Why do so many 'developers' use phpBB given how awful it is?

Marshalrusty

phpBB Project Manager
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
190
Not awful by any means, but definitely not noob friendly either. When I first started out years back, I went with one of the one step installers to upload a forum. My choices were SMF and phpbb.(wound up with SMF) With my very limited knowledge at the time, if I would have gone with phpbb, not sure I would have kept it- as trying to install a mod was a nightmare all on it's own.

If phpbb would find a way to have the automod installed out of the box; and make it easier to have mods install on various themes without all the edits, I personally believe it could still be the best open source software out there.
There are no more file edits for extensions as of phpBB 3.1; they are completely drop-in.

We have changed to a fixed release cycle and our current goals are to massively overhaul the UI for 3.2 and 3.3. Brand new style is coming too.
 

Phillip

The Priest
Joined
Aug 28, 2013
Messages
4,560
We have changed to a fixed release cycle and our current goals are to massively overhaul the UI for 3.2 and 3.3. Brand new style is coming too.

A brand new style is coming for phpBB.com? Or the styles themselves?
 

s.molinari

Leader of Skooppa
Joined
Sep 14, 2012
Messages
5,035
Who searches for "phpBB3" specifically? Why not just "phpBB"? o_O


The internet got huger and lots of casual forum traffic went to social media networks.

This still leaves a massive niche for people who actually want a discussion-based community. Facebook doesn't serve this purpose, and neither do many other kinds of setups. There are millions of active phpBB communities, and that number has been stable for a couple of years now. Actually, we've seen traffic increase recently.

In other words, we are doing our thing and doing it well. Trying to do it even better. Forums certainly aren't going anywhere, and phpBB is easily on an upswing.

It is nice you keep a positive outlook Yuriy. But, forums have lost their flare and their participation since the mid 2000's. You are right too. Forums won't be leaving the Internet scene anytime soon. Though, I feel online communities built with forums shouldn't be just a "niche" on the Internet. They should be one of the main parts of it. Why? Because they do what the Internet was intended to do. To bring people together with the same interests around (in most cases) a single topic and these intentions are the most noble, because part of being a good and successful person is to constantly grow as a person. Other than growing as a child, once you are adult, the only way to grow is through learning, expanding your mind, and online communities are aimed at doing exactly that. To help each other grow.

So, I am glad to hear you aren't worried about forums and PHPBB's overall activity. Though, it can and should be a lot better.

Scott
 

Marshalrusty

phpBB Project Manager
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
190
It is nice you keep a positive outlook Yuriy. But, forums have lost their flare and their participation since the mid 2000's. You are right too. Forums won't be leaving the Internet scene anytime soon. Though, I feel online communities built with forums shouldn't be just a "niche" on the Internet. They should be one of the main parts of it. Why? Because they do what the Internet was intended to do. To bring people together with the same interests around (in most cases) a single topic and these intentions are the most noble, because part of being a good and successful person is to constantly grow as a person. Other than growing as a child, once you are adult, the only way to grow is through learning, expanding your mind, and online communities are aimed at doing exactly that. To help each other grow.

So, I am glad to hear you aren't worried about forums and PHPBB's overall activity. Though, it can and should be a lot better.

Scott
I'm right there with you on pretty much all of that. We are actively working on making phpBB better and more relevant in an ever changing internet. phpBB is a community maintained and driven project, so any and all contributions of ideas and code are welcome. Whether that's writing up an RFC for improving a feature, contributing code to core, or writing extensions. More so in phpBB 3.1 than ever before, the entire community can get involved.
 

s.molinari

Leader of Skooppa
Joined
Sep 14, 2012
Messages
5,035
That is great and I wish you and the PHPBB3 community all the best too! I am very passionate about online communities (especially built with forum software) and any success towards making them better is something that makes me personally happy. Keep up the good work.

Scott
 

br360

Participant
Joined
May 31, 2014
Messages
52
There are no more file edits for extensions as of phpBB 3.1; they are completely drop-in.

We have changed to a fixed release cycle and our current goals are to massively overhaul the UI for 3.2 and 3.3. Brand new style is coming too.
Finally got around to installing 3.1.2 today, and have to give you guys credit for making the extensions so much easier to install. Nicely done.
 

Erin Nicole

Habitué
Joined
Jul 13, 2014
Messages
1,051
Can it really be worse than a program that seems to get hacked every other week? (mybb)
 

GTB

Tazmanian
Joined
Nov 24, 2005
Messages
4,031
phpBB 3.1 is way ahead of MyBB now. The days of MyBB having the edge over phpBB are gone with 3.1. What phpBB lacks most right now is a new look coming with 3.1, they need to ditch ProSilver sooner rather than later - because people are judging it as being same as 3.0 due to same theme look used.

I made a lot of changes to the ProSilver theme trying to improve it for people to use, even released my ProSilver Flat on phpBB.com.
 
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JQP

Dork
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
288
Boy, I couldn't agree more on that one! I disliked Prosilver enough that I never made it an option. Web sites don't look like that. Why would they want their message boards to? PhpBB doesn't even use it. I'd even suggest using a very plain, vanilla version with optional sidebars as the default. Let the users add all the fancy images and whatnot if they want them.
 
Joined
Sep 3, 2012
Messages
504
I've never really liked MyBB or SMF. So phpBB has always been my go-to, if the only option is free forum software. I haven't tried 3.1 yet, but I'm excited to do so soon. Though I'm probably a bias since I used to help with QA. :)
 

Phillip

The Priest
Joined
Aug 28, 2013
Messages
4,560
I've never really liked MyBB or SMF. So phpBB has always been my go-to, if the only option is free forum software. I haven't tried 3.1 yet, but I'm excited to do so soon. Though I'm probably a bias since I used to help with QA. :)

You will like 3.1 a little better than 3.0. I can promise you that.
 

