Before you go too far down the road...

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s_mack
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Before you go too far down the road...

Post by s_mack » Thu Dec 29, 2011 8:18 am

Hi guys.

PLEASE don't take this the wrong way. I don't want to stick my nose where it doesn't belong and I CERTAINLY don't want to discourage what you're trying to do - I think its a fantastic idea. I wish I saw this developing earlier than now, but better late than never.

I have quite a bit of experience with running forums. Admittedly, I'm not 100% up to date but a quick bit of searching shows me not a lot has changed. I know there are thousands of people that will die-hardedly defend phpBB to the death, but it really is quite a nightmare to manage in many regards. You've already seen how the anti-spam measures are annoying at best and because phpBB is the largest platform it is also the biggest target. Keeping up with spammers is a huge task and you will cause yourselves really a lot of working keeping on top of it. So many other platforms are so much better in that regard.

Considering we were looking for a way to better organize our support and discussion I don't think we really need the main advantage that phpBB *does* have - 3rd party add-ons. Some of them are cool, but really its not worth the price paid (in terms of man-hours dedicated to running the thing).

I have had several forums based on SimpleMachines Forum and that's the one I use the most often... however, I haven't actually updated it in a long time or installed a new one so I'm not familiar with whatever the latest version is and as I went to get a link for you, I noticed their site is down (!!!). That's not a good sign. However, the fact I've NOT updated my installation in YEARS and I *STILL* have ZERO spam issues should mean something. It literally takes no effort to manage beyond moderation, which is easily offloaded to the membership.

Oops... OK, right after I finished typing that last paragraph, I see their site is back up :) its http://simplemachines.org/

I've tried them all. For free ones, its by far the best I've tried. And it beats most pay ones in terms of being EASY TO MANAGE - which is key when you don't have a lot of resources or time.

So... that's my 2c... take some time to figure out what platform you REALLY want and then organize it as best you can before you get too far into this.

Whatever you do, I'm here to help.

- Steven


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Rob Thomson
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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by Rob Thomson » Thu Dec 29, 2011 9:50 am

Hi Steve,

I have never used - or found simple machines before. I must say it looks rather impressive.

On the plus side - it can covert phpbb forums too!

I will give it some time in a separate install. If it looks worthwhile; then we can change. But for now probably safer to leave as is. If we change to much on here to quickly - people will just get scared off!

Rob
Slope Soaring, FPV, and pretty much anything 'high tech'
...........if you think it should be in the wiki.. ask me for wiki access, then go add it!

s_mack
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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by s_mack » Thu Dec 29, 2011 2:32 pm

I fully agree. I kinda thought this was just being used as a test site while kinks were being worked out, so my suggestion was just meant as a "before you put in too much work customizing phpbb".

I've administered both... hands down, I prefer Simple Machines. Phpbb requires constant attention to keep spammers at bay once you catch their attention.

- Steven

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Rob Thomson
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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by Rob Thomson » Thu Dec 29, 2011 3:47 pm

s_mack wrote:I fully agree. I kinda thought this was just being used as a test site while kinks were being worked out, so my suggestion was just meant as a "before you put in too much work customizing phpbb".

I've administered both... hands down, I prefer Simple Machines. Phpbb requires constant attention to keep spammers at bay once you catch their attention.

- Steven
I guess the touch part is that once you have people working on one platform - changing things is not always a good idea. It creates more problems!

From my point of view - We are locked down top a level at this point where spam should be minimised. But no doubt it will come!

Technically.. I have no issue with the work on forum backends. I am a sysadmin & php developer by trade - and to be honest.. technically have not yet found anything too much of an issue.

If we do have problems over the next few months - we can review then and make a decision on a suitable way forward :P

Rob
Slope Soaring, FPV, and pretty much anything 'high tech'
...........if you think it should be in the wiki.. ask me for wiki access, then go add it!

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erazz
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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by erazz » Thu Dec 29, 2011 4:36 pm

I also know only phpBB but I must say that this looks very nice!
Z

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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by RCPlaneHobby.com » Thu Dec 29, 2011 5:12 pm

just to chime in for what its worth,
i'd highly recommend going to simple machines,
i've ran several phpbb forums and they always, and i mean always get hacked. they are such a pain in the but i stopped using them all together so please be careful

oh and i can't thank you enough for starting these forums. they are awesome and after a few days of being up they've been a huge help!!

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Rob Thomson
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Before you go too far down the road...

Post by Rob Thomson » Thu Dec 29, 2011 5:29 pm

Guess by definition one needs to clarify on what you mean by hacked?

Spam is not a hack.

I personally spend a higher amount of time keeping clients servers free of malware; resolving hacks etc. 99% of the time it is poor sysadmin work that causes the issue.


I give u an example.

If your forum allows you to upload a file with a .php extension - poor sysadmin controls will allow a hacker to run that php code. End result - and exposed and hacked system.

Lock things down properly - and the risks are greatly reduced :)

So rule is - be proactive as a sysadmin and the problems are reduced!

Rob


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Slope Soaring, FPV, and pretty much anything 'high tech'
...........if you think it should be in the wiki.. ask me for wiki access, then go add it!

s_mack
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Re: Before you go too far down the road...

Post by s_mack » Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:57 pm

Yeah, sure... but with phpbb you have to keep on it a lot more. Like I said, with my Simple Machines installs I basically have been able to forget about them. And its not just spam - you leave a phpbb install get a little behind on the security updates and it does get "hacked" (as in, db compromised).

Of course you can do what you want... but I can promise you less headaches with Simple Machines (or pretty much any major forum platform but SM is free)


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