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Personal Info AddOn Documentation

This topic is meant for administrators and serves as introduction springboard to PersonalInfoAddOn topics. Keep this topic as reference.

Using PersonalInfo

This document assumes you have copied the PersonalInfoAddOn files to your user web. Otherwise, see PersonalInfoAddOn for installation instructions.

Further requirements:
  1. Custom UserForm
    • You have either copied the example UserForm topic to your user web, or you have modified UserForm with the fields in the example.
  2. Custom NewUserTemplate
    • You have either copied the example NewUserTemplate topic to your user web, or you have modified NewUserTemplate with the fields in the example.

HELP If you want to use PersonalInfo for existing user topics, see Customize information in the user topic

HELP If you would like to show different information on the user pages, see Customize information in the user topic

HELP If you need to speed up searches, see Speed up searching using a data cache

Modifying existing user topics

Setting PersonalInfoUserViewTemplate as view template for existing user topics:
Include the personal info block in existing pages using either of these 2 methods:
  1. By editing files using the file system: add this line at the bottom:
       %META:PREFERENCE{name="VIEW_TEMPLATE" title="VIEW_TEMPLATE" type="Local" value="PersonalInfoUserView"}%
    Make sure the topic ends with a newline.
  2. Or by editing topics using a web interface: set the preference
          * Local VIEW_TEMPLATE = PersonalInfoUserView

Customize information in the user topic

To change the fields:
  1. Add the custom fields and field formats to the table in Main.UserForm.
    Below is an example, so change the fields as you like, but keep the fields Picture and WorkStatus (including the value 'Current') (both fields are not displayed to the user in topic view). In the current setup the value for WorkStatus can be set when editing the topic.
    | Picture | label | 1 |  |  | H |
    | <nop>WorkStatus | select | 1 | Current, Former |  | H |
    | <nop>WorkEmail | text | 40 |  |  | H |
    | <nop>WorkPhone | text | 40 |  |  | H |
    | <nop>WorkPhoneMobile | text | 40 |  |  | H |
    | <nop>WorkLocation | text | 40 |  |  | H |
  2. Edit PersonalInfo#personalInfoFields and write the fields and field labels by editing the INCLUDE variables. The variable fieldName corresponds to the field names in UserForm. The variable label can be any text you wish.

To change the layout:

Speed up searching using a data cache

By default Foswiki's SEARCH is used to find all users. With many users this can mean a significant performance hit.

Searches can be sped up by having user data in cache: an attachment to PersonalInfo. For fast user data retrieval:
  1. Install Foswiki:Extensions/AttachContentPlugin
  2. Enable it in configure
  3. In Main.SitePreferences set PERSONALINFOADDON_FILECACHE:
  4. Update the info, either:
    1. Manually: in PersonalInfo, click on the "Update" button. By saving the topic, the attachment is updated with the latest information.
    2. Automatically: create a cron job to regularly save the PersonalInfo topic.

HELP The same idea may be used to create an XML file, this is turned off for performance. See #PhoneListXML.

Documentation of the INCLUDE sections in PersonalInfo.


This block is intended as a quick introduction of the user (picture!) and to provide the most common information at hand. It makes it easy to edit the data "on the fly".

This block is included on every user page when PersonalInfoUserViewTemplate is set as view template.

This include is written in PersonalInfoUserViewTemplate:
%INCLUDE{"PersonalInfo" section="personalInfo"}%

hand Creates:

IRC Nick
Home Page


Creates a search box to directly find users with their WorkPhone number.

When AttachContentPlugin is enabled, an updated javascript file attachment is created each time PersonalInfo is saved. This will make loading of the directSearch module a lot faster.

To disable the auto-creation of the attachment, change PersonalInfo#createDirectSearchAttachment: change %STARTATTACH{ to %<nop>STARTATTACH{

%INCLUDE{"PersonalInfo" section="directSearch" title="*Phone list*" maxresults="10"}%

Parameter Description Default value
title Title above the input box no title
maxresults The number of users that are displayed; use -1 to show all users 12
inputfieldsize The width of the input field 12

hand Creates:

Phone list

(try to find John Doe - the PersonalInfoDemoUser - by either first or last name)


Creates a bullet list of users. Listed users have a field WorkPhone and have the value Current at field WorkStatus.

%INCLUDE{"PersonalInfo" section="phoneList"}%

hand View phoneList


Creates a list of user data in XML format. Listed users have a field WorkPhone and have the value Current at field WorkStatus.

The auto-generation of an XML attachment is turned off for performance. To create the XML file, remove the <nop> from the beginning of STARTATTACH at PersonalInfo:createPhoneListXMLAttachment.


hand View phoneList XML

If the XML has been saved as file:

hand PhoneList XML file


Creates a bullet list of all users in an empty page. This might be useful for live searches using AJAX.

Call the topic with url:
... where the search characters come after the q=

hand View personalSearch with the letter 'a'


Creates a table of all users.

Usage: create a topic and write the line:
%INCLUDE{"PersonalInfo" section="tableOfAllUsers"}%
or use the url:

hand Printable list


Creates a grid view of all user pictures.

  • imgHeight - height of the pictures

Usage: create a topic and write the line:
%INCLUDE{"PersonalInfo" section="pictures" title="Face book" imgHeight="100"}%
or use the url:

hand See PersonalInfoFaceBook


Quickly sift through user pictures.

This module adds a search box to the picture grid.

hand See the example on PersonalInfoFaceBook

Reference for administrators

Distribution files:

All these files need to reside in your user web (by default Main).

Diagram of main pages

Diagram of main pages
Topic revision: r1 - 2010-08-15, ProjectContributor
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