Page Editing

Last modified by Adel Atallah on 2018/06/05

In XWiki all pages are editable (provided you are logged in and/or have the edit rights). To edit a page, all you have to do is to click the arrow in the "Edit" button. Please note the location of the "Edit" button varies depending on the skin your wiki is using. 

If you're using the Flamingo skin you should see the following:


Simple and Advanced editing modes

Since XWiki is an application wiki, not all users will need to use the same features. This is why XWiki comes with a Simple and an Advanced editing mode. Users can easily choose which editing mode they prefer on their profile (available at the top right of the page when you are logged in). This way, standard users do not have to choose between editing modes they may not be familiar with. By default new users are given the Simple editing mode but they can switch to the Advanced mode as described below.

Simple Mode

After clicking the "Edit" button in Simple mode, XWiki will automatically edit the page in the Basic mode (WYSIWYG or Wiki) for standard pages and in Form mode for pages which include Forms. The two editing modes available in Simple mode are:

Advanced Mode

Experienced XWiki users will want to use all the editing choices (particularly those who want to use XWiki programming features). They can choose to switch to advanced mode on their user profile page (see image below). Following this, clicking on the arrow in the "Edit" button on any page will display the full editing menu, letting the user choose which mode he wants to use ("Wiki", "Inline form", "Objects"...).

Once you have switched to advanced mode, the "Edit" menu will look like this on mouse click:


In addition, advanced users have the ability to create Terminal pages (i.e. pages that can't have children).

Common edit actions

All edit modes have some or all of the elements in the following image :


A wiki document's version is composed of two numbers. Saving a major change will increase the first component and reset the second to "1", while a minor edit will just increase the second component.

The minor edit checkbox is meant to mark the fact that superficial changes were made to the document. Such changes may include, but are not restricted to: spelling error corrections, text rearrangements, formatting. It is the editor's responsibility to distinguish between major and minor changes.

By default, minor edits do not appear in the "What's New" page and in the document history. The option "Show minor edits" will list all the versions, including minor ones.

The Version summary field allows entering a short description of the changes made to the document in the version that is being saved. It is displayed in the history page and it is meant to increase comprehensibility of the content's evolution.

The Cancel button causes the changes to be discarded and forwards to the document view mode.

The Preview button shows the document as it would look with the current changes saved, but does not actually change the document. From the preview mode, the user will be able to cancel the changes, return to edit mode or save the changes. This button is not available in all edit modes.

The Save & Continue button submits the current changes and returns to the current edit mode.

The Save & View button submits the current changes and returns to the document view mode.


The Autosave feature automatically saves the document you're working on as a minor version at a given interval. Just check the Autosave checkbox next to the action buttons, at the bottom of the editing area. You can optionally change the autosave interval by entering the desired number of minutes in the input following the checkbox.

Note that this feature is still not fully mature since it creates a new revision of the document every N seconds (where N is the time interval you specify). This means a document may have a lot of revisions which will potentially hamper performances and history readability. In the future one idea is to implement the notion of pseudo versions.

Wiki editing mode

This is a mode you should be familiar with if you're already a wiki user. In this mode you can enter text using a simple Wiki Syntax. Note that the Help Application provides help on the syntax when editing a page.

This is how the wiki edit mode looks like with the Flamingo skin:


Choosing a Syntax

You have the option to choose what syntax you want to use for writing the content of the page (see the XWiki Syntax Guide for more details and the Rendering wiki for a full list of available syntaxes). To choose the syntax to use for the current page, go in wiki edit mode and in the Information Panel select the syntax to use. 

By default only the latest XWiki syntax is enabled, but you can configure other syntaxes, as shown in the screenshot below.

For example using the Flamingo Skin:


Converting between Syntaxes

If you already have content for the page in a given Syntax and you try to change the Syntax to another one then XWiki will propose to convert your content to the new Syntax if it knows how to perform that conversion (converting to XWiki Syntax 2.0+ will always prompt for a conversion). The quality of the conversion will usually be good but may depend on the quality of the original Syntax; for example converting from XWiki Syntax 1.0 to XWiki Syntax 2.0+ may not generate perfect result and you'll need to review manually the result.

WYSIWYG editing mode

This mode is ideal for first time users or people who do not want to use the Wiki Syntax. It's a mode similar to the one used by your favorite word processor in which you see how what you type is rendered. There's a toolbar available to add special effects to your text, add images, insert links, add macros, etc.


Read the documentation for using the WYSIWYG editor for more details.

Setting the page parent

Starting with XWiki 7.2, the concept of setting the page parent has been deprecated in favor of the Nested Pages feature. The location of a page is no longer controlled by the "parent" field. In order to change a page's location you now need to Rename or Move it to another location.

For example a page "CEO" inside a page "Boarding" inside a page "Management" inside a page "Staff" you would have the following Breadcrumb:


XWiki < 7.2 In order to have an organized structure of your page, when you create a new page in a space, its parent will be automatically set to be the WebHome page of the space in which you create the page.

If you want to change the parent of the page, you have to edit the page with wiki or wysiwyg editors.


Click on the small pencil above the page title in order to edit the page parent.


If the page has no parent set, the breadcrumbs feature will not show the path to navigate from the Main.WebHome to the page. These pages are called orphan pages.



