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Some questions regarding features and plugins/addons support

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  • Some questions regarding features and plugins/addons support

    I'm about to start on a big project for a client, and a big part of this project is a community section where the members (mostly writers) can exchange ideas, see upcoming events, read newsletters and announcements and see the profile (biography, photo, interview etc.) of a featured writer, chosen by the admin staff. There's a new featured writer every month or so, which means an archive feature would be required.

    I have a couple of specific questions, as I'm a bit unsure whether vBulletin can handle all this:
    1. Would it be easy to divide the forum part into two seperate sections (both members only), and limit the access to these sections only to those who have been given the required permissions by the admin staff?
    2. Is there a newsletter feature/addon/plugin for vBulletin?
    3. Is there by any chance a map plugin, where each member could be shown as a point on this map?
    4. What about an event feature (see/browse upcoming events, as well as an archive.) Would that be possible, either through vBulletin itself or by using an addon/plugin?
    5. And lastly: is vBulletin more powerful than Invision Power Board, and more suited to fit my requirements?

    Thanks in advance for all your help.
    Last edited by syff; Mon 17 Jul '06, 8:00am. Reason: Better title

  • #2
    1. If you are refering to giving specific access to differnt forums and categorys based on usergroups, this is a built-in feature.

    2. There is a mass email system as well as a mailing list generator. All emails go out in plaintext. If this doesn't suite your needs is the best place to search.

    3. Possibly, we do not provide support for third party code and addons, your best bet is searching

    5. More powerful might be a hard specific question to anwser. There is a large ammount of prefrence in choosing software regardless of how much more powerful it might be. In my personal opinion it is, and its possible vBulletin might suite your needs better . I encourage you to checkout the demo here.


    • #3
      3. There was a free addon posted at our modification website (Member to Member modification support). (You can view the description here: VBGooglemap Member Edition)

      4. vBulletin has the buildin option to run multiple Calendars.
      Last edited by Marco van Herwaarden; Mon 17 Jul '06, 8:13am.
      Want to take your board beyond the standard vBulletin features?
      Visit the official Member to Member support site for vBulletin Modifications:


      • #4
        Thanks for your quick reply. I'll definitely check out and search through their archives to see whether the plugins/addons I require have been written yet.

        Also, I have one more question: Since I'm not the one administrating the site when it's finished, I'm wondering how easily the forum can be updated from one version to another. I've tried phpBB before, and it was a pain in the ass to update.

        Is it a one-click update from the administration panel (maybe too much to ask of? I don't know ...), or do you upload the files manually through FTP?


        • #5
          Upgrading a stock forum consists of,

          Backing up (you should always backup regardless of what platform you are on)
          Uploading new files
          Running the upgrade.php script, it tells you what happens and asks you to click next.

          Normally the whole process takes under 5-10 min assuming you have a decent upload speed.


          • #6
            Ok, thanks. I can live with that :-)

            I just have to do some more research, and then I'm off to buy a license and start exploring the forum.

            Thanks for all your help!


            • #7
              Looks like 30 min later and you've made your choice Welcome.


              • #8
                Welcome, indeed! : )
                Toddler from Hell


                • #9
                  I like to add that you can upgrade very easily if you have plugins installed.

                  Easy as 1, 2, 3
                  1. disable the plugins
                  2. upload the new files overwriting your old ones
                  3. run upgrade.php

                  Then you can enable the plugins one by one to make it easier to pinpoint which plugin causes problems.


                  • #10
                    In answer to your first question, vBulletin allows Additional/Secondary Usergroups which allows you to "layer" access privileges.

                    You can restrict the Registered usergroup to just basic access and then add users to Beta Tester, Developer, Blue Group, Red Group, etc. etc. each of which elevates their permissions. A user can belong to multiple usergroups.

                    User 1, User 2, and User 3 can each have a slightly (or significantly) different view of the exact same forum. User 1 might not see forum 2 and 4. User 2 might see them but not be able to post there. User 3 might have full access. Tons of flexibility here.

                    As for upgrading vBulletin, if you have no modified any PHP files -- and with the current versions of vBulletin, you can change all the templates, style, color scheme, and use Plugins/Products and Addons all without modifying PHP files -- then you just re-upload all the source PHP files, run an upgrade script, and you're updated. You don't have to edit 20 PHP files like you did with phpBB.

                    Figuring out which Plugins might not work with the newest version of vBulletin is made easier if, every time you download and install a Plugin, you keep a little folder on your PC which contains a URL/weblink to the posting about that Plugin. Then when vBulletin 3.6 or some new version comes out, you can check back there and see if other people are having problems with 3.6 and if there is an update.


                    • #11
                      In 3.6 you can add the url for the product/modification to the product details in the Control Panel (if the author hasn't done so already). That then hyperlinks the product description direct to the relevant thread.
                      Baby, I was born this way


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