XF 2.2 Search forums, SEO improvements and dev team news

Screenshot 2020-08-03 at 10.47.31.webpA new way to surface content

Forums are usually devoted to a single subject matter and the threads they contain relate to that subject matter, unless it's all gone wrong and your users are wandering off topic. Threads belong to their parent forums, so if your board separates posts about kittens from posts about puppies into separate forums, you are never going to see a kitten thread and a puppy thread sitting next to each other within your forum hierarchy. This is how it has always been, it's the basic nature of the discussion forum paradigm.

But what if you want to have a forum that contains all threads from across your entire board that were posted in the week before last, or all threads started by moderators, or all threads that have no replies or... we could go on here.

Of course, we already have a mechanism to find those threads that meet those criteria in the form of the search system, but wouldn't it be great to be able to simply click on a named forum and get those matching threads returned as though they actually belonged to that forum? Well, with XenForo 2.2, you can.

Introducing Search Forums


Search forums are a brand new type of node, which aggregate threads from your entire installation based on criteria of your choosing. This allows your members to browse a more diverse selection of threads as though they were all posted in the same forum.

The simplest use of search forums might be to display threads from a handful of different forums, but the same comprehensive criteria system available in the 'Batch update threads' tool is at your fingertips.

forum-search-add.pngAdd-on developers, as ever, are able to extend this system to provide new options.

To ensure this feature performs as well as possible, results are cached for each user. You can set how long the cache lasts to make the appropriate trade-off between accuracy and performance.


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SEO improvements

When it comes to SEO, XenForo already makes extensive use of best practices. Of course, there is always room for improvement. That’s why we’re making a handful of changes to help take things to the next level.

Forum index controls

There are situations where you may want more control over how threads in a particular forum are indexed by search engines. New forum options let you do just that.

View attachment 226840You will be able to choose whether search engines can index all threads, no threads, or only a set of threads meeting certain criteria on a per-forum basis. This HYS is brought to you by the word ‘criteria’. Criteria.

Outbound link adjustments

XenForo has always set the nofollow attribute on outbound links posted by members, with the notable exception of those posted by staff. A new permission gives you more granular control over designating exactly which users’ links should be trusted.

Last year, Google updated their recommendation for how to best attribute links in user-generated content. Accordingly, we now set the ugc attribute on links posted by untrusted users, in addition to the nofollow attribute for backwards compatibility with search engines which do not yet support the new attribute.

View attachment 226841

Finally, we also work around the 'gotcha' of quoting messages containing links, and set the appropriate ugc and nofollow attributes on quoted links, regardless of whether or not the quote came from a trusted user.

Very nice :cool:
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In this video you create a forum for recently fixed bugs, and set the date back to May 1. What is the point of that? As time goes on they are not recent anymore. Shouldn't the setting be "x days ago"? Otherwise you have to keep editing the date field?

Or can we not set the date there and use the general "Thread list date limit" setting?
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