Installation guide

WissKI works on top of Drupal 8. If you have the skill to set up a standard Drupal content management system, you have no problem installing and configuring a basic WissKI. We try to provide you with all necessary information for this process, if you have any additions or find any problems in our guide, please let us know!

You will find help in installing and configuring the system following the steps of this submenu:

  1. System requirements
  2. From nothing to Drupal 8
  3. From Drupal 8 to a basic WissKI system
  4. Configuring your WissKI system
  5. Configuring your WissKI pathbuilder


System requirements

For running our new currently actively developed WissKI D8 system we recommend the following software:
Apache 2.X + Mod Rewrite (for clean URL support)
MySQL 5.5.3 or higher
PHP Version 5.5.9 or higher
Drupal 8.X

You will also need a RDF store repository database for the storage and retrieval of triples through semantic queries with SPARQL.

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From nothing to Drupal 8

Drupal is one of the most used content management systems in the world. Its flexibility pared with a very strong modding-community is the perfect basis for WissKI. Our newest version is based on Drupal 8. To install Drupal 8 on your server please follow the instructions on the Drupal website. Here you get all the basic information for setting up your server to run Drupal.

Setting up your server:
Setting up Drupal 8:

The strong community of Drupal 8 provides many guides and tutorials covering absolute basics and more advanced techniques. If you have any problems with the original Drupal 8 documentation, we suggest that you look for these community tutorials on youtube or search for them on google.

A very good and thorough basic Drupal 8 guide is provided by In collaboration with they try to teach beginners the basic functions and installation processes for Drupal 8:
In preparation for working with WissKI we suggest that you watch their videos on Drupal 8 and get yourself familiar with the basic functions of creating contents in Drupal 8.


Example Drupal 8 installation on Ubuntu 15.10 with Apache2, MySQL and PHP

We provide you with an example installation for Drupal 8 on a fresh Ubuntu 15.10 system. Please keep your individual server setup and security measures in mind while following these instructions.

Install Apache2 Webserver

  • Download the Apache2 Webserver:

sudo su
apt-get update
apt-get install apache2 -y

You should see this screen:



Install MySQL Database2

  • apt-get install mysql-server mysql-client -y
    During the installation you have to pick a secure MySql ‘root’ password for your database. It is later used in the Drupal 8 installation.

Install php-mods

  • Download and install php 5.x.x and the php mods for Apache2 and Mysql:
    apt-get install php5 php5-mysql php5-gd php5-curl libssh2-php


Set up your Apache2 Web Server for Drupal 8

  • Activate the apache2 rewrite and ssl module:
    a2enmod rewrite ssl
    systemctl restart apache2

  • Check if the modules are working with:
    apache2ctl -M | egrep 'ssl|rewrite'

Set up MySQL Database

  • Start MySql :
    mysql -u root -p
  • Enter the following lines. It will set up a database for your site called “drupaldb”. You can name the database as you like.
    create user drupaluser@localhost identified by 'drupaluser@';
    create database drupaldb;
    grant all privileges on drupaldb.* to drupaluser@localhost identified by 'drupaluser@';
    flush privileges;


Downloading Drupal and preparing the installation

  • Download the newest version of Drupal 8 to your server's root folder. In this example: /var/www  (while writing this guide its 8.2.3)
    cd /var/www/       

  • Extract the Drupal 8 files:
    tar -xvzf drupal-8.2.3.tar.gz

  • Copy the extracted files to you var/www/html directory
    cp -a /var/www/html/Drupal-8.2.3/. /var/www/html/

The installation files for Drupal 8 are now in your webserver's root directory.

  • Create “settings.php” and “services.yml”:
    cd /var/www/html
    cd sites/default 
    cp default.settings.php settings.php
    cp services.yml

  • Create a new directory named 'files' and change the permission of all files and folders in 'sites/default' directory, so Drupal 8 can access them.
    mkdir files/
    chmod a+w *

  • Change the owner of the drupal directory to the user and group 'www-data':
    cd /var/www/
    chown -R www-data:www-data html/

  • Now create a new file called 'drupal.conf' that will contain the Apache virtual host configuration:
    cd /etc/apache2/sites-available
    nano /etc/apache2/sites-available/drupal.conf

  • Enter the following lines into the new created drupal.conf:
    DocumentRoot /var/www/html/
    <Directory /var/www/html/>
    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride All
    Order allow,deny
    allow from all
    ErrorLog /var/log/apache2/
    CustomLog /var/log/apache2/ common

  • Create a link of drupal.conf in you “sites-available” directory and copy it to your “sites-enabled” Apache2 directory:
    ln -s /etc/apache2/sites-available/drupal.conf /etc/apache2/sites-enabled/drupal.conf

  • Restart your Apache2 Webserver:
    systemctl restart apache2.service

Installing Drupal 8

  • Open a browser and direct it to you webserver http://localhost:80
    The installation of Drupal 8 starts here:




  • Follow the instructions of the Drupal 8 installation process.



