This tutorial will lead you through the process of creating a bot using the AutoWikiBrowser program through the example of changing a word on pages of the fandubbing wiki.
There is a more in-depth user manual on Wikipedia.
Step 1: Create your bot account
Note: If you already have a bot account, skip this step
Your bot must use a separate account (for more info check this article).
- Many users prefer to have their bot account include the word "bot", to signify that they are a bot.
- On the user page of this account; post info about the bot's owner and all the needed details (mentioned here). To make it simple you can use this template: Template:Bot (just copy it on your wiki).
- Contact Wikia staff and request a bot flag for this account. This stops your bot showing up in RecentChanges and leaderboards.
Step 2: Get the program
Download AutoWikiBrowser to your computer. The basic operation of the software is:
- Launch AutoWikiBrowser
- Log in to the bot account using AutoWikiBrowser
- Specify what the bot is to do
- Specify what pages the bot should do
Note that AutoWikiBrowser doesn't have to be ran in bot mode. It can also be ran in "semi-automated" mode, where you check each edit and automatically open the new page after saving. This may be handy if you want to edit a bunch of pages one after another.
Step 3: Learn how to use the program
In this example we will set up our bot and then use it to replace a short phrase on many pages of our wiki.
Choosing a wikia
- Launch AutoWikiBrowser.
- Go to Options → Preferences → Site
- From the drop-down list choose "Wikia" and then type the URL of your wikia. In the example, this wikia is "pl.fandubbing".
- When you are done, save changes with the OK button.
Your program may freeze for few seconds. After this on the bottom bar you will see that program is synchronized with the given wikia:
Once you have chosen a wiki, you must log into your bot account. In the example the bot is named "fandubbing.wikia" after the wiki it runs on.
- Go to File → Log in/Profiles...
- Enter your the bot's username and password
- Press "Login"
Now the bot is set and ready to work!
Choosing edit options
In this example we will use the bot to replace all badly entered artist names.
- Make a list of pages to edit. For example, you can choose all the pages in a given category.
- Choose the edition options from the middle panel. In this example in the "Find and Replace" section we used "Normal Settings" and entered the phrase and its replacement.
TIP: To make list of all pages in the main namespace, in the "Make List" panel choose "Special Page" as the source. When you press "Make List" an additional window should appear. Choose "All Pages", select namespace "Main:" and press OK.
TIP: Untick all settings you are not sure of! To learn more about what all of those do, see the manual.
Starting the edits
When you are ready to begin go to the "Start" tab from the middle section..
- Enter the default edit summary. It will be shown as summary of each edit.
- Press Start!
The program will start searching through the previously listed pages. When it finds the phrase it searches for, it will apply all previously defined changes and show them in the top window.
In case you are not satisfied with the changes you can edit the page using the edit box on the right.
When you are done press "Save" to save changes. If the page doesn't need to be edited, press "Skip" to leave the page unchanged.
TIP: In "Skip Options" tab check the option "Skip if no changes are made". This will cause AutoWikiBrowser to automatically skip pages that won't have any changes.
Fully automatic bot
The example above shows semi-automatic editing. It is quite fast and safe, as you can control each change being made. However, if you wish you can go to "Bots" tab and check "Auto save" option.
AutoWikiBrowser will now save each change automatically, without any confirmation. Use this option with care, running a few semi-automatic test edits before turning auto save on to test if the bot is functioning properly is recommended.