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Am I over my head?

Discussion in 'XenForo Pre-Sales Questions' started by SDB33, Dec 1, 2013.

  1. SDB33

    SDB33 Member

    I am completely new to building a forum. I have a domain name … exactly what else do I need? I keep seeing things like phpbb, hosting, FTP, licenses, database, storage…….. am I over my head in thinking I can use this software? Is there a wizard to help me?
    Core Freedom likes this.
  2. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    You're not over your head, provided you are willing to take the time to develop a community. There is a difference between setting one up and actually taking the time to promote one.

    But if you feel you're up for the task, XenForo is th easiest one for a newbie to learn, as well as the most flexible one for an expert. It really is the best of both worlds.

    All you need is a web host to get yourself started and of course a copy of XenForo. From there it's easy simple as point and click, as most host have control panels to help you get started and on your way (there is even people like myself who can easily set you up for you if you wish).

    Welcome to the community :)
    SDB33 and Ryan_ like this.
  3. Deathstarr

    Deathstarr Active Member

    Welcome to Xenforo, You will also find this community more then happy to help you with your questions.

    You can get an affordable hosting package from you favorite web host, if you do not have a web host I suggest cortexnetworks.com and you can get a cheap shared hosting package. After that download a copy of xenforo from the customer area and unzip the package. Next you will upload the upload files to your hosting account. This can be done via FTP or the control panel (I suggest FTP, Firezilla is a free FTP program.) then you will just type in your web address and install it pretty much. You will have to setup a database but that is really simple.

    If you have problems you can ask your host or come here and ask.
    SDB33 and Adam Howard like this.
  4. SchmitzIT

    SchmitzIT Well-Known Member

    As other stated, the domain name is one thing. It's basically an address people can reach you at. Now you'll have to put something on it, by buying a place to stay (a hosting account).

    Depending on the amount of traffic you expect, you could look into a host offering shared hosting (for small forums only, but cheap), or something a bit more dedicated (a VPS, which offers guaranteed hardware). Most hosts will allow you to run a MySQL database. You'll need to upload the XenForo files, establish a database, and then run the installer for XenForo, which is as wizard-like as it can get.
    SDB33 likes this.
  5. SDB33

    SDB33 Member

    Wow thanks guys! This is great info. So if I am understanding it all corect… I can get a hosting site for $3.95/mo with cortexnetworks.com they also offer an FTP account and a MySQL 5.1 database. Will all this suffice? So I would purchase the host from cortexnetworks.com, and the XenForo and start the process… I am ok with putting a lot of work into making the forum run, its the set-up I want to get right on the first try! :)

    Here are a few questions about the forum we were wondering (nothing to do with set-ups):
    What privileges can I give paying members to my forum? i.e. paying members can upload photos...
    How much can i manipulate the appearance?
    Can I place ads?
    Can I upgrade later?
  6. Dillonl97

    Dillonl97 Member

    Yes that would suffice but how much space/bandwidth do they provide?

    Edit - just seen this:
    • 6 GB Disk Space
    • Varnish Cached Servers
    • 60 GB Bandwidth
    • 30 Day Money Back Guarantee
    • Daily Offsite Backups
    • Softaculous Installer (280+ Apps)
    6GB isn't much at all. Personally, I'd recommend Name.com (excellent personal experience).

    Yes you can place ads. Also, there are various themes/styles available. By upgrade, what do you mean?
    Adam Howard likes this.
  7. RWonko

    RWonko Active Member

    for a host Site5 have been really good for me.
    Adam Howard likes this.
  8. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    I would recommend a different provider. If only because you want some room to grow as your community grows. And who has more current software, so you can easily use some of the newer add-ons that developers are releasing. Perhaps HawkHost.com for example (it's were we started our site).

    You can manipulate XenForo appearance to virtually no limitation if you know some css. If you want to keep it simple though, you can change all the colors, fonts, and even images with a few mouse clicks away using the style properties.

    Yes, you can place ads anywhere you like within XenForo.

    Yes, you can upgrade later. XenForo includes 1 full year of support and upgrades. Each year after it is only $40 for each additional year for support and upgrades. If you decide not to renew, the software is still yours to use (you're not forced to renew).
  9. Flexin

    Flexin Active Member

    I use MDD Hosting (They have been quick to fix any problem I every had) and I'm using a 5 gb account. I have about 1.6 used in a year and a half or so. You don't need a huge amount of space to start off with.

    Divvens likes this.
  10. SDB33

    SDB33 Member

    This is great info everyone! Thank you! We are one question away from signing up! If I decided to have a paid membership on my forum can I limit them to things like: permission to post photos/videos, limited access the only a half a post, etc…..
  11. Deathstarr

    Deathstarr Active Member

    Starting out you do not need much, I run my forum and another website on my 6gigs of space and have yet to go over 2 gigs of space.

    I highly recommend CortexNetworks.com I have used them for quite a few years now and Yes they do offer true backups for free.

    On the other hand,
    @SDB33 You can use YouTube for videos and give users the option to upload photos and images it will take space but its easy to upgrade.

    Warning: Do not use an unlimited host like HostMonster or BlueHost or any of those. You pay $$$ a year and if you over use the server they close your account and there goes your forum. Use a true web host that displays limits and usage, If I use 6 gigs then that one thing, If I use a unlimted host and start using to much space they close your account.
  12. Core Freedom

    Core Freedom Well-Known Member

    SDB33, glad to hear you're making the jump. I got XF 2 years ago after researching forum software for 9 months. Lots of grey hair and tears went into the process but with a great team such as XF and the support here this will be doable and enjoyable. The person who has helped me consistently and without him there is no way I could have come this far, and that's Andrej (I think if you do a search for him on here then you'll find him just fine). He does everything from setting up, helping with banner placements, updates, and so much more. He is a god-sent and a trusting guy all around. Can't recommend him highly enough.

    I don't think you stated what country you are located in. I use HostGator because my forum is part of my Wordpress site and HostGator has great Wordpress support. Most internet people I know use either HostGator or BlueHost (with HG being their preference). While I've had my share of server trouble with my server, it wasn't their fault as much as the world of technology can indeed be volatile. I find that there is not one person who knows everything and so it's important to surround yourself with a great team.

    My site is in the field of spirituality, 90% of my site is premium content (hidden or inaccessible by non-premium members). I also use Youtube videos and my own banners for my own digital products.

    If I can give you one piece of advice it is this. Building a community (online or offline) can bring with it much joy and also much heart ache. Give yourself at least 1.5 to 2 years before you decide whether or not you are on the right track. I think you will find that with the right team supporting you (from the technology aspect of it), you can focus on building the community you want.

    Good luck!
  13. ZeroHour

    ZeroHour Member

    Have you tried a demo yet? I would start there and see how you find using the admin system of Xenforo etc before purchasing. Xenforo is very good but it does sound like you are new to this so I would take a look at how you go about making some basics in the admin system now you have an idea what can/cant be done.
    I just want to avoid you purchasing to feel overwhelmed by it all but people are friendly here at least. Another thing to remember is that if you are not 100% ready yet to pay for forum software you could start on phpbb then migrate to xenforo later once you are happy running a forum.

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