxy for the request if user had proxy URL set

if ($wgHTTPProxy) {

curl_setopt($curl_h, CURLOPT_PROXY, $wgHTTPProxy);

curl_setopt($curl_h, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, true);


// ... Aaand execute the curl script!



Oleolsenkjhølkølk (talkcontribs)

I have the same issue with visualeditor giving an "unknown error" when saving edits, although the edits still get saved.

My mediawiki version is 1.29+

php 5.5

I am not using the extension slacknotification, but i do have the Echo extension installed, which i assume works in a similar way by providing notifications.

I found another post mentioning cURL needs to be installed, and got it enabled a half hour ago, although my problem still persists so i suspect i might need to do something more than just having the php extension cURL installed.

I am wondering if the "heroku fix" for parsoid might be contributing to the problem?

The solution for users on shared hosting, where you run parsoid from a heroku account.

Reply to "When other extension uses curl_exec, visualeditor throws "Unknown error" when editing article" (talkcontribs) (talkcontribs)

I still have the trouble , you can see in the link, any help?, thansk.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

Are you running "matching" versions of MediaWiki, VisualEditor, and Parsoid? Your note on Stack Overflow said that you're running MediaWiki 1.26.2 but did not (AFAICS) mention the version numbers for the extensions. (talkcontribs) (talkcontribs)

I'm thinking I am not using the correct version of parsoid, nodejs and VisualEditor with work right all together with de mediawiki 1.27.0 version.

Any help?, thank you very much (talkcontribs)

I would apreciate if any body can give me the links and the correct protocol to dwonload and install the correct version of parsoid, nodejs and VisualEditor for mediawiki 1.27.0, thanks in advanced.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I don't know how to install the software myself. If we're lucky, someone else will be able to help us.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs) (talkcontribs) (talkcontribs)

I'm afraid this wiki documentation or wiki does not show the correct protocol to install the visual editor, I've spent a lot of time trying without result, I'm thinking about change the product for a wiki, does not give me the correspondent support or help.

the documentation of this wiki is so rolled that is imposible to configure this extension, is not clear at all, apart of that I think there woul be a wiki page describing the complete protocol to install the 3 products , nodejs with the correct version of each SO, the correct version of parsoid for each SO and nodejs and mediawiki, and finally the correct version os visual Editor Extension.

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

I'm sorry that it's so frustrating. As I said, I don't know how to do it myself. The WMF can't provide support to other people's wikis. Perhaps it'd be possible to find a consultant, or advice from a user group? (talkcontribs)

What we need is a step by step install Wiki+VisualEditor/Parsoid for CentOS7 and Ubuntu. I am too spending a LOT of time trying to get it to work.

Nowhere does it say how and where to download the appropriate versions of MediaWiki/Parsoid (how is the pairing working, any list of versions that work?)

Whatamidoing (WMF) (talkcontribs)

If you figure it out, then please feel free to start a doc page here.

I've heard that the versions of MediaWiki, VisualEditor, and Parsoid must all match (so if you do 1.27 for one, then you have to do 1.27 for all three of them).

Richbodo2 (talkcontribs)

I realize this is an ancient thread, but FWIW, having just installed mediawiki (about an hour including server setup, config, security, etc.) and parsoid (about a week and still slews of errors), for the record it's still non-trivial and I think anyone who can offer consulting services to people trying to set this up would make a mint.

Could be wrong, but it seems that in it's current state, Parsoid/VisualEditor setup really changes the equation as to which wiki people will use drastically and unexpectedly.

Reply to "Can't run VisualEditor y my wiki"