Please note that when you copy a page, its parent field will not be updated accordingly to the new space the copy is in. You will have to do that manually.

Hiding Pages

It's possible to hide (or unhide) pages. When a page is hidden, it'll still be visible if you navigate to it but it'll disappear from Search, Page Index, Navigation Trees, etc. However the hidden page will still be visible to users who've configured their user profile to show Hidden Pages. By default users don't see hidden pages.

To hide a page, edit it in Wiki or WYSIWYG edit mode and set the flag as shown below:


When you're a "Simple" user, you only have a single Edit button available and when clicked that takes you to the default edit mode. If the page you're editing is configured to use the "Form" editor then you won't see the side panel as on the screenshot above. Thus you'll need to switch to being an "Advanced" user and Edit in Wiki or WYSIWYG mode.
Hiding is not replacing permissions which is what you'll use if you want to make pages not visible to some user or group.

Form editing mode (aka inline mode)

Inline mode, or Form mode, is a special feature of XWiki, that allows administrators to define patterns of structured information (like a blog entry, or a standard tax form). Pages containing such structured information can be edited and re-edited as simple HTML Forms, which have (almost) the same structure as the displayed page. Thus, when clicking the edit button, it seems that the page content can be edited in-place, or inline and the form view is automatically displayed.

Technically the inline mode is triggered automatically differently whether the page is written in XWiki Syntax 1.0 or 2.0, using the following algorithm:

  • XWiki Syntax 1.0: If the page contains a call to #includeForm()
  • XWiki Syntax 2.0: If the page is including another page which itself contains an object of the type XWiki.SheetClass

Note that it is beyond the scope of this simple guide to explain the programming technique supporting this feature. Please check the Developer's Guide to find out more about programming with Objects/Classes and Forms.

Objects editing mode

In XWiki it's possible to attach Objects to pages. Objects are simple sets of properties with values that add additional information about a page. For example a security right can be added to a page to control its rights, a blog object is attached to a page representing a blog entry, etc. Again, it's beyond this simple guide to explain this programming technique. Please check the Developer's Guide to know more about programming with Objects/Classes.


Classes editing mode

We've seen that some pages can have Objects attached to them. Some pages can also be Object definitions, a.k.a Classes. The Classes editing mode calls the class editor on the current page, allowing to edit the Classes attached to the document. Again, it's beyond this simple guide to explain this programming technique. Please check the Developer's Guide to find out more about programming with Objects/Classes.


Access Rights editing mode

This mode allows you to control the access rights for the page you're viewing (you need to have the required access rights to modify a page's rights). See the Rights Management topic for more information.

Full Screen Mode

A full-screen mode is available in XWiki. When editing a page either in Wiki or WYSIWYG mode, clicking on the button at the top right of the edit box will send the editor in full-screen mode. You can then edit your page as usual and click on the button to return to the usual interface when you are finished.

The button you need to click to go in full-screen mode

Editing while in full-screen mode

Title Behavior

Pages have both names and titles. The page name is used in the URL to the page while the title is used to display a user-friendly short description of the page. The title is used for example as the top level headings when viewing a page.

Page titles can be set while editing documents in Wiki or WYSIWYG modes.

Titles are not mandatory by default but it's possible to configure XWiki to make titles mandatory.

The title's content is parsed using Velocity so you're also allowed to put Velocity content in there in addition to plain text (this is for example useful when wanting to internationalize titles). Note that you're not allowed to use any wiki markup.

When a page has no title set then XWiki will use the page name as its title.

It's also possible to configure XWiki to extract the topmost heading from the document's content. For example if you have a level 1 heading, it'll be used as the page title. If you don't have a level 1 heading but have a level 2 heading then the level 2 heading will be used as the page title. The heading level depth XWiki used for titles is controlled in XWiki's title configuration. Since you're allowed to use any wiki syntax in headings, if a page doesn't have a title set (and titles are not mandatory) then any wiki markup in the topmost headings will get rendered when displaying the extracted title for that page.

However this is a backward compatibility option and we do not recommend that you use it. The reason we deprecated this behavior that allowed styling the titles is because it leads to all sorts of issues:

  • The title is used in several places including the browser's title or in LiveTable results and since those places forces to display the title in plain text, this means you'd see wiki markup or HTML displayed as is
  • When the heading is generated through a script, if that script gets executed outside of the page's rendering context, it can lead to side effects and the page title displayed in LiveTable or other places can be completely wrong


By default, when you edit a page, a lock is put on the page, till you either Save or Cancel the edition. 

If you navigate away from the page without Saving or Cancelling, the lock will remain for a predetermined period of time (the duration can be configured). This is why it's recommended to Cancel if you're not making any change to the page instead of just closing your browser tab for example.

Anyone trying to edit a page that is locked will see the following warning message allowing you to know that the page is locked and also to force the lock.


If you force the lock then the last user who saves will overwrite the content with his version of the page.

Extension page protection

Since 10.3, extension pages are protected against editing (unless explicitly indicated otherwise in the extension) to avoid mistake a user could make while still allowing advanced users to force it if really required.


Default Language

If you've set up your wiki to be multingual, then when editing a page using the wiki editor, you'll be able to set the default language for the current page as in:


Created by Vincent Massol on 2017/09/06

Get Connected