5. Manage phpMyFAQ

The administration of phpMyFAQ is completely browser-based. The admin area can be found under this URL:


You can also log in the public frontend, and after the successful login you'll see a link to administration backend, too.

If you've lost your password, you can reset it. A new random password will be generated and sent to you via email. Please change it after your successful login with the generated password.

After entering your username and password, you can log into the system. On the dashboard page you can see the following cards:

  • some statistics about visits, entries, news and comments
  • the latest current number fetched from phpmyfaq.de
  • a nice diagram with the number of visitors of the last 30 days
  • a list on inactive FAQs
  • a button to verify the integrity of the phpMyFAQ installation. Then clicking on the button phpMyFAQ calculates a SHA-1 hash for all files and checks it against a web service provided on phpmyfaq.de. With this service, it's possible to see if someone changed files.

You can switch the current language in the administration backend, and you have an info box about the session timeout.

5.1 Users and Groups

5.1.1 User Administration

phpMyFAQ offers flexible management of privileges (or rights) for different users in the admin area. To search for a certain user, just start typing the username in the input form, and you'll get a list of hits for usernames. It is possible to assign different privileges to real people (represented by the term users). Those privileges are very detailed and specific, so that you could allow a certain user to edit but not to delete an entry. It is very important to contemplate which user shall get which privileges. You could edit an entry by completely deleting all content, which would be equivalent to deleting the whole entry. The number of possible users is not limited by phpMyFAQ.

Keep in mind that new users have no privileges at all; you will have to assign them by editing the user's profile.

A super admin can set users as super admins as well, then the given permissions aren't evaluated, so please be careful with setting this option.

A user without any permission in the admin section can still get read access to categories and records. You can set the permissions on categories and records in the category and record administration frontend.

5.1.2 Group Administration

phpMyFAQ also offers flexible management of privileges (or rights) for different groups in the admin area. You can set permissions for groups in the same way as for users described in the topic above.

Please note that the permissions for a group are higher rated than the permissions on a user. To enable the group permissions, please set the permission level from basic to medium in the main configuration.

5.2 Content

5.2.1 Category Administration

phpMyFAQ lets you create different categories and nested sub-categories for your FAQs. You can also re-arrange your categories in a different order. It is possible to use various languages per category, too; there's also a frontend to view all translated categories. For accessibility reasons, you should add a small description for every category. You can add an image for every category, which will be shown even on the start page if you flag this category with this configuration. If you add a new category, you can set the permissions for users and groups, and you can bind an administrator to that category. This is quite nice if you want to share the work in your FAQ between various admin users.

5.2.2 FAQ Administration

You can create entries directly in the admin area. Created entries aren't published by default. All available FAQs are listed on the page "Edit FAQs". By clicking on them, the same interface that lets you create records will open up, this time with all the relevant data of the specific entry. The meaning of the fields is as follows:

  • Category The place in the FAQ hierarchy where this entry will be published depends on these settings. You can choose one or more categories where to store the entry. If you want to add a FAQ record to more than one category, you have to select the categories with your mouse and press the CTRL key.

  • Question This is the question or headline of your entry.

  • Answer The content is an answer to the question or a solution for a problem. The content can be edited with the included WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor when JavaScript is enabled. You can place images where you want with the integrated image manager. The Editor can be disabled in the configuration if you want.

  • Language You can select the language of your FAQ. By default, the selected language saved in the configuration will be chosen. You can create entries in multiple languages like this: Write an article in English (or any other language) and save it. Now choose Edit FAQs and edit your English FAQ record. Change the question, answer and keywords and change language to, let's say Brazilian Portuguese. Save the FAQ record. Now you can, when you click edit records, see both FAQs in your list, having the same id, yet different languages.

  • Attachments You can add attachments like PDFs or any other binary data using the Add attachment button. If you click on the button, a popup opens and you can upload an attachment. Please keep in mind that the PHP configuration about upload size will be checked.

  • Keywords Keywords are relevant for searching through the database. In case you didn't include a specific word in the FAQ itself, but it is closely related to the content you may wish to include it as a keyword, so the FAQ will come up as a search result. It is also possible to use non-related keywords so that a wrongly entered search will also lead to the right results.

  • Tags You can add some tags about the current FAQ here. An auto-completion method helps you while typing your tags.

  • Author It is possible to specify an author for your FAQ.

  • Email It is possible to specify the author's email for your FAQ, but the email address won't be shown in the frontend.

  • Solution ID Every FAQ generates automatically a so-called solution ID. All records can be accessed directly by putting this ID into the search box.

  • Active? If a FAQ is "active" it is visible in the public area and will be included in searches. Is it "deactivated" it will be invisible. Suggested FAQs are deactivated by default to prevent any abuse.

  • Sticky? If a FAQ is "sticky" it is a very important FAQ record and will always be shown on all pages on the right column. You should mark records as sticky if they're very important for your whole FAQ. Sticky records also appear at the top positions of the lists of FAQ entries.

  • Comments? If you don't want to allow public comments for this FAQ you can disable the feature here.

  • Revision Like a wiki, phpMyFAQ supports revisions of every entry. New revisions won't be created automatically, but you can create a new one if you click on "yes". The old revision will be stored in the database, and the new current revision will be displayed in the public frontend. You can also bring back old revisions into the frontend if you select an old revision and save them as a new one.

  • Date You have three options for the FAQ creation date. You can choose to refresh the date of the FAQ entry for every update, or you can keep the date, or you can set an individual date for the FAQ entry.

