A friendly recommendation.

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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 12:31 pm

Yep, the site I linked is really helpful. But it doesn't give you an idea for the admin control panel.

I'm going to check out the boards from belly right now - thanks again! If LA isn't too busy anymore, he'll likely want to snoop around the admin panel as well, belly. But I'll let him speak to that.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by bellisimo on Mon Aug 09, 2010 12:42 pm

yea sure he can check it - you got the info.

I use cirtex hosting and they provide PHPBB and SMF with their user panel. They have been reliable with me for well over 3+ years.
you can see the prices here:

http://www.cirtexhosting.com/shared.shtml

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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:10 pm

Okay, I just finished tinkering around with these. Belly, once again - THANKS! It's one thing to see a live demo, but to actually see what these forums are capable of from an admin perspective is completely different. LA is surely going to want to check this out.

From what I could see, both boards were quite fast (what we've become accustomed to with this phpBB software). And to me, that's priority #1. I find vbulletin quite slow in comparison.

As I suspected, this forum we're on now (Madison Square) does not give the admin NEAR the same power/modding/tweaking ability as you would get with the full phpBB software outside of forumotion. The admin panel on belly's site was just loaded with options that I don't get here. It is quite a powerful piece of software by the looks of it.

As for the SMF software, it is also really fast. And in terms of the admin panel, it seems to have many of the same bells & whistles as phpBB. I'm not sure if it is as powerful, but it surely seems like it's even or close to being even to phpBB.

So then I started comparing what mods are available, and/or the modding communities for these pieces of software. Here are the two big sites, by the looks of things:

phpBB Mods: http://www.phpbb.com/customise/db/modifications-1/
SMF Mods: http://custom.simplemachines.org/mods/

It would seem as though both have quite a vibrant community of people working on tweaking/customizing abilities. I think that having mods available for us is key - as you'll see there are tons of cool options out there (i.e. Facebook 'like', etc.).

Also, as for skins and themes, here are the availabilities of pre-made ones for each piece of software (I'm not sure if we'll go in our own direction for the overall skin, or simply tweak an existing one, or simply create a logo to fit with one we like . . . but here is some of the themes out there):

phpBB Skins: http://www.phpbb.com/customise/db/styles-2/ (there are live demos available here!!! Some of these are really cool)
SMF Skins: http://custom.simplemachines.org/themes/ (there are live demos available here!!! Some of these are really cool)

Once again, both have a lot of options available. And from what I could tell in the admin panel, it is fairly easy to install these. A few clicks of the button.

I don't know which is better between phpBB and SMF, but I like the fact that they are open source (right?) and have communities of people working on mods/tweaks that can customize the board in fun ways. Both are VERY powerful when I was looking at the admin panels, and both are very fast. If I had to choose the nicer one based on looks alone, I would probably say phpBB - and honestly, I really like this software . . . but either of these seems really good. And of course, the right skin/theme might just make me believe SMF looks nicer.

LA, I will PM the forwarded admin info for belli's boards so you can snoop around and explore since you'll be making the final call!
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:26 pm

Check This Out: http://www.forum-software.org/forum-comparator/phpbb3-vs-simple-machines-2

That is what everyone should look at. I'm changing my opinion based upon this comparison that gets into the nitty gritty.

I am in favor of SMF.

1. WYSIWYG Editor (this is available in SMF and not phpBB - and it is something that comes in handy, I believe).

2. Look at the Social Networks and Blogging part of this comparison!!! SMF far outweighs phpBB. In fact, phpBB is useless.

I'm also starting to find some nice skins for SMF (not to say there aren't any for phpBB . . . but originally, I thought phpBB was the nicer looking). If you look at the reviews these pieces of software received on the comparison site, SMF got a 10/10, and 8/10 from the community.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 1:34 pm

Here is an SMF Mod similar to what I was envisioning (i.e. a facebook profile page for each user):

http://custom.simplemachines.org/mods/index.php?mod=1675
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by The Toxic Avenger on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:03 pm

Cool stuff guys!

Good work.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by The Toxic Avenger on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:03 pm

I like the intensity Sweabs. Honest.

