Over the last few weeks we have been working on improving the speed of the site. A major part of this is improvements to Wikia's current Monaco skin.

The new version will use 'sprites' (combined images) or CSS to replace some individual images. This will cut down the number of images your browser needs to load and make pages faster. There are also changes to the ways Javascript and CSS are processed for the skin, with some stylesheets being combined to further speed up loading.

So, what should you see on your wikis? For most, the only change should be faster loading times. For a few wikis with heavily customized skins, you may find that some icons are reset to the defaults. Examples of this are the external link icon and the "more" button in the header.

We expect the changes to be live around March 18. If you want to test the changes in advance, you can do this by going to Special:DevCookie and set the cookie to true. Then, when you go to any wiki, you will see the newer, faster Monaco.

The main places you will see changes (and to check) are:

  1. The search field and button.
  2. The two header buttons (like the "more..." button). These were previously images and are now rendered with CSS. The CSS class "color1" is applied to these buttons by default, but the buttons can be different from color1 by specifying a background-color and color for the CSS class "header-button".
  3. The green and gray Wikia buttons. Again, these are now purely CSS. There is a tool to help style buttons at: http://help.wikia.com/wiki/Help:ButtonFactory

When you have finished testing, don't forget to go back to Special:DevCookie on any wiki and remove it.

This is an important improvement to the Monaco skin, and we look forward to faster site speeds. As always, feel free to contact us through Special:contact or here if you need any help.

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