New to forums.. please help!

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lwexler
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New to forums.. please help!

Post by lwexler » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:48 pm

Hi,

I'd like to start/create a phpbb forum on a website domain that i just bought. I also signed up for free web hosting with google cloud. i downloaded the phpBB-3.2.7 zip folder but have no clue how to get the forum up and running on my website so that i can start customizing it. Can someone help me please? Tried reading some of the introduction guidelines on installations but can't seem to figure it out.

Thanks!

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stevemaury
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by stevemaury » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:06 pm

Have you registered a domain name? Do you have FTP access to your website folder? Does Google cloud provide a database? You do realize that it is only free for a trail period?
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by lwexler » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:44 pm

I bought a domain on godaddy. Not sure if i have FTP access or if google cloud provides a database. How do I find this out? Google Cloud said it was a 12 months trial.

Thanks for your help.

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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by stevemaury » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:54 pm

You will need to find out your FTP credentials. FTP is used to upload files to your host. You will also need to know your database server name. Then you can create a database and user with all Privileges. Most hosts provide a database wizard or similar name to create a database and database user.

If your domain name from GoDaddy is example.com, you need to decide whether you want your phpBB's board to be at example.com, or at example.com/(as an example, forum). If the latter, create that directory in your public_html folder (also called www or http_docs).

Upload the download of the phpBB files to wherever you want the board to be, browser to the /install folder and follow the directions.
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EA117
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by EA117 » Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:45 pm

Mark Hamill made a post about how to setup phpBB on Google Cloud recently, if you hadn't already seen that.

lwexler
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by lwexler » Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:01 pm

Awesome, thanks! I’ll check this out

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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by lwexler » Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:25 pm

Thanks again for your help. that was helpful.

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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by lwexler » Sun Jul 21, 2019 10:09 pm

I have gone ahead with the installation of XAMPP and followed all the instructions as I agree that all I want is to start setting up a forum so this seems the be the best approach. If I start this on my local computer, does that mean it won't be accessible publicly for members to register & contribute?

After following all the instructions, I managed to create the database, but I don't know how to access the forum. The last set of instructions were:

"From here, browse your computer to C:\xampp\htdocs. Create a new directory named phpbb. Copy the phpBB files to this directory. Next, open your browser and enter the URL in your browser: https://localhost/phpbb"

I found the folder "htdocs" and copied all the files in that folder into a new folder called "phpBB" and then went to https://localhost/phpbb. However, i get the caption "Index of /phpbb" Apache/2.4.39 (Win64) OpenSSL/1.1.1c PHP/7.3.7 Server at localhost Port 443 and don't see an actual webpage

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Lumpy Burgertushie
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:28 am

you were not supposed to copy the htdocs contents to the phpbb folder or whatever that was.
undo that.

then you have to download the phpbb zip file from the downloads button at the top of this page.
unzip it on your computer. you will then have a folder named phpBB3
copy that folder and put it in the htdocs directory.

then go to localhost/phpBB3

from there you will see the install page and follow the instructions there.


and no, people will not be able to access your board if you install it on your computer.

you really need to just get a hosting plan and forget about google cloud or xamp etc.

go to https://webhostingtalk.com find a hosting company that you want.

get your hosting account setup with help from the support at the hosting company.
then, download the phpbb zip file from here. unzip it on your computer.
get a ftp program and learn how to use it to connect to your new hosting company account. the support will help you with that.
then, using that ftp, upload the phpBB3 folder to your new hosting account.

now, using the admin panel of your hosting account ( usually called cpanel ) find the database section and create a new database. create a new user for that database with a password. you host support can help you with this.

once you have all that in place, then you can install phpBB


if you are serious about having this board , this is the way to do it. none of the free stuff( hosting etc. ) will work very well and may simply disappear without warning.


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EA117
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by EA117 » Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:30 am

XAMPP and a local installation of the web server & phpBB is a great learning tool. It's also indispensable when you're trying to test out a major upgrade of your board, and want to test against a copy of your board using XAMPP on your local machine in order to work out the kinks, before attempting to do it to your actual live board. More on that later.


