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The future of the forum

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  • The future of the forum

    As many of you know we have been struggling with our current hosting company, the annual hosting bill is huge and the support with the numerous problems is poor. What doesn’t help is that I have no IT knowledge to do any trouble shooting myself and I’m away from home for 12 hours every day where I can’t even log into the control panel for the server.

    So I’m asking for help. What I would like to do is have a small group of co-owners of the forum. Preferably people with some technical knowledge (although not a lot is needed as I’ve done ok considering my extreme lack of it!) But also people who are able to be around often is really important, so when a problem does come it they can report it/deal with it quickly rather than having to wait for me to come online again.

    There is no financial requirement needed as our members are super and generally the donations cover the costs.

    I would like to move hosts, before we have to sign and pay for another year, which will be in January. Some help with this is crucial as I have no idea how to download and move the forum database.

    Of course if you be-come a co-owner you will also be given administrator permissions on the forum as well, however this doesn’t mean more work, the excellent moderators do everything needed with the threads.

    If you are interested or have any questions please PM me or post below.

    Thank you for your support, this is a great forum and hopefully this will be a new opportunity to make it run even smoother

  • #2
    I would like to help!

    The thing is, I have no knowledge of how any of this works. I only have a very little HTMl knowledge, but a very little. Mostly just basics (how to create link/s etc), tho I am still learning. So I really don't know if I could be of any help I have no IT knowledge, nor do I know how to move the forum database.

    I did try to find some help via google. So this may help...

    http://blogs.technet.com/b/nexthop/a...ql-server.aspx
    http://community.mybb.com/post-627337.html

    The only thing I can offer, is some of my free time. I have the time to visit forum for an hour less/or more every day. Be it in the morning or afternoon.

    But even then I have no idea how to do this...

    so when a problem does come it they can report it/deal with it quickly rather than having to wait for me to come online again.
    A little explanation on what this entails would be great.

    So what a pointless post I made . Anyway, my advice is to wait for some people with more knowledge then me. You can always use me as the last resort The thing I could be able to do is report the problem (by using email?). Or contact other new co-worker, or already existing Administrator. So if my job requirement is only to contact other member/s via email or pm's here on the forum. That I can do. The other I really don't know. Tho I wouldn't mind some experience, since I am starting to learn HTML


    Anyway good luck! Hopefully people will contact you over this.

    Sorry for the rambling. I hope at least my links will help a little.
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    • #3
      Originally posted by Sky View Post
      I would like to help!

      The thing is, I have no knowledge of how any of this works. I only have a very little HTMl knowledge, but a very little. Mostly just basics (how to create link/s etc), tho I am still learning. So I really don't know if I could be of any help I have no IT knowledge, nor do I know how to move the forum database.

      I did try to find some help via google. So this may help...

      http://blogs.technet.com/b/nexthop/a...ql-server.aspx
      http://community.mybb.com/post-627337.html
      Thanks for the links and the offer to help Sky. Unfortunately moving the forum isn’t really something that even reading about will make me confident enough to do on my own as SQL databases and the like is something I know nothing about. I can't download the forum also as it's too big and times out!

      It's also not HTML knowledge that's needed to run this site. It's PHP, SQL and general server administrator knowledge. Being able to understand the tech support team when they say I need to do something on the server to re-set an IP that’s been blocked. It’s also being able to log into the hosting site and open support tickets, clearly descriping the problem, like downtime, slow access. Giving log’s from the server that explain the load it’s had over the last 24 hours.

      Originally posted by Sky View Post
      The only thing I can offer, is some of my free time. I have the time to visit forum for an hour less/or more every day. Be it in the morning or afternoon.

      But even then I have no idea how to do this...

      A little explanation on what this entails would be great.
      As above, it’s about being around several times during the day, being able to access and log into the server to check on any problems (I can’t log into the server from work and I’m only online from home an hour at most once a day).

      Generally I’ll get an email from a member saying they can’t access the forum or any of the sites because their IP has been caught in the firewall, I then ask them to send me their IP and go to the support page and raise a ticket for the IT team to pick up. They’ll often ask me to run something and then it’s fixed. This whole process can take 24 hours and if I can only start it 12 hours after the issue has been reported that’s not helpful.

      So it’s really just being around to be a point of contact between the members and the host. Reporting issues, checking server load, backing up the forum. But it does require some knowledge because honestly I have none and I need someone to lean on rather than the other way as my time is going to be even less next year and if I don’t get someone who can help then the forum will probably be lost moving hosts as I can’t stay with the current ones.

      I hope a few people come forward at this request. It will be sad to see this place go but I can no longer run it on my own.

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      • #4
        The reason I didn't reply yesterday is that I'm not the best suited person for the job. I'm afraid that my knowledge in this area is lacking (read: I know nothing about PHP & SQL) but I'm around quite a lot. So if you find one person who wants to teach me or who needs a flunky to help out, I'm available.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Nina View Post
          The reason I didn't reply yesterday is that I'm not the best suited person for the job. I'm afraid that my knowledge in this area is lacking (read: I know nothing about PHP & SQL) but I'm around quite a lot. So if you find one person who wants to teach me or who needs a flunky to help out, I'm available.
          Same I would love to help you out but I know nothing of PHP and SQL and I have no one around who knows about it and who I could bribe....but I live online so I could devote some time to the forum if you would need that If you find someone with knowledge and you still feel like you need extra help I am availible as well
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          • #6
            I would like to help!

