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Looking to move from vB4 to XenForo

Discussion in 'XenForo Pre-Sales Questions' started by Skyscape, Jul 11, 2016.

  1. Skyscape

    Skyscape New Member

    Hi All,

    I own a very large and active forum that has been running VBulletin since late 2000. We are actually one of their very first customers, using vB2 Beta.

    After much research into the roadmap for our next site, I've decided we will move to XenForo. Right now I face one major dilemma though - should I wait until XenForo 2.0 or commit to the upgrade on the current platform?

    I realize nobody can tell me when XenForo 2.0 is to be released, however I would really like to avoid the major time and cost of a complete migration (we also use the CMS, which would require a CMS solution as well), only to have XenForo 2.0 released shortly after we've completed our migration.

    Also, if I purchase a XenForo 1.x license now, would I have to pay to upgrade to XenForo 2.0 upon release?

    Again, I realize my basic questions here cannot be answered but I am looking for any sort of help that could help guide my decision.

    Thank you.
  2. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Only you and your community can decide this. When you look at it like that however, you could go on forever, wait for 2.0, wait for 2.1, wait for 2.2 etc.

    Currently the plan is that your XF1 license will grant you access to 2.0 as long as it is active.
  3. Skyscape

    Skyscape New Member

    Hi Slavik, thank you for your reply. I realize what you're saying however I am not simply concerned about minor version updates such as 2.1, 2.2, etc. My concern is that XenForo 2.0 could be an entirely new platform, and as such cost us a great deal of money to upgrade to - and I would rather not be faced with that situation shortly after migrating to XF 1.x (and the associated cost).

    My question is really asking if there is any sort of roadmap for an anticipated date that XF 2.0 might be approaching completion? I don't want to go into a major site migration, only to have to repeat the process soon after. So, in this context, I was looking for input on if XF had released any information on a possible future release date.

    Thank you for your quick reply.
  4. Slavik

    Slavik XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    At this point in time no, im afraid not.
  5. Skyscape

    Skyscape New Member

    Alrighty, thank you.
  6. wang

    wang Well-Known Member

    In that case, I think it would be better to wait until xf 2.0 comes out. If you do not plan to use a lot of add ons and custom styles, you can migrate now. Then when 2.0. comes out, you can do a simple upgrade. But if you will be using a lot of add ons, especially big ones, and custom styles, you will be depending on them for the upgrade. Because they will need almost a complete re-write to be compatible with 2.0.
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2016
  7. Chris D

    Chris D XenForo Developer Staff Member

    Just wanted to add some additional context to this.

    It's true that we do not currently have a release date, but we are making solid progress, so it is certainly coming soon but I wouldn't necessarily say it's going to be soon enough to put your plans on hold.

    XenForo 2.0 is not going to be a completely different platform, at it's heart it's still going to be the same XenForo people like today. It's true, however, that from a code point of view and a styling point of view, a lot has changed, therefore any add-ons or styles created for XF1 are going to require work to make them compatible with XF2.

    Even if XF2 was going to be released tomorrow, XF1 still has a reasonably long shelf life as we will be continuing to support and maintain it as we do now for a period of time after XF2 is released. Of course, in the early stages, XF1 is also going to be more stable. However, XF2 obviously isn't going to be released tomorrow. Although we don't have a date, it will happen after some form of extended testing period.

    The migration from XF1 to XF2 is going to be mostly painless in terms of the upgrade itself. It isn't going to require any sort of extensive migration process. In its most simplest form, it will mostly be a case of uploading the new files and running the upgrade script, just like most other upgrades, albeit it will take longer to run through the various steps. What complicates it, however, is a reliance on certain add-ons or styles. This is actually what makes XF1 viable for an even longer period; a lot of people will not be able to upgrade to XF2 immediately because they will have to wait for the various add-ons they rely upon to be made XF2 compatible. If you plan to use a lot of add-ons then this will actually likely buy you even more time on XF1.

