MediaWiki pingback

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MediaWiki pingback

Ori Livneh
What proportion of MediaWiki installations run on 32-bit systems? How much
memory is available to a typical MediaWiki install? How often is the Oracle
database backend used?

These are the kinds of questions that come up whenever we debate changes
that impact compatibility. More often than not, the questions go
unanswered, because we don't have good statistical data about the
environments in which MediaWiki is running.

Starting with version 1.28, MediaWiki will provide operators with the
option of sharing anonymous data about the local MediaWiki instance and its
environment with MediaWiki's developer community via a pingback to a URL
endpoint on MediaWiki.org.

The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback) will
default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope) that
no one feels surprised or violated.

The information that gets sent is described in <
https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Schema:MediaWikiPingback>. Here is a
summary of what we send:

- A randomly-generated unique ID for the wiki.
- The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")
- The version of MediaWiki in use
- The version of PHP
- The name and version of the operating system in use
- The processor architecture and integer size (e.g. "x86_64")
- The name of the web server software in use (e.g. "Apache/1.3.14")

Neither the wiki name nor its location is shared.

The plan is to make this data freely available to all MediaWiki developers.
Before that can happen, I will need to solicit reviews from security folks
and from the WMF's legal team, but I don't expect any major issues.

Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)

The change-set implementing this functionality is <
https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/296699/>, if you want to take a look.
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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Andre Klapper-2
Nice work! 

Wondering how much this fixes https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/T56425 
("Provide opt-in ability to register a user's MediaWiki installation")?
Reply in that task is welcome. :)

andre

On Thu, 2016-07-21 at 17:29 -0700, Ori Livneh wrote:

> What proportion of MediaWiki installations run on 32-bit systems? How much
> memory is available to a typical MediaWiki install? How often is the Oracle
> database backend used?
>
> These are the kinds of questions that come up whenever we debate changes
> that impact compatibility. More often than not, the questions go
> unanswered, because we don't have good statistical data about the
> environments in which MediaWiki is running.
>
> Starting with version 1.28, MediaWiki will provide operators with the
> option of sharing anonymous data about the local MediaWiki instance and its
> environment with MediaWiki's developer community via a pingback to a URL
> endpoint on MediaWiki.org.
>
> The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback) will
> default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
> display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
> checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope) that
> no one feels surprised or violated.
>
> The information that gets sent is described in <
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Schema:MediaWikiPingback>;. Here is a
> summary of what we send:
>
> - A randomly-generated unique ID for the wiki.
> - The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")
> - The version of MediaWiki in use
> - The version of PHP
> - The name and version of the operating system in use
> - The processor architecture and integer size (e.g. "x86_64")
> - The name of the web server software in use (e.g. "Apache/1.3.14")
>
> Neither the wiki name nor its location is shared.
>
> The plan is to make this data freely available to all MediaWiki developers.
> Before that can happen, I will need to solicit reviews from security folks
> and from the WMF's legal team, but I don't expect any major issues.
>
> Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)
>
> The change-set implementing this functionality is <
> https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/296699/>;, if you want to take a look.

--
Andre Klapper | Wikimedia Bugwrangler
http://blogs.gnome.org/aklapper/

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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Greg Sabino Mullane-2
In reply to this post by Ori Livneh
> The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback) will
> default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
> display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
> checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope) that
> no one feels surprised or violated.

Sounds sane, as long as the installer makes it quite clear what it is going
to be doing.

> - The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")

Would love to have DB version information as well (getServerVersion)

Lua version?

> Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)

Many of the wikis I install are on intranets behind heavy firewalls. I'd be happy
to submit this data however if there were an optional method to do so.

