Intranet Twiki up and running!

Finally, after a few weeks of occasional hacking, I’ve got a Twiki running on the Linux intranet server, running Fedora, Apache 2.0 and Perl 5.8.0. The intranet Twiki at Ted Roche & Associates is for note-taking, internal project tracking and experimentation.

If you haven’t worked with a wiki, you owe it to yourself to try it out. A wiki is a simple interface: a web site with an “Edit” button on each page. Any web user (or a secure, limited, logged-in user) can edit the page, and change whatever they are allowed by the webmaster. Voila! Community-maintained web sites! Most wikis I have worked with are set up as knowledgebases, although their use is only limited by your imagination. A superb example (though in FoxPro, not a Twiki) is the FoxForum wiki at http://fox.wikis.com.

Twiki is one of my favorites wikis: it is cross-platform (Windows and most Perl-supported web servers, Linux, OS X, IIS, Apache, etc.); the code is Open Source and fairly readable Perl. I have Twiki deployed on the internet on a W2k IIS configuration (using RedHat’s CygWin) for a private client wiki, and also deployed a temporary one on a Linux laptop for a small conference last year in Toledo.

The sticking point in getting this instance running was a name resolution problem and matching configuration. The Twiki web site provides copious documentation (in a Twiki, of course!), but because they support so many configurations (BSD, Linux, RedHat, Mandrake, Windows, IIS, Apache 1.3 and 2.0), that it can be tricky to separate out the current suggestions from other people’s troubleshooting issues from older issues. My “solution” was telling the twiki it was running on neresus.tedroche.com and then adding the IP address of the Neresus box to the HOSTS file of the client. This is a kludge, of course, that I should be able to remedy with a DNS in-house. I’ll add that project to the list… maybe on the Twiki!

Onward and upward! The next project for the intranet is a CVS configuration, and I’ll also be trying to convert the Twiki from interpreted, CGI-driven to a module mod_Perl (faster) configuration.

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