            But like others in the thread I have no experience with using PHP and SQL! But I am online alot and willing to learn if there are any experts willing to teach a novice the very basics . I am willing to help in whatever way is needed whether as one of the co-admins or even as a moderator if one of the current moderators take one of the co-admin spots and decide they can't handle both duties
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            • #7
              Thanks everyone for the offers. Rosely has kindly offered to help with the move as that is the big challenge. If anyone is willing to learn how to manage vbulletin forums and server management then please let me know when you feel confident enough to help with database back ups etc then I will add you as admins to the forum and server.

              I had hoped to get a small group together ready for the post move getting things up and running. But I really do need people with a bit of knowledge as I can't offer any support to anyone starting out.

              I plan to step down a lot next year so until we get some new admins any issues will go unresolved. I appreciate the people wanting to help and if you do feel you can learn and be confident with this then let me know.

              Let's hope we don't have any issues next year!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Nikki View Post
                Thanks everyone for the offers. Rosely has kindly offered to help with the move as that is the big challenge. If anyone is willing to learn how to manage vbulletin forums and server management then please let me know when you feel confident enough to help with database back ups etc then I will add you as admins to the forum and server.

                I had hoped to get a small group together ready for the post move getting things up and running. But I really do need people with a bit of knowledge as I can't offer any support to anyone starting out.

                I plan to step down a lot next year so until we get some new admins any issues will go unresolved. I appreciate the people wanting to help and if you do feel you can learn and be confident with this then let me know.

                Let's hope we don't have any issues next year!
                Okay, I am far from being an SQL & PHP expert and I have no experience with vbulletin, but I do have an IT background and know a thing or two about server and database management, so I could probably help with the administrative part of running the forum. The problem is that my personal situation is a bit chaotic at the moment; I need to move house and my computer is in its final throes, all of which limits my online time considerably. I assume that my situation in either regard will have resolved itself in about 4-6 months, at which I could think about taking a more active participation in running the forum. So, that's all I can offer at this moment.
                Last edited by galathea; 06-12-13, 07:55 PM.

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                • #9
                  A question... How attached is everyone to Vbulletin as the forum software? It is just I have an invision power board license going unused and I have some experience of using IPB for things like backing up databases and restoring them. From the sounds of it the IPB back up management is more user friendly than Vbulletins.

                  I just thought I'd mention it as another option
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bittersweettwit View Post
                    A question... How attached is everyone to Vbulletin as the forum software? It is just I have an invision power board license going unused and I have some experience of using IPB for things like backing up databases and restoring them. From the sounds of it the IPB back up management is more user friendly than Vbulletins.

                    I just thought I'd mention it as another option
                    I suppose the problem is that you can't just upload the vbulletin database into a different forum software, which means we would loose all content of this board and would need to start over.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by galathea View Post
                      I suppose the problem is that you can't just upload the vbulletin database into a different forum software, which means we would loose all content of this board and would need to start over.
                      If the current vbulletin installation was upgraded from Vbulletin 3 to VBulletin 4 invision power board have converter tools which can be used to convert the database from VB to IPB.

                      It's completely up to Nikki and whoever else would be involved in running the site. I just figured since I have the licence sitting unused Id offer is all
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Bittersweettwit View Post
                        If the current vbulletin installation was upgraded from Vbulletin 3 to VBulletin 4 invision power board have converter tools which can be used to convert the database from VB to IPB.

                        It's completely up to Nikki and whoever else would be involved in running the site. I just figured since I have the licence sitting unused Id offer is all
                        I think that it's great that you mentioned!! If everything else fails and in the end the forum needs to be shut down, at least we know that there is a possible alternative for the future!

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                        • #13
                          If the board was moved to Invision Power Board, I have some experience in that. I know very little about VBulletin though... However I don't have a LOT of free time to help with the board; it's the main reason I stepped down from being a moderator at Buffy-Boards.com :/ But if I CAN be of help I would love to.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Bittersweettwit View Post
                            If the current vbulletin installation was upgraded from Vbulletin 3 to VBulletin 4 invision power board have converter tools which can be used to convert the database from VB to IPB.

                            It's completely up to Nikki and whoever else would be involved in running the site. I just figured since I have the licence sitting unused Id offer is all
                            That is a wonderful option. I don't know how easy it is to upgrade from 3 to 4 though... I know with some backend systems upgrading to a new major release can be a pain...

                            However, I don't know how attached everyone is to all the old posts?
                            We could try upgrading and then if it doesn't work, just start over with IPB with another host, and then only keep/move the domain...

                            Edit:
                            This Youtube makes it sounds easy:
                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_HsD0QNgn4

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Rosely View Post
                              That is a wonderful option. I don't know how easy it is to upgrade from 3 to 4 though... I know with some backend systems upgrading to a new major release can be a pain...

                              However, I don't know how attached everyone is to all the old posts?
                              We could try upgrading and then if it doesn't work, just start over with IPB with another host, and then only keep/move the domain...

                              Edit:
                              This Youtube makes it sounds easy:
                              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_HsD0QNgn4
                              Sure thing . As I said I have the license and should be able to afford to maintain it since it's only $25 every six months or something like that. So the forum software end of things shouldn't be a worry if we do go down the route of starting again using IPB.

                              The only thing would be the hosting I'd prefer for someone else to handle that side of things (collecting donations etc)
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