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Thinking of a change! VBulletin to XenForo

Discussion in 'XenForo Pre-Sales Questions' started by tommydamic68, Aug 8, 2013.

  1. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Hello all,
    I am thinking of making a change whether it's upgrading from VB3 (which i have currently) to -VB4 or when more stable - VB5 and or another forum software. So just a tad bit of history about my current forum. My site was started in 2009 - it has become a very popular and busy niche in my market. I have about 1700+ visitors a day and a steady 120- 150 members who actually login in daily and participate on a site that does about 140 - 200 posts/ threads a day. I average about 100.00 dollars from google ads on the site monthly, the ads blend in well and are not overwhelming to members but pay the hosting bill! So there it is in a nut shell. So after owning and running this site, I have a very good idea what most of my members expect and like about my forum.

    Here are my concerns and wants - hopefully!

    First - how complicated is the transfer from VB to X? (I DON'T WANT TO DO IT MYSELF!) Where and who will I get to to move and install this. (I can't afford to lose 4 years of info!) Data base, members info and pictures etc? Statistics attached.

    VBSEO bogs down my site. it as of lately been giving me many database errors. I have many mods (probably many I don't use or need but VB3 is really slow lately especially with many more members, VBSEO and much more action going on in the community over the last few years.)

    Will Xenforo software be a better and faster software for me compared to VB3?

    Will the built in SEO in Xenforo be at least comparable and give the same results as VBSEO?

    Is the likes system the same or better as VBSEO like system that my members use the heck out of?

    Is there a "thanks" mod?

    I am very familiar with installing mods from VB.org myself - is it similar adding mods on X?

    Is there a newsletter mod available? - I pull in a huge amount of members a month with my monthly newsletter, my google adsense doubles!

    Is there a reminder mod - it sends out a "Can we tempt you back" reminder if you have not been on the site in 30, 60 or 90 days. Another mod that I use to bring em back and works flawless.

    Mobile - I currently have Tapatalk installed and a LARGE number of members use it. The future in forums, I believe is going to be mobile. Is Tapatalk compatible with X or do you offer a better mobile solution?

    How easy is it to customize the skin?

    Well, that's all I can think of for now - sorry for all the questions but I want a company that is going to be around for awhile, offer state of the art software and up to the real world updates and modifications to keep up with the rest of the world and stay ahead of the game!


    Attached Files:

    Alien likes this.
  2. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    There are several people at this forum who will transfer your forum for you for a small fee. Its rather easy with direct importers.

    Yes, the software is extremely fast.

    The results of the SEO capabilities of XenForo are astounding and many feel no need to change them.

    I've never used the vBSEO likes system, but they can be converted.

    The Post Ratings addon by Luke Foreman can have a "Thanks" rating added to it.

    Yes, installing add-ons is relatively similar.

    I believe there are newsletters software, I haven't looked into them closely. You can mass mail members in the core software.

    I do not believe I've seen a reminder mod. You can request one after being licensed.

    TapaTalk is compatible, but the software includes a pretty good responsive design. Resize your browser to test it out.

    Its extremely easy to customize and there is a plethora of users here to help you if you need it.
    tommydamic68 likes this.
  3. Gene Steinberg

    Gene Steinberg Well-Known Member

    vBSEO is one of those snake oil add-ons for vBulletin that promises a lot, but delivers very little that's useful that you can't get free. (Worse, if you criticize the product, you will be inundated with flame from the true believers who believe it can do no wrong.)

    I tried the vBulletin version available from the company's site, and versions used by some larger companies for their forums, and it has become slower and slower over the years. I moved three forums from vBulletin a couple of years ago, and never looked back.
    tommydamic68 likes this.
  4. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Sorry - left one thing out and can't seem find it on my profile page, is there an album section? Where members share their photos? My site is about cats and they will upload and share their albums and pictures in the community.

    Thanks again,
  5. MattW

    MattW Well-Known Member

    There are two very good album add-ones available (paid 3rd party)
  6. Jeremy

    Jeremy XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    That feature isn't built in. You can use several 3rd party add-ons.
  7. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Thanks everyone. Appreciate the input!
    MattW likes this.
  8. 0ptima

    0ptima Well-Known Member

    tommydamic68 likes this.
  9. Moshe1010

    Moshe1010 Well-Known Member

    The import process involves pressing 10 buttons. Do you really don't want do it by yourself and pay somebody else clicking 10 buttons for $100?
    There is a very friendly importer built-in already in XF for your forum size. Just do it first on a testing area and you'll see how easy the entire process is (except for rewrites, but you can get help for that on this forum pretty quick).
  10. Mark Wein

    Mark Wein Member

    We just made the change last week. Relatively painless import from vB4 and the users love it. :)
    tommydamic68 likes this.
  11. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Well thanks everyone who gave your input. I will still investigate further to satisfy my needs for my site. I would just like to share my thoughts thus far with my findings with Xenforo.

    I am truly no professional at running a forum. However I was very good at building a "community" 4 years ago that is steady, busy and building and has created a name for itself on the web in our small little niche.

