Discussion Board Software

anotherjeff

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 7, 2004
137
0
Honolulu
So I'm thinking of putting a discussion board on my page. vBulletin is very nice but very expensive. I looked on wikipedia for some reviews of other discussion board/forum softwares and I was wondering what my fellow MacRumors types recommend.
 

rendezvouscp

macrumors 68000
Aug 20, 2003
1,526
0
Long Beach, California
I'm a phpBB type of person, but that's just me. I found that their software for administrating the forums was pretty good, and the features were exactly what I needed for a small community. It looks like it's pretty easy to theme for, but I never got around to doing that. Good luck!
-Chase
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
Another free open-source alternative is SMF. Both SMF and phpBB can be auto-installed via Fantastico if your web host has it.

(I used Fantastico to install a WordPress blog on my site with ASO and now I'm a disciple -- totally easy set-up, then ftp your theme files into place.)
 

eva01

macrumors 601
Feb 22, 2005
4,714
0
Gah! Plymouth
I have seen forum software for 5000 dollars before ;) vB is cheap

I only use vB and until my co-admin at my site finishes his own board software i wont use anything else other than vB
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
eva01 said:
I only use vB and until my co-admin at my site finishes his own board software i wont use anything else other than vB
Have you had specific negative experiences with phpBB or SMF?

I'm interested to know, because I and a friend of mine were planning on setting up fora for our family websites. If vB is really worth the money, it would be better to know before rather than after....

Thx.
 

eva01

macrumors 601
Feb 22, 2005
4,714
0
Gah! Plymouth
I have personally never used SMF, but i have used phpBB and i just hate the interface of it for the administrator side. What i did go for prior to vB that i did enjoy was IPB but i believe that is now more expensive than vB.

either way, you can get a trial version of IPB, and a demo pass to the vB admin panel.

And if you decide to go with vB afterwards, they have import scripts from 20-30 different types of boards into vB
 

ravenvii

macrumors 604
Mar 17, 2004
7,586
489
Melenkurion Skyweir
So far I've only used PHPBB, UltimateBB and vBulletin. vBulletin is the best of them all. UltimateBB is a unstable piece of crap, and PHPBB is much better, but still a piece of crap. I hate it's interface, and unless you mod it extensively, it sucks for the user as well.

I've never used SMF, and PunBB looks interesting. I don't have any projects currently, so I'm not really looking around much those days.
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
eva01 said:
And if you decide to go with vB afterwards, they have import scripts from 20-30 different types of boards into vB
Do you mean that running the script will convert a (for instance) phpBB forum into a vB forum by assimilating the file structure? Or is it a script to install vB fresh into a server directory?
 

wrc fan

macrumors 65816
I've set up both phpBB and vbulletin from scratch and done some maintenence of vbulletin on a high traffic site... and in my opinion vbulletin doesn't offer enough to warrant the price unless you know that you are going to be getting a lot of traffic (in which case you would probably have the budget for vbulletin and the price wouldn't be an issue). So I'd recommend just keeping it cheap and using phpBB.
 

mnkeybsness

macrumors 68030
Jun 25, 2001
2,511
0
Moneyapolis, Minnesota
phpBB is becoming very weak and very insecure. I definitely do not recommend it, unless you are going to use their default template and update very frequently.

I built and help maintain another popular forum that uses phpBB and we had some security issues a few months back that almost resulted in all of the administrators losing administrative privileges to the boards. They would have succeeded, if they had known that I created another account just a week or so earlier and made them an administrator (since the other administrators and I were the first few registered).

Lesson learned: do not use phpBB unless you are NOT going to add any modifications or hacks to it and only use the subSilver template.
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
Yikes!

Man, it sounds like a real nightmare, getting your forum hijacked.

You noted that phpBB is "getting" less secure -- is that because newer versions have implemented insecure changes or because older insecurities have not been addressed?

It also seems that not too many people have any experience with SMF, although it sounds from the description that it's pretty full-featured.

Is SMF newer? Or just less well known?

Do you folks with some experience (both good and bad) have a quick and dirty opinion of SMF based on its description on the website?