Feedback on phpbb software

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TJK
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Feedback on phpbb software

Post by TJK » Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:24 am

I have been using phpbb for quite some years now and I am completely satisfied with the development of the software in general lines. I believe I'm in position to offer some feedback back to the community after so many years of usage and having passed through 3 major versions. What follows is my personal opinion and does not necessarily correspond to the opinion of other members of this community.

I have this feeling that every major version is a bit worse than the previous one. I outline some of the facts that make me think of that:
  1. Every ( new ) major version is heavier than the one before, something that personally I dislike. Probably Symfony Framework contributes to that.
  2. The fact that many functions included in the core files make the software sometimes run slow , especially if the resources are not enough. With the release of 3.2.x I have seen the speed increase. Plenty of them could be extensions.
  3. I also happen to think that the search functionality could do more than it does now. There are moments ( and there are a lot of them ) which I get the unpleasant message:

    "The following words in your search query were ignored because they are too common words:
    You must specify at least one word to search for. Each word must consist of at least 3 characters and must not contain more than 14 characters excluding wildcards."

    This really frustrates me. I remember reading somewhere that the search function is built on a powerful system. I don't know but I think that things could be improved there.
  4. Upgrading or even updating to a new version is a nightmare for many administrators included myself in the past. I quite often see messages about failed updating or "The installer detected a timeout". The last is a configuration in php.ini so this is not a problem. An automated way ( by the ACP [ downloading , unzipping and updating by itself] would be the ideal ) .
  5. I also have the feeling that templates are quite hard coded allowing no freedom over customisation. In case something goes wrong during the customisation of the style then there is this danger of something being broken (e.g extension, functionality, etc )
I regard 3.1.x as the best version ever released. It was quite cute and simple. It's certainly lighter than 3.2.x. Of course phpbb3.0.x gave most of us the opportunity to come face to face with php , html and js. The fact that now template files are not edited is a good thing and I vote for that as well as the fact that phpbb is moving forward. I still consider phpbb the best free forum software out there and I highly recommend it to someone who wants to start a new community since it has a nice installing system and generally it is easy to use.

Last but not least, I am fond of that prosilver template. I find it quite old fashioned , too dark for my taste and I think it's run its circle. I'm waiting anxiously to see the new template for phpbb 3.3.x

Thank you.
I'm waiting for your comments.
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JoshyPHP
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Re: Feedback on phpbb software

Post by JoshyPHP » Mon Feb 05, 2018 12:58 pm

If your only goal was to give your opinion then I hereby acknowledge that your opinion has been received. On the other hand, if your goal was to effect change, you forgot to mention how. Without an actual plan, all we're left with is the conundrum of an ever-slowing software that has too many features in the core except for the search part which should have more features.
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AmigoJack
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Re: Feedback on phpbb software

Post by AmigoJack » Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:15 pm

TJK wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:24 am
Each word must consist of at least 3 characters and must not contain more than 14 characters excluding wildcards
This is a limitation of the MySQL's fulltext index and out of phpBB's scope - you either have to switch to a different DBMS or use phpBB's native search backend with all its disadvantages.

phpBB should support phrase searching ("με τη" in contrast to με τη alone), but not if using the Sphinx backend (due to code inconsistencies).
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TJK
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Re: Feedback on phpbb software

Post by TJK » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:05 pm

JoshyPHP wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 12:58 pm
If your only goal was to give your opinion then I hereby acknowledge that your opinion has been received. On the other hand, if your goal was to effect change, you forgot to mention how.
Hi Joshy,

with this post I only intend to give my opinion. I have proposed some ideas in the phpbb Ideas. Thank you!
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TJK
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Re: Feedback on phpbb software

Post by TJK » Mon Feb 05, 2018 8:08 pm

AmigoJack wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:15 pm
TJK wrote:
Mon Feb 05, 2018 11:24 am
Each word must consist of at least 3 characters and must not contain more than 14 characters excluding wildcards
This is a limitation of the MySQL's fulltext index and out of phpBB's scope - you either have to switch to a different DBMS or use phpBB's native search backend with all its disadvantages.

phpBB should support phrase searching ("με τη" in contrast to με τη alone), but not if using the Sphinx backend (due to code inconsistencies).
Thank you for clarifying that.
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