Subpages introduce some hierarchical organization into wiki pages, with levels of the hierarchy separated by slashes (
Where it works
By default, MediaWiki's subpage feature is turned off in the main namespace, but can be used on talk pages and user pages. See Help:Namespaces. In namespaces where the feature is switched off, any slashes (/) within a page name are simply part of the page name and do nothing special. It's not possible to use slashes in the title of a page from a namespace where subpages are activated. However, as a crude hack, a character similar to the slash can be used instead, such as the "big solidus" (U+29F8), which results in Foo⧸bar (cf. a real slash: Foo/bar). Make sure to create a redirect from the title with a slash, so that linking and search will work correctly. This brings an obvious disadvantage for people without the proper font to view that character. Also, if the page's corresponding subject/talk namespace pair uses the slash version (for example, subpages are disabled in the main namespace in Wikipedia, so the slash version can be used in the main namespace, but not on the main talk namespace), then moving the subject page won't move the discussion page and vice-versa (though the redirects would still point to the "correct" place; that is, links wouldn't be broken).
How it works
Slashes (/) within a page name break the page into parent and subpages, recursively, e.g.:
- Help:Subpages - this page
- Help:Subpages/subpage - child page
- Help:Subpages/subpage/sub-subpage - grandchild page
- Help:Subpages/subpage/sub-subpage/sub-sub-subpage - great grandchild page
- Help:Subpages/subpage/sub-subpage/sub-sub-subpage/sub-sub-sub-subpage - great great grandchild page
Note that the part of page names after a slash is case sensitive including the first letter.
In subpages, a link back to antecedent pages will automatically appear at the top. These links do not appear, however, if the antecedent pages have not yet been created.
Use of subpages
There are various uses for the subpage feature. Some of the typical usages of subpages are:
- to create archives of old discussions under a talk page
- to create scratchpad editing spaces under a user page
- to create other language versions of a document in multilingual wikis
Subpages are useful for organising information hierarchically. On the other hand, subpages tend to have a long name that is hard to remember, so it may be more user-friendly to use them as little as possible. You can also organize pages with the category feature, which is more suitable for creating a hierarchical network of information.