vBulletin vs. phpBB


Sr Hunter
Who made the decision to use vBulletin for TDH? I've been getting less and less thrilled with phpBB over time, and am starting to look at what's out there.

I'm a fairly proficient PHP programmer, so I'm pretty comfortable hacking things up / fixing my own bugs / etc... but it seems like the core of phpBB is just wonky. Lack of moderator tools, lack of security checking at places that it really ought to have it, etc...

RPF uses Invision IP Board, TDH uses vBulletin, and right now I'm using phpBB for the 501st sites I manage.

I'm curious about what went into the decision. Why this was chosen, what features it offered that made it compelling, etc...

Anyone feel like geeking about forum software?
Tyler and I had a lot to do with that decision as we handle a lot of the infrastructure for the website. The main reason for using vBulletin was ease of installation, the ability to migrate data from the old board, which was more or less a highly hacked phpbb board, the support offered for vbulletin, the community that uses vbulletin, and the hacks available. Honestly a lot of it came down to the support as I have always handled the technical side of the board to some degree, but we were left hanging with the last board and had a board that had been severely modified and no one wanted to touch it with a 10 foot pole. We couldn't upgrade. We couldn't move servers. We couldn't even get a good backup. vBulletin provided us a path that we couldn't find anywhere else.

I don't want to make it sound as if that was the only reason. I believe vBulletin is a great product. They are on the ball with releasing patches for security and seem to genuinely be interested in what the community needs. For TDH's purposes, we didn't want a lot of bells and whistles. We simply wanted a very stable core for everyone to be able to post to. I think vB has fit that bill very well.

I looked at Invision Board and got involved when the RPF moved to it. Personally, I didn't care for it as much as vB but it seems to have fit their needs fairly well.
Personally out of all the boards that I frequent I like the TDH boards the best (in terms of software, well I like the forums the best too but that is a different thread). While the RPF forums are nice I just find that The TDH boards are eaiser to use. (the another board uses the same boards btw). My local 501st board uses some older simpler software that sucks something fierce. I am glad to come here and get simplicity while still having more options then I know what to do with.
Yeah, we had some lovely security issues on the NEG forums over the weekend with emails getting sent out from secure areas to folks who shouldn't have seen them. Great fun... Brian's been a life saver to us with them but we're thinking of moving to something better.

Thanks Art!
Vbulletin is better in my opinion. I set up the PHPBB for the Imperial Gunner Corps and there seem to be more retily available intergrated features for Vbulletin but there both open source and the possibities of what you can do is infinite with both, its just a matter of modding it to do what you want, so perhaps I am just lazy... LOL :)
I admin a site set up in vBulletin...it's great. I've been getting on the admins at HVM to move from ezBoard to vBulletin...but just can't get them to budge.
VBulletin is the best in my opinion. It's all simple, easy to see and fast. I'm part of the admin staff at ultimate metal and we rarely have any problems with new users not knowing how to do things, unlike some of the other forums I've visited.
I think phpbb is the best bet if you are not demanding feature packed.
Lots of hacks and help can be found in their forum as well.

Anyway, their next version is looking good so it might be possible to switch later and won't have much hassle.
Demo : free forums
Here's something I can talk about!! lol
I've ran a few gaming websites over the past 13 years and I've always wound up using phpbb and the newer versions are definately really powerful and work great for free software, but VBulletin is leaps and bounds better in all ways, I've found in my experiences. The only thing that's ever stopped me is the price at the time for vB. If you don't care, free or have to pay some bucks for it, then my suggestion is vB. Should I ever run a site for mass consumption again that needs forums, I'll more than likely go with that.

Good luck!

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