One issue with the page you're seeing when you visit https://localhost/phpbb is the fact that you downloaded the PHP 7.3 version of XAMPP. That is indeed the latest version, but its not a version of PHP that the phpBB software supports yet. In order to run the current phpBB 3.2.7 release in a XAMPP installation, you'll need to download and use the PHP 7.2.20 version of XAMPP instead of the latest PHP 7.3.7 version.

Note Bitnami has a full XAMPP-plus-phpBB package that you can download and install both XAMPP and phpBB in one shot. Bitnami is the same provider of the Google Cloud application package for phpBB that was referenced in Mark Hamill's post. You will get to a successful phpBB installation using either the Bitnami or non-Bitnami approach; Bitnami has simply "already done more of the steps for you", which you'll have to do manually if downloading XAMPP and installing phpBB separately.

If you download and install the PHP 7.2.x version of XAMPP, you'll copy all the phpBB files to the htdocs folder again, and then start with the phpBB new installation instructions. You weren't really expecting to see anything at https://localhost/phpbb yet, because phpBB is not installed yet, didn't have a database yet, etc. But you were expecting to see the installer at https://localhost/phpbb/install, once you reached step 5 of the installation instructions.

Note that when you reach the "database settings" page of the phpBB installer, this page is prompting you for the database user, database password and database name of a database you created for phpBB to use, prior to starting the phpBB installer. This is not prompting you for something the phpBB installer is going to "create for you" like on most of the other installation pages.

If you use the Bitnami package for installing XAMPP and phpBB, all that is already done, and you don't use the phpBB installation instructions at all. The database and other details were already taken care of. When you go to http://localhost/phpbb/ you'll find phpBB already installed and available, and you're able to login with the founder account you specified during Bitnami installation.


Yes, by default this local XAMPP-based installation is only going to be accessible to you and not the public. Technically you can configure your DNS name and your ISP's router/gateway to actually make that local XAMPP installation accessible to the public. But that's unlikely to be the smartest way to do it, unless you really are committed to "running the server from your home."

What's subjectively "not smart" about it is that you'll typically want to get a static IP address from your ISP. (Or resign yourself having your board offline periodically whenever your ISP assigns you a new IP address & you haven't updated your DNS name to point to the new address yet.) And/or the site will be offline whenever your computer or power is off. And how buttoned-down the security is on your XAMPP web server is now "your problem" rather than a hosting provider that is doing it for you & a thousand other customers. Not to mention that if your web server does get compromised, it's your local computer that becomes exposed, and all the important personal data that might entail.

So no, unless you have some really specific requirement to run your board from home -- and/or the purpose of the board really is fine with perhaps not being available 100% of the time -- a local XAMPP installation is probably not how you want to run an actual public site. But still a great way to start, and something you'll likely continue using in order to test things on the local XAMPP site, instead of breaking or affecting your actual public live site.

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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by 3Di » Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:04 pm

EA117 wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:30 am
If you use the Bitnami package for installing XAMPP and phpBB, all that is already done, and you don't use the phpBB installation instructions at all.
This would be considered a wrong suggestion, certainly not what the support suggests.
Use the package downloaded from here and install it yourself, if you want to avoid possible problems and enjoy adequate support.
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Re: New to forums.. please help!

Post by EA117 » Mon Jul 22, 2019 9:04 pm

3Di wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:04 pm
This would be considered a wrong suggestion, certainly not what the support suggests.
Indeed, and I too presume that's why they didn't or wouldn't have suggested it. To keep the ideas this raises from dragging the current topic off-topic, I'm put most of them over in the phpBB Discussion area.

Yes, if someone wants the benefit of receiving helpful support from many members here in https://www.phpbb.com/community/, they may need to consider the position of "we do not want to support third-party installers."

Which is a different consideration entirely from "the third-party installer is actually likely to be the source of any issue you encounter." Or that "for even a local single-user XAMPP installation, this is a reasonable concern to have."

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