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What constitutes a 'big board'?

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  • What constitutes a 'big board'?

    Here's my situation. I run a board that has a little under 200 active members, (300 total), maybe 30 concurrent when it's busy, but in the 9 months it's been running it's already up over 400,000 posts. We run without safety nets, (no 30 seconds between posts, no minimum post length, etc.), and have a few add-ons like an arcade, FlashChat etc. Hitting 'New Posts' every 5 seconds is a particular favourite.

    We're running on a dedicated server, that has a 2.6MHz Celeron processor and 512MB ram. Powerful stuff, huh? I'm planning on switching to an AMD Athlon 3200 with 1GB when the contract is up, to help with the performance, (which isn't bad as it stands - only ocassionally do we get a server load of above 0.8).

    I'm trying to figure out where we rank in all this madness so that I can make my ill-informed decisions slightly more rationally! I checked out the Server Configuration forum and everyone seems to be talking about 1 million plus posts, thousands of users, 200 concurrent, and dual core/dual processor servers. I'm seeing a tenth of the membership of these boards, but half the posts already, in only 9 months - all this on a poxy Celeron!

    So how do I figure out where we fit in, so that I can make sense of the threads on here? Small board? Big board? Busy board?

  • #2
    Most important is the concurrenct users online statistic, I think. If you are searching a lot, mysql would be happy if it could have the full database into RAM.

    An Athlon 3200 1 GB RAM will give you much more speed but I do not know if you really need it. Only upgrade if you are unhappy with the speed.

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    • #3
      Please post a Server Configuration request in the Server Configuration forum. Make sure to provide all information asked in [Server Optimisation]: Required info for optimisation requests [August 4, 2006]
      Want to take your board beyond the standard vBulletin features?
      Visit the official Member to Member support site for vBulletin Modifications: www.vbulletin.org

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Marco van Herwaarden View Post
        Please post a Server Configuration request in the Server Configuration forum. Make sure to provide all information asked in [Server Optimisation]: Required info for optimisation requests [August 4, 2006]
        Sorry, this wasn't really supposed to be a server configuration request. I was trying to gauge how our board comapres to a more traditional forum in terms of usage, so that when I go and read through the other forums I can make better sense of them, as to how the responses might apply to our situation. It just so happened that Server Conf. was the last stop I had made and so was fresh in my mind. My bad.

        The last paragraph is what I'm really wondering about, regardless of the server it's on.

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        • #5
          For us all our customers are the same, and we don't differentiate between small or big boards.

          Also there is no standard definition of a "big board".
          Want to take your board beyond the standard vBulletin features?
          Visit the official Member to Member support site for vBulletin Modifications: www.vbulletin.org

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          • #6
            I this approach entirely right though? wouldn't you listen more closely to someone who runs a board with a few hundred thousand users rather than someone who has just started using vBulletin?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Marco van Herwaarden View Post
              For us all our customers are the same, and we don't differentiate between small or big boards.

              Also there is no standard definition of a "big board".
              Well I do understand that there is no standard definition, which is partly why this is in the Chit Chat forum, so that I can hopefully gauge responses from various members as to their views. I'd also have to point out that the first sticky in this very forum is titled "Huge vBulletins - 1 million posts and greater", so at least someone has their own idea about this. This gets me back to part of my OP when I noted that these 1 million+ posts boards also typically have thousands of members, compared to my 300.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Greps View Post
                I this approach entirely right though? wouldn't you listen more closely to someone who runs a board with a few hundred thousand users rather than someone who has just started using vBulletin?
                Why? Do you pay more for your license than I do? And why shouldn't it be based on number of posts instead of number of users? Sounds like a challenge to me! I'll put my 300 rabid users against 1,000 of yours any day of the week! And I haven't even started drinking yet!

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                • #9
                  I think a big board should mainly be based of active users online posting. because anybody can create fake accounts and build a massive database up of threads. Then turn around and say they have a million posts, so they have a big board.

                  I really think it should be much more user activity based, rather than thread count based. I've seen some huge boards, but after reading threads and seeing there just rubbish spam posted and no active users online. It's so obvious there just fake sites trying to be listed in big boards.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Gary Bolton View Post
                    I think a big board should mainly be based of active users online posting. because anybody can create fake accounts and build a massive database up of threads. Then turn around and say they have a million posts, so they have a big board.

                    I really think it should be much more user activity based, rather than thread count based. I've seen some huge boards, but after reading threads and seeing there just rubbish spam posted and no active users online. It's so obvious there just fake sites trying to be listed in big boards.
                    I'm not trying to advertise my board as a big 'un, or bolster its image in any way. There are no fake accounts, no spamming, but because of the lack of restraints my users are free to post as often as they like with just a smilie if that's what they want. As such we've gotten 400K posts from just a relatively few users. A metric that combines active users/threads/posts/number of queries would be kinda handy I think. My board definitely has a small user base, but with no limit to posting or searching I really don't know what effect it has on the MySQL. I'm pretty sure that it's MySQL intensive considering its small user base.

                    Coincidently Big Boards does have the ability to sort by posts/user I think, which will give a different perspective on things.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DaveAK View Post
                      Why? Do you pay more for your license than I do? And why shouldn't it be based on number of posts instead of number of users? Sounds like a challenge to me! I'll put my 300 rabid users against 1,000 of yours any day of the week! And I haven't even started drinking yet!
                      the number of users was just an example. my point was though, a webmaster who is capable of running a large board would be more familiar with the technical and functional demands of a script. a large user base would contribute to the experience of using a certain forum software, and the developers should know better than not to listen to someone with hundreds of thousands of users (or tens of millions of posts) asking for a certain feature.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Greps View Post
                        the number of users was just an example. my point was though, a webmaster who is capable of running a large board would be more familiar with the technical and functional demands of a script. a large user base would contribute to the experience of using a certain forum software, and the developers should know better than not to listen to someone with hundreds of thousands of users (or tens of millions of posts) asking for a certain feature.
                        Ahh! Ok then. But I'm in the position of being a small user asking a question of the community, not giving advice to developers. Should I just leave this vB stuff to the big boys?

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                        • #13
                          oh no, I was just questioning Marco's post, that's it.

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                          • #14
                            I think the relevance point here, for my information, is that in the help of the settings it keeps referring to a big board - "if you run a large forum you should select no in this option...", "this will only impact large forums..." so if vB are referring to large forums in advising what settings you should select then perhaps it may be advantagous to know what a "Large Forum" really is? - just a thought
                            Best regards
                            Ian
                            "Everyone wants to fly, but some people just haven't realised it yet"
                            www.recreationalflying.com
                            NOTE: This post remains solely the property of the poster and any reference to it is done so by the acceptance of this condition. Also elements of whatever I posted were previously used by a competing site so the post is also made on the condition that it can not be used by Glenn Inwood of Cowra NSW Australia or anyone associated with him.

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                            • #15
                              I's rather see quality boards instead of big boards.

                              Quality being good content, and users that get along well.
                              Radio and TV Player for vBulletin

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