Advise please!

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36thcrazyfist
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Advise please!

Post by 36thcrazyfist » Tue Jul 28, 2009 3:26 pm

Hello,

I'm looking for a little bit of advise and as this is a collection people running PHPBB I thought it'd be a good place to ask.

I am the Web Manager and Committee member of one of the biggest car clubs (for a single car) in the UK, I've been doing this role just over a year and recently we have been having a few issues.

The website is [unnecessary link removed]
The software is now becoming very outdated, we're using a version of php-nuke with a very old version of PHPBB built in afaik.

What I'm wanting to know is do any of you know of a complete content management system which would suit our needs, bearing in mind we have seperate areas for paid members, a register for the cars - things like that - i have heard of such things but never seen any of them!

Also another issue is hosting, we are becoming too big for our host so I'm currently looking for someone within the UK so I can contact them easy enough but cost is a huge factor as we are a non profit organisation.

On average we're using around 55GB of data per month and hitting 1.3million hits.

If any of you have an information to help it'd make it a whole lot easier, althought I was a web developer by trade for a few years I've never done it at such a scale before.

Thanks in advance,

Simon

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shadowolf
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Re: Advise please!

Post by shadowolf » Tue Jul 28, 2009 5:19 pm

Maybe Joomla? It's not exactly minimalistic, but it can be set up in a fairly straightforward manner...

I would go to OpenSource CMS for this kind of thing. It lets you test the various CMSes, both front end and back end.

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Eelke
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Re: Advise please!

Post by Eelke » Wed Jul 29, 2009 7:22 am

Joomla currently doesn't really have a good way to distinguish between "regular" website users and premium (paying) members, because it has a rigid user group structure (this is set to change with the next version, though - of course, in true Open Source spirit, that will be "ready when it's ready"). There are extensions available that add this kind of thing onto the base system, though, like JUGA. For phpBB, there is a very nice bridge available in the form of the Rokbridge, although that does not offer template integration (so you'll have to put in some elbow grease if you e.g. want to replicate your sites menu structure on the forums).

I am personally very much in the same situation (also a national car club, be it in the Netherlands), although my current site is custom coded, except for the forums, which is phpBB. I am currently working on a new site based on Drupal, which at its core is more suited for community sites. I am planning to continue using phpBB for the forums, because that's what I am using now and the impression I have of the Drupal forums solution is that it is not as fully featured as phpBB (building a system completely based on Drupal - or at least analyzing what's missing - that can match phpBB feature for feature may be a next project :)).

The only challenge I have is that I am not particularly thrilled with the current options to integrate Drupal and phpBB, so I am working on my own. On the one hand, I'm a bit bummed that I'm not using any of the available offerings (not at all the Open Source spirit), on the other hand neither of the two options are particularly mature. I may end up posting my solution on Drupal.org when it is finished.

tandem
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Drupal and phpBB

Post by tandem » Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:40 pm

I decided to go with Drupal as I am convinced Drupal is the most flexible CMS framework. I have used PHPBB for a long time and consider it the best bulletin board system available. I wish I could easily combine the two.

At first glance the phpBBforum Integration module seems to fit the bill; however, after closer examination it does not look very practical at this point due to problems associated with keeping both platforms updated without breaking the site.

As much I love phpBB, I think I may have to go with the Drupal Advanced Forum and the other modules in order to get a better forum functionality for a site.

Vadim is doing great job with maintaining the module; however, there is only so much one guy can do to keep up the pace with all the updates of Drupal and phpBB. More developers need to get on board.

I am convinced that some type of co-operation between the Drupal and PHPBB developers would greatly benefit and strengthen both communities.

EDIT: Spelling
Last edited by tandem on Sat Sep 19, 2009 6:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Eelke
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Re: Advise please!

Post by Eelke » Sat Sep 19, 2009 8:50 am

For me, an important reason to not go with the currently available Drupal/phpBB solution is that I am not too thrilled with all the different options it offers; I feel there is only one proper way to integrate the two, and that is to run phpBB inside Drupal. Also, like you I didn't like the fact that there is quite a large patch to be applied to phpBB, that touches many parts of phpBB.

I thought it should be possible to do the integration with no modifications to phpBB. That didn't proove completely possible, but I think I am currently way ahead of the existing integration module; I've had to change one function inside phpBB, because its name collided with a function in Drupal. The rest I've managed to do with some variable juggling and the like (in a "wrapper" function that sets up the environment for phpBB to run in, and afterwards restores everything the way Drupal needs it). I now have phpBB running inside Drupal and am working on session integration (which I think I can manage completely using phpBB's authentication plugin mechanism and Drupal's mechanism to do external authentication - i.e., no core hacks on either side either).

I am also extremely interested to learn to what extent Drupal can be made into a viable alternative to phpBB with "conventional" Drupal modules and I have been asking myself numerous times whether that would have been the better path to pursue.

tandem
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Re: Advise please!

Post by tandem » Sat Sep 19, 2009 7:00 pm

Hi Eelke,

Is the solution you are working on for Drupal 6 or 5? I would love to help out, unfortunately I do not have the PHP skills required.

Have you considered working with other Drupal / phpBB developers on this? You may find additional brainpower at the phpBB group.

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Eelke
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Re: Advise please!

Post by Eelke » Sun Sep 20, 2009 8:34 am

It's Drupal 6. I have considered it, I may post my solution when it's "fleshed out" a bit more.

Desdenova
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Re: Advise please!

Post by Desdenova » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:19 pm

Eelke wrote:It's Drupal 6. I have considered it, I may post my solution when it's "fleshed out" a bit more.
If you do manage to get something working, it would be great if you released it to the community for others to use it, and for some of us to poke at. :)

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