[Tutorial] How to create a private forum?

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dhn
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[Tutorial] How to create a private forum?

Post by dhn »

New link to the Knowledge Base

How to create a private forum?

There are a lot of reasons to have private forums on your board. e.g. a closed forum for Moderators so that they can discuss User Behaviour or Forum Rules. If you offer forum hosting for clans they would need a private forum to talk about tactics or internal team problems.

All this can be done very easy in phpBB in combination with the new Usergroup and the Forum Permissions Feature. What we want to do in this short explanation is to create a Usergroup which will be able to access a for other Users which are not members of this group invisible and not accessable forum.

Lets go.
We will start with setting the Forum Permissions. In the Admin Panel click on Forum Admin -> Permissions. Select the forum you want to make private in the Drop Down List and click on Look up Forum. You will be presented with the Simple Mode Drop Down box. You can now select Private[Hidden] or Private.
Private[Hidden] means that Users who are not allowed to use the forum will not see it on the Forum index. If you select Private those Users will see it in the Index listing but still won't be able to enter and read it. You can fine tune the permissions if you click on the advanced mode button, e.g. If you don't want every member of the forum to be allowed to create polls you should set the Poll Create button to MOD (only Moderators would be allowed to create a poll) or ADMIN (only Admins would be allowed to create polls). Press Submit and the forum permissions should be set up correctly now. Of course you can change the permissions whenever you want.

Now we will look at the Usergroup Feature. If you already use the feature you can skip the following 2 paragraphs.
Click on Group Admin -> Management. Now we press the Create a new Group button. You will be presented with a screen where you enter all the important information for the group. If you want to be the moderator of the group (the moderator has the ability to add and remove Users from a group) enter your own name in the Moderator field. We will select Open Group (Users will be able to request to join the group and the moderator has to approve the request before they are members). Closed Groups does only mean that no one can request to join the group, and only the moderator can add members manually. A Hidden Group will not be visible in the User Group panel for other Users.
After we created the group we have to add members to it. This is not very comfortable at the moment but will hopefully improve in 2.2. Return to the Forum Index and select the Usergroup button. Select your newly created group and add click on View Information. Now you see all members of the groups. You can enter the name of a User in the textfield below the list and press Add Member. The User will now be a member of your group. Continue the procedure until all members you want to have access to your forum are in the group.

The last step is to set the Group Permissions.
We return to the admin panel for that. We choose Group Admin -> Permissions and select the group in the list. We are looking now at a list of all forums. You will see that only the forums which have access set to private will have a the extra box for Simple Permissions. Just change this from Disallowed Access to Allowed Access. You can of course use the Advanced Mode again which allows you a little more fine tuning.

Ok, I hope this tutorial is helpful. Remember that english is not my primary language. Feel free to make suggestions.

Keywords: create private forum permissions group hidden

fritz_corner
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Post by fritz_corner »

I think you took a huge step towards perfectness there, dhn! Just before I saw your post I thought: "Why can't anyone write down some tutorials for the ones still learning?" and there it was!

Just waiting for someone to thoroughly describe how to edit the headers/bodies/footers too... :wink:
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Post by Blade »

fritz_corner wrote: I think you took a huge step towards perfectness there, dhn! Just before I saw your post I thought: "Why can't anyone write down some tutorials for the ones still learning?" and there it was!

Just waiting for someone to thoroughly describe how to edit the headers/bodies/footers too... :wink:


Everyone can write a tutorial if they have time ;)
and that's still a problem ...
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R
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Post by R »

If we are going to start writing tutorials, I guess this sorta thing would be good to keep for a phpbb manual maybe...i can just picture it, HTML online, and PDF for download...:lol:

Tovarisch
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Post by Tovarisch »

Good initiative.

I think there should have been complete documentation with the final release of phpBB2, but alas.. A FAQ is good, but it's still not documentation per se.

What if Adobe and Discreet would have released Photoshop and 3ds max without documentation? What an outcry that would've caused.. :wink:

-Tov

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Post by R »

Aye. Just imagine how much easier it will make answering these questions down the road, and the documentation can be updated regularly with more detail etc.

It would be cool, because there might be lots of people contributing to it :D

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Post by Blade »

I'd join this group, but first we have to make sure of the first importeant issues. or? ;)
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fritz_corner
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Post by fritz_corner »

Blade wrote: I'd join this group, but first we have to make sure of the first importeant issues. or? ;)


Such as figuring out how it works yourself you mean? lol

Well, even if I put an lol there I really mean it. I do know (or can imagine anyway) how complex this forum is but when you browse this support forum it sometimes feels like no one knows the whole thing in total.

I mean, many people come together and create a great creature but no one knows how to tame it.

I said earlier to a friend of mine that I understand why this is free in a way. If you don't charge anything you don't have to put up with any support.
Then again, when people come together to do these sorts of things you get the best out of everything really.

Understand me right now. When people (like the staff of phpBB) don't work with this in a profite way we all get the things that might not work or may work in a way no one has ever thought of before.

Take young kids and stuff them all together in a group. Tell them to make something fun. =You get something wonderful.

Take young kids and stuff them all together in a group. Tell them they have to make something fun or they wont get supper. =Shit.


phpBB rules and I hope they will rule for some time. Our world needs people like them. I don't know jack s** about anything but I take the chance of helping people out when I can. That's the charm about pioneers and wannabes. You gotta love them!!!

...or they wont get supper. =*beep*.? I didn't write that, so please don't beat me lol ...wont get supper! Haha!
Last edited by fritz_corner on Tue Apr 09, 2002 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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hopeful
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Post by hopeful »

dhn -

Thanks! That was very helpful and clear. I had figured out how to do this stuff myself, but was having trouble explaining it to the moderators of the board. Just cut and pasted your text and it all made sense. Woohoo!

One question about groups... Is it possible to allow users to join groups without the validation step? I don't think so, but it would be nice. Is there a drawback to this approach?

I ask because this is what I would love to do: Set up regional groups for each state as well as regional forums. When a user joins an open group, they are automatically validated and also given permission to see the regional forum. I know, it's a few steps away and is probably a mod, but wouldn't it be cool? If you have any thoughts on this stuff, I'd love to hear it.

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Post by dhn »

hopeful wrote: One question about groups... Is it possible to allow users to join groups without the validation step? I don't think so, but it would be nice. Is there a drawback to this approach?


This is not yet possible without validation but will be in 2.2 ... you may ask in the mods forums if someone is willing to make an easy modification for this.

Oh and thanks for the compliments. :)

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Post by ILJ Tiffster »

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!!!

I have been struglling with this for a few days and was at my wits end...almost ready to say no conversion until this is explained to my mods.

Now I can simply paste in what you wrote and they should understand how to do this.

Again, thank you.

And I do agree...documentation would have been GREAT!!!!!

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Post by hsim »

what you see here posted by Moderators and Support is some thing like a very good documentation. Especially the [Tutorials] are exactly that - documentation. Since phpBB2 is brand new there hasn't been time yet to write or include a full documentation with it. The main effort was on making excellent code :)
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Post by EJ Fly »

...and had they sat down and written a manual for it, that would've prolonged the launch of V2, and phpBB 2.0 would've started to look old before it was even released!

Just my 2 cents ;)
EJ Fly

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Post by Spry »

Thanks for the tutorial, dhn! I would never have guessed that English was not your primary language, and you helped me understand how to manage the usergroups perfectly. :-)
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Post by firehorse »

Excellent Tutorial :)

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