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  1. #1

    Default the best forum software?

    Hello everybody!

    I was wondering what is your favourite forum software and why?! My favourite ones are vBulletin (paid), phpBB and SMF. We have customers that use many other softwares that are also good.

    Please feel free to share your forum opinion!
    Last edited by sgforumadmin; 01-24-2006 at 10:16 AM.
    Mike
    Forum Administrator
    Web Hosting

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    4

    Default

    I personally perfer IPB because of the sytle but appreantly vbulletin has more features than any other forum software. Because most of the time they listen of their clients suggestion

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Mt Crawford Va. U.S.A
    Posts
    47

    Default

    I have used PHPBB in the past, but if I ever start another forum I will use VB.

  4. #4

    Default

    SMF. by far the most customizeable..and effiecent..and powerful..

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Hi Guys. and gals.

    I run a proboard forum for my local Honda Jazz/Fit Club.. www.ausfit.com
    and now thinking of moving to proper forum..

    Due to the non-profit community, we are looking at the cheapest possible way run the forum.. therefore, vbulletin would be out of the question as it cost money.

    What can you guys suggest? phpbb? SMF? Have to admit, I'm not familliar with both..

    What can SiteGround host and what's the price?

    Any suggesiton would be appreciated.

    Thanks.

  6. #6

    Default

    Hi Ahcash,

    Both phpBB and SMF are options for you.


    • phpBB is older, with bigger supporting community and .. more vulnerable. Still, it is an excellent solution.

    • SMF is younger, yet powerful. SMF offers the most popular forum addon for Mambo and Joomla CMS's.
    Here is the SiteGround phpBB tutorial to which you can refer when starting your phpBB forum - it has how to install instructions, change template guide, and basic forum, member and group administration tips.

    SMF manual will be up within a couple of months.
    Last edited by sgforumadmin; 01-24-2006 at 10:21 AM.
    Mike
    Forum Administrator
    Web Hosting

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Thanks for the reply, admin...

    SMF could be good but it looks too much like the proboards.. or the other way around.. doesn't matter...

    Phpbb seems like the way to go...

    questions that you might be able to answer:

    1. If I go with phpbb, how do you accomodate the future upgrade of phpbb? Would customers get latest upgrade on the server? How does this work?

    2. When you say phpbb is "more vulnerable", what do you mean by that? You can PM me if you want..

    3. Do you guys planning to do up a vBulletin package?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    22

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ahcash
    Thanks for the reply, admin...

    SMF could be good but it looks too much like the proboards.. or the other way around.. doesn't matter...

    Phpbb seems like the way to go...

    questions that you might be able to answer:

    1. If I go with phpbb, how do you accomodate the future upgrade of phpbb? Would customers get latest upgrade on the server? How does this work?

    2. When you say phpbb is "more vulnerable", what do you mean by that? You can PM me if you want..

    3. Do you guys planning to do up a vBulletin package?
    phpBB is more vulnerable to exploits. People could easily get into your admin account. When I say could I mean before 2.0.x I dont know if its still there or as easy but I remember reading something about it.

    And I dont think siteground will be able to get a vBulletin package as its $160. But I dont know.

  9. #9

    Default

    Belive it or not, SMF is derived from proboards (yabb). But written in php + mysql. so switching over will be no problem for you.

    I highly reccommend you change your decision to smf. Because "looks" wont matter. Why? becasue smf's template system is much more powerful than phpbb's, you can make it look complete different. mine is at http://model98.org/forum

    also...phpbb is very insecure..and the support * disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word *s, and anything else that can go wrong, will.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    7

    Default tt

    I am going to start up a site with a forum.

    I am reluctant to use SMF for a couple of reasons:

    1. How does it look? There are virtually thousands of examples of themes for phpbb on the net to be viewed up close, but I haven't found much on SMF. Even on the forum www.simplemachines... and the treads in the topic "themes" you can download them, but there is no example shown.

    on phpbbhacks the majority of the themes and hacks have a "example" button so you don't have to install 20 different ones before you may find something you like.

    2. I need two mods for the forum: A portal (thinking of using ezportal) and a theme (I actually like subcorolla). It seems easy to find all kinds of different portals and themes for phpbb and actually see them enough to make the choice before going ahead and installling anything.

    With SMF is there any way of actually being informed about what one is downloading. Tastes are different, so other people's taste may not be the same, so the least one would expect is a chance to view what it actually is.

    ___

    I would wish these two points was solved, because there sure are a couple of very positive comments about SMF in this tread. Enough to try it out if I could be sure I could find a theme I liked and a portal I liked.

  11. #11

    Default

    2. I need two mods for the forum: A portal (thinking of using ezportal) and a theme (I actually like subcorolla). It seems easy to find all kinds of different portals and themes for phpbb and actually see them enough to make the choice before going ahead and installling anything.
    smf has a built in portal system. in the SSI.php file, TONS of built in "modules" are complete integrated in the forum.

    my home page is a portal. scroll down to announcements. http://model98.org

    and here is all of the built in modules: http://model98.org/forum/ssi_examples.php

    1. How does it look? There are virtually thousands of examples of themes for phpbb on the net to be viewed up close, but I haven't found much on SMF. Even on the forum www.simplemachines... and the treads in the topic "themes" you can download them, but there is no example shown.
    most provide a demo link. if not just try it out. installing themes in smf is extremely easy...you can upload the zip/tar file through the admincp, and SMF decompresses it.

    also, making your own themes is incredibly easy in smf...look at mine..