Azareal

The AtomBB Overlord
Joined
Mar 7, 2010
Messages
1,141
Can it really be worse than a program that seems to get hacked every other week? (mybb)
I used to like MyBB, but I noticed that they were going down a bad path after the cancellation of MyBB 2.0 when they started working on 1.8.
One reason that I put so much time into AtomBB, although phpBB 3.1 seems to have some nice advances. It doesn't exactly make me go "wow" though compared to what was already on the market.

One reason that they gave was due to opposition from the big board owners (the two year long development phase of 1.8 says that they may have been understaffed), although what they don't seem to get is that people don't really want them to rewrite the entire software with a framework for no reason other than it's "modern" and they ignored anyone who proposed a gradual approach rather than one big rewrite that may be the end of the project.

As far as MyBB 1.8 is concerned, as a release it mainly made me go.. Meh. It was incredibly rushed and now, they're really feeling the consequences of it.
They probably thought.. "We got to get this out ASAP in order to remind the world of our existence. If there are problems then, we can just fix it in a patch!"
IB probably thought the same thing when they rushed out vB5 and that didn't go too well either. Luckily, MyBB didn't do this for a major release like 2.0.

Is a five year old theme supposed to impress me or anyone? If people wanted to use an Apart theme then, they could have downloaded it and installed it on their sites like they were able to do for five years.

phpBB 3.1 is way ahead of MyBB now. The days of MyBB having the edge over phpBB are gone with 3.1. What phpBB lacks most right now is a new look coming with 3.1, they need to ditch ProSilver sooner rather than later - because people are judging it as being same as 3.0 due to same theme look used.

I made a lot of changes to the ProSilver theme trying to improve it for people to use, even released my ProSilver Flat on phpBB.com.
I don't think phpBB 3.1 is THAT good. It still lacks some polish compared to MyBB 1.6. I have yet to hear about weekly security issues about phpBB 3.1 though in comparison to MyBB 1.8.
 

GTB

Tazmanian
Joined
Nov 24, 2005
Messages
4,031
I also think MyBB 1.8 was rushed, like they felt the need to prove a point. They flew through only a few Beta's (no RC's if memory serves) and went to Gold very quickly indeed, beating even phpBB 3.1 to it. But they was very late in the game starting development going on 1.8 vs phpBB 3.1, really to do it.

When you look at the number of Beta and RC versions phpBB 3.1 went through in comparison before hitting gold release. How MyBB managed to it with just a few Betas and such a short time frame doesn't stack up and looks rushed
 
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Frode789

Participant
Joined
Dec 16, 2014
Messages
91
phpbb is still a great piece of software, it is free and has quite a lot of addons. And it is great that the days of manual file edits with addons is gone in 3.1, that alone is a big step forward for phpbb.
 

zaboca

Adherent
Joined
Nov 16, 2012
Messages
270
I don't get why people hated the manual mod file edits of the previous versions. Yes other forum offerings had automated installers, but honestly, phpBB helped lay the foundation for me as a web developer. It was because of phpBB mods that I got the hang and familiarity of sifting through source code, finding/adding/editing/improving various lines of code. Yes it was tedious at times, but it was a learning process in the end.

In the end I'm thankful for it having been that way because back then, phpBB site owners you'd find to be more technically apt at running sites, for the simple reason that they had to modify the code manually. Compared to the "modern" way of running websites (primarily thanks to wordpress) where everything is upload and click next->next->next->congratulations. And then when something goes wrong, they're clueless. I guess things are obviously going to be easier going forward while the technical barrier to running and managing a site is lowered, but I still miss the part about having to go into the "nitty gritty" of it to help mould my site. Now it just seems to "desensitized" for lack of a better word.
 
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Azareal

The AtomBB Overlord
Joined
Mar 7, 2010
Messages
1,141
I don't get why people hated the manual mod file edits of the previous versions. Yes other forum offerings had automated installers, but honestly, phpBB helped lay the foundation for me as a web developer. It was because of phpBB mods that I got the hang and familiarity of sifting through source code, finding/adding/editing/improving various lines of code. Yes it was tedious at times, but it was a learning process in the end.

In the end I'm thankful for it having been that way because back then, phpBB site owners you'd find to be more technically apt at running sites, for the simple reason that they had to modify the code manually. Compared to the "modern" way of running websites (primarily thanks to wordpress) where everything is upload and click next->next->next->congratulations. And then when something goes wrong, they're clueless. I guess things are obviously going to be easier going forward while the technical barrier to running and managing a site is lowered, but I still the part about having to go into the "nitty gritty" of it to help mould my site. Now it just seems to "desensitized" for lack of a better word.
The problem is that it becomes much harder for developers to push big versions with many new features / changes with a mod based system, as they are much more likely to just break all of the mods across versions while plugins would be more resiliant.
 

Danielx64

Developer
Joined
Nov 8, 2009
Messages
3,315
The problem is that it becomes much harder for developers to push big versions with many new features / changes with a mod based system, as they are much more likely to just break all of the mods across versions while plugins would be more resiliant.
That a really good point, but on the other hand, having a rather poor API/plugin system can drive people away because they can't do what they want to do without having to edit the core.

(please note that the above comment was not directed at phpBB as it can apply to any systems)
 

Marshalrusty

phpBB Project Manager
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
190
Does phpBB still not have a quick reply? That seriously boggles my mind.
phpBB has had a quick reply built-in since at least 2008-9, and a plugin for a quick reply since 2001, before many of the other forum systems even existed. No mind boggling necessary.
 
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