  • Permissions If you add or edit a new entry, you can set the permissions for users and groups. Please note that the permissions of the chosen category override the permissions of the FAQ itself.

  • Date Date of the last change.

  • Changed? This field is reserved for comments that can reflect what changes have been applied to a certain entry. This helps multiple admins to keep track of what happened to the entry over time. Any information entered here will remain invisible in the public area.

  • Changelog The changelog lists all previous changes, including user and date of change.

You can edit and delete all records as well. Please note that old revisions won't be deleted until the whole FAQ is deleted.

phpMyFAQ lets visitors contribute to the FAQ by asking questions. Every visitor is able to view these open questions in the public area, and may give an answer. If you wish to get rid of open questions, you can do so using this section. Alternatively, you can take over a question and answer it yourself and hereby add it to the FAQ.

5.2.3 Comment Administration

In this frontend, you can see all comments that'd been posted in the FAQs and the news. You can't edit comments, but you can delete them with one easy click.

5.2.4 Open questions


5.2.5 Glossary

A glossary is a list of terms in a particular domain of knowledge with the definitions for those terms. You can add, edit and delete glossary items here. The items will be automatically displayed in tags in the frontend.

5.2.6 News Administration

phpMyFAQ offers the ability to post news on the starting page of your FAQ. In the administration area you can create new news, edit existing news or delete them.

5.2.7 Attachment Administration

In the attachment administration, you can see an overview of all all attachments with their filename, file size, language and MIME type. You can delete them, too.

5.2.8 Tags Administration

You can edit existing tags, of if you need to, you can delete the tag.

5.3 Statistics

5.3.1 Ratings

Below every FAQ, a visitor has the chance to rate the overall quality of a FAQ by giving ratings from 1 to 5 (whereas 1 is the worst, 5 the best rating). In the statistics, the average rating and number of votes becomes visible for every rated FAQ. To give you a quick overview, FAQs with an average rating of 2 or worse are displayed in red, an average above 4 results in a green number.

5.3.2 View sessions

This function lets you keep track of your visitors. Every visitor is assigned an ID when coming to your starting page, that identifies a user during his whole visit. Using the information gathered here, you could reconstruct the way visitors use your FAQ and make necessary adjustments to your categories, content or keywords.

5.3.3 View Admin log

The admin log allows you to track any actions taken by users in the admin area of phpMyFAQ. If you feel you have an intruder in the system you can find out for sure by checking the admin log.

5.3.4 Search statistics

On the search statistics page you'll get a report about which keywords and how often your users are searching. This information is split into keywords, the number of searches for this term, the language and the overall percentage.

5.3.5 Reports

On the report page you can select various data columns to generate a report about content and usage of your FAQ installation. You can export the report then as a CSV file.

5.4 Exports

You can export your contents of your whole FAQ or just some selected categories into four formats:

  • a JSON file
  • a plain HTML5 file
  • a PDF file with a table of contents

5.5 Backup

Using the backup function, it is possible to create a copy of the database to a single file. This makes it possible to restore the FAQ after a possible "crash" or to move the FAQ from one server to another. It is recommended to create regular backups of your FAQ.

  • backup data A backup of all data will include all entries, users, comments, etc.
  • backup logs The sessions of visits and the admin log will be saved (i.e. all log files). This information is not necessary for running phpMyFAQ, they serve only statistical purposes.

During the backup process, phpMyFAQ generates a hash on the whole backup file and stores this information. The hashes of backups will be verified during the process of restoring. If a backup can't be verified, the admin can't use the backup file for restore.

To back up the whole data located on your web server you can run our simple backup script located in the folder /scripts.

5.6 Configuration

5.6.1 Main configuration

Here you can edit the general, FAQ specific, search, spam protection, spam control center, SEO related, Social networks settings, Mail setup for SMTP, LDAP configuration, and API settings of phpMyFAQ.

5.6.2 System information

On this page phpMyFAQ displays some relevant system information like PHP version, database version or session path. Please use this information when report bugs.

5.6.3 FAQ Multi-sites

You can see a list of all multisite installations, and you're able to add new ones.

To host several distinct installations (with different configs, different templates and most importantly, different database credentials), but only want to update once, you need to follow these steps:

  • Make sure you have the multisite/ directory in your document root and multisite.php in it
  • For every installation, there needs to be a subdirectory of multisite/ named exactly like the hostname of the separate installation.

For example, if you want to use faq.example.org and beta.faq.example.org, it needs to look like this:

|-- [...]
|-- config
|   |-- constants.php
|   `-- database.php
`-- multisite
    |-- multisite.php
    `-- beta.faq.example.org
        |-- constants.php
        `-- database.php

5.6.4 Stop Words configuration

We need stop words for the smart answering feature and the related answers. If a user is adding a new question to your FAQ the words will be checked against all FAQs in your database but without the stop words. Stop words are words with a very low relevance like the English word the.

5.6.5 Template meta data

If you need to add metadata to your template, you can do this in the template metadata administration. You can define a page type, e.g. foobar, a content type (Text or HTML) and the content, e.g. <marquee>Foobar</marquee>. After saving the metadata entry, you can use it in your template:

{{ foobar }}

This feature is deprecated and will be removed in phpMyFAQ 4.0.

5.6.6 Elasticsearch configuration

Here you can create and drop the Elasticsearch index, and you can run a full import of all data from your database into the Elasticsearch index. You can also see some Elasticsearch relevant usage data. This page is only available if Elasticsearch is enabled.