seeking advice

BigJoe

New member
i am interested in purchasing xenforo to start a forum but have zero experience running a forum. i did a demo and i think i have the basics but there is much i do not understand. i am very familiar with how xenforo functions as i was a user on another xenforo based forum for a long time. i have basic computer skills but dont have any IT skills. is it possible for someone with no experience to make this work ? i did a little research and already found the host i would like to use. beyond purchasing the forum software and buying a hosting plan, im not too sure what else i will need ? any help will be greatly appreciated
 

Nerdface

Well-known member
It can be as simple, or as complicated as you choose to make it.

..but if there's something you'd like to achieve but can't quite figure it out, there's plenty of us around who should be able to point you in the right direction.
 

frm

Active member
Running a forum and maintaining a forum are two completely different aspects.

Running requires dedication while maintaining requires some technical skill.

This community can help you with both, but running a forum is ultimately up to you and what you put into it to make it grow.

That said, I've used vB in the past on a forum in a high $$$ niche that I was just not interested in, thus it ultimately failed. This time I went straight into 2.1 because the features and am finding it easier to maintain and I picked a more enjoyable niche to run.
 

BigJoe

New member
Running a forum and maintaining a forum are two completely different aspects.

Running requires dedication while maintaining requires some technical skill.

This community can help you with both, but running a forum is ultimately up to you and what you put into it to make it grow.

That said, I've used vB in the past on a forum in a high $$$ niche that I was just not interested in, thus it ultimately failed. This time I went straight into 2.1 because the features and am finding it easier to maintain and I picked a more enjoyable niche to run.
i should have chose my words more carefully, the maintenance part is what im asking about. im not worried much about "running" it as its for a small group of friends anyway so no issue there. so since you say you need technical skill for the maintaining of the forum, are you saying someone without much in the way of computer skills will not likely be able to do it ?
 

frm

Active member
i should have chose my words more carefully, the maintenance part is what im asking about. im not worried much about "running" it as its for a small group of friends anyway so no issue there. so since you say you need technical skill for the maintaining of the forum, are you saying someone without much in the way of computer skills will not likely be able to do it ?
No. But one should have a degree of some technical skill. I would put it at between being able to install a new program and word processing. There are tasks that you will find difficult in any of those at times (such as recently with me replacing auto "fancy quotes" with straight lines), but the technical experience of being able to understand where the changes needed to be made in Word (in my example) and how to obtain the advice of changing it is required.

If you can follow a manual to do simple computer tasks, xF will be no problem... especially with such a strong community to ask questions and receive multiple answers and ways of doing things.

Later on, you can get into more complex things or hire developers for customization that you can't do yourself. However, out of the box, I believe it's solid and meets just about any new forum's needs.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
If you were able to find your way around the demo back end and are already familiar with the front end, then you will be fine.
 

imno007

Well-known member
Since the site is so small, just make sure you go with a decent shared host, or maybe a managed VPS if you don't mind paying a little extra, and you should be fine. As long as you have a good support staff to take care of things on the server end, well, that's where most of the technical stuff will be happening. For managing a small site on Xenforo, you should be mostly fine on your own. And of course you'll have support from the Xenforo team for any serious issues that might arise, and forum support is always available for everything else.

Besides what you already mentioned, you'll need to register a domain name, although I assume you know that already. But think twice about registering one through your host, because that can make things unnecessarily difficult if you ever decide to go with another host. Best to register one with a third-party service (registrar) like Namecheap. That way if you ever do switch all you'll have to do is update your DNS settings to point to the new host.
 

Vekseid

Active member
i should have chose my words more carefully, the maintenance part is what im asking about. im not worried much about "running" it as its for a small group of friends anyway so no issue there. so since you say you need technical skill for the maintaining of the forum, are you saying someone without much in the way of computer skills will not likely be able to do it ?
If you go with a shared host, the backend maintenance is taken care of for you. SMF/Elkarte (for over a decade now) and Xenforo (as of 2.1) have auto-upgrade capability. You sign into your forum, go to the admin interface, you get an alert that tells you you need to upgrade, and you can upgrade straight from said interface. Trivially easy, though you will need to have an appropriate user/permission structure.

If going with shared hosting, find one that provides fastcgi for their php access. There are many ways any forum software can break otherwise.

Second on getting domain separately from your host. They usually won't fight if you want to leave, but needing to ask them to make changes is also frustrating.

This is all for maintaining the vanilla forum, of course. More work needs to be done if you use a custom theme, addons, etc.
 

BigJoe

New member
If you were able to find your way around the demo back end and are already familiar with the front end, then you will be fine.
thanks my friend,. i have a few questions,

1. How would i add a logo to the main forum page ?
2. our forum is going to be private and not open to the public , is there a way to set a home page so non members cant see any of the forum content ?
 

shimspedy

Active member
i am interested in purchasing xenforo to start a forum but have zero experience running a forum. i did a demo and i think i have the basics but there is much i do not understand. i am very familiar with how xenforo functions as i was a user on another xenforo based forum for a long time. i have basic computer skills but dont have any IT skills. is it possible for someone with no experience to make this work ? i did a little research and already found the host i would like to use. beyond purchasing the forum software and buying a hosting plan, im not too sure what else i will need ? any help will be greatly appreciated
hey when i started my forum i had zero experience.. and I didn't even host it but for a year now i have learned a lot and gained a lot of experience so i would say try it and in few weeks you will be managing it like a pro !
 
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imno007

Well-known member
For the record, I had already answered his questions, but my post was deleted for the reason that it was too specific for the pre-sales forum. Maybe it was the image I included that made it just slightly too specific. Or Brogan just gave up. Too many people here too quick to help. :D
 
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