Help:Tracking categories

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Tracking categories are a feature of MediaWiki that allows pages with certain characteristics to be tracked. It works by adding any such page to a category automatically.

What category to use is determined by the tracking category's system message (i.e. a page in MediaWiki namespace). If the message is a single dash (-), then the tracking category is disabled. Often such categories are marked as hidden (__HIDDENCAT__) as they are meant for maintenance and not general consumption. Some sites use Parser functions to modify which category is used based on namespace, but that doesn't work properly until 1.19.

Default category (in English) Message What triggers the categories inclusion Version
Pages with too many expensive parser function calls expensive-parserfunction-category Too many expensive parser functions (like #ifexists) included on a page. See Manual:$wgExpensiveParserFunctionLimit. 1.13 Before that, Parser Function extension used pfunc_max_ifexist_category
Pages containing omitted template arguments post-expand-template-argument-category After expanding a template argument (something in triple braces, like {{{Foo}}}), the page is bigger than $wgMaxArticleSize. 1.13
Pages where template include size is exceeded post-expand-template-inclusion-category After expanding all the templates, the article size is bigger than $wgMaxArticleSize, so some templates weren't expanded. 1.13
Noindexed pages noindex-category This article has the __NOINDEX__ magic word on it (and is in a namespace where that flag is allowed), and hence is not indexed by robots. 1.15
Indexed pages index-category This article has the __INDEX__ on it (and is in a namespace where that flag is allowed), and hence is indexed by robots where it normally wouldn't be. 1.15
Hidden categories hidden-category-category This is a category with __HIDDENCAT__ on it, which prevent it from showing up in the category links box on pages, by default. 1.13
Pages with broken file links broken-file-category Category added if the page contains a broken file link (A link to embed a file when the file does not exist. This does not include links to files on the bad image list, files that cannot be displayed inline (due to lack of handler support), links directly to a file page (by preceding with a colon, aka [[:File:Example.png]]). The category, if enabled, is linked from Special:Wantedfiles since 1.19. 1.18

Extensions can also add new tracking categories (via Parser::addTrackingCategory method).

Some wikis add other sort of tracking categories via some hacks, for instance this category which tracks pages with #expr errors, added through the relevant errors shown on such pages.

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