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Zer Netmouse
November 14th, 2011
06:47 pm

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Saving wiki pages from spammers: how to Revert to a previous Revision

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From:nicegeek
Date:November 15th, 2011 03:18 am (UTC)
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I'll add to this that there are ways to configure Mediawiki that can help to control spam. Some of these include:
- Requiring CAPTCHAs for certain operations such as anonymous edits or new account creation.
- Limiting the creation of new pages to users with accounts older than a certain age.
- Blocking anonymous edits.

This page contains information on some such measures.
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From:brainwane.dreamwidth.org
Date:November 15th, 2011 03:29 am (UTC)
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MediaWiki, the software that these wikis run, has a bunch of extensions available to help prevent and manage spam and vandalism, as nicegeek pointed out. And there are people who have rolled their own solutions as well -- check out https://www.noisebridge.net/wiki/Secretaribot . And it really helps to have upgraded to the latest version of MediaWiki, which right now is 1.17.0. If you have trouble, please visit the #mediawiki channel on the freenode IRC network -- this page explains how:

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki_on_IRC
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From:netmouse
Date:November 15th, 2011 03:39 am (UTC)
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sadly, when we upgraded sfartistwatch.com to the newest version of mediawiki, it broke. It looks ok at first, aside from the fact that the reference to the logo we had was destroyed in the upgrade, but then if you log in, the formatting gets messed up and the tabs and sidebar go away. We still haven't figured that one out.

This sort of thing is not encouraging so far as upgrading regularly goes.
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From:brainwane.dreamwidth.org
Date:November 15th, 2011 01:23 pm (UTC)
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Argh! That is very discouraging! Please email me at sumanah at wikimedia dot org with a description of what happened -- what the old version was, what operating system and database and version of PHP and server you are using, whether you had a custom skin, etc. -- and a list of the problems you're facing. I'll get it to the mediawiki-l list https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/mediawiki-l and get you some help, and maybe we can file appropriate bug reports and make things better.
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From:netmouse
Date:November 15th, 2011 03:35 am (UTC)
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unfortunately some of the spammers create new user accounts and then come back and use them later, but these do get rid of a lot.

The Carl Brandon site has one of the security methods that requires simple math to add links, which may be why recently one of the primary modes of attack it is suffering is the "replace content with a stupid comment" attack, which seems so pointlessly destructive to me that I really wish I had the skills to hunt those people down and kick them off the internet permanently.
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