Prepare Your Mind – Download A Copy Of Wikipedia

wikipediaPreparing for disasters usually includes things like storing food, water, and basic survival gear for keeping yourself alive and safe through difficult times. But I’ve never seen anyone suggest that they should prepare for the possibility that information itself may become difficult to access during a disaster situation. There is an incredibly simple and virtually free way of solving this problem; download Wikipedia itself.


Most people know that Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, is a great place to learn about new things. Few people know that all the content on Wikipedia can downloaded the their own computer and accessed offline. It does take up quite a bit of hard drive space but external hard drives these days are fairly inexpensive. Visit download.wikimedia.org and select the format you prefer.

If you are a web designer, software developer, or generally geeky person, you may want to select the XML or SQL version and install a fully functional version on your computer. You may also want to download a copy of MediaWiki the open source software that powers Wikipedia.

If you are not very technical consider downloading the static html files and use a web browser to view them. If you install Google Desktop on your computer it will make searching the Wikipedia files, and everything else, much easier. If you want a more secure method of storing the data you can buy Wikipedia on DVDs.

No matter which option you choose having access to Wikipedia in an emergency might be very useful, especially during a long lasting disaster. For more information about downloading Wikipedia visit en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia_database.

9 thoughts on “Prepare Your Mind – Download A Copy Of Wikipedia

  1. If you are worried that you won’t have access to information in a disaster of no internet, have you ever thought that said disaster might include power outage (since the power grid is mostly controlled via internet). Not to mention wikipedia is hardly the most reliable source of information and hardly has sufficient information to do anything terribly practical.

    • Wikipedia is arguably one of the most reliable encyclopedias. It’s also free to download but requires a very large drive.
      http://news.cnet.com/Study-Wikipedia-as-accurate-as-Britannica/2100-1038_3-5997332.html

      A small photovoltaic panel can power a laptop and some low power consuming desktop computers. A downloaded version of Wikipedia’s content to your local machine doesn’t require an internet connection to view. So in the case of an extended blackout you could easily have access to all the info on wikipedia as long as you have a micro off-the-grid power source like a PV panel, battery (car battery or preferably deep cycle battery) and small inexpensive inverter.

  2. Books…. remember them? The printed word at your fingertips. They still exist and a few good reference books are easily obtained without a computer.

    • Books are essential but heavy and susceptible to damage (floor, fire, etc). A small library of essential books would also be a good prep.

      Wikipedia has so much content and value it should not be overlooked as a good free addition to your electronic library.

  3. I agree with Michael. It’s free, why bitch? If you can’t think of a reason to do this then you should think a little harder. :)

  4. GReat! I didn’t know this! Thank for the article. I think it’s good that you posted this so people know about this great option! Downloading wikipedia, who would have thought it was even possible! =)

  5. It would pay to have a portable generator, good laptop, aend sevral hard drives to store information, music, movies, so you don’t have to be bored, I’d have back up for the important stuff.

  6. I have just come across your website, and I find it to be a great site with a lot of extremely useful information. I agree that downloading wikipedia would be a good idea. I would also suggest searching the web for downloadable emergency manuals, military field manuals, etc, that would also be useful during a SHTF scenario. There are many available, all you have to do is spend a little time searching for them. Before long you could have a well rounded emergency library.

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