Is it possible to "absorb" another forum?

Get help with installation and running phpBB 3.3.x here. Please do not post bug reports, feature requests, or extension related questions here.
Post Reply
User avatar
Big Mac
Registered User
Posts: 71
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 11:31 am
Location: London, UK
Name: David Shepheard
Contact:

Is it possible to "absorb" another forum?

Post by Big Mac »

Hi,

I took over the running of a RPG forum that runs on phpBB a while ago.

A few days ago, a friend who runs a different RPG forum, said he was thinking of shutting it down, because the activity has reduced.

It has been suggested (by a user who has accounts on both our sites) that his forum is merged into our forum. I don't think the user has any idea how complex merging two databases (without screwing them up) could be.

I think I have a general idea of what we need to do, but I believe it would be a lot of complex steps.

To make things more complex, my friend uses vBulletin, so I'm guessing that his board would need to be converted to phpBB, before a merger could be attempted. (And from this topic in the [3.3.x] Converters subforum, it looks like there isn't a vBulletin to phpBB converter that converts the latest version of vBulletin to a supported version of phpBB.)

So, I'm guessing that I would be looking at:
  1. Convert from vBulletin to phpBB (if possible),
  2. Upgrade from an out of date version of phpBB to the same version that the forum I'm looking after and
  3. Merge the two forums into a single database.
But, is it actually possible to merge two phpBB forums together?

Are there any tools to do this, or would it require both forums to be locked down, and studied, so that things like user IDs, post IDs and forum IDs can be changed, so that nothing gets overwritten?

Should any of that research be done, with the vBulletin forum before it is translated into a phpBB forum, so that the in-use numbers at the forum I am running, can be reserved during the phpBB conversion process?

I have no idea how conversion works, so I don't know if it would be easier to shunt user IDs, forum IDs and post IDs along, before a merger.

One other potential issue I'm thinking of is the legal question. My friend wasn't planning to get his forum handed over to another group of RPG fans. So there has obviously never been permission requested to pass data to our group or anyone else. So, I'm not sure if I could legally take over the login details from my friend's forum.

I'm not expecting legal advice, but does anyone have any experience of dealing with that? Did you need to go to a lawyer? Or did you find a way to blank out data or hash the data, so that only the original users could see it?
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
User avatar
KevC
Support Team Member
Support Team Member
Posts: 70067
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2004 10:44 am
Location: Oxford, UK
Contact:

Re: Is it possible to "absorb" another forum?

Post by KevC »

Many people have asked about merging but few have succeeded.
However, this came to light recently that might be worth a try

viewtopic.php?t=2521566
-:|:- Support Request Template -:|:-
Image
Cheap UK Hosting
"In the land of the blind the little green bloke with no pupils is king - init!"
User avatar
Big Mac
Registered User
Posts: 71
Joined: Sun May 27, 2012 11:31 am
Location: London, UK
Name: David Shepheard
Contact:

Re: Is it possible to "absorb" another forum?

Post by Big Mac »

KevC wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 7:45 pm
Many people have asked about merging but few have succeeded.
However, this came to light recently that might be worth a try

viewtopic.php?t=2521566
Thanks KevC.

So it looks like this is theoretically possible, but it involves:
  • Getting a vBulletin forum from someone else's server (which I don't have access to yet),
  • Converting vBulletin to phpBB and
  • Merging two phpBB databases
Two of those steps sound very tricky.

I'll pass this information over to my team.

If we get anywhere, I'll try to pass back anything useful we learn, in case it helps other people.
David "Big Mac" Shepheard
Post Reply

Return to “[3.3.x] Support Forum”