BlueSpice uses the MediaWiki extension VisualEditor as editing tool. This sophisticated editor supports all common edit tasks that you can expect in a wiki environment.

What is VisualEditor?


The visual editor is optimized for editing wiki pages. Important characteristics and functions are:

  1. Page structuring with headings.
  2. Consistent text formatting.
  3. Linking of contents.
  4. Inserting special content (files/media, tables, templates, magic words)
  5. Adjusting page options.

Text editing

Typical text formatting options such as bold, italics, or text color are available as a context menu. When you highlight text, a menu with common formatting elements appears. For example, you can apply a different text color.

Applying text color
Applying text color

Pasting content from your clipboard (ctrl+shift+v)


If you paste content from your clipboard (e.g., copied from MS Word or MS Excel), you usually also paste many unnecessary formatting tags from the original application. To avoid, this you should paste the content as plaintext.

If you already pasted text which resulted in undesirable formatting, you can use the undo function in VisualEditor to remove the content again if you have not yet saved the page or switched between visual and source editing mode.

To paste content as plain text instead, use the shortcut ctrl+shift+v.


If you want to apply multiple formatting options at the same time, shortcuts are often the quickest way. For example, to show text in bold and italic, highlight the text and press Ctrl+b (for "bold") and Ctrl+i (for "italics"). Even a link can be quickly inserted by pressing Ctrl+k. Pressing Ctrl+b again will cancel the bold. Multiple formats can be removed after text selection with Ctrl+m.

All available keyboard shortcuts are marked accordingly in VisualEditor next to each menu item.

Menu items with shortcuts
Menu items with shortcuts

Note: For a list of all available shortcuts, click on "Keyboard shortcuts" in the Visual Editor help menu (the question mark menu item).

Inserting other content

Many typical page elements such as images, files and tables can be integrated into your page from the Insert menu.

  • File formats with a preview option: jpg/jpeg, png, gif, pdf
  • File formats without preview option are always inserted as links (e.g., Microsoft Office formats)
  • Files can be connected with namespaces and categories

If you want to learn more about inserting these elements, go to the following help pages:

Wiki-specific content

Some functions in the "Insert" menu are little known from traditional word processing, but are quite typical for working with a wiki. Therefore, they are briefly introduced here. Find more information on the help pages here in the helpdesk or at

  • Comment: Add comments to the page. These are only visible in the source code.
  • Gallery: A simple picture gallery can support many process flows.
  • Magic word: Wiki features such as signature, word counter, category tree or even process diagrams with can be integrated as a "magic word".
  • Your signature: Only works on pages that allow signatures. Pages in the Namespace "Pages" are not included.
  • Codeblock: Programming code is displayed here in clean code blocks, optionally with line numbers.
  • References list:
  • Chemical formula: The formula rendering uses an external service via Wikimedia's REST API.
  • Math formula: An editor opens for entering a mathematical formula.

Switching between edit modes

When creating or editing a page, the page loads in visual editing mode. If you are familiar with the code language of MediaWiki ("Wikitext"), you can easily switch to source editing mode using the "Switch editor" button:


MediaWiki reference

Since VisualEditor is a standard MediaWiki extension, you can also read a documentation of functionality on MediaWiki. Here in the BlueSpice Helpdesk, we only give some hints and tips for using the editor.

Hints and tips

VisualEditor is optimized for editing web pages. That's why it has exactly the features that are often needed to create a wiki page. The consistent formatting of content supports the readability of your wiki content.

Text formatting

Text formatting
Undo function


Left arrow: Undo last action (greyed out: there is no last action yet)

Right arrow: Restore last action (greyed out: there's nothing to restore yet)

Format Paragraph


Here text can be defined as heading or specific paragraph type. Note: If you work in a table, the options will change accordingly (content cell and header cell):
screenshot: content cell

Style text

Manual:VE character formatting.png

If no text has been selected before clicking on the " A" button and on a button, the text will be formatted from the current position of the cursor.

(More Info at])

Insert hyperlink

Manual:VE Insert hyperlink.png

If no text was selected before the hyperlink dialog was opened, the link will be generated with a number:

[1] To subsequently change the hyperlink description, just click on the link to open the edit menu. In a table, you may need to double-click the cell first and then click the hyperlink again.


Manual:VE cite.png

The citation menu is used to insert references (also called itemizations or footnotes) within the text.

Manual:VE structure new.png

Insert special content

Paste Special Content
Insert menu


Use the "insert" menu to insert various media (images, videos) and text formats:

Manual:VE media.png

Inserting pictures and videos

(Details on MediaWiki])


Manual:VE template.png

Include a template in the page.

Manual:VE table.png

Tables are an important tool for formatting tabular page content.

Manual:VE comment.png

Comments are not visible to readers, but only in edit mode. A comment can be inserted anywhere on a page. The comment can be edited by clicking on it.

And this is what a comment looks like:
screenshot: comment


Manual:VE gallery.png

Magic word

Manual:VE magic word.png

With a "magic word" you can include certain variables or so-called behavioral switches in your page. For example, you can display the word count:

Learn more about the functionMagic Word".

Overview of all Magic Words in the visual editor.

Your signature

Manual:VE your signature.png

This option can only be used in discussions. It allows to add a signature at any point of a discussion.
Code block

Manual:VE code block.png

With code block various code examples can be entered, like e.g. in HTML syntax. The code is then displayed properly formatted:
<span style="color: red">red text</span>
Refernces list

Manual:VE refernces list.png

Chemical formula

Manual:VE chemical formula.png

The formula rendering uses an external service via Wikimedia's REST API.
Math formula

Manual:VE math formula.png

It opens an editor for entering a mathematical formula.

[info on MediaWiki]

Special Characters

Manual:VE special characters.png

Page options

Page Options
Options menu
The options menu allows editing of all page settings.

Manual:VE options.png

This button allows the page settings and page information to be updated simultaneously within a dialog box.

Manual:VE categories.png

Here you assign the page to one or more categories Categories. The page will appear accordingly on all linked category pages.
Page Settings

Manual:VE page settings.png

Page redirection: When the page is redirected, the content of the page is no longer displayed, but the target page is loaded directly.

This setting can also be used to display or remove the table of contents at the top of the page. The table of contents is automatically generated by the headings on the page. When a page has more than three headings, the table of contents appears automatically by default.

Advanced Settings

Manual:VE advanced settings.png



Templates used

Manual:VE templates used.png

View as right-to-left

Manual:VE view as right-to-left.png

Support for languages that are read from right to left. Clicking this button right-side formats the page text. Click again to set the text flush left.
Find and replace

Manual:VE find and replace.png

Words or characters can be searched and replaced directly on the page. The "Undo" button can be used to cancel the change.

Troubleshooting: Visual editing is disabled

If you only see code editing, please contact an administrator of your wiki. The following settings must be checked in this case:

  • Global settings via the configuration manager
  • Namespace management settings
  • Parsoid service on the server