Looking for some answers!


New member
Hello, this is basically my first post and ive travelled all over the web sniffing around with no real help..

i have a few questions that xenforo users may be able to help with.

background: i used to be HUGE into vbulletin 3.x-4.x versions( i absolutely loved the mod/admincp and extensions, etc..
i just recently decided to start a website for my company and wanted to use forums, my first choice was vbulletin, HOWEVER, alot of people said stay away from newer vbulletins for various reasons. A few people recommended wotlabs 4.1, some pointed me to phpbb, others pointed to xenforo...
my biggest thing is, i NEED a ton of extensions that help the site and make it "fun" ...like system, rank system, possible store option, being able to post attachments without them uploading sideways, mobile use for apple and all smartphones, very manageable forums, the ability to have a donate button for paypal/etc, able to have buttons for social media(instagram, facebook, twitter)( A MUST), and a way to generate user money that they can use to buy fun things on the "store" similar to older vbulletin forums where they had custom options for usernames and such that you could buy with points earned from posting.

my main question is: does xenforo offer these things and do they cost extra compared to buying the xenforo software package, and are these extensions usable in the newest release of xenforo? i currently have a phpbb forum thats buggy and has issues with apple phone users and posts photos sideways and has a lack of extension support.

ANY input is warranted, as im starting out small but want alot of features more than jsut a standard forum.

thank you to anyone that can/does help with getting me to the right software....

at this point, my decision will be based on the available extensions/plugins that i can use with the newest version. it was hard travelling around the xenforo extension area because everything is labelled weird and i wasnt able to understand alot of it.

thanks again for your time!


Well-known member
Hi there and welcome.

I will keep it short and say just about everything you mentioned can be done with XF either out of the box or with addons.

Xenforo has a few official addons (which they maintain and are paid addons) and everything else would be something a community member has created. Some community member supplied resources are free and some are paid products. This boils down to the individual author's decision.

There is definitely a lot in the resource manager, it is just a matter of trolling through the list when you get the time.


New member
the fact that some extensions will cost money leaves a bad taste in my mouth. ive never experienced that with vbull, phpbb or anywhere really. the forum software already costs alot(to me). I came here because the resource manager was confusing to me...trying to find simple extensions doesnt seem to work, they all are named differently or fancy, and being that i do not know xenforo well, it creates extra frustration. im no web developer or anything so im a giant newb when it comes to that stuff. Is their a way to test out the forum with extensions before you buy it? like a brief trial run with addon support?


Well-known member
I'm sorry for your inconvenience and understand your frustration,

However since you bring up vBulletin which I also once used, I would point out that the current version of vbulletin is about $250 and at the bottom of their purchase page it also notes that other addons can be purchased so they are actually quite a bit more expensive to be honest.

vBulletin 5 Connect
Includes free forum support for life of vBulletin 5 Connect and one month of ticket support (includes ability to download vB4, which we will no longer sell separately).

US $249.00

As far as a test-bed that supports 3rd party addons I would say that xenforo is probably not setting up a demo that allows you ftp access to the server (to upload addon files) so that is more than likely not going to happen in any official capacity offered by xf in the near future.

They have a demo here -> https://xenforo.com/demo/ but again here with this demo you cannot upload files to the server because of security concerns.

Also consider that some of the addons which you may want to try out may be paid resources from 3rd party developers (someone like me or you) who xenforo has nothing to do with.

However, if I refer back to your post describing what you wanted to do with XF I would say most of what you want is included with XF by default (you can try this out at the demo link) and that the only thing that is not included and is significant enough to require an addon is a site currency system and a store as you mentioned.


New member
well, i just really want a forum that fits "me" and what i believe will work for potential users. Functionality and very customizable. Thank you for linking me to the demo. i wish they had a demo where most features were there already and we could tinker with what they do, or at least a video demo, i get that would be improbable, but i can dream LOL.
i just dont want to buy a license then get stuck with something i dont want. im really gravitating to xenforo or vbulletin because of features, just hard making the distinction of which would be better for me. thank you for replying and helping me out EQnoble.


Well-known member
Well in that demo you can login to the admin control panel (it will be a link in the top right of the page when you are logged into the demo titled "Admin").

All of the built in features of xenforo and their configurable options are available to you there which you are free to play with and use and really learn the system as well as being able to test out some of the styling properties, the color palette etc.

It may be useful for you to keep this open in another tab while you play around there -> https://xenforo.com/help/manual/

I'm sure a video demo could be made but with such a large swath of topics that are worth covering that would either be a really long single video, or a popcorn worthy mini-series :).


Well-known member
the fact that some extensions will cost money leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
You get what you pay for. Trust me on that. ;) There are still some really good free add-ons here, but I can't tell you how many other free add-ons I have had to abandon over the years since they were unsupported, or fix on my own since they did not look professional. If it is an established add-on or theme developer, I do not mind paying a bit for the product. They deserve to be compensated.

I used to use free forums myself, but I have now gotten rid of all of them, and consolidated them into Xenforo. Same deal there--you get what you pay for. phpBB and SMF both left me hanging, on grossly outdated systems that promised for years at a time that they were "about to release the next version."

Tracy Perry

Well-known member
the fact that some extensions will cost money leaves a bad taste in my mouth. ive never experienced that with vbull, phpbb or anywhere really.
Then by all means you will NOT be interested in IPS.
Bang for the buck, XenForo is one of the better forum scripts out on the market currently. I use 3 of the major script names and by far XenForo is the more capable forum script.


Well-known member
the fact that some extensions will cost money leaves a bad taste in my mouth. ive never experienced that with vbull
There have always been paid addons for vB. vBSEO, Photopost and other gallery scripts, the vBGeek products, several of the vBAdvanced products, more recently the Dragonbyte stuff, and I could go on.
Also, does paying for someone's work always leave a bad taste in your mouth? Does it leave a bad taste in your mouth to be paid for your work yourself?


Well-known member
If you're looking for free add-ons/extensions and a 'cheaper' forum script, Xenforo isn't your option. Commercial software wise, Woltlabs is the cheapest, but nearly every add-on/extension is a paid one for that platform. XF is the most capable as everyone has already stated but if paying for add-ons or even the software itself is a problem for you, your best bet is to look elsewhere such as phpBB or even MyBB.