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    7

    Default

    OK, thanks for the answer mate.

    Some theme examples would be nice.

    and I don't understand what you mean by "portals are already built in" - can you make them "appear" via the admin page or ...?

    and one last thing. It seems SMF is secure and easily customizable etc, but I don't like the way the posts are divided. I like the TEXT the users write to be the focus and not all kinds of pictures and the headline repeated over an over again for each new answer.

    I so far haven't seen any forum using SMF that didn't have this very annoying overuse of the topic heading.

    Here
    http://model98.org/forum/index.php?topic=1167.0
    for instance it says

    "THE METRIC SYSTEM
    Reply #1 on: January 27, 2006, 05:34:09 AM "

    between each answer. I am not counting on my users to be so stupid they need that repeated over and over on the same page.

    For instance here using phpbb the exact same topic headline (in big letters even!) isn't repeated over and over.

    http://www.chimelock.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=784

    Probably not a huge fix, but I'm not sure my programming knowledge is enough to change it, so I'd like to know if I would then just have to try and live with something like that. Which would be hard because it serves no purpose except to clutter the forum. already with sigs and "logged" and all kinds of other stuff, it is more than cluttered enough as it is imo.

    I'll look forward to your comments mate.

  13. #13

    Default

    of course not. all of the things you want to change in smf are theme related..it comes down to deleteing one variable in display.template.php to remove that.

    no, the portal isnt in the admin page. but you can use the SSI.php page to build your own portal with ease.

    for example:

    [php]<?php

    $ssi_theme = 1;
    $ssi_layers = array('main');
    require_once('SSI.php');

    ssi_boardNews();

    ssi_shutdown();

    ?>[/php]

    that one bit of code is a simple portal for smf. save it as portal.php in the smf directory, and you get this. smf parses it all.

    that's how my entire site is built. just using smf powered web pages.

    if you cant do that (which is pretty bad ), then there is mkportal, mambo, simple portal, and tinyportal for pre-made portals.

    tiny portal is my favorite. http://tinyportal.net

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    7

    Default

    Thanks for your reply mate.

    I will include an img of the front page I would like and I'd be glad if you could advice me what to do.

    The img shows the basic structure. I don't need all the "who is online" , how many users" and bla bla bla.

    Just in the middle links to "the 10 last topics" in one of the "forums" (or well perhaps not forums but rather sections).

    and below that the 10 last post in general from the rest of the forum.

    On the sides I'd like news etc. Perhaps I can get som news pages to supply me with news - I can probably find the scripts for those later. So basically I just need the two middle scripts and I can make the rest myself.

    [IMG]http://www.* disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word *.se/?1015891[/IMG]

    http://www.* disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word ** disabled word *.se/?1015891

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    12

    Thumbs up

    I've used phpbb for over a year, with one disappointment after the other.
    I later converted over to SMF and I am SOOOO glad I did. SMF has many options to chose from and any design changes are easy to make. There are some very savvy support people at SMF too.

    I really do like SMF a LOT better, and think you will also. There are 10 dBs with your hosting, get them both. You'll find that SMF will convert your existing forum far easier, and change styles with ease. EVERYTHING is easier with SMF.


  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    7

    Default

    I am convinced.. almost. Enough to use it. I now have it, but I'll need little help now and then.


  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    5

    Default

    I have just initiated an installed of phpbb on siteground to see how it looks like... The initial options after the install are very limited... and the available tweak are very limited too.. I looked everywhere to try to change the logo on the page only to discover (after 1 hour of reading the FAQ..) that I need to do it in the headers section by modifying the header files... what a pain...

    I am looking at SMF at the moment and hopeful it can give me more options...

    P.S. phpbb is not for beginners like myself..

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    2

    Default Invision Power Board

    Well, vBulletin is the best regarding features, but IPB has a great look so I like it better and I'm more used to Invision software. Plus, its cheaper!


  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    18

    Default

    I think the best forum software is IPB, because it has lots of features in the admin panel.
    I use PHPBB because it's opensource.

    But, you haven't seen PHPBB 3.0.... Please search for the feature list at the area51.phpbb.com

  20. #20

    Default

    Hi!

    In SiteGround (and even with another hosting service) I use SMF Forums.
    It is easy to manage, has many features, could be implemented with many MOD or templates. Really great!

    My first forum was a "phpbb" but there were problems with "exploiting" and so, after a couple of upgrades, I desisted.

    On my main site I use an IPB forum (paid license). I think it is surely more professional as it has many features customizable.

    By the way, I think that choosing a software for a forum should involve the question "how many queries it will generate when connected to a database?". This because, if you use a software that generates many queries (connections) to the database, if your board has many active visitors you'll receive this kind of error message:
    --------
    User 'xxxxx' has exceeded the 'max_questions' resource (current value: 50000)
    --------

    n.b. is there a limit of connections with mySQL hosted in SiteGround?

    I read somewhere that it seems as the IPB forum requires less connections than Vbulletin, but as I am not a technician I cannot confirm.

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