A Step-by-step Guide to Create a Forum
To create a forum you need not know much about PHP. With a little knowledge on the working of databases or learn more here How To Create A Database, you’ll be able to create a forum for your website in no time.
To make things easier there’s an open-source script, you can install phpBB easily on most Web servers. It makes creating a forum a much less difficult task.
1. Know your System Requirements to Create a Forum
We should know already that PHPBB is written using the language PHP you need to know whether your Web server supports this language before you can create a forum.
You can know if it supports PHP by asking your Web host or by uploading a particular script to your server.
Without proper knowledge of your system requirements, you can end up having various problems. This could cause problems when you’re trying to create a forum.
2. Upload the PHPBB Files to Create a Forum
Once you’ve downloaded and decompressed the files for phpBB, everything you need to upload when you have to create a forum should be in the directory called PHPBB2
To create a forum the only real requirement is to make sure that the directory structure is preserved.
Use your favorite FTP program to upload the files to your server. Ensure that you transfer all non-graphic files in ASCII mode.
Most FTP programs will do this automatically for you, based on the file extensions.
Configure your files to transfer all of them with the extensions .php, .tpl, .inc, .htm and .cfg as text files.
Once you’ve completed the upload, change the permissions on the config.php file so that they’re writable by all.
You also have the option of saving a new config.php file and then overwriting the original.
3. Get Under Way with the Installation in Order to Create a Forum
To set-up phpBB on your server you need some information.
Database Server Hostname/DSN, Database Name, Database Username, Database Password and Admin Email Address are some of the required information.
The host name will be the domain name at which your database is hosted. If instead you’re using ODBC to connect, you will need the connection name.
If you are unsure about your situation, clarify the specifics with your Web host.
The database name is, quite simply, the name of the database you’re planning to use. You may use an existing database or create a new one.
To create a new database, you may again need to speak with your Web host.
If you’re using MySQL with phpMyAdmin, then it’s a relatively simple matter.
And if you’re using an existing database, table names will be created with a distinctive prefix so that the phpBB tables are readily identifiable.
The username and password need no explanation. The admin email is the email address to which you want questions relating to your bulletin board to be sent.
4. Installation of the Software to Create a Forum
Installation is as simple as pointing your browser towards the install.php file.
Fill in the text boxes and press the Start Install button. It should finish within seconds. They will also create database files for you.
Shut down your browser, and don’t forget to delete the directories called contrib and install.phpBB won’t run until you do so.
Now during the installation, they will ask to download the “config.php” file, you must now upload it to the phpBB2 directory, overwriting the existing file.
5. Administering your Forum
Styles Admin is probably the next area you’ll want to look at, but before you do, go to the phpBB site and see what other styles you might like to download.
Upon installation, the phpBB default style, subSilver, is the only one available, but any number of styles may be installed.
After downloading them from the phpBB site, you need to upload your new styles to the Templates directory, which is directly below the phpBB2 directory.
After this, new styles must be installed from the Administration panel by going to Styles Admin > Add.
Once you’ve found a theme you like, you can further customize it from the administration panel by choosing Style Admin > Management > Edit.
You can associate a theme with an entirely new Cascading Style Sheet (CSS), or you can edit the existing one.
6. Customizing your Forum
Once you’ve settled on a style, you might want to further customize it in ways that aren’t available through the Administration panel. For example, you might want to display your own logo, rather than the phpBB logo.
These are important aspects
If you have some knowledge of HTML, you can implement small changes without much hassle.
Any changes you wish to make to the appearance of the header can be addressed by making changes to the file called overall_header.tpl.
Since this file can include every page within a style so all your changes will take effect throughout the whole bulletin board.
Some other changes can be relatively easy to make.
These are the main steps that you have to follow to create a forum. You can create a forum on various platforms.
We’ve given you steps on how to create a forum using phpBB, considering that it’s the most user-friendly and easy-to-understand platform by far.
You can find me cooking up new ideas to keep myself occupied since I hate staying idle.
I also hope that one day I write something worth plagiarizing 🙂