Wiki search & pages

Ben Gamari ben at
Sun Mar 17 08:47:16 UTC 2019

Julian Leviston <julian at> writes:

> Hi,
> When I started this message, I couldn't find the commentary in the
> wiki any more.
> Also, when I try to search with the “search or jump to” box, it sits
> on “Loading” for quite a while, then I get impatient (after 20 seconds
> or so), and click off it, but the drop down box doesn’t go away, so I
> remove the word “Commentary” from the search box, and the drop down
> box is replaced by a bunch of preset searches. I can’t seem to get it
> to go away then.
I have also noticed this. The relevant upstream ticket is [1]. The
problem appears to be that an empty search result set is returned
(strangely) but the user interface is not updated.

> Also, down the right hand side of the wiki are a bunch of links which
> seem to be the first 20 or so, sorted alphabetically, rather than the
> relevant navigation links in the old trac wiki side nav. I can’t seem
> to work out how to navigate my way around to find the commentary
> anymore :(
Yes, GitLab's wiki page list is unfortunately very hard to use in the
case of large Wiki [2] like GHC's.

> If I type commentary and hit enter, on other hand, it comes up with
> search results, but it’s quite slow (takes 5 seconds or so to get that
> page up generally, and feels kind of buggy). That brings up the main
> commentary page, except I really miss the side-nav that indicated
> where I was located in the wiki (I realise there’s a breadcrumbs at
> the top… it says “GHC > Wiki > commentary”, but the commentary page is
> definitely *not* on the GHC > Wiki page… this makes me feel kind of
> “lost”.
The Wiki does indeed have a number of problems:

 1. The permissions model is too restrictive

 2. The pages list is slow

 3. The pages list doesn't reflect hierarchy

 4. Breadcrumbs don't reflect hierarchy

I'm aware and am pushing for fixing for all of these:

 1. I have a small patch which looses wiki permissions which I will try
    deploying on Monday. Upstream has also said they are interested in
    fixing the issue.

 2. Upstream is working on improving the situation

 3. I have pinged upstream about this and they are planning work in this
    area (

 4. This also falls under

> How is a new person supposed to discover these pages exist? Sorry I
> don’t want to be whining, but this seems quite important.
Indeed it is important and the status quo is not good. In the short term
we have implemented a workaround in the form of a manually generated
table of contents page [3]. This is linked to from the Wiki homepage [4]
but admittedly this is pretty easy to miss. I suspect I will need to
patch the wiki page rendering to make it more visible. I have opened [5]
to track this.

Currently the index is not automatically regenerated when the Wiki
changes but this is on my list of things to fix [6].

> Navigating between pages seems quite slow (3 or 4 seconds between page
> loads).
That is true.

> Maybe it’s fine and I’ll get used to it with time. Hope so.
I also hope this improves. The currently situation is quite far from
okay, but upstream has been quite responsive to our issues and is
working actively to improve it.


- Ben

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