Offline Confluence Documentation

Confluence documentation was offline for several hours today (just now got through). I think there is some problems with the Atlassian ID merge and that was causing proxy errors to be thrown.

There used to be a nice hyperlink at the bottom of every page we display in Confluence that would take you to the documentation (online), but in the 4.X versions that became about 10-20 links before I can reach the documentation for the version of Confluence I am running. (Also the documentation has gotten much harder to use for experienced users because we need to wade through pages of fluff before we get to content found in the old user manuals right on the top level).

So, where can I download an export of a Confluence documentation space so I can install that locally?

4 answers

1 accepted

Hallo Kevin

You can find the offline versions of the Confluence documentation here: https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/ALLDOC/Confluence+Documentation+Directory#ConfluenceDocumentationDirectory-downloads

I hope this solves the problem.

Cheers

Sarah

Hallo again Kevin

I'm also very interested in this comment of yours, as it may give us useful feedback on the way we're structuring the documentation:

Also the documentation has gotten much harder to use for experienced users because we need to wade through pages of fluff before we get to content found in the old user manuals right on the top level.

We're constantly thinking about the best way to structure the documentation, and particularly right now we have an idea to refocus and restructure the Confluence documentation space. It would be great if you can tell me more about the problem. For example, is it the overview pages, that we've put at the top levels of the documentation? And looking back at the earlier versions of the documentation, which style suits you best. Are the Confluence 3.5 docs closer to what you like (https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/CONF35) or even earlier perhaps, like 3.0 (https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/CONF30).

Many thanks for your feedback.

Sarah

And, thanks for the pointer. I now see today that the space export is provided. So, this is just what I was hoping for!

Now, consider making this an add-on to Confluence, such that you get the initial draft when you first install and every time the exported space online is updated you get the option to upgrade your add-in. Then you will have on-line - in-application documentation.

So, I click "Getting Started: More things to try". (BTW, this is taking 20-30 seconds to load a page this morning). Then I must stop and think again. I pick Adding Pages. Then I look under Related Topics and I see "Take me back to Confluence User's Guide". Hey - that is what I wanted in the first place. So I land here:

https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/CONF42/Confluence+User%27s+Guide

Still, I don't see a nice "Search User Guide" box. I see I can open the user guide in PDF, so I go there because I know I can quickly search the full document and I don't have to pay a price for each page load.

This is an example. Think: experienced user, deleted page which does not show up with searches (never had that happen previously), I don't know how to recover it. Can I find the info in 2-3 clicks? That would be great.

When I look at the 3.* documentation, there is that nice search box to search the specific version's documentation. That would usually get me an answer in a snap. 2 clicks to get "Restoring a Deleted Page" for 3.5. Nice!

Hallo Sarah,

I can give you a usage case from yesterday. I wanted to find out how to recover a deleted page. A Google search for Confluence Documentation landed me here:

https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/DOC/Confluence+Documentation+Home

I looked to the main body of the page and see at the top that I need to go elsewhere for version 4.2.13 documentation. A few more clicks and I land here:

https://confluence.atlassian.com/display/CONF42/Confluence+Documentation+Home

Now, I look at the main body again. (In hind-sight, I see the user guide on the left margin is probably where I should go next - maybe the margin wasn't even showing for me.). I don't see a search box (at the top looks like global search, over all versions, so I don't want that because I would have to go through the slow navigation back to my version again.

Now, none of the boxes on the main page look like they could answer my question. Getting Started is too trivial, Resources don't fit, I'm not Customizing and I don't see recover a deleted page under the list of Popular topics. It looks like these four boxes are it. There are no elipsis or other indicators that there is any more depth than what appears on the surface list of a handful of items. So, then I have to stop and think, make a decision (=time, slow).

continued...

Sarah, thanks for sharing both sides of ths conversation. I'm in the process of migrating existing single-page-per-topic, static HTML to v5.1. I have the content, now I have a few new ideas about how it should be structured. Please continue to share your experiences...regards, Kelly/Texas

Thanks so much for your feedback Kelly! It's great to know the discussion is helping other people as well as the Atlassian tech writers.

Cheers, Sarah

0 votes

Hi Kevin,

I've noticed those outages too. We are looking for what is causing this performance problem with confluence already.

As for your question about exporting a space, I think that won't be possible to export the entire space. Only the space administrator can export the entire space. What you can do instead is to export one page at time using the (tools -> export to pdf OR word) function.

