A small FAQ thing which I will probably be shouted at for

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Pit
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A small FAQ thing which I will probably be shouted at for

Post by Pit »

Well, I just made this topic so people could refer other people to it when they asked a common question. I know it's pretty incomplete, I'll add more very soon, as more questons pop up or I am reminded of older ones. Most of it is copied shamelessly from other sources, so don't just go assuming I came up with all this myself. :P But anyway, here we go:

Information covered in this topic:
  • Part 1: What is phpBB 2.0, and where can I get it?
  • Part 2: Okay, so it's not totally finished. When will the official final version be out?
  • Part 3: What are the new features?
  • Part 4: How do I install phpBB 2.0/What do I need for phpBB 2.0?
  • Part 5: I want to change the look of my board. How do I start?
  • Part 6: Troubleshooting common problems.
  • Part 7: I have an error, so I looked at the troubleshooting and it was no help. What do I do now?
  • Part 8: Miscellaneous.



Part 1: What is phpBB 2.0, and where can I get it?

phpBB is a free, open source (this means you can modify it however you wish) piece of forum software, designed to be easy to understand, user freindly, and above all, the best forum on the internet. :D
phpBB 2.0 is the newest member of the phpBB family. It includes many new features, support for many different types of database, a powerful administration panel, full templateability (for easy customisation), strong security to protect your forums from hackers, high scalability, and all coded in php, the fastest, most reliable scripting language this side of.......somewhere.

There are two ways you can get phpBB 2.0. The first is via the sourceforge project page, which can be found here. This contains all the "landmark" released of phpBB 2.0, such as Beta-1 (NOT RECOMMENDED) and RC-2 (reasonably stable, hopefully no majorl bugs).

CVS is the other way of getting phpBB 2.0. It stands for "concurrent versions system", and it is a useful way for developers to store files that may constantly change. CVS is also the only way to get the very latest versions of phpBB 2.0. To use CVS under windows, you will need WinCVS (make sure you get the stable ersion). When you have installed it, open it, then click on Admin > Command line and type the following:

Code: Select all

cvs -d:pserver:anonymous@cvs.phpbb.sourceforge.net:/cvsroot/phpbb login
Press enter when it asks for a password.
Then (in the same command line), type:

Code: Select all

cvs -z3 -d:pserver:anonymous@cvs.phpbb.sourceforge.net:/cvsroot/phpbb co phpBB2
That will download all the latest phpBB 2.0 files to your machine and put it in a folder called phpBB2 under the current directory. Then, when you want to get updates, just go back into WinCVS, right click on "phpBB2", and select "Update selection".
An important point to remember with CVS is that there may be changes in the files which need you to do something special. For this reason, if you use CVS you should subscribe to the CVS checkins mailing list.

NOTE: PHPBB 2.0 HAS NOT YET BEEN OFFICIALLY RELEASED, SO YOU SHOULD NOT USE IT FOR ANYTHING OTHER THAN TESTING PURPOSES.



Part 2: Okay, so it's not totally finished. When will the official final version be out?

phpBB 2.0 will be released whenever it is released. There is no set date for this. The only thing that can speed it up is if everyone reports bugs in the correct way as soon as they notice them. Please do not post questions about when phpBB 2.0 will be released.



Part 3: What are the new features?

The main new features are:
Usergroups - users can now join "usergroups". Once they make a request to join a group, the "moderator" of the group will be notified, and can choose to accept or decline their request. The administrator can give users access to certain forums depending on whether or not they are in a particular group.

Verification of new registered users - there are now settings in the administration panel that allow you to choose between three different types of verification: "E-mail" verification means that upon registering, the user will be sent an e-mail with a link which they must follow before they can post. "Admin" verification means that you (the admin) will have to manually approve each new user. "None" means that as soon as the users have registered, they can log-in and post.

Database backup/restore - There is now an option in the admin panel that allows you to easily backup/restore the database, should something go very wrong, although this is unlikely to be necessary.

Avatars - Your users can now have the option to choose a small image that can go underneath their username in posts. You can control how large the pictures are, whether they are allowed to link to off-site avatars, decide whether they can/cannot upload avatars, and make special "galleries" with avatars that the users can choose from.