--
Greg Sabino Mullane [hidden email]
End Point Corporation
PGP Key: 0x14964AC8

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Re: MediaWiki pingback

C. Scott Ananian
Since we have a running debate about services -vs- all-in-one installs -vs-
requiring binary modules, it would be nice to include data points
reflective of these three different hosting scenarios (multiple server,
single server, shared host w/ no ability to install new modules).  To start
the discussion, I might suggest returning a boolean yes/no whether parsoid
is configured (as a proxy for "can services be installed"), a boolean
yes/no for whether mysql is on the same server as php (as a proxy for
"multiple server install"), and a boolean for whether the lua sandbox
extension is installed (as an imperfect proxy for whether binary modules
can be installed), and perhaps a variable reflecting the tidy configuration
(enabled?  if enabled, using the tidy extension or standalone tidy?) as
another insight on binary modules (weakened because i think the tidy
extension is bundled by default with PHP 5).
  --scott


On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 10:29 AM, Greg Sabino Mullane <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> > The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback) will
> > default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
> > display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
> > checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope) that
> > no one feels surprised or violated.
>
> Sounds sane, as long as the installer makes it quite clear what it is going
> to be doing.
>
> > - The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")
>
> Would love to have DB version information as well (getServerVersion)
>
> Lua version?
>
> > Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)
>
> Many of the wikis I install are on intranets behind heavy firewalls. I'd
> be happy
> to submit this data however if there were an optional method to do so.
>
> --
> Greg Sabino Mullane [hidden email]
> End Point Corporation
> PGP Key: 0x14964AC8
>
> _______________________________________________
> Wikitech-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l
>



--
(http://cscott.net)
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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Chad
I went ahead and wrote a bare minimum page for the setting:

https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:$wgPingback

We should greatly expand this. Namely, it needs to list *what* we collect,
*why* we collect it, *who* gets to see the data, etc. The talkpage seems
like the best place to collect suggestions for new items to add to the
pingback.

This page needs to be kept up to date *any* time a new metric is added
to the collection. It's going to be one of the first places people check
when
they see the variable so it needs to be descriptive :)

-Chad

On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 9:31 AM C. Scott Ananian <[hidden email]>
wrote:

> Since we have a running debate about services -vs- all-in-one installs -vs-
> requiring binary modules, it would be nice to include data points
> reflective of these three different hosting scenarios (multiple server,
> single server, shared host w/ no ability to install new modules).  To start
> the discussion, I might suggest returning a boolean yes/no whether parsoid
> is configured (as a proxy for "can services be installed"), a boolean
> yes/no for whether mysql is on the same server as php (as a proxy for
> "multiple server install"), and a boolean for whether the lua sandbox
> extension is installed (as an imperfect proxy for whether binary modules
> can be installed), and perhaps a variable reflecting the tidy configuration
> (enabled?  if enabled, using the tidy extension or standalone tidy?) as
> another insight on binary modules (weakened because i think the tidy
> extension is bundled by default with PHP 5).
>   --scott
>
>
> On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 10:29 AM, Greg Sabino Mullane <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
>
> > > The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback)
> will
> > > default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
> > > display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
> > > checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope)
> that
> > > no one feels surprised or violated.
> >
> > Sounds sane, as long as the installer makes it quite clear what it is
> going
> > to be doing.
> >
> > > - The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")
> >
> > Would love to have DB version information as well (getServerVersion)
> >
> > Lua version?
> >
> > > Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)
> >
> > Many of the wikis I install are on intranets behind heavy firewalls. I'd
> > be happy
> > to submit this data however if there were an optional method to do so.
> >
> > --
> > Greg Sabino Mullane [hidden email]
> > End Point Corporation
> > PGP Key: 0x14964AC8
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Wikitech-l mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l
> >
>
>
>
> --
> (http://cscott.net)
> _______________________________________________
> Wikitech-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikitech-l
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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Legoktm
Hi,

On 07/22/2016 10:05 AM, Chad wrote:

> I went ahead and wrote a bare minimum page for the setting:
>
> https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:$wgPingback
>
> We should greatly expand this. Namely, it needs to list *what* we collect,
> *why* we collect it, *who* gets to see the data, etc. The talkpage seems
> like the best place to collect suggestions for new items to add to the
> pingback.
>
> This page needs to be kept up to date *any* time a new metric is added
> to the collection. It's going to be one of the first places people check
> when
> they see the variable so it needs to be descriptive :)

Going along with this, I wrote
<https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/300661/> which shows the exact data
that MediaWiki will send during the install process.

