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A knowledgebase plugin for Redmine

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This plugin adds professional knowledgebase functionality to the Redmine project management application.

Introduction

Redmine Plugin Extension and Development

Redmine is just plain awesome, and has proven to provide 90% of the functionality I need. The one feature that was missing was a usable knowledgebase component. I've looked at some of the open source solutions available, but couldn't find anything that fit my needs exactly. Seeing as Redmine is so easily extended, I figured why not create it for this platform instead of starting yet another project from scratch :P

SHAMELESS PLUG This plugin is discussed in Redmine Plugin Extension and Development, which is now available from Packt Publishing.

Features

  • Article versioning
  • View differences between versions
  • Email notifications and atom feeds
  • Categorization of articles
  • Article ratings
  • File attachments
  • Comment on articles
  • Article tagging
  • Project-based permissions

Installation

To install the knowledgebase, execute the following commands from the root of your redmine directory, assuming that your RAILS_ENV enviroment variable is set to "production":

git clone git://github.com/alexbevi/redmine_knowledgebase.git plugins/redmine_knowledgebase
bundle install
rake redmine:plugins:migrate NAME=redmine_knowledgebase

More information on installing Redmine plugins can be found here: http://www.redmine.org/wiki/redmine/Plugins

After the plugin is installed and the db migration completed, you will need to restart Redmine for the plugin to be available.

Updating from v2.3.0 (Should work for all 2.x versions but has not been tested)

To update redmine from v2.3.0 to 3.0+ you will first want to delete redmine_knowledgebase from the the /plugins and /public/plugin_assets directories.

Once those two directories have been removed, run the following commands (as though you were performing a fresh installation):

git clone git://github.com/alexbevi/redmine_knowledgebase.git plugins/redmine_knowledgebase
bundle install
rake redmine:plugins:migrate NAME=redmine_knowledgebase

Upon restarting Redmine, the Knowledgebase entry will no longer appear as a :top_menu entry.

The knowledgebase is now project-specific, and therefore must be included in at least one project to work properly. If you wish to use it like v2.x, you can make a public project that will only be used to store knowledgebase articles.

You will need to go into your database now and change the kb_articles and kb_categories project_id to the project id of the knowledgebase project you just created.

You can find the id in the projects table.

To generate the full project list from the command line, you can run the following from the root of your Redmine installation:

rails runner "Project.all.map { |p| puts \"#{p.id}\t#{p.name}\" }"

This will produce a list similar to:

3    Plugin Development
4    KB 2.x
5    Global

If you want to move all existing categories to the above "Global" project, you could do this via:

rails runner "KbCategory.update_all(\"project_id = 5\")"
rails runner "KbArticle.update_all(\"project_id = 5\")"

Uninstall

rake redmine:plugins:migrate NAME=redmine_knowledgebase VERSION=0

User Guide

Overview

Once the Redmine Knowledgebase Plugin is installed, you will need to add the knowledgebase module to an existing or new project. Once you do so, there will be a Knowledgebase link in the Project menu bar.

Configuration

To start using the Knowledgebase plugin, click on the Knowledgebase link in the Project menu bar.

This takes you to the Knowledgebase home page. Because no articles or categories exist, you will see this message: "No categories have been created. Click Create Category to get started.". To the right is a green circle with a plus (+) sign, and the link to create a new Category.

Click on Create Category. This takes you to the Create Category page.

  • Root Category - since this is the first category, this is checked by default. Root categories show in the right hand Browse by Category sidebar.

  • Title - give the new category a title relevant to your needs. This title will show in the Browse by Category sidebar as a navigation link.

  • Description - provide a description of the category. This description will show on the category main page.

Click on Create to create the new category. You can edit this information again once the category is created by using the Edit link on the category main page.

The first category created is the parent category for all new categories.

You can continue to create as many new categories as needed, and add more new categories at any time. See Using the Knowledgebase for information on how to create sub-categories and add articles.

Once you have added categories to the Knowledgebase, there will be a Jump to Category drop down menu on the Knowledgebase home page. You can use that to navigate to any category or sub-category. You can also navigate to categories (not sub-categories) by clicking on the category name in the right hand Browse by Category side bar.