:flirt:
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Los Angeles on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:11 pm

OK, kids. We're ready to go to the next level. Please be patient while we organize and assemble, it will likely take a few days.

After that, we'll make an announcement to head over and get things rolling. Even if you see a board up, please don't post until we give the go-ahead.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:17 pm

The Toxic Avenger wrote:I like the intensity Sweabs. Honest.

:flirt:
Thanks! This is fun.

I'm playing around with the boards belli has set up, and it is sure easy to manipulate themes/mods, etc. Always a good sign.

Are others favoring either SMF or phpBB more than the other?
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Los Angeles on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:19 pm

I think you've done the work for us, sweabs. Let's go with SMF.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by The Toxic Avenger on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:30 pm

The only feature that I liked and SMF did NOT have (and that php did) was Instant Messaging but I suppose it isn't the end of the world.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 3:45 pm

The Toxic Avenger wrote:The only feature that I liked and SMF did NOT have (and that php did) was Instant Messaging but I suppose it isn't the end of the world.
Could always do a chatroom for that sort of thing - although I suppose it isn't exactly the same.

EDIT: Just found a mod similar to the thanking system Very Happy
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Pig Nash on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:12 pm

Cool. I liked smf looking around on the admin panel last night. You sure you don't want to keep adminning sweabs?
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:15 pm

Yeah, I'm going to help out in the beginning seeing as I have some time these days. If it is too much of a commitment when work picks up, then so be it - but for the time being I should be okay to help.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by The Toxic Avenger on Mon Aug 09, 2010 4:21 pm

I'd still like to help in any way possible but I can't do much. I'd LIKE to help with coding and images but something tells me that LA has got that on Lock... and I've got laptop anymore so no Photoshop skills. Sad

Moderating or writing "Articles" seems the most likely thing for me to do.

I've got a wide range of topics that average folk like and that I'm good at or have an interest in like Cooking, Playing/making Music, Video Games, and I dabble in a lot of other things as well.

Just an FYI.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by vapacersfan on Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:25 pm

Good work all.

I am partial to vbulletin, but that is just me.


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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Los Angeles on Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:34 pm

I also like vBulletin, but it comes with a fairly hefty price tag. I think we're going to go with the best open (free) option and if things don't work out, we can then import our database into vBulletin when the time is right.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by vapacersfan on Mon Aug 09, 2010 5:38 pm

Los Angeles wrote:I also like vBulletin, but it comes with a fairly hefty price tag. I think we're going to go with the best open (free) option and if things don't work out, we can then import our database into vBulletin when the time is right.

Nothing wrong with this at all.

You guys seem to know what you are doing, and having a "level headed" guy running things helps Wink

Cheers,

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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 6:30 pm

By the way, I think I might like the "look" of phpBB more than SMF - but it might be because I'm familiar with phpBB now. SMF definitely has a different look to it.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Los Angeles on Mon Aug 09, 2010 6:40 pm

balloon, you are now officially our resident expert. It's looking like your call. PHPBB3 or SMF? Pick one, already!
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by vapacersfan on Mon Aug 09, 2010 6:47 pm

I am sitting here bored at work. If you want you can PM me both addresses and I will take a look and look at some of the admin things (at least the ones I know I used, honestly I only ended up using 5-10% of the faetures I had available)

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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:06 pm

Los Angeles wrote:balloon, you are now officially our resident expert. It's looking like your call. PHPBB3 or SMF? Pick one, already!
Heh - lemme do just a bit more research. Answer coming soon...
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by balloon on Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:42 pm

After more snooping, and some feedback from others - my instincts are correct - phpBB is just cleaner looking. And I think that aesthetics are an important part to any forum (it should be easy to navigate and pleasing to the eye). phpBB just has a natural minimalistic, clean look that is less cluttered than SMF. When you're reading threads in SMF, at times it seems bogged down with too much writing and crappy looking icons.
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by Los Angeles on Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:47 pm

DONE!

We're moving, folks!
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Re: A friendly recommendation.

Post by bellisimo on Mon Aug 09, 2010 7:49 pm

cool - i can finally sleep then Very Happy

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Re: A friendly recommendation.

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