Free message board needed

I’m looking for factual answers, but also opinions. GQ, or IMHO? I’ll try GQ…

My webpage has a bulletin board that is not very user-friendly. It also becomes corrupted from time to time, and needs to be reset by the host; messages are always lost when this happens. The host will not support any other message board on their server. It has been suggested that I try YABB. I have nothad a chance to look into it yet.

Does anyone know where I can get a message board similar to SDMB’s that is A) free, and B) hosted on a free server. (My site is non-commercial, so I can’t afford to be paying for a message board.)


I’ve got 2 website set up with message boards. The MBs I use are from Proboards.

I can’t say enough about Proboards. There is a banner ad at the top, but that’s it. I’ve never had any problems with it.

If you’d like to see how it looks, PM me and I’ll give you a link.

AFAIK the two best free message boards are Yabb and []Invision]( [url) Board

Take a look here for an example of Invision.

Thanks! I’ll look into them. :slight_smile:

Check out the CGI Resource Index listing of Buletin Boards. . They have a great listing of free, shareware, and pay BBS’s as well as ratings for each one.

I can’t say enough about tForum. Plus, I helped develop some of the code, so you know it’s good. :wink:

I can’t say enough good things about phpBB. It’s got easy installation, terrific drop-in templates available from multiple sources (if you don’t want to design your own), great plug-ins (with more being developed almost daily) and a really vibrant community of users and developers who offer great support. Obligatory disclosure: I run five different communities using phpBB software.

I’ll also pipe in for phpBB. One caveat: it works well on an Apache server, but I’ve heard it’s slow on Windows servers. Other than that, it’s easy to use, easy to install (my hosting service has a one-click “install phpBB” thingy that does it for you, but even doing it manually isn’t hard), and has just about all the features you’d want.

The free server part is going to be tricky, because most don’t have PHP or MySQL capabilities, and they offer very limited monthly bandwidth.

I’ve found that Proboards and ezForums bulletin boards tend not to get much traffic compared to their vBulletin, UBB and phpBB cousins. Personally, I’m hesitant to register on a Proboard or EZForums site; what’s going to happen to my e-mail address?

My advice: skip two fast food meals a month, get a decent $10/month hosting plan, and install phpBB. It’s not an exact vBulletin 3 clone, but it comes close enough, and there are more than enough mods, hacks and themes available. Invision Board is free, but it’s not open source, and users pay for support. There are also bulletin board plugins for open source portal packages such as PHP-Nuke and PostNuke.

You will have to put up with ads if you don’t pay, but I’ve always liked EZBoard. It’s widely used.

Or even better, skip one fast food meal, and go with the $5/month plan at Verve Hosting. Someone on the SDMB recommended Verve to me a while back, and I went with them and have been extremely happy. For $5/month you get a lot.

A third vote here for phpBB. Very user friendly for visitors and installation and maintenance is a breeze. All you need is mySQL on the host and the ability to execute php - which is almost every server out there.

Worth taking a look at, anyway.

If you can afford $65 a year, we’ve had good luck with Bravenet. Their free service is horrid with popup ads, but give them a few bucks to run things and it’s quite nice with the ads gone.