Using the Knowledgebase

Once you have created categories, you can then add articles and sub-categories.

Creating Sub-categories

To create a sub-category, click on a root category in the right hand Browse by Category sidebar, or use the Jump to Category drop down menu from the Knowledgebase Home page.

Once you are on the main page for that category, click on the New Category link on the right side of the page. This takes you to the Create Category page.

  • Root Category - uncheck this box if you want this to be a sub-category

  • Parent Category - choose the relevant parent category from the drop down menu. This option only appears if the Root Category checkbox is un-checked.

  • Title - give the new sub-category a title relevant to your needs.

  • Description - provide a description for the sub-category. This description will appear on the sub-category main page.

Click on Create to create the new sub-category. You can edit this information again by using the Edit link on the sub-category main page.

You can have sub-categories of sub-categories.

NOTE - sub-categories do not appear in the right hand Browse by Category side bar. Sub-categories only appear in the Jump to Category drop down menu on the Knowledgebase Home page, or in the category main pages.

In the Jump to Category drop down menu, sub-categories are shown with a leading > , sub sub-categories with a leading >> , etc.

Creating Articles

To create an Article, click on the Create Article link on the home page, or navigate to a category or sub-category, and click on the Create Article link. This opens the Create Article page.

  • Category - select the category or sub-category from the drop down menu

  • Title - give the article a relevant title

  • Summary - a short summary of what the article is about. This shows under the article on the category or sub-category main page.

  • Content - the content of the article. The Content section uses the Redmine Wiki formatting syntax, so anything that is possible in the Redmine Wiki is possible here.

  • Tags - add tags to the article Separate tags or tag groups with commas. Global tag search is currently not implemented, but is in development. Tag search is currently only available at the Article level.

  • Change Comments - This field enables you to record the changes made to the article each time you edit it. This comment, along with the date, time, and author/updater, will show in the article history table at the top of each article.

  • Files - attach any files or images to the article, along with an optional description. Note that the maximum size of the files or images that can be uploaded is 5MB.

Click on Create to add the article. Click on Preview to see how the article content will look and make any necessary changes before creating the article.

Managing Articles

Once you click on Create to add the article, the article is displayed. This page shows the title, summary and content of the article, the creator (Added by username), how long ago the article was created, and how many times it has been viewed.

You can also Edit or Delete the article, as well as rate the article. Clicking on any of the tags in the Tags section will search for any other articles with the same tags.

You can also comment on an article by clicking on Add a comment.

When editing the article, you will once again be able to enter a change comment as to what changed with this version of the article. This is useful to others who may be watching the article, and will allow them to get a brief idea of what change you made. They will also be able to see previous versions of the article if you allow them to, view highlighted differences between them, and revert to previous versions, if they have permission.

If you Watch the article, you will receive email notifications if the article is updated, deleted, or a comment is added. You can also watch an entire category, to be notified if any document in that category is created, edited, deleted, or commented on. You can also subscribe to atom feeds on article categories.

Using Wiki Macros

You can easily create links to articles and categories from issues or Wiki pages using the macros.

4 macros are available so far:

  • {{kb(<article_id>)}} will render a link to the "kb#" format. (It may change according to your locale).
  • {{article_id(<article_id>)}}, identical to the kb macro, will render a link to the "kb#" format.
  • {{article(<article_id>)}} will render a link to the "kb#: " format.
  • {{category(<category_id>)}} will render a link to the "" format, only renders the title of the category.

Knowledgebase Home Page

Now that categories and articles have been created, the home page of the Knowledgebase will show lists of Recently Updated Articles, Most Popular Articles, and Top Rated Articles. You can adjust permissions to enable users to view these lists, or change how many documents are displayed in these lists. You can use this page to help navigate the Knowledgebase, as well as using the Jump to Category drop down menu or the Browse by Category menu on the right of the screen. You can reach this page from anywhere inside the Knowledgebase by clicking on the Home link.

About

Copyright (c) 2010-2014 Alex Bevilacqua, released under the MIT license

Though I initially wrote this plugin, it would not be possible without the many contributions from the community. See AUTHORS for the full list.

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