  • Enter the name, username and password of the MySQL Database you created earlier



Congratulations! You have successfully installed Drupal 8.

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From Drupal 8 to a basic WissKI system

For this part of the installation tutorial a fully installed basic Drupal 8 system on a server is a prerequisite. WissKI is a custom drupal module and is basically installed like every other Drupal 8 Module.

  • At the moment you can download the current version of WissKI from our Git-Sandbox:

  • Install and configure Git

apt-get install git-core

  • Run the Git access clone commands from the sandbox project page to download the newest version to the “/modules” directory.

git clone --branch 8.x-1.x wisski

  • Install and activate required Drupal 8 contributed modules.


  • Go back to your installed Drupal. Click on  “Manage” to get the Administration-Bar”. Then click on “Extend”.



Then click “Install new module” and install the following Drupal 8 modules by selecting the  download address from the Drupal-Modules Site:


  • Inline Entity Form


  • Image Effects

  • Colorbox

    Then activate the new modules by checking them in the “Extend” - menu

  • Choose the WissKI Modules you want to install and click on “install”.



For a basic WissKI functionality, we suggest that you Install the following Modules:

  • WissKI Core

  • WissKI Linkblock

  • WissKI Pathbuilder

  • WissKI SPARQL 1.1 adapter with pathbuilder

  • WissKI Store Abstraction Layer Zero

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Configuring your WissKI system

The installed WissKI modules should give you two new Option-Menus under “Configuration”: “WissKI” and “WissKI Salz”. First you'll have to link your WissKI with a RDF store repository.


  • In the category “WissKI Salz” choose “WissKI Salz Adapters”.




  • You should have the option to edit the “SPARQL 1.1 with Pathbuilder” adapter.
  • If not: Go back to “Extend” and install the “WissKI SPARQL 1.1 adapter with pathbuilder” module.
  • Click on “Edit”.




  • The System needs some backend to read and write its data to. Typically we use a Triplestore or RDF store repository.

  • Enter your SPARQL 1.1 compatible read endpoint under “Read URL”

  • Enter your SPARQL 1.1. compatible update endpoint under “Write URL”

  • Click “Update adapter”

Now you have your first basic WissKI system installed and configured.

Start configuring the system by initializing it with an owl-dl ontology by your choice, preferable a domain ontology based on the Erlangen CRM (ECRM) or a version of the Erlangen CRM directly. You can do this by clicking on "Configuration" and "WissKI Ontology" or by loading it manually to the triple store - Both will work. At the time of this tutorial the current version of the ECRM is version 160714 which can be found at

The next step is the configuration of your pathbuilder.

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Configuring your WissKI pathbuilder

You can now use the Pathbuilder to describe which data is stored and viewed in the system and how it is mapped to the concepts and properties of the Erlangen CRM or your specific ontology.


  • To configure your pathbuilder go back to the “Configuration” Menu and under “WissKI” click on “Pathbuilders”.



  • Click “Add Pathbuilder".



  • You can now set up your pathbuilder.

  • It is possible to import and export pathbuilders.

  • Save


  • Edit your new pathbuilder.


  • Start adding paths

At first you should think about the typical concepts you need to manage. For example, museums usually have to handle museum objects like paintings, archeological objects, sculptures etc. These museum objects usually were made by human persons at a certain time and a certain place. So the basic starting form probably handles museum objects and gathers information on the creation of the objects.

We will provide basic templates for such forms in our pathbuilder templates area. As a starting point just go there and copy the link of the basic template for Museum Objects and Persons. Please take care: Path definitions are depending on the correct version of your ontology.

For example two basic paths for managing an Information Object with a title and a type with the ECRM Version 160714 would be: -> -> -> ->

It is recommended to create sub-classes in your ontology for your specific scenario, instead of using merely the classes of Erlangen CRM.

In our example we have two statements (Title and Type) we want to say about one specific Information Object. So we have to create a Group for the Information Object:


  • Click on “Path Type” and then select “Group”
  • Save



  • Now you add Paths to your new group.


  • Choose a title and set the “Path Type” to “Path”.

  • Then click “Edit” and select “Change”



  • Choose the class from your ontology.



  • Continue and insert the property to build the wanted path.

  • Save.


  • Now you select the anchors of your paths and group them under your previously created group.

  • Activate the Paths and the Group.

  • Save.

Changes to the Pathbuilder need to be saved. It is recommended to save everytime you create a new path or change something else (order, regrouping etc.).


You can now start to add content to your WisskI System.


  • Go back to your site and click “Create”



  • Choose your created group.



  • Now you can put in statements, defined by your previously created paths.

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Paper: WissKI aus Anwendersicht (June 2015)
Find here explanations concerning the basic work and funcions of the system (in german).

Paper: WissKI aus Administratorensicht (June 2015)
Find here explanations concerning the configuration and administration of the system (in german).

For more information, tutorials and modeling suggestions please visit also WissKI @ Sammlungen der FAU. (Documentation is currently available only in german.)
Please note that these explanations refer to the system of Drupal 6.

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