Wiki: How to Contribute Content to TechNet Wiki

Wiki: How to Contribute Content to TechNet Wiki

 

 


Before You Start

Think of the TN Wiki as like an airport. There are a lot of different people there, moving through the airport with purpose, on the way to many different destinations. However, there is a certain decorum and consideration that we all must pay to each other and to the rules, or the whole thing breaks down. Then none of us can get to our destinations.

These contribution guidelines are those "rules". If you were at our airport, we'd expect you to:

  1. Take care not to let your activity impede the activity of others. For example, see the rules about changing tags further down in this article. Also read the advice below about linking to your source material when you are working on something someone else started. Be nice. Contribute boldly, edit gently!
  2. Do what you can to aid airport security, or we'll all get delayed. For example, have your ID out, remove your shoes ahead of time, know and follow the rules about packing your bag, that sort of thing. On the wiki, this means read the wiki articles tagged with "TechNet Wiki", "wiki" or "core docs".
  3. Help those who are lost, or don't know the rules yet.
  4. Check the suggestion box site for content that others have requested.
  5. Look for stub pages that you can contribute to.
  6. Follow the Wiki Ninjas twitter account.
  7. Follow the Technet Wiki or #TNWIKI hashtag on Twitter (if you use it).

You must sign-in to contribute. You must join to sign in. To learn how to join, see Wiki: How to Join.

The fastest way to get started is to click on a tag that indicates someone is looking for your help. For example, needs work, or stub.

The easiest way to get started is to contribute a link to one of the survival guides.

 


Content

  1. Technical Content (IT Pro and Developer)- This is not the wiki you are looking for if you are a consumer or want to write for the consumer audience. However, the boundaries of "IT Pro content" are fuzzy. For example, articles about scripts, which are of interest to both IT pros and developers, but owned exclusively by neither, is welcome.
  2. Original Content - Wikipedia's experience is that most articles start out as stubs or outlines. Feel free to start these, and then recruit technical writers, reviewers, editors and illustrators to help you co-create the content. Tag these with "needs work" or " stub".
  3. Advertising - Content that exists to advertise something is not allowed and will be deleted.
  4. Inappropriate content - See Wiki: Types of Articles Not Appropriate for TechNet Wiki
  5. Personalisation - "When editing a page, main namespace articles should not be signed, because the article is a shared work, based on the contributions of many people, and one editor should not be singled out above others." (Source: Wikipedia: Signatures). Don't use a signature or greetings, use 3rd person, More information here : Wiki: User Experience Guidelines

     

     VERY IMPORTANT
    Do not just copy/paste from TechNet/MSDN or other websites, or blogs, or other sources of material that you did not create. If you do this and then save this without any editing, rewriting and improvement by you, you are plagiarizing another's work.

    If you are working on material that started on a blog, another website or any other source, it is important to link to the original material at the top of the article.

    For example, "This document was originally published as <link to original> and has been reproduced here to allow the community to correct any inaccuracies or provide other enhancements before updating the original version of this topic.".

    Copy/pasting content and then saving under your name without proper source reference, is plagiarism. We frown on that here. Violations of copyright will be deleted.

     

  6. Be trustworthy.
    • Don't plagiarize.
    • Don't impersonate - take responsibility for your actions.
    • Don't post blatant commercial or marketing content, it will be deleted.
    • Non-blatant commercial or marketing content that is editorial and adds no technical value will be also deleted. Some examples:
      • in an article about how to do something in Hyper-V, an edit that inserts "This is easier with VMware" will be deleted. However, if the article refers to a procedure, for example "How to manage a Hyper-V virtual machine using SCVMM," it is appropriate to add information on how to manage a VMware virtual machine using SCVVMM.
      • Information on how to manage a VMWare virtual machine with VMWare does not belong on the TechNet Wiki.
      • Another example: reviews of a particular smartphone are not welcome. Information on how to deploy, manage, optimize and use the phone with software like Exchange is welcomed.
      • Reviews of Xbox 360 games and hardware - not welcome. Information on how to program against, fix or otherwise optimize Xbox technology is welcome.
    • Report or just correct information that is technically incorrect. For example, errors in a script sample.0
  7. Label pre-release content. Clearly indicate the version of the product when it is important. Do not post content about products that are under a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) or that are not publicly available. Do not post information about pre-release content. The place to participate in the pre-release process for Microsoft products isMicrosoft Connect.
  8. Clean HTML. Copying and pasting from Microsoft Word or PowerPoint will likely result in formatting problems. See the formatting section below for more specific instructions. We recommend authoring in Windows Live Writer, and then pasting from there. You can download Windows Live Writer for free at: http://download.live.com/writer.
  9. Images. The maximum-width of an image in a wiki article is 600 pixels. Please re-size any images that you want to share that are larger than 600 pixels.
    1. Use the Snipping tool to add value to your article with screenshots, here is how.
    2. NOTE: Images you upload onto the TN Wiki cannot be deleted from the wiki. You can of course, edit your article to delete or modify the image. However, the original is still on the server, and may be seen in the history. As with all things, do not upload images that contain information you should not share publicly, such as server names, user names, and other personally identifiable information. KEEP THIS IN MIND when you create your screenshot.
  10. Style. Please follow the wiki style guidelines, using templates can be a big help.
    1. Reading this blog post can also help you get started. It has some great advice, including:
      • Successful content - about whatever, for whomever, on whatever platform, and to whatever end - requires the same thing any successful venture does: that you know what others care about, and that you demonstrate that knowledge by providing it for them (and not just what you wish they'd wanted in the first place).
    2. If you're not paying attention to the other people who talk about the same stuff you do, then your content won't be successful.