    So, in summary, I wouldn't necessarily suggest putting plans on hold because of XF2 being on the horizon. XF1 will likely serve you well for as long as you like, even if your usage of it stretched beyond when we stop officially supporting it, it will of course still be a stable and viable platform.
    wedgar likes this.
  8. Skyscape

    Skyscape New Member

    Thank you Chris, that gives me all I need to know. I really appreciate it. That helps me a great deal.

    My biggest concern is not the forums themselves, but our CMS. Currently, we're relying on the vB4 CMS, which has always been wholly inadequate. We are an online magazine, so our CMS is so absolutely crucial to our content delivery. I've been using Wordpress for many years for another site, which I absolutely love, and I was looking at options to bridge Wordpress and XenForo. That would be idea for me in terms of functionality. So, that bridge with Wordpress and XenForo is central to my concerns. And that's also my biggest concern with migrating from XF1.x to 2.0. So for us, any upgrading of message board platforms is likely to be an intensive affair since we will likely have some modification to integrate a CMS.

    I wish we were not in a situation where we have to heavily invest in modifications to marry a message board and CMS, however there is currently no other path unless we look at Invision, which I do not believe would suit our needs. Our other option is to run Wordpress as our home page and the forums as a seperate sub-directory of the site. We've done this many years ago and I always felt as if we were promoting two separate entities. I want our readers to have a single login for the entire site, with the ability to comment and share articles from that login. With social media sites so important to us now, it's something I must consider. We run paid campaigns on Facebook and getting readers is great but we also want to gain them as assets to the business.

    As important as a CMS is for our business, the message forum is more important for our revenue stream. XenForo appears to meet all of my requirements for a message forum, which I'm happy about. The bulk of my concerns are ultimately centered around the CMS and its integration with our message board.

    Thanks again Chris, you've really helped in making my planning easier.
    wedgar and Chris D like this.
  9. Ernest L. Defoe

    Ernest L. Defoe Well-Known Member

    @Skyscape there is a new addon by a developer named Bob that might be what you are looking for as far as a CMS type addon. It's called AMS (Article Management System) it can be purchased from here https://xenaddons.com its a very very powerful system.
  10. Skyscape

    Skyscape New Member

    Thank you so much Ernest, I will have a look right now.

  11. TheXboxCloud

    TheXboxCloud Active Member

  12. Ernest L. Defoe

    Ernest L. Defoe Well-Known Member

    For bridging xF and WP I prefer the XenWord addon but I think AMS will/should suit the OP needs. It's been in development for quite some time and has been a private addon that just recently went public. It's very powerful with tons of configuration options and made by one of the best addon developers for xF.
    Luiss and TheXboxCloud like this.
  13. TheXboxCloud

    TheXboxCloud Active Member

    Never tried them.

    However for article management system I also recommend CTA Featured Threads which is what I use and also XenPorta could be an option. Both are famous article management systems on Xenforo.com and both have good reviews.

    Either way just wanted to broaden your perspective on what's available. I'm sure either way you'll be satisfied.
  14. Luiss

    Luiss Member

    Im also thinking about that too.
  15. Sadik B

    Sadik B Well-Known Member

    Hi @Skyscape I concur with @Ernest L. Defoe

    You should consider the AMS addon if you are mostly hosting articles in your CMS. Take a look at this site -> http://www.thelaw.com/ They use AMS.

    If you still want to go with Wordpress, look at the XenWord addon. I have implemented it on another WP / XF membership site and it really really works well and is regularly developed.

    From a long term perspective, I really would suggest going with one system if you can instead of bridging two even though XenWord works very well right now. If you go with AMS, the benefit is that there is no "bridging" and so it's low maintenance, less time spent, less issues, less money spent on upgrades etc. etc.

    About your original question. The choice is very simple. Either move to XF 1.5 right now or move to XF 2 one year later. The only choice you have to make is whether you want to wait one year. I say one year because even if XF 2.0 is released in another few months it will probably be one more year before it has the same number of major addons available and as stable as 1.5. So decide if your site can stay on VB for another year... :)

    And lastly XF 1.5 is simply the best forum software out there right now.
    wedgar likes this.

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