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Message Forums? Any recommendations?


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#1
hellerooo

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Hi

I have a site up and running and started out using a link to a msn group as our own 'message forum'. msn then started playing up, not allowing messages to appear, allowing membesr to join, and not allowing others. Anyway, after several complaints from members (I run a slimming club/site) I set up another forum with ezboards. I think the boards are great, but in the last month I've only had 11 people join. When I asked my members about joining they all replied saying that it was far too complicated, so they gave up.

When I have used other forums (like this one) joining is really easy. Does anyone know of any good forums that I can use. Ideally I would like one that is easy to use, no advertising, simple to join (give yourself a username and password and start posting....I will moderate the board) I am happy to pay each month for a good board as the 'forum' thing is essential for my site.

Any help/advice greatly appreciated!

Thanks

Helen
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#2
Facedown98

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Well, if you can get free webspace, then SMF would be a great choice. You can download that here: http://www.simplemachines.org/ ... Here's a demo of it so you know what you prefer: http://www.simplemac....org/community/ ... Let us know what you think. If you need free hosting, I do that as well at [removed] .

(Edited becuase last link did not work)

Edited by admin, 30 November 2006 - 03:03 PM.

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#3
hellerooo

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Do I need any techinical ability to download/add to my site? I am no good with web design.

I created my site using dreamweaver and kind of taught myself along the way. I am not technical in any way!!

The boards look great though, far better than what I have now.
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#4
Facedown98

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They're just as easy as this forum to use. Installation you might find a bit more challenging, but if you use the readme file's instructions, you'll do fine. All you need is web space.
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#5
hellerooo

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Sorry, me again!

Right, I've uploaded files to a directory called Forum. I am completely stuck though. I have been trying to follow the advice given in the readme file, but I'm a bit lost.

All files are present in the Forum file, but I don't know how to run install.php, I don't know if i've done everything wrong..HELP!

I've been on www.simplemachines.org/community but from what I've read most topics are about forums that are already installed.

I'm not the sharpest tool in the box ( :whistling: )

Helen
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#6
Facedown98

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Ok. Give the the URL to that folder you made... EX: www.mysite.com/forum ...
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#7
hellerooo

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I placed the folder called 'Forum' with all my other pages and pictures for my site. Is this right?

If it is right the URL would be http://www.jigsawslimming.co.uk/forum (although when I tried to view it I got 'page not found'?)


Helen
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#8
Johanna

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The regular pages for your site will not go in the forum folder, they belong in the public_html file, which is where the forum folder goes, too.
Johanna
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#9
thenotch

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If you want REALLY easy check out PunBB.
It's free, highly configurable and the Lite Beer of forum software (Tastes Great, Less Filling).

You can do a lot with it and by visiting PunBB Resource you can make some cool modifications and integrate it into your website quite easily.
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#10
hellerooo

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Thank you for you help

I will have a look at PunBB. I also looked at VBulletin, don't mind paying for the board...so long as it's easy t use and easy to install.

Thanks

Helen
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#11
thenotch

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vBulletin is sort of the de-facto standard (nothing against IPB mind you but I believe if you polled the online forum world vBulletin would probably still have the market share).

I use it at one of my sites and I use PunBB at a couple others.

vBulletin has a LOT of extra features, some worthwhile, some useless IMHO.

PunBB has very few features unless you use hacks and modifications, but you get what you wwant without enabling stuff you don't want and can customize it how you wish.

Another concern might be overhead when it comes to bandwidth and disk space.

vB takes up considerably more disk space and is just a bit more instensive on the server depending on which features you enable.

PunBB on the other hand takes up very little space and is nowhere near as hard on the server.

Obviously there are pluses and minuses with all forum software and you should evaluate as many as possible before choosing. See what the server requirements are, the bandwidth overhead, disk space requirements, cost, features and then weigh all that with your needs and your current server configuration.

Good luck!
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#12
Johanna

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I own an IPB board http://leatherworker.net/forum/ and a vBulletin board http://prisonsupport.net . Both are rich in features and have many options for customization. I like the vBull board better for the site guest's experience, but the IPB board was easier to set up and configure. Both boards do their admin functions online (something to consider if you have a slow or expensive connection) and both boards have top notch tech support. Both boards are capable of handling heavy traffic, attachments can be regulated, search engines love dynamic content, and the two softwares cost roughly the same.



Helen, if you want a fully functioning board "out of the box" (the free boards require lots of mods to match the features of IPB & vBull) and want to take a look at the "guts" of either or both, send me a PM and we'll make arrangements for you to compare the two. I have a live chat installed on the IPB board that we can use, too.



Johanna
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#13
hellerooo

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Hi Guys

I asked on here ages ago for help with creating my own message forum on my site. I received lots of help (thankyou!). I stressed the point that I don't have an idea what i'm doing. I have created my site using dreamweaver, and that's as much as I know. I was recommended to try phpbb, which I liked but I can't install it.

Someone offered to install the forum for me free of charge, so I jumped at the opportunity, but it's been 6 weeks and it's currently being hosted on their site (temporarily) as they can't install it on my site. I have upgraded my hosting to enable php (?) but weeks are passing by and i'm getting nowhere.

I would love to have my own forum, which is easy to use (no need to register, but can have the option) plenty of seperate message boards for discussion of different topics. and must be easy peasy to install.

Any ideas? btw, did I mention that I have no money!!!!!

Thanks

Helen


I posted this message in a new thread as it was a slightly different content to this original message I posted a while back. However, I was told to add to this thread and the message was locked??? Very bizarre!
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#14
Michael

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Can you ask your host to install it for you? They might do so?

Also do you have cPanel? You can normaly install it from this in that with out too much trobale. When you say that you can install it, what happens?
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