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Update mediawiki.org documentation to include zip distribution
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Description

Following on from T272126: Release MediaWiki tarballs additionally as zip files, and the release of zipballs for 1.35.1/1.31.12/1.31.11 (which are available from the usual location), we should look at updating documentation such as the linked below, both to mention the zips, and to update documentation about issues like T257102: Mediawiki 1.34.2 tarball incompatible with 7zip on windows due to Pax format and T258716: Filenames truncated in 1.34.2 tarball release (The Unarchiver bug!) (and possibly close those as resolved, as the zips can be used instead)

Including, but not limited to:

Event Timeline

I tried to updated the mediawiki download template (https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Template:DownloadMediaWiki) and found that it uses https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Template:MW_stable_release_link to show the download link which a protected page. Can anyone update that link for zip

Do we really want to be making the zip the primary?

I think zip should be the primary, at least till the tar issue has been resolved. Another reason is zip works on every platform without any issue and without any extra tool. Windows default extract tool is a littler slower than the 7zip and WinRar but it works. This a major advantage over the tar format.

As we have tar as primary, people including me had to spend a big amount of time to find an appropriate tool just to extract. I asked assistance on helpdesk and reported a number of bugs. Eve once I reported a bug and then forwarded to helpdesk again. This is not welcoming at all for any kind of user. I believe many other people are facing the same issue and there are possibilities that many have not returned to the site again!

Do you think tar have any advantage over zip?

Do we really want to be making the zip the primary?

I hope not... :)

Do you think tar have any advantage over zip?

See e.g. https://superuser.com/questions/146754/on-linux-unix-does-tar-gz-versus-zip-matter

I believe many other people are facing the same issue and there are possibilities that many have not returned to the site again!

You're speculating on the latter part. Let's not do that, it's not helpful, nor is it relevant. I understand frustration happened.

Another reason is zip works on every platform without any issue and without any extra tool.

This is incorrect. On most linux installs (especially headless CLI variants), you have to install the unzip tool (certainly the case on Debian/Ubuntu) to be able to extract a zip, whereas tar (and gzip) are there by default due to many things being distributed using them. Sure this is easy to install (in most cases, if you can install packages), but it definitely requires an "extra tool" to be installed.

If we look at https://pingback.wmflabs.org/#server-operating-system most installs are using linux. The number reporting back as "winnt" is around 5% of the linux count.

I'd imagine any MW install on mac is most likely to be a developer machine.

Do we really want to be making the zip the primary?

I hope not... :)

I think if we ask a designer, or someone who is more experienced at writing documentation, we can probably come up with something nicer. Not sure offhand who might be the best person to ask

I don't like the display of one format getting a higher billing (especially when it's larger, bolder fonts etc) and then a message lower down saying "oh btw, there's this other format too"!

Ideally, both should be in the headline, possibly with the format listed (in some way). And then in the notes below something like "if you're using Windows or macOS, it is recommended to use the zip download due to tarball compatability with some tools such as 7-Zip and The Unarchiver".

To that extent, how it is now in https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Template:MW_quick_download seems reasonable to me (though, obviously no explanation notes), displaying both, and technically in alphabetical order.

I would imagine most people installing MediaWiki would recognise the file format they normally use on their OS; certainly zip for Windows, mac probably gets a little grey.

Reedy triaged this task as Medium priority.Jan 28 2021, 3:22 AM