Can i add a forum to my website?

  window man 16:04 29 Nov 03
Locked

I have got a website for my cleaning business and i would like to add a cleaning forum to the site. How hard is this to do? I use Frontpage if that makes any differance?

Many Thanks

get some pre-made forum's from companies like phpBB and invision power board, that are both free. You just need to set up and go!

  window man 16:20 29 Nov 03

Thanks for replying Pilch. Is it just a case of adding a button to my site and then getting one of these free boards?

You will need to make sure that the server has MYSQL then you install all the files required upto the server and can go from there.

I only know this because i talked to a friend nicely and he set it up for me!

But i would presume that there are tutorial's about on the internet that can help you.

  Talented Monkey 18:16 29 Nov 03

Before you decide which board you are going to install, you will have to find out a few things about your website hosting. First are you allowed to upload and install scripts? If you are with a free hosting site, then answer is more than likely no, in which case you have to go through a third party You may also want to consider this option as well, if you are not confident with installing your own, or tweaking the odd bit of code that is sometimes required, however the better boards have an install script where you enter a few details, but sometimes even this can be a pain!

There are many sites offering a forum hosting service, you simply sign up, a board will be created under a sub domain and you simply place a link to it on your site. Here is a reasonable company , you may want to check out others as well.
Proboards click here

Most of these hosting companies require a advert banner of their site on your site, and indeed proboards ask this off you as part of the terms and conditions. Failure to do this may result in your boards being deleted! This isn’t too much of a hardship, simply make their banner as link to the forums or place at foot or head of page

If you are competent enough to install yourself, then you will need to have a MYSQL database free, failing this then you will need to have a directory called CGI-BIN on your web space, this is provided by your hosting company to run certain scripts in. If you have neither then you will have to pursue the third party option as previously described

Another point to take in to consideration is weather your board will run on your server, some will only run on a specific server such as Linux, others do a better job on all platforms.

There are many good forums out there, I only know of the php/mysql boards, so you have to find out yourself or from others about the other script versions. As for cost, some are totally free, while others you need to purchase it outright or pay a small fee or y to activate features or remove adverts Here a few good boards to install yourself

PHPBB click here
Ezboard click here
Ikonboard click here

Of course I have the luxury of control panel where I just simply click the install button nd select couple of options and answer some questions and its all done!

  window man 19:00 29 Nov 03

Many thanks for replys. I will check out a few things first.

Thanks again!

  Forum Editor 00:22 30 Nov 03

Scripts and databases. If your site is designed in FrontPage and your server has FrontPage extensions installed you have everything you need - built in to FrontPage already.

FrontPage has its own forum component, and although it isn't as sophisticated as some of the third party offerings it's all you need for a commercial site like yours - and it's a great deal easier to set up and administer. You can customise the forum as much as you like, and with a bit of effort and imagination you'll have something to be proud of - and without any advertising banners.

In FrontPage, just go to File/new/page or web and select web templates. In the list of web templates you'll see 'discussion web wizard'. Select this, and be sure to tick the option box to add the discussion web to your existing web. Then follow the prompts to create the forum. I think you'll be pleased with the results.

Come back to your thread if you need any further help.

  Talented Monkey 00:31 30 Nov 03

Maybe i should start looking at this frontpage everyone keeps on mentioning seems like i could have saved alot of time in posts! still i hope others have learnt from it.

  STEVE71163 13:33 30 Nov 03

I use Frontpage 2003 and i didnt know it could do this. You learn something new every day :0)

  tbh72 15:07 30 Nov 03

Can I just echo FE's words regarding Frontpage Server Extentions causing problems with php/sql forums.

I like the functionality and ease of setup of the many php forums available and sacrificed the use of FPSE's to use one. I have spoken with my hosting company and am in the process of upgrading my hosting account to include sub-domains. This means I will be able to manage the main website using Frontpage whilst having the ability to also have php forums & chatrooms.

The reason php forums DO NOT work with a server that have FPSE's installed is the inability to carry out the file permission installation procedure.

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