Directions for transferring biographies

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Please transfer biographies from the DVD version of the website ONLY. The biographies online in the old site are two years out of date. You may get a DVD with the biographies from John Elberfeld. Email him at

Nothing ever goes smoothly - gremlins are everywhere. Different browsers, and different versions of the same browser all behave differently.


1. Everything goes MUCH faster if you transfer all the files on the DVD to your hard drive. This can take 3 or more hours, so this a job to start just before you go to bed, or leave for work. You can work off the DVD until you make the transfer.

2. Open Index.html on the DVD. CTRL-O (for Open) will open a dialog box that lets you navigate to the Index.html file. If the Index file you see first causes a problem (demands cookies even though you allow them), go to the Index.html file inside the Wiki folder. You can also look at the files on the DVD and double click on either Index.html and it should open in your default browser. Experiment until you find a way that works, and then remember what you did for next time.

3. Use the browser's BACK BUTTON ONLY for navigating back a level when in the file on the DVD. Clicking any of the links in the navigation bar will bring you to the old web page with the outdated files. Just hit the BACK BUTTON until you are back to the DVD files. You want to transfer ONLY files on the DVD. Make sure the address of the file you transfer starts with "file:///C:/Users..." or something along that line.

4. I usually have two different browsers open. Internet Explorer seems to work well with the DVD version, and so I use Chrome or something else for the online work. This helps me keep track of what I am doing.


1. As more name are added, it may pay off to check the names of the files already transferred so you don't attempt to create a duplicate.

2. Copy the name of the person from the top of the page on the DVD version: Abrams, Elijah

3. On the NEW online version, click on "Hilltown Biographies" in the navigation bar down the left side of the page. If you are reading this, you know how to do that. Click on "Create a Biography" and select the bottom "Blank" template.

4. Paste the name you copied into the name box. IT IS THE WRONG ORDER. Cut and Paste until it is first name, middle name, last name: Elijah Abrams. Make sure there is only one space between names, and you got rid of the comma.

5. Click "Create Page." An almost blank page appears. You will see . This command eliminates the table of contents, which for most biographies is bigger than the page content so it is an unnecessary distract. If you have a complex biography that needs a table of contents, you can get rid of that command.

6. Looking at the DVD version of the biography, click View Source. Usually, but not always, you will see the MediaWiki code for the page. Click somewhere in the source code. Do CTRL-A to select everything, and then CTRL-C to copy all the code. (If you can not access the code, select the text from the page an copy it.)

7. Return to the NEW online version of the site. You should see a bizarre little face in the tab at the top of the page. Click below the command and do CTRL-V to paste the code.

8. Save you work and hope it looks good.

9. Go back to the DVD file and copy the name as it appears at the top of the page: Abrams, Elijah. This copy and paste makes sure that no typos are introduced.

10. On the NEW online version, click the down arrow next to "View History" and click the "Move" option. Paste the "Last name, First name" you just copied into the new tile box, and click Move Page. You can chose to watch any of the pages you want.

11. Click on the link to the page just to be sure all is well.

12. If you pasted just the text from the page, instead of the code, you can format the text and put in links as needed.

13. FIX THESE DIRECTIONS as needed so the next person has a better chance of complete the process successfully.


1. Use the back arrows on the DVD version to go back to the list of names that you are working from.

2. In the NEW online version, you can click on the "Blank Template" link in the bread crumbs at the top of the page. This saves several navigation steps if you are sure the next person has not already been added. (If they already exist, their content will come up instead of a blank page.)