-- Legoktm

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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Antoine Musso-3
Le 22/07/2016 à 23:34, Legoktm a écrit :
> Going along with this, I wrote
> <https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/300661/> which shows the exact data
> that MediaWiki will send during the install process.
>
> -- Legoktm

I was going to suggest it and I am not surprised you already came up
with a patch for it :-}

That is similar to sending back a stacktrace when an Android App crash
or on Mac OS.  Maybe later we will have a stacktrace beacon! :}

--
Antoine "hashar" Musso


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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Chad
In reply to this post by Legoktm
On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 2:35 PM Legoktm <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Hi,
>
> On 07/22/2016 10:05 AM, Chad wrote:
> > I went ahead and wrote a bare minimum page for the setting:
> >
> > https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Manual:$wgPingback
> >
> > We should greatly expand this. Namely, it needs to list *what* we
> collect,
> > *why* we collect it, *who* gets to see the data, etc. The talkpage seems
> > like the best place to collect suggestions for new items to add to the
> > pingback.
> >
> > This page needs to be kept up to date *any* time a new metric is added
> > to the collection. It's going to be one of the first places people check
> > when
> > they see the variable so it needs to be descriptive :)
>
> Going along with this, I wrote
> <https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/#/c/300661/> which shows the exact data
> that MediaWiki will send during the install process.
>
>
Reviewed and merged. Great addition to this!

-Chad
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Re: MediaWiki pingback

Mark A. Hershberger-4
In reply to this post by Ori Livneh
Ori Livneh <[hidden email]> writes:

> The plan is to make this data freely available to all MediaWiki developers.
> Before that can happen, I will need to solicit reviews from security folks
> and from the WMF's legal team, but I don't expect any major issues.
>
> Please chime in if you have any thoughts about this. :)

This is so freaking awesome.  Thanks for your work on this.

I'm sure I'll have other comments later.

Mark.

--
Mark A. Hershberger
NicheWork LLC
717-271-1084


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Re: MediaWiki pingback

K. Peachey-2
In reply to this post by Ori Livneh
On 22 July 2016 at 10:29, Ori Livneh <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Starting with version 1.28, MediaWiki will provide operators with the
> option of sharing anonymous data about the local MediaWiki instance and its
> environment with MediaWiki's developer community via a pingback to a URL
> endpoint on MediaWiki.org.
>
> The configuration variable that controls this behavior ($wgPingback) will
> default to false (that is: don't share data). The web installer will
> display a checkbox for toggling this feature on and off, and it will be
> checked by default (that is: *do* share data). This ensures (I hope) that
> no one feels surprised or violated.

If it's disabled by default, isn't our standard practice not to
pre-tick the option?

> The information that gets sent is described in <
> https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Schema:MediaWikiPingback>. Here is a
> summary of what we send:
>
> - A randomly-generated unique ID for the wiki.

How is it randomly-generated? Is a true-random or a hash based on
provided info? Is there anything to prevent duplication?

> …
> - The chosen database backend (e.g., "mysql", "sqlite")
> - The version of MediaWiki in use
> - The version of PHP
> - The name of the web server software in use (e.g. "Apache/1.3.14")
>
> Neither the wiki name nor its location is shared.

If a organisation creates custom packages (with custom naming), this
could conceivably reveal information if they accidentally trigger this
option


> The plan is to make this data freely available to all MediaWiki developers.
> Before that can happen, I will need to solicit reviews from security folks
> and from the WMF's legal team, but I don't expect any major issues.


Has a draft of the Data Retention Guidelines and Data Access
Guidelines that you are planning to send to Legal been created/shared
yet?

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