VBulletin 5 vs comparable software

torquewrench

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Nov 2, 2015
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I've been researching forum software for weeks, and after finally settling on VBulletin 5 after seeing a layout I really liked on a Honda Acccord forum, access to the site today was crashed by a hacker...

A few questions:

Is the software vulnerable because of its popularity?

Is there a comparable software that's just as reliable and user-friendly? (I guess reliable is subjective at this point)

Is most forum software "you get what you pay for?"

My web experience deals mostly with Wordpress, so I was hoping the dashboard functionality of whatever I go with would be just as easy to use. I also found VBulletin pricing to be reasonable.

I'm really glad I found this forum as questions in my Wordpress days were answered by pouring over hundreds of webpages. I hope to be able to reciprocate in the future when I earn my cap and gown!

Tommy
 

ozzy47

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Oct 18, 2013
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Based on that, I still say XenForo, https://xenforo.com/

It's popular, there is a plethora of mods and styles available, it's affordable, and it is actively developed, and the coding standards are quite high.
 

Tracy Perry

Opinionated asshat
Joined
May 25, 2013
Messages
4,991
I don't plan on selling anything. Just a forum with a gallery, maybe chat, video.
In that case, I'd suggest XenForo as the first choice.
Their default gallery is REALLY a good one and well thought out (Chris D originally had it as an add-on and the Xenforo developers/owners got doubly smart - they grabbed the rights to it and hired the developer of it - that being Chris). It supports video by embedding or uploading directly (Admin control over this) - and as I said, it's now a 1st party add-on (XenForo supported). There are several popular chats. I like Siropu's myself, but there are a few others out and DragonByte is bringing their vBulletin version over I believe.

My next choice would be WBB (only have had exposure to the BETA's of the forum script) but they get good reviews from the people that use it.

After that would be IPS 4.x series - although the gallery is seriously lacking compared to XenForo's. The editor in IPS is also "quirky" in some aspects and your users will have to get used to a different way of interacting with it compared to XenForo or WBB. It also will not allow you to create media BBCodes like XenForo will - which means if you want custom media BBCodes you will either need to know how to write the add-on to do it or hire someone.
 

torquewrench

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Nov 2, 2015
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Thanks so much! I just got notification of these replies.

I noticed there are a lot more themes with Xenforo. I'll probably dig a little deeper for sites that use Xenforo(I see this one does, obviously). I can't remember which IP forum I read about, but it had horrible reviews. I guess I just want something with a clean look that won't look too busy because I want a blog feature, too.

I'm guessing VBulletin won't be my wine of choice. That's a bummer because I saw some really cool sites running it. Here's to some Xenforo research!
 

torquewrench

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Nov 2, 2015
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Oh and I haven't read anything on Vanilla, but the pricing was pretty rich! I'm guessing nobody uses it? Hahaha
 

VICE

tool
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Jun 8, 2013
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I guess I just want something with a clean look that won't look too busy because I want a blog feature, too.
Free alternatives should satisfy this requirement.
Primarily NodeBB and Discourse but also Flarum in the future.
(I forget to add Vanilla)

Though I have to warn you about Andorid compatibility issue for Discourse.
I tested Discourse before and its first load is quite slow, though super fast for subsequent loading.
 

torquewrench

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Nov 2, 2015
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Free alternatives should satisfy this requirement.
Primarily NodeBB and Discourse but also Flarum in the future.
(I forget to add Vanilla)

Though I have to warn you about Andorid compatibility issue for Discourse.
I tested Discourse before and its first load is quite slow, though super fast for subsequent loading.
I thought vanilla charged a fortune if I remember correctly?
 

Tracy Perry

Opinionated asshat
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Messages
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I noticed there are a lot more themes with Xenforo. I'll probably dig a little deeper for sites that use Xenforo(I see this one does, obviously). I can't remember which IP forum I read about, but it had horrible reviews. I guess I just want something with a clean look that won't look too busy because I want a blog feature, too.
First site in my sig is running IPS 4.1.2
The other two are running XenForo (one with the gallery and downloads - the motorcycle one, the other with just downloads) with some add-ons and using some of Audentio's styles.

I thought vanilla charged a fortune if I remember correctly?
I know they were rather expensive when I looked at them, and I wasn't honestly that impressed with it.
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
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Aug 26, 2010
Messages
7,283
Is the software vulnerable because of its popularity?
I'm a little surprised no one has jumped on that statement. vBulletin 5 is not popular at all and there's a ton of content here that will explain why. vBulletin 3 and 4 on the other hand were extreamly popular but both are now considered EOL in terms of further development.
 

torquewrench

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I'm a little surprised no one has jumped on that statement. vBulletin 5 is not popular at all and there's a ton of content here that will explain why. vBulletin 3 and 4 on the other hand were extreamly popular but both are now considered EOL in terms of further development.
I guess my experience is different. Every form I've ever visited up until now was VBulletin. Those I paid attention to, anyway. I'm probably going to use Xenforo. I really like the functionality and add ons. Lots of themes, too.
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
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Messages
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I guess my experience is different. Every form I've ever visited up until now was VBulletin. Those I paid attention to, anyway. I'm probably going to use Xenforo. I really like the functionality and add ons. Lots of themes, too.
I could be wrong but I would imagine that's because most of them were running on vB3 or vB4. There are still more forums running on those two versions than any other forum software. However there are very few established forums running on vBulletin 5, it simply isn't robust enough.

If you are leaning towards Xenforo which is in my view a good choice you might also want to check out WoltLab Burning Board which also recommended by a lot of forum owners.
 

torquewrench

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Nov 2, 2015
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I could be wrong but I would imagine that's because most of them were running on vB3 or vB4. There are still more forums running on those two versions than any other forum software. However there are very few established forums running on vBulletin 5, it simply isn't robust enough.

If you are leaning towards Xenforo which is in my view a good choice you might also want to check out WoltLab Burning Board which also recommended by a lot of forum owners.
I definitely appreciate that. I'll take a look at sites that currently run WoltLab. Xenforo had some sites that I really liked, and the options were pretty favorable. Thanks!!
 

VICE

tool
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Jun 8, 2013
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Nobody mentioned this yet but choosing Xenforo will subject yourself to significant extra $ for the add ons (depending on how many you need them). Always remember to check the TOS because some of them are atrocious.
 

Sherrie

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Jun 8, 2013
Messages
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That was one of my reasons for choosing Burning Board and that Burning Board had more in the core. Its been ages since I compared both demos when I was making my decision so I can't remember all the fine points.

With Xenforo you have the benefit of a larger community and I believe more plugins. The only thing from this forum that I wish I could have on my forum is the post ratings.

Woltlab have a cheaper license fee but they do charge for upgrades which are annual or longer, they do not charge renewal fees or for forum support. They have an opensource frame work that is currently free. From there you can buy their forum, blog, calendar, gallery and filebase. You can install any or all you just need the framework. Next year they will be bringing out a new framework that has a CMS as part of it which will then make it pretty complete.

Burning board have a decent amount of plugins that continue to grow, which are mostly free or cheap. The only downside to burning board in my mind is that most of the community is German but in order for their English community to grow it needs us to give it a try.

Here's a couple of old threads that discuss both in comparison:

https://theadminzone.com/threads/burning-board-vs-xenforo-moving-from-vb3-8-confused.135942/

https://theadminzone.com/threads/should-i-choose-burning-board-or-xenforo.108538/
 
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