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Questions Before I Order

Discussion in 'XenForo Pre-Sales Questions' started by Acreo Aeneas, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. Acreo Aeneas

    Acreo Aeneas New Member

    I'm considering Xenforo (also considering vBulletin) for a professional game development studio website.

    Right now, it I am using a Wordpress install with various plugins to achieve what I want (bbpress for forums -- used Simple Press in the as well, All-In-One Event Calendar, a community made theme, private messaging plugin, Google Analytics plugin, Advanced Access Manager, etc). I'm finding that all these plugins still leave out functionality I wish I had or force me to consider purchasing their premium versions (which can add up to the cost of a XF license). Also it's becoming harder to maintain the current functions I have given some plugins I used to use are no longer maintained (or their latest version are buggy as hell).

    For the longest time, I've always wanted a vB or IPS forum (or some other premium paid-for forum + CMS software). After some research and debate, I've narrowed down my possible choices to: XenForo and vBulletin. I'm leaning towards XF as development seems to be progressing along nicely, plugins/addons seem to be of a higher quality than most of what the vBulletin community puts out, and pricing is a lot more affordable in the short-term (long-term is still up-in-the-air). XenPorta is one of the major reasons why I'm considering XF over vBulletin.

    Even after doing weeks of research, lurking around the forums, playing around with the demo, and reading through XF's site, I'm still left with some questions:

    1. If I purchase a license, is it tied to the first domain I use it with? If I later get rid of the domain, can I use the license on a new domain?

    2. How easy is it to create a theme for XF? Are there any resources and sample themes to help me develop my own along the way? Is the theming/styling of XF well documented?

    3. I foresee needing a downloads management plugin of some sort. Does the XF Resource Manager fulfill this role? Or should I look to a community made plugin or perhaps pay for a custom-made plugin?

    4. Is there any plugin (or perhaps built-in functionality) for private replies to topics within a forum (only admins, the poster, and possibly certain users/user groups can see/reply)?

    5. Are there plugins for post composition level spell checking, disabling parsing of smileys in posts, multiple custom user ranks, etc?

    6. I will be using the software on a shared web host. Is there a general rule-of-thumb for how large the forum gets, how many visitors daily, etc before I should consider moving my install over to a VPS/semi-dedicated hosting plan?
     
  2. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    1. You can use the license on a single domain, and may change them in the customer area as long as you remove the previous instance.
    2. I don't develop themes, but I've seen it praised as being better than vBulletin & IPB. I personally prefer it to vBulletin.
    2. Resources Manager is good for resources, but has its gripes. IE, there's only 1 file per resource. I believe there is an add-on around, but I don't have the link. I'd play with the Demo to see if you think resource manager would work for you.
    4. Not that I'm aware of.
    6. XenForo works beautifully on Shared hosting. I don't think there is a rule of thumb, besides monitoring your own usage to see if you feel you need more resources.
     
    Shelley likes this.
  3. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    1. Your able to change the domain anytime you wish as many times as you like for free.

    2. It's incredibly easy to create a theme and the styling/template system as well as the style properties makes it easy to customize. Updating style when updates come out is a quick and painless experience also the styling system xenforo possesses is light years ahead of the other forum solution your considering.

    3. The RM will perform what you want most likely but on the offchance it doesn't there are many add-ons already released to fill anything that is missing and you can always request a developer to create an add-on if something is missing that you need.

    4. Is this like the anonymous user add-on? If so I'm quite sure there is an add-on available but not 100% sure.

    5. I'll leave that question for the server gurus who will respond to that one for you.

    Whiplashed by King Kovifor
     
    Jeremy likes this.
  4. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Ninja'd and I even found a post of yours to quote. :whistle:
     
    Shelley likes this.
  5. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    *shakes fist @ Jeremy* :D
     
  6. Acreo Aeneas

    Acreo Aeneas New Member

    If you're referring to http://xenforo.com/community/threads/bd-anonymous-posting.35427/, then no. There's going to be a need for a support forum on our site whereby customers/users will want to ask questions and get their game issues resolved but without revealing the details of their thread or posts to everyone else. Thus only the OP and admins (or in my case admins and the development team group) will be the only ones who can see and reply to that topic.
     