I hope this helps!

Regards,

Rodrigo

Rodrigo - this is why I was hoping Atlassian would provide it. I'm not going to export one page at a time. I was hoping for a load of a space.

Hallo again Kevin

Thanks so much for all your feedback. It's extremely useful, especially in the light of the fact that you're an experienced Confluence user, looking for a specific quick fix to a problem.

I have some suggestions to improve the experience, which I'll be discussing with the team next week. I've also included some comments from my general investigations, which I hope will be interesting.

Breaking down the points, with suggested solutions

A Google search for Confluence Documentation landed me here: (DOC space home page)

That's good.

If you Google for "recovering a deleted page in Confluence", you get the right results near the top of the stream. That's good too. Google is working well for us there.

I looked to the main body of the page and see at the top that I need to go elsewhere for version 4.2.13 documentation.

That's good too, except it took "a few more clicks" to get to the version-specific docs you needed.

Now, I look at the main body again. (In hind-sight, I see the user guide on the left margin is probably where I should go next - maybe the margin wasn't even showing for me.).... none of the boxes on the main page look like they could answer my question... It looks like these four boxes are it. There are no elipsis or other indicators that there is any more depth than what appears on the surface list of a handful of items.

Suggestion: Let's add a hint on the Confluence documentation home page, telling people to explore the left-hand navigation panel for a full list of topics, and explaining how to expand the left-hand navigation if it's hidden. Let's also add a link to the site map for the user's guide and for the administrator's guide. (People like having all topics on one page, so that they can use the browser's on-page search.)

I don't see a search box (at the top looks like global search, over all versions, so I don't want that because I would have to go through the slow navigation back to my version again.

Actually, the search is space-specific, and therefore version-specific. We've configured the Documentation theme to restrict the search results to the current space. Problem and suggested solution: The Confluence search box used to say "Search this space" if the doc theme option is set to restrict the search to the current space. I've raised an issue to get this fixed: https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/CONF-28724 (Please vote/comment on the issue if you like.)

So, I click "Getting Started: More things to try"... Then I must stop and think again. I pick Adding Pages. Then I look under Related Topics and I see "Take me back to Confluence User's Guide". Hey - that is what I wanted in the first place. So I land here: (User's Guide)

Making the space-specific search and the left-hand navigation more obvious would probably have solved this. You wouldn't have felt the need to wander around like this.

Still, I don't see a nice "Search User Guide" box. I see I can open the user guide in PDF, so I go there because I know I can quickly search the full document and I don't have to pay a price for each page load.

Making the search more obvious would help here too. If you type "delete" into the search box, the right result pops up fairly quickly in the dropdown.

However, if you type "recover" into the search box, the page doesn't appear in the dropdown, because the dropdown does its matching on page titles only. The page in question is called "Restoring a Deleted Page", not "Recovering a Deleted Page". So, you have to press Enter to go into the full search. There's not much we can do about that.

Minor improvement already implemented:​ I've added the label "recover" to the page called "Restoring a Deleted Page", to boost it to the top of the search results. (Before I added the label, it appeared at around 5 in the list, which wasn't bad either.)

It's also worth mentioning that the page about "Deleting a Page" has links to the information about restoring deleted pages. So, if you were confident about using the search, you'd find that pretty quickly by searching for "deleting". In other words, making the space-specific search more obvious would help here too.

When I look at the 3.* documentation, there is that nice search box to search the specific version's documentation. That would usually get me an answer in a snap. 2 clicks to get "Restoring a Deleted Page" for 3.5. Nice!

Again, we should fix the search. (smile)

About the slowness of the documentation site: We had some serious performance problems earlier this week. The tech team dived in and fixed some problems. It should be performing better now. So sorry that you happened to be using it at the time!

Thanks so much again for all the time you've put into this topic, Kevin.

Cheers, Sarah

Hallo again Sarah. (I really like saying Hallo. Maybe I should change how I speak!)

You're welcome. It looks like you have made some great improvements. Maybe my brain has been adjusted a bit. Or perhaps it was my neck that got adjusted after reading the new slant on this information today.

Hallo Kevin ;)

I read your comment in my email feed, and was a bit puzzled by the "new slant" bit. But now I see what you mean. Eek!

Happy April 1st (although it's April 2nd already here)!

Cheers, Sarah

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