    I believe today - and the future is mobile. Everyone (almost everyone) has a smart phone that has become their lively hood. The lack of a built in mobile skin is my first negative. The world is mobile- that's just how it is. If your not offering that option you have made yourself very limited as a resource to your community.

    Second - the lack of (inclusion) of an album or member photos is a huge deterrent for me. People love pictures and sharing them! If you don't believe me- check Out Instagram! People like sharing photos, whether its cars, boats, food or cats!

    Third- from what it seems, every "add on" that is attractive or needed as far as add ons are paid - and not cheap! This also had a big negative impact. VB. org is a great resource of "free" mods- that were needed to stay up to date in the real world that you could simply import into your forum for free.

    Thanks for listening- I still have not made a solid yes/no decision with Xenforo but these concerns and needs could surely make or break my decision.

    Last edited: Aug 9, 2013
    whynot likes this.
  12. Moshe1010

    Moshe1010 Well-Known Member

    There is a "mobile style" in XF. Minimize your browser and you'll see it by yourself. Secondly, there are several photo/album add-ons:

    About your third point, in VB.org people were making add-ons and then disappearing for months/years and the add-on eventually died. Here, if you pay money, you will get 100% support - fast and efficient. By the way, most of my add-ons (about 35) are free. The other that I've paid for, you wouldn't find anything close to that quality/features in VB.
  13. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Well-Known Member

    By chance have you even tried looking an xenForo.com on a mobile device? Looks fine to me (as it does on my 3 forums also).

    If $30-40 is to high, there IS a free add-on that will work with 1.1.5 and below... and having a built in "album" on the stock software is not something that is very standard now AFAIK.

    Again, from what I understand - IPB AND vBulletin add-ons are about equal in price to features. I personally don't consider $40 very high for a media solution (I have 3 copies of @Chris Deeming's Media Gallery).

    It depends on where your priorities lay. Are your current add-ons vB 4 compatible - or will you have to pay to upgrade them to a compatible version? Never played much with vB as I never really liked it from the end user point of view - but I DO know that there were worlds of differences between the 3.x versions and the 4.x versions.
  14. Parminder Singh Chahal

    Parminder Singh Chahal Active Member

    It is easier to convert a Vbulletin forum to Xenforo then just upgrading a Vbulletin forum to a newer version. Xenforo's latest version also lets you convert vb4 to xenforo with the built in converter. It is just a matter of entering the database user name and pass and then a few clicks thats all.

    Vbseo does not do that. It is something that you are not doing right. I still run all my large forums on Vbulletin + vbseo. The problem with Vbseo is that there is no support any more for vbseo as the owner seems to have either lost interest or has found something more profitable to do. Tickets at Vbseo have not been answered for months now.

    Xenforo is the best option if you cant do without vbseo support. I would myself eventually move all my vbulletin forums to Xenforo one step at a time. I have set up a couple of new forums using xenforo and I like it so far.

    Better > Yes a lot better then vb3 (Vb3 is ancient as compared to xenforo.)
    Faster > Yes and No (It depends upon how you use it. Xenforo is faster out of the box. If you are using Vbseo's built in opcode cache support with xcache or apc along with some page cache then no xenforo cannot compete with it out of the box but you can use xcache and page cache with xenforo as well but it would take 15-20 mins of work)

    Vbseo does a lot of things that Xenforo wont but having said that, vbseo development is kind of dead right now. It does not look like they would release a vb5 compatible version for vbseo any time soon if they ever do that is. I am not waiting for a vb5 compatible version as I dont like vb5 itself.

    Like system in Xenforo will not show the number of likes or the list of likes per post on top of the page like vbseo does and nor is there an option to be able to directly go to the post with most likes like you can with vbseo. It would need a simple mod for it and there may already be one if you look into the resource thing. I personally do not like to use any addons so Ive never looked at the resources section.

    Mobile is the future yes but tap a talk is a leech living like a parasite on the hard work of us webmasters. Xenforo's latest release has an excellent responsive default theme which unlike crap a talk would give you a way to earn some advertising revenue as well from your mobile traffic.

    Very easy.
  15. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Well it's not really a gallery I'm looking for but rather a members album that can be accessed via the members profile Page. There they can upload pics and other members can access their page to view album pics. Do they have something like that? And you said the Xenforo forum when viewed on a Mobile device it is utilizing a mobile skin like vb4 and vb5?
  16. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

  17. Moshe1010

    Moshe1010 Well-Known Member

    It's the same skin, just changes based on resolution. It's for tablets/mobiles/lower resolution displays. Your website design would never brake by the viewed display and would always adjust to the device it's viewed on.
    As I noted before, try to make your browser windows smaller and smaller and you will see how things start to change and move places.

    About the albums, see what Brogan posted and you also have this:
  18. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

  19. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

  20. tommydamic68

    tommydamic68 Well-Known Member

    Thats really awesome! Do you have the link to the add on to see the description and price? Also, would it even be possible to transfer the existing members albums over to this "add on" or will all my members pictures (1000's) be lost in the transfer from vb3 to X?

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