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Arguably the most important part of a forum is its user base. XenForo contains a wide range of user management tools in the Users section of the admin control panel.

All visitors to your forum are considered to be users. Those users that complete the registration process and log-in are considered to be members, while users who have not registered or are not logged-in are guests.

While individual users may have configuration and customization applied to them according to the data in their user profile, the majority of their abilities, access rights and restrictions is provided through their membership of user groups, where permissions are defined.

This section covers the more complex features that relate to users in XenForo.

Searching and listing#

A comprehensive search system exists to find users registered on your forum. You may search either using data or statistics related to user accounts, or you may search by IP address.

Search results are shown in the user list, which can be sorted by username, join date or a range of other criteria.

Data about the users in the list may be exported to a file.

User customization and gamification#

There are a variety of tools to allow you to customize your users' experience of your site including additional data collection tools such as custom user fields and gamification options like trophies.

XenForo also offers the facility to have your users pay for access to content or functionality via user upgrades.

User discipline#

Enforcing your site's rules is an important part of running a forum. XenForo supports both incremental and absolute approaches to dealing with user discipline. XenForo provides a range of tools including a warning system and banning options.

Importing and exporting single users#

XenForo provides functionality to import and export user profile data via Users > Data portability.

Both import and export functions operate with XML files, which are sufficiently generic to allow import into other forum software systems that offer such functionality.

The exported data includes the username, email address, timezone, date of birth, website URL, location, Signature and About fields from the user's profile. Additionally, the values of all custom user fields are included in the exported XML data.

Batch export#

The users shown in the user list, either as the result of a search or having clicked on List all users, may be exported as a CSV (comma separated values) file using the Export user list control above the list, which can be opened in any spreadsheet application, such as Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets.

The resulting CSV contains the most important data elements of each user account such as username, email address and registration date. It can be used to build an email list or similar, but does not contain a complete copy of the user data for archive or migration purposes.