Forum Thread

Best free forum software?

Vanquished 1,291 324 August 3, 2016 at 06:29 AM
Hey Everyone,

Thinking about starting another forum (I had one way back when that used Simple Machines), been out of the forum game for a while so I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions on which software I should go for.

Looking for security (most of my previous forums ended up with countless spammers bogging down the database), ease of navigation and integration of advertisements.

Thanks!

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Joined Jul 2013
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#2
Quote from Vanquished View Post :
countless spammers and integration of advertisements.
Sounds like karma
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#3
I administer a Forum and use Proboards. It works well, but on the Free version you put up with advertising.
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Joined Dec 2014
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#4
Quote from Novakingwai View Post :
Sounds like karma
Why do I even bother posting here. You guys are so unbelievably unhelpful.

Karma? Karma is having a forum to help people and having spam bots overload the system posting gibberish?

Seriously, can I block you?

Quote from repitall View Post :
I administer a Forum and use Proboards. It works well, but on the Free version you put up with advertising.
Thanks! I was looking at that, I'd have my own domain and hosting but I can't afford to spend a couple hundred a month for a subscription. Especially on a new site. I was considering MyBB and PHBB as well as proboards.
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#5
Quote from Vanquished View Post :

Karma? Karma is having a forum to help people and having spam bots overload the system posting gibberish?
Having ads then filled with spam is karma.
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#6
Honestly noting really beats vBulletin (which slickdeals runs on incidentally). I've used phpBB and a few others in the past, but I'm not sure what the best free option is. Whatever you do, keep the software up to date and store passwords with a unique salted hash.

Whatever you end up running, I strongly recommend https://www.abyssguard.com/ and activating project honeypot httpBL support for spam protection / blocking and reCaptcha on account registration.
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Last edited by jkee August 3, 2016 at 09:37 AM
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Joined Dec 2014
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#7
Quote from jkee View Post :
Honestly noting really beats vBulletin (which slickdeals runs on incidentally). I've used phpBB and a few others in the past, but I'm not sure what the best free option is. Whatever you do, keep the software up to date and store passwords with a unique salted hash.

Whatever you end up running, I strongly recommend https://www.abyssguard.com/ and activating project honeypot httpBL support for spam protection / blocking and reCaptcha on account registration.
Thank you. I like vBulletin but for a new project I just don't have the spare change for a license fee.

Appreciate the advice for protection, biggest problem I had before was spam user registration.

Interestingly enough I have a wordpress site too and one of my biggest issues was phony logins. They never made it to the email verification stage but they got stuck in the database. Had something like a 4 million spam accounts created (none email verified). Had to just straight up remove the option to register from the site.
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#8
SMF probably is still the free forum I feel. I think its features are better than phpbb. For SMF, to prevent spam user registration I merely moderate all new users and verify their email addresses and IP addresses. If legit IP and username/email address combination I let through and if from a suspect country or one that is known for proxies, then I deny. I'd do that on a daily basis and edit the registration page to note that accounts are verified and may be up to 24 hours before activated. Recaptcha can be used with SMF too so that helps some, but still some straggling spammers can get through.

That being said, I still agree that vBulletin is the best if you can afford the license, but you were asking about free forum software.
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#9
Yeah I like SMF too. Haven't used proboards.

You can run abyssguard on nearly all linux servers
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