Forum software with best features/difficulty balance?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by G5Unit, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. G5Unit macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2005
    Location:
    I'm calling the cops
    #1
    I am in the process of setting up a forum for use in my school. I have attempted this before as seen here:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=428635

    and here:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=368714

    Yet both times these projects fell through, as vBulletin was simply to difficult for me to manage by myself.

    I plan on starting this project up again, but this time with a more simple/easy to use forum software. Not something completely bare bones, but also not something that has 1,000,000 options to change.

    I would love any assistance into the matter!
     
  2. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2007
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    #2
    vBulletin is a professional product, it's not free and has many options intended for those who want a more secure, scalable and customizable product.

    Obviously you don't need all that, so I suggest the following free/open source forums:

    PHPBB - latest version is decent compared to years past, I think its very easy to setup plus easy to install themes. The most popular of its genre.

    Vanilla - standards compliant, installs in minutes

    UseBB - not to be confused with UBB which is a commercial product, this is very easy to install, lightweight and intended for small to med sites only.

    Obviously there are many hundreds of software choices out there - so wait for more replies and suggestions. I strongly suggest you try PHPBB first, even if you don't go with it, and study its features. Use it as a baseline for comparison with others. Why? To be honest, PHPBB core code can often be found in much of the competition in some form or another if you catch my drift.

    -jim
     
  3. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2005
    Location:
    I'm calling the cops
    #3
    Hey thank you, very informative post!

    Another question: I plan on having all the accounts for the forum pre-established, as in only students attending the school would be able to use it.

    Is it possible, if I were to get an excel spreadsheet with names of students in one column and their student ID in the other, to bulk create accounts?
     
  4. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000

    SrWebDeveloper

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2007
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    #4
    As you test drive, also check to see if the forum software has an import tool or options for users. The format used is typically CSV which can be generated by Excel. I know for example that PHPBB can import CSV user data via a beta freeware tool called MODDB.

    -jim
     

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