Easiest Method to Create a Forum Based Website? (SquareSpace?)

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by HappyDude20, May 22, 2017.

  1. HappyDude20 macrumors 68030


    Jul 13, 2008
    Los Angeles, Ca
    hello community!

    I'm wanting to connect my domain to a forum of which I'll also assemble and begin to draw people in. I know I can do this just as well with a Facebook group. I essentially just want a website that also has a domain, or it could just be a forum, so long as people can sign up and create logins.

    Any help?
  2. JackieInCo Suspended

    Jul 18, 2013
    I've always just bough the domain through Hover.com and then paid for cheap hosting through asmallorange. I then simply set up a database for the forum and then ran the forums install script. Just took a few hours to do all together.

    Buying or leasing the forum software could be the most expensive part. I own a vBulletin license that I don't use anymore so it's free for me to setup anywhere I would like to this day if I wanted to do so. Other forum software costs $150 on up depending on extras you add.

    It's very easy to do for someone who's done it before but it can be terribly difficult for someone who has never setup a website.
  3. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jul 13, 2008
    Los Angeles, Ca
    Surely there has to be some sort of paid site that'll allow me to have a forum. Hell, if I could charge a monthly recurring membership for members, say through PayPal, that would be great.
  4. Jamesbot macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2009
    Check out discourse.


    They can either host it for you, or you can set it up pretty easily on a VPS of your choice (its open source).
  5. jtara, May 25, 2017
    Last edited: May 25, 2017

    jtara macrumors 68000

    Mar 23, 2009
    Why wouldn't you just use a hosted forum service? There are MANY. Google is your friend.

    Do you think most sites host their own forums on their own servers? NO.



    I can't vouch for the list above. Just a top Google search result.

    I can recommend AGAINST Zoho. Javascript Foundation (previously jQuery Foundation) uses Zoho and their customer service stinks and it is buggy. Months ago, they broke quotations, and now they aren't set-off from the rest of the text. Think setting off quotations is important for a technical forum? Yea, I think so...

    I think that points out one potential criteria for selection. Pick somebody that is in the FORUM business. Zoho has all sorts of hosted services, forums are just one of them. And they don't seem to care much about forums.
  6. 2457244 macrumors regular

    Jul 20, 2015
    Don't even go there...

    Forums (software) are dinosaurs for building communities. If sites like MacRumors would ever have to do it all over again in 2017-2018 they would never choose a forum system as their main foundation today. They only did this years ago because that was the only suitable option available to them back in the days before all the social media and easy to install services like WordPress became populair.

    I can only see one outcome to this.
    You pay each month a lot of money for the use of X software hosted on their servers and after 12 months you'l pull the plug because it's going nowhere and it's only costing money.
  7. jtara macrumors 68000

    Mar 23, 2009
    What do you suggest instead of a forum? Call it whatever you want, but the ability to have users post topics and respond is useful for many types of sites.

    Wordpress is not a forum!

    Anyway, maybe the purpose isn't "building a community". Forums are very common for software development topics. They serve a utilitarian purpose. Answering questions, and then having the answers (and discussions) hang around to benefit others in the future. Whether or not you "build a community" (which I guess is code for "build eyeballs for ads") might often be irrelevant.

    StackOverflow ain't everything. In fact, I'm not a StackOverflow member, and rarely do I use their solutions. I use more-focused forums that support specific software products and developer products, etc.

    BTW, if forums are so passe'.... what are you doing here posting on a forum?
  8. Xowi macrumors member


    Oct 23, 2012
    I've owned and operated multiple community forums over the years and if your core is a unique niche you may be able to build a great interesting site.

    I would steer clear of the hosted packages and buy the software, xenforo or invision, get some hosting which is cheaper than a 12 pack of beer/month now and focus on your community.

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7 May 22, 2017