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Best forum software for new business related forum/network

Discussion in 'Forum Management' started by SoCoolNetwork, Jun 29, 2013.

  1. #1
    I'm thinking of setting up a business related forum/SN and was wondering if anyone has any advice on which forum software to use?

    My plan was to go with WP+BuddyPress, and just use the group forums options, but after looking into it it seems that a more dedicated forum software package might be a better choice.

    I've used phpBB3 in the past and each time have had the forum completely hacked with spam to the point where I just gave up on it (even with various security measures) so I'm very reluctant to use phpBB.

    I'm a big fan of WP, so bbPress looks good but I'm thinking maybe a more pro forum package such as IPB/XenForo might be a good way to go? I like the look of IPB but it's $175, and not obviously based on WP.

    As for my actual site, I like the idea of a private members only section, and perhaps even allow for some kind of paid member ship, which I'm not sure the free forum options offer. I want to be able to customise the look somewhat and not have it look like all the other 1000s of forums out there (or is that not that important?). It has to be responsive to look good on mobile. Also obviously anti-spam measures are very important, and when I say Forum/SN I'm more leaning towards the forum side of things, not the SN.

    To summuraise the above into clear questions.
    SEMrush
    1) Is WP+bbPress+buddyPress a serious option for a quality forum/sn? Being free and based upon WP, if it has most of the functions of the more "serious" forum software then it would seem the way to go?

    2) phpBB3 is a complete non-starter?

    3) Of the paid options IPB or XenForo, which would be better to go with? ads, paid user options are very important to my idea.

    Thanks for any advice.
     
    SoCoolNetwork, Jun 29, 2013 IP
    SEMrush
  2. fare

    fare Active Member

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    #2
    Hello there,

    Here are some of my suggestions:

    1) If you would want to build a dedicated forum, I would suggest you to use a forum software (paid or free) instead of a plugin for WP. Using plugins are quite limited in features (user groups permissions etc)

    2) Not sure about phpbb, but I would recommend mybb and smf for free options. They are user friendly and have an active community.

    3) Majority of the forum softwares (even the free ones) have both the features you need.
    For the paid option, it's just setting up IPN which will automatically changes the user group of the user to a group that can access the restricted forum upon subscription.
     
    fare, Jun 29, 2013 IP
  3. SoCoolNetwork

    SoCoolNetwork Greenhorn

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    #3

    Re: point 3)

    That seems fairly straight forward with IPB, but I don't see the similar kind of options (which are easy to setup) with the other forum software?
     
    SoCoolNetwork, Jun 29, 2013 IP
  4. fare

    fare Active Member

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    They should be pretty similar, maybe you're just not familiar with the user interface. It should be under manage subscription and the steps are straight forward. The challenging part would be setting up permission for the different groups and forums, it always gives me headache. :(
     
    fare, Jun 29, 2013 IP