  7. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Yes, this is built in using the forum permissions.

    Edit: I see you added a question up above. I do not believe there is an add-on that does spell check.
     

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  8. Acreo Aeneas

    Acreo Aeneas New Member

    Oooh. Hmm, I'm loving XF more and more now. I can't even find a working plugin to achieve this in bbPress much less other forum plugins for Wordpress.

    Hmm, no spell check. Okay, not a deal breaker. Something I got used to seeing on a lot of vB forums that I have grown to rely on (since I write articles and do long peer-to-peer support replies). What about disabling the parsing of smilies in posts/pages?
     
  9. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    XenForo is highly extensible and has a lot of built in functionality that allow you to do a lot of things. You can set permissions per-user per-node (node is the term for a 'forum' since you can define multiple node-types in XenForo) as well, so if you have a moderator that you'd like to be able to see other people's threads, but don't want all moderators to, you can define customer permissions for that single moderator.

    If there is functionality that is missing, the quality of add-ons for XenForo is usually superb and you can usually find a willing developer to take on a project. I highly suggest XenForo over vBulletin (having used vBulletin up until XenForo came out).
     
  10. DRE

    DRE Well-Known Member

    Xenforo is great for alot of stuff but if your heavy into writing then you might want to think twice cause of the text editor. vB4's better in that aspect.
     
  11. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    If you want to disable smilies, you can use the [plain] BB Code ;). There isn't an 'option' for it per se. Pages (a node-type by default) don't parse BB Code or smilies, they are built using HTML. If you are looking for XenPorta to not parse smilies, you would have to ask Jaxel, but could most likely be done via a simple add-on if necessary. You may be able to find a developer to add such an option to posts.

    I wouldn't be surprised if you could get a developer to take on spell check for you. Cédric does a lot of work with the editor and may be willing to help you out.
     
    Shelley likes this.
  12. DRE

    DRE Well-Known Member

    Mikes gonna replace TinyMCE some day tho so it's all good.
     
  13. TsinJu

    TsinJu Well-Known Member

    I did not knew anything about css before i bought xenforo. All i can tell you.... It´s dead easy. Never been working with a Forum thats easier to modifiy than xenforo. Clean and (for me, most of the times) logical structure.

    It´s really fun to work with it!
     
    Shelley likes this.
  14. Acreo Aeneas

    Acreo Aeneas New Member

    Hmm, well I'm not too worried about a text editor being basic especially if TinyMCE is going to be replaced with a WYSIWYG editor in the future? Perhaps it could be as good a a modded WP editor? (syntax highlighting, properly indented and nested HTML/code elements, basic word processing functions, etc.)

    "plain" BB code, hmm, I'll have to remember that one! Awesome, pages already disable bb codes/smilies. Cedric, hmm, I'll talk to him and figure out what's possible. Perhaps he already has good editor plugins.

    Thanks TsinJu. :) I know CSS and generally do some web work freelance. I was just worried about some complex structure I'd have to weasel my way around.

    Does anyone know if I need to learn a new language in order to write a template/style/theme for XF?

    Hmm, there isn't a multi-quote ability built into XF? Would have made this response easier.


    I may be jumping the gun, but I've finally "sealed the deal" and ordered a license of XF. :D
     
    Morgain and Shelley like this.
  15. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    TinyMCE is a WYSIWYG editor. It just has its issues.

    There is a few XenForo specifics that make doing loops and certain things easier, as well as phrasing, but it is all basic HTML syntax and is really easy to pick up.

    If you click "Reply" multiple times, it'll insert each post in your quick editor as a quote.

    Congrats! Now you can post in the support forums for a lot more detailed help in getting things done.
     
  16. Morgain

    Morgain Well-Known Member

    Welome to XF.
    Recommend making a friend of Shelley as a queen of styling and css.
     
    Acreo Aeneas and Tracy Perry like this.

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