More BBcodes - BBcodes are similar to HTML, except they are easier to use, and less easy to do stupid things with. The different things that BBcodes can do are:
Make text bold/italic/underlined
Give text a specific size/colour
Create links that will open up in a new window, so the user can stay at your site even while they are following the links
Mark out a "quote", eg
blahblahblah

Mark out "code", in a similar way.
Create lists, like the one at the top of this topic
Make images appear in posts

Polls - Users, if you choose to allow them, can now post polls for other users to vote in. You will, like with normal posts, be able to edit these if you are a moderator/administrator. Normal users, whilst able to edit normal posts, cannot edit a poll once someone has voted.

Announcements - You, and your users if you allow them, can now post special announcement topics, which will appear at the top of every page in the forum you post them in.

Stickies - These are like announcements, except they will appear only on the first page of the forum they are in.

Forum Pruning - You can set (on a per forum basis) phpBB 2.0 to remove all topics from that have not been posted to in a certain number of days. You can also set how often phpBB will check.
A user's post counts will not decrease if their post is pruned.

Mass email - You now have the option to send all your users an email at once via the administration panel.

Users send email via board - If you enable this feature in the adminstration panel, instead of seeing each other's email addresses, users will simply see a link to a page which allows them to send an e-mail to that user. This way, everyone's email addresses are protected from spambots, and if the user who is sent the mail chooses, they can reply to the mail, and thus the first user will get their email address.

Pre-registration agreement - There is now a pre-registration agreement that all users must read and agree to before they can register. There is also a separate form for people under 13 to register.

Improved search - The search is now much more functional, and faster.

Create and import smilie .pak files - Another new feature is the ability to create and import .pak files for smilies. These are files that contain all the settings for the smilies, saving you the slow process of manually adding each smilie.



Part 4: How do I install/ upgrade to phpBB 2.0/What do I need for phpBB 2.0?

phpBB 2.0 has been made to be compatible with as many setups as possible. However, a bare minimum requirement for using is php 4. It will not work with php 3 or less. [Editor's Note: Most (if not all) of phpBB2 was designed to work on PHP3, however it has not been tested, nor can we support it. If you try it on a PHP3 server and it doesn't work, don't come running to us. You have been warned. I'm quite interested if someone does get it working, though. :) -dougk_ff7] Your host should be able to tell you what version (if any at all) of php their servers are running. Or, if you still cannot find out, save this code as a .php file on your site and open it in a browser:

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<?php
phpinfo();
?>
You should get a nice big page, with the php version right at the top. If you see simply the original code/an error message, either your host does not support php, or there is an error with your host's version of php.

phpBB 2.0 also requires some form of database that can integrate with php. It supports many types:
  • mySQL
  • MSSQL (both normally and via ODBC)
  • PostgreSQL
  • MS Access (via ODBC only)
Installing

You must first have a database to install into, and the user details for it. Your host may have given you a database when you signed up, if so you can use that. Otherwise, you will need to create one. Ask your host or see the homepage of your database type (eg http://www.mysql.com) for details on how to do this, or ask someone here who knows.
If you are installing to a database that uses ODBC, e.g. MS Access you should first create a DSN for it before installing.
To install, open install.php in your browser. Fill in the required fields, and choose the correct options from the drop-down boxes. You should not experience any errors, if you do, make sure all the settings you put in are correct. If it still fails to install, try updating your phpBB 2.0 files, then try asking for help.
Once the database has been properly prepared, the installer will try to put the correct settings into the config.php file. If it finds it cannot do this, you will be given the option to download the correct file and upload it yourself.
There you go, if everything went well you should now have a working copy of phpBB 2.0!

Upgrading

If you have already used a previous version of phpBB, you may want to upgrade. Before upgrading, you should make a backup of the database you are using (again, see the database type's official site, or ask). Then simply enter all the correct values, (make sure you choose "upgrade" rather than "install", and hope it works.



Part 5: I want to change the look of my board. How do I start?

The simplest way is in the admistration panel, where you can edit some colours and fonts. But the best way is by editing the templates, which can be found, surprisingly enough, in the /templates directory. subSilver is under /templates/subSilver, Euclid is under /templates/Euclid, etc. The template (.tpl) files themselves are just html and css. Brackets {} denotate a variable, ie {U_FAQ} is the Url of the FAQ. These will be replaced by the correct values when the template is "parsed" by the php script.
If you are stuck, people here will probably be ready to help.



Part 6: Troubleshooting common problems.

Problem - I get this message: "phpBB : Critical Error - Couldn't open PSO template config file"

Explanation - You have accidentally switched either your style or the default board style into one that does not exist (the files needed are no longer there).

