Confluence wiki notes

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Confluence wiki notes

This page captures some experiences from setting up Confluence as wiki on a home server.

At they kindly have a free license for personal use. Also see and their "Builder" theme, which lets you build a Confluence installation with a web-page-like feel. They were about to release a version with a similarly free-for-personal-use license.

I found I could use Apache http modules to rewrite incoming URLs to go to Confluence, and reverse proxy to rewrite some of what was coming out. But I had to use a sed filter to rewrite the URLs that appear inside the HTML to get rid of the /display/spacename prefix before the PageName. The mod_rewrite_html module would do this more efficiently, but it's not an official part of Apache, so you have to be able to rebuild or add new modules.

Important macros include {show-to} so you can show things like "add page" only to registered users; I didn't want others to even realize the site was a wiki.

Problems with Confluence:

  • The RTE is tinyMCE, and it isn't good enough. Also it relies on what's in your browser, which also isn't very good.
  • Hard to remove vestiges of being a wiki. There was HTTP that I couldn't rewrite somewhere, in some redirects (after logging in for example).
  • The RTE would insert newlines around all macro usage, so you couldn't use macros in-line in a paragraph. The RTE also inserted <br/> and similar nonsense.
  • Didn't want to have a wiki hosted on a home server and worry about the hole in the firewall. I could have fixed that with a two-layer firewall solution, where the wiki server was seen as an "outside" system as far as the rest of the house was concerned.
  • My cable modem contract says I shouldn't run servers. They wouldn't care if the volume was low, but heaven help me if I were popular. I could host bulky things elsewhere, but this is less convenient.

I tried using a LAMP device from but it didn't use any less memory than Fedora 7 (as far as the "top" display reported anyway). Far better was to use Fedora (with its extensive RPM-managed package support) but start at runlevel 3 so there is no X, no GUI. Also turn off selinux and the update daemon, which have large working-set sizes even when idle.





This page was last edited April 26, 2008.