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I want to start 3 forums, but not at same time. One next week, another after one more week & third one in May so I was thinking to start with phpbb/smf and then in May buy vbulletin license in bulk when my third forum would be ready. But I am confused after reading many phpbb forums hacked incidents that it would be safe or not. Is it safe to use phpbb? Or smf is a better & safer free forum script? Or should I start with vbulletin itself?

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Last Post by mackone
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they are equally safe, so long as you keep them updated and have it set up correctly (never let it run using the mysql root account!!!!!!!)

vbulletin is best in the long run but costs $$$. Its worth it though as its a pain or in some cases impossible to move users/posts from one system to another.

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May I ask why you want to start 3 fourms in such a close time frame? A new forum takes a lot of hard work and is very time consuming to get off of the ground. I would encourage you to just throw your time tables out the window, if possible in your situation, and just say that you'll start the next one up with the previous one hits a critical mass of 5 new members a day or 20 posts a day on a consistent basis or something like that.

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they are equally safe, so long as you keep them updated and have it set up correctly (never let it run using the mysql root account!!!!!!!)

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind while setting up the forum.

May I ask why you want to start 3 fourms in such a close time frame? A new forum takes a lot of hard work and is very time consuming to get off of the ground. I would encourage you to just throw your time tables out the window, if possible in your situation, and just say that you'll start the next one up with the previous one hits a critical mass of 5 new members a day or 20 posts a day on a consistent basis or something like that.

Yes, I know a new forum takes a lot of hard work and time to grow. But building forum is not my main aim. Forum is just going to be a part of my site so that visitors can discuss their queries or problems there because my website is a knowledge-based website and I have some professional contributers to it.

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I also go with VB though not free but its overall layout is nice and clean, its more secure with alot of great features.

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phpbb is easy to use and highly customisable, plus its free as free could be. I regularly setup people with phpbb because of the lack of cost but the high level of support out there for it.

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I'd have to recommend vBulletin, however the newest version of phpBB (phpBB 3) is really starting to impress me.

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I'd have to recommend vBulletin, however the newest version of phpBB (phpBB 3) is really starting to impress me.

yep its a top notch bit of kit for sure, some great features and really easy to manage. Will love to see what else they can included in it:)


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yep its a top notch bit of kit for sure, some great features and really easy to manage. Will love to see what else they can included in it:)


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I was talking about PHPBB3 there lol

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Among free and open source software, phpBB tops my list. Fairly good product, huge MOD database, and pretty good support.

If you haven't got much time, and want to see what the new phpbb3 can offer, just try it out on this host : <snipped>

Hope this can help!

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Vbulletin is more Google SEO friendly, and you can have more visitors from google search results if you use Vbulletin :)

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phpbb does struggle to get picked up properly by search bots I agree with that. Other forums with similar content does get picked quicker than a phpbb forum (in my experience)

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well just buy Vb and stick to only one forums rather than 3 else mybb is also better and free.
Don't just try to make 3 forums at a time its very hard to maintain forums.just stick to one first.

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What about invision? I did an extensive look into which forums to use for a large online community I run..

In the end I chose iPB because of the support, mods available and plugins available..

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I understand no one has written in this thread for like 2 weeks, but I feel I have something to add here. I do not reccomend SMF. I run SMF for my clan forums, and I will be the first one to tell you, there are A LOT(!!!) of exploits for SMF.

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Go with Vbulletin it simply the safest if you keep updatin' it and add the patchs from the support site, vB gives your user alot of interactive which helps to make it more friendly and nice

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i heard somewhere that Vbulletin is better In SEO and SERP :)

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Exactly on point - there is no way to predict time tables exactly with a new site - let alone a new Forum. The technical choice is less critical in a Forum - than figuring out how you will grow & manage it.

I think phpBB is a little clunky and aged - hard to really change styles with - but you can get everything you need. SMF is more modern but still slightly smaller community and missing 1 or two things.

vBulletin is fine & dandy - but you can't modify source if you need or want to - or are into extensions - or want to do CMS at same time you depend on plug ins.

There is no one right answer to the software question - as it depends on you - but Dani is right - your time frames are WAY out of whack...

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I don't think it matters which forum software you use as long as you have a strong community behind it. Regardless of whether we use vBulletin or InvisionBoard, if the content is awesome, the users are going to keep coming back. The core functionality of all forums -- the stuff that made forums as popular as they are -- exists in all software. And for everything else, it's a combination of personal preference and individual site requirements, and there are always mods :)

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Also consider Ning. You can make a free site and then pay for premium features such as using your own domain name ($5/month) and controlling the ads ($20/month). Ning allows you to make a social network type of site with forums, blogs, profile pages, videos, music, etc... Very easy to use. Backed by big money and Marc Andreeson.

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I prefer phpBB because it has a very large community of users & developers who can provide support, it has a less restrictive license (GPL).
Also, with phpBB you can get "pre-modded" versions of the board (I've also seen a couple mods that include pre-modified files) which appear to be prohibited by the IPB license.
Demo : {snip}

Edited by jay 11: removed link

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phpBB is the current forum i'm using, but after visiting many other forums, i found myself like vBulletin better. I can't compare between phpBB and vBulletin as i didn't use vBulletin before, but phpBB is pretty user friendly after all.

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I think it will be safer if you start with V-bulletin. Because v-bulletin is far better than other two it will not cause problems.


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