Solution - Create a .php file with the following code:

Code: Select all

<?php
$phpbb_root_path = "./";
include($phpbb_root_path . 'extension.inc');
include($phpbb_root_path . 'config.'.$phpEx);
mysql_query("UPDATE ".$table_prefix."config SET config_value = 1 WHERE config_name = 'default_style'");
echo "The fix should now be complete"
?>
Save it in your phpBB 2.0 directory, and open it in a browser. It should do all the work. NOTE: This will only work for mySQL users. I do not have any other dbms to test it on, if someone else would like to contribute fixes for others, it would be appreciated.
Once you have done this, go into the admistration panel -> styles admin -> management and delete all the PSO styles.

More coming soon [edit](wow, I said this so long ago, and did more come? :P)[/edit]


Part 7: I have an error, so I looked at the troubleshooting and it was no help. What do I do now?

Well, obviously the troubleshooting is not much help right now, but if there is a bug in the script and searching extensively reveals nothing, you can submit a bug report. Bug reports should not be posted to the forums, instead you should use the sourceforge bug tracking system. For information on that, please see here.



Part 8: Miscallaneous.

Umm, well, nothing to do in this part 'cept say good luck and don't ask stupid questions in the wrong place. :D Feel free to ask me stuff, I'll try and put it in. Also feel free to shout, scream etc if I am just being annoying, it's late at night and I feel silly, so don't blame me if I act like an idiot. ;)

UPDATE
Much as I love this topic :D...I think it is time to let it go, as it seems to me to be getting slightly obsolete and taking up space...Topic, I bid you farewell, and good luck on your journey into the uncharted pages of this forum...at least until such time as I can be bothered to update again...Goodbye topic, we had some good times together, I'm sorry I was such a bad poster to you...
Last edited by Pit on Fri Jan 04, 2002 1:27 am, edited 6 times in total.

sage
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Post by sage »

Nice work - but you forgot "When will it be available?" ;)

--edit--
(I just want to make sure that everyone knows I was making a (non?) funny.. although it is probably the most frequently asked question :) )
Last edited by sage on Sun Dec 16, 2001 9:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

Pit
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Post by Pit »

Whoops.
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A small FAQ thing which I will probably be shouted at for

Post by Teach »

Great work! :D

One minor typo:
The Black Pit - in Part 3 wrote: save this code as a .php file on your site and opes it in a browser:

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Post by DMartin »

Great - and very helpful!
Parentheses {} denotate a variable


However, these are brackets {} and these are parentheses ()

:)
DeAnne Martin

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Post by Pit »

Heh, I suppose there always will be typos when posting at 2am. But I just felt I had to do something useful for my 1000th post, since all the others were generally no more than three lines long and pointless. :P
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broker
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Maket this easy to find

Post by broker »

You should make this as an announcement in this fourm
and also place it somwehere on ohBB site so people can
easily find it.

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Post by M Elliot »

DMartin wrote: Great - and very helpful!
Parentheses {} denotate a variable


However, these are brackets {} and these are parentheses ()

:)


actually, these [ ] are brackets, these are braces { } and these are parentheses ( ) :)

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Post by gameofhit »

M Elliot wrote: actually, these [ ] are brackets, these are braces { } and these are parentheses ( ) :)


Well, in all fairness, {} are often called curly brackets and braces, and [] are often called square brackets and just "brackets"

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Post by SHS` »

Made it sticky. :D
Jonathan “SHS`” Stanley • 史德信
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Pit
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Post by Pit »

Hmm, suppose I'd better get to work on that troubleshooting bit then...
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Post by Nothlit »

Brackets {} denotate a variable, ie {U_FAQ} is the Url of the FAQ. These will be replaced by the correct values when the template is "parsed" by the php script.


Forgive me if this is staring me in the face somewhere, but for those of us who would like to modify/create templates, it would be nice to have a big fat list of these variables somewhere. Are they in one of the files somewhere, or is it a big mystery? :?

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Post by dhn »

Nice Work, Pit, I think I will put the FAQ in my signature.

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Post by Pit »

Hmmm, it's not sticky any more. Either someone changed it or it's because I edited it and I don't have the power to post stickies...eh, that's life I suppose.
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Post by Gud »

The Black Pit wrote: Hmmm, it's not sticky any more. Either someone changed it or it's because I edited it and I don't have the power to post stickies...eh, that's life I suppose.


Why aren't you a moderator? You deserve it :?

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