XenForo Pet Peeves - Pre-Sales Questions Before Huge Conversion

ProCom

Well-known member
I have 5 small forums already on XF. I think it's the best platform available. That said, I'm about to convert a HUGE site over to XF and there are a few things that drive me BONKERS.

So, since I haven't purchase the license for this huge site yet, I thought I'd post in the pre-sales section to see if y'all have any solutions or ideas on the following:

1) Editing a post that has images, tags, etc. is done with bbcode vs. a rich text / WYSIWYG editor


Example: I write and submit a post with a bunch of images, tags, etc., but when I go back to edit the post, instead of seeing the images, tags, etc. in the clean rich-text editor format I had when writing the post, I see the following mess of code:

Code:
Here are some user tags: [USER=14250]@user14250[/USER] & [USER=14251]@user14251[/USER]!!!

Check out all these cool pics!!!
[ATTACH=full]13564[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=full]13566[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=full]13577[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=full]13595[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=full]13554[/ATTACH]
Now, imagine a poor non-technical member trying to edit or reorder their images into a different order! They'd be so confused as to which image is which and what to do. My demographic is very non-techy and going from rich-text editor where they see the nice images and tags to the code above... they'd freak out.

So, why doesn't the editor parse the post in a way that makes it look the same as it did when the post was first being created? Is there no way to do this for our non-techy members?

2) Clicking the image button brings up a URL box instead of an "upload file" form?

I bet 98% of the time people click on an "insert image" button, they expect a modal to popup that says "choose a file to upload" and not a URL field. Seriously, how many people already have an image hosted and a URL ready when they click the image button?

Based on all the other interweb editors I've used, I'd expect the "insert image" button to bring up a "choose file" dialogue.

Ideally, the insert image pop modal would look something like the following... giving people multiple options, including showing the 5 most recent images they uploaded as well as a "more" link:



Is there any way to change the "image" button in the editor to open up an "Upload File" dialog vs. the URL field?

3: Alerts for "read" threads don't remove or mark the alert as "read".

Ok, this one is just nit-picking, but when I get an email about a thread I've subscribed to or otherwise read a thread I'm subsribed to, I'd expect that the corresponding alert should be removed or 'unalerted'. Of course, there's probably a good reason for it being this way that I don't understand.... it just seemed weird to me.


So, to reiterate:
I do LOVE Xenforo and will gladly convert my big site over to it... but the items above frustrate the hell out of me, and I can already imagine my members complaining about them (well, especially the first two). ;)

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and advice!
 

Chris D

XenForo developer
Staff member
1) This has been changed in XF2 but otherwise there's no solution for this. To my recollection, it doesn't come up all that often.

2) Again, this doesn't come up all that often either. There is a much bigger "Upload a File" button right below where they're typing so I think most people just get used to that. There's no plans to change this in the near future as we feel that inserting an image and uploading a file are separate actions, and it seems unusual to hide important functionality behind a tiny button, when there's already a clearly marked button below the editor.

3) There's an add-on for this: https://xenforo.com/community/resources/alert-improvements-by-xon.4578/
 

ProCom

Well-known member
Thanks for the quick and detailed reply Chris!

#1 is definitely the most annoying, so it's good that's being addressed in XF2!
#2... ya, good point. Hopefully old members will get used to it and new members will be able to figure it out without too much issue.
#3 Sweet!

:)
 

Tracy Perry

Well-known member
I think what throws people off is the "upload a file" language used. Most of us know that "file" means images also (because they ARE files) but a LOT of end users think of files as stuff like PDF's, .DOC's, etc. and think of .JPG, .GIF, .BMP as images and NOT as files. Simply modifying the language (as most do) to reflect "Upload a File/Image" seems to solve the problem.
 

Chris D

XenForo developer
Staff member
The wording in XF2 is "Attach files" which we felt was more familiar as it's the same terminology as emails, then, where people would commonly attach images.
 

ProCom

Well-known member
@Tracy Perry , that's definitely what we've run into on our smaller XF sites. Confusion from our non-techy members on where / how to upload "pictures / images".

I like the iade of changing the text to "File/Image" and will definitely be doing that!

As far as the little "Image" icon in the editor: I wonder if there are any addons / mods to make that button bring up the "Upload a File" dialogue... or if that's just not possible?
 

ProCom

Well-known member
@Tracy Perry , that's a great idea!

Is there a way to add text or a button onto the "Image" button popup that says "Upload Image" and simply has the same action as the "Upload a File" button?

Basically something like this:
upload_2017-1-16_19-53-36.png
 

Mr Lucky

Well-known member
Or better yet, the button do both a URL and upload an image. That would be the ideal solution.
This is the way it is handled on WordPress and (If I remember correctly) vBulletin, plus many many other platforms -

It is much more logical and intuitive to do this. Treat images as different to other files as they are different, they are embedded as part of the post even when only thumbnails.

The image icon should give the choice to either upload and embed or embed from URL.

This catches out a lot of my less experienced members
 

Alfa1

Well-known member
1) Editing a post that has images, tags, etc. is done with bbcode vs. a rich text / WYSIWYG editor
This is driving my members bonkers. Hitting the preview button doesn't let them preview images. It renders the preview function useless when users need to see how their post looks with images.
Its not just an issue for threads, but also for addons. Imagine writing a news article in the Article Management System but not being able to see how your images are positioned in the article. Some users conclude that the site doesn't work for them. Just because of this issue.

IMHO its something that needs to be fixed somehow.
 

ProCom

Well-known member
https://xenforo.com/community/threads/include-upload-image-in-insert-image.73393/

Add your like to the first post and maybe it stands more chance of being implemented.
Done! I don't know code at all, so is this something that could be hacked / addon without a tremendous amount of work?

IMHO its something that needs to be fixed somehow.
Ya, I'm worried that after our conversion that most of our members will see the rich text editor as a step backwards. Seeing code where an image should be will confuse most of my non-techie members. Waiting for a fix in XF 2.0 seems like a far-away resolution... but the functionality is pretty core to XF, so I don't know how feasible a pre-2.0 fix would be?
 

Alfa1

Well-known member
I plan to make the jump from vb3 to xf1 with my big board this week. I doubt that all addons we use will be XF2 ready before 2018. XF1 will be used for quite some time. I think this is also why the XF team decided to implement the new HTML5 uploader for XF1 as the flash uploader was a major headache and would have been for the next year.

This preview image failure issue seems to be a major thing for our members so we will need some solution.
 

ProCom

Well-known member
Great point @Alfa1 , we probably won't be jumping onto 2.0 really soon either, and when I convert my huge community (18mm posts, 400k members, 20,000 AMS articles) I'm going to get a LOT of complaining from confused members!
 

Mr Lucky

Well-known member
That's definitely helpful!

Would it also be possible to add an"Upload an image" link or button code in that same location?
I'm sure it would, but I'm not clever enough to know how to do that. I could try to work it out but it' would all be trial and error, a lot of work that someone else would know how to do in 15 seconds!
 

AnneMoss

Member
Echoing what @ProCom said. We're about to convert to XF and I can see how we'll have to make some very good tutorials to help people with images. Using the same platform as @ProCom now and the same non-techy crowd. Our current editor handles images uploads far more intuitively, IMO.
 
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