    3. If you've come up with incredibly clever taglines, fantastic copy, and informative posts that perfectly embody everything you are and you honestly think everyone else will love it, too, because you took so much time doing it... but you don't verify that with anyone else, then your content won't be successful.

    4. Consider readers who are not native English speakers - by following How to Write for an International Audience, you can dramatically increase your potential reach.

  11. Ask for help. If you have questions, or would like to collaborate with someone from Microsoft on some wiki content, just post a request in the wiki forum.

 


Methods to contribute to the Wiki

  • Online editing means using the built-in wiki controls for authoring and editing.
    • For a 10 minute video on using the editor, watch this video.

    • For a detailed how-to on using the editor, see Wiki: Using the Editor.

  • Offline editing. Many people find these controls adequate for short-duration tasks that don't need a lot of formatting. For longer duration tasks and more control over formatting, use offline editing. Offline editing tools that work well include:
    • [FREE] Windows Live Writer (free download)
      • author in WLW and then copy/paste. Seems to have the least formatting issues. NOTE: Though the setup of WLW asks you for a blog address, you don't need to enter a valid one to get to the editor. ( If this is true it could do with some explanation since it seems to insist on connecting). 
    • Notepad (posting clean HTML from Notepad into the HTML editor is sometimes the best way to preserve formatting)
    • Wordpad
    • KomPozer
    • [FREE] Expression Web 4 - see Authoring Blog and Wiki Content with Expression Web for more information.

    When editing raw HTML refer toW3Schools.com for appropriate HTML syntax and use the "Try it yourself" feature to render raw HTML to preview how it will be displayed.

 


URLs and Linking

Linking to New or Existing Pages

Entering [ [Publishing Guidelines] ] (without spaces between the brackets) in the wiki editor page will generate a link to this page. If the named page does not exist it will be created. By default new links are created as sub-pages to the page where the link is created. If the page exists elsewhere in the wiki then the link should point there unless the user specifies a subpage link. (See below) <need Telligent verification here>

 

External Linking to and from the Wiki

The URLs for wiki articles can be referred to either by the full URL or as a partial URL. Linking from the wiki is as simple as using basic HTML linking or the editor's link button to generate a new link. Links external to the wiki are indicated in wiki articles with a graphic, like this:


Files

File Attachments

You cannot attach files. You can link to videos you have posted elsewhere, to scripts on the Script Center Gallery, and to files you have uploaded to other servers such as SkyDrive and Flickr.

 

Images

  • If the image is larger than 600px it should be resized to 600px
  • If you did not create it (such as a screenshot from your computer) then add a link to the source (Be Nice)

 


Tags

Tags are similar to keywords and are included in the search index, but are not displayed to the reader of the content. At least one tag is required for all new content created.

Do not delete tags, even if you think they are wrong. Add your own tags instead. For example, if you find some useful content tagged as "HyperV," do not delete these and replace them with "Hyper-V". Just add your "Hyper-V" tags to the tagstream. Someone tagged it with "HyperV" for a reason important to them, and is counting on using that tag to find the article.

Please add a tag for the language in which your post was written. For English, add en-US. This assists members of the community to easily locate and filter articles written in English.

Tip: don't forget to tag yourself while authoring a new article (and not while making edits) - this way you can easily access all articles that you originally authored.

 


Formatting

Use standard formatting commands, such as <h1>, <h2>, etc.. All the formatting is done via style sheets (both for print and screen).

Article Titles

The title of the article is stored separately and is used for the <title> tag, breadcrumbs, side-bar navigation, and most importantly the URL.

In the above example the title of the article is How-To Contribute. The URL is http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/how-to-contribute.aspx. If you change the article title to "Wiki: How to Contribute", the URL will change, but the links will all go to the new URL. Title capitalization is preferred (most all words start with a capital lever, except most prepositions and articles like "the").

 

Table of Contents

There is no Table of Contents for the wiki. Feel free to create a mini-TOC for a long article. To add an automatic TOC to your article, simply type the letters "toc"(without the quotes) between two square brackets (see the top of this article for an example).

 

Inserting a Table

How to Create Quick and Basic Tables for TechNet Wiki

 

"Return to top" links

When an article is longer than just a section or two, it could be useful inserting the "Return to top" links at the end of each section. Kurt L Hudson explained how you can add this feature to your Wiki article in a post on the WikiNinjas Official Blog.

 

Removing an Article

If you accidentally publish a duplicate article, or have a good reason to want to remove an article, you cannot do it yourself. Only an administrator can physically remove an article. Instead, you have to change the article title and content, and replace the tags with:

  1. Candidate for Deletion
  2. Duplicate Article

...as explained in the WiKi: How to Report a TechNet Wiki Page.

 


See Also

 


Other Languages

This article is also available in the following languages:

 


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Comments
  • This is some great advice here. Good work.

  • Good Work =)