Personal Wiki

2 minute read

For some time I have been trying to have my personal wiki,where I could add programming notes for my own reference. I didn’t want them to exist in blogs. I think blogs need to be more carefully thought and polished. Also I could not write any secret informations there.

My search for personal wiki led me to gollum. It is a simple wiki system built on top of Git. Setting it up is quite easy for any rubyist. Basic workflow to create new gollum wiki would be something like this:


# install gollum
$ gem install gollum
# make new directory and cd into it
$ mkdir new_wiki && cd &_
# initialise git
$ git init
# start gollum there
$ gollum .

You need to visit http://localhost:4567 to access this wiki. And you can now start adding new pages. If you want to create new pages inside folder you had to name as folder_name/file_name.

However I ran into problem while trying to install gollum gem. Here is that output:

$ gem install gollum
Fetching: charlock_holmes-0.7.3.gem (100%)
Building native extensions.  This could take a while...
ERROR:  Error installing gollum:
	ERROR: Failed to build gem native extension.

    current directory: /home/user/.rbenv/versions/2.3.1/lib/ruby/gems/2.3.0/gems/charlock_holmes-0.7.3/ext/charlock_holmes
/home/user/.rbenv/versions/2.3.1/bin/ruby -r ./siteconf20160817-26716-1a0rqd4.rb extconf.rb
checking for main() in -licui18n... no
checking for main() in -licui18n... no

*********** icu required (brew install icu4c or apt-get install libicu-dev) ***********
*** extconf.rb failed ***
Could not create Makefile due to some reason, probably lack of necessary
libraries and/or headers.  Check the mkmf.log file for more details.  You may
need configuration options.

Provided configuration options:

To see why this extension failed to compile, please check the mkmf.log which can be found here:


extconf failed, exit code 1

Gem files will remain installed in /home/user/.rbenv/versions/2.3.1/lib/ruby/gems/2.3.0/gems/charlock_holmes-0.7.3 for inspection.
Results logged to /home/user/.rbenv/versions/2.3.1/lib/ruby/gems/2.3.0/extensions/x86_64-linux/2.3.0-static/charlock_holmes-0.7.3/gem_make.out

The error log clearly mentioned that gem depends on icu and I need to install it before being able to install gem. Thus I installed dependencies as follows:

$ sudo apt-get install libicu-dev

Removing files

I could not find any option to remove files in web interface, I had to remove files manually if I wanted to delete from my wiki. However it wouldn’t reflect until I made a git commit after deleting files.

Adding/Updating files from web interface automatically make relevent git commit though.

Would you use gollum for personal wiki? what other solutions do you know? Don’t forget to comment below.


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