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Administrators can protect and un-protect pages, to prevent anonymous users or all non-admins from editing or moving a page. The majority of pages on all wikis should remain publicly editable, and not protected.
Pages may, however, be temporarily or permanently protected for legal reasons (for example, license texts should not be changed) or in cases of extreme vandalism or edit warring. This page explains the uses and how-to for protecting pages.
Levels of protection
- Allow all users
- This is the default setting for all pages, all users can edit the page.
- Block new and unregistered users
- This setting protects the page from edits by users who have not registered for an account or have registered less then three days ago.
- Administrators only
- Like the option says, only users with administrator rights can edit the page if this level of protection is selected.
Permanent protection can be used for:
- Protecting highly vandalized pages, such as the Main Page on large wikis.
- Maintaining the integrity of the site's logo and favicon.
- Maintaining the integrity of key copyright and license pages.
A temporary protection can be used for:
- Enforcing a "cool down" period to stop an edit war.
- Protecting a page or image that has been a recent target of persistent vandalism or persistent edits by a banned user.
- There is no need to protect personal .css and .js pages like user/monobook.css. Only the accounts associated with these pages (and admins) are able to edit them.
- The interface and system messages in the MediaWiki namespace are protected automatically, they can only be edited by users with administrator rights.
Below you will find a set of guidelines that we feel are important to consider when protecting a page.
- Do not protect pages unnecessarily. For example, do not protect a page simply because it is the Main Page, but protect it because it is actually a vandal target.
- Do not protect a page you are involved in an edit dispute over. Admin powers are not editor privileges - admins should only act as servants to the user community at large.
- Avoid favoring one version of the article over another, unless one version is vandalism.
- Temporarily protected pages should not be left protected for very long.
- Talk pages and user talk pages should not be protected except in extreme circumstances.
How-to-protect a page in seven steps
- Determine if the page indeed requires protection.
- Determine for how long it should be protected.
- Click the "protect" tab at the top of the page.
- Select the level of protection (protection levels are explained above)
- Select the time you want the page to be protected for using either the drop down menu or the "other time" box
- Explain why you are protecting the page using either the drop-down menu, the text box, or both.
- Check the settings to make sure you didn't make a mistake, then click "confirm"