Dan.com

SMF or phpBB Forum

Dynadot Dynadot
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Which is better? Why do I ask?

I have previously used only phpBB. But for my last forum project I used SMF. On the SMF project I'm getting new users try to register about every 5 minutes. All are spammers. Fortunately the 2 pronged anti-spam used by SMF seems to work about 98% of the time. It's the 2% which are a pita. They post on average 300-500 spam message each before I get a chance to ban them. After I ban them I then have to go and delete all their spam. I would say the admin in SMF isn't so good as in phpBB, although I haven't really had to admin phpBB for a while.

OK. I suspect my domain must be on some spammers list to attack my board, because it is not exactly a high profile or traffic sight. But it seems like an inordinately difficult task to maintain the website well.

I would like to take some measures to immediately ban everyone with an .xx email address. This would reduce my spam fighting by about 50%. But no idea how to do it.

I'm considering going back to phpBB. Should I do that? Any other tips are welcome.
 
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The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of NamePros.
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SMF also keeps all the registered members banned and not banned in one file, afaict. It would be nice to separate them into 2 files. I forget if phpBB does that.

I'm so tired of the moderation, I'm considering closing the website.
 

DU

Secret SantaTop Contributor
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17,903
Surely you can delete all posts as an option when you ban/delete the user?
Is that the only issue that is making you choose?

If you have already deleted the user you could probably run a script to delete all their posts/topics.

P.S. I know nothing about SMF :) or phpBB.... I only messed around with MyBB :)

I suggest you buy Xenforo and then tag all your questions with Paul :)
 
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I found that option only once, but have never found it again. SMF admin does seem to have it's own logic, which I don't seem to share :( I wouldn't mind actually buying Xenforo, except it's not just a lifetime price.

Online support for phpB seems easier to access than SMF, imho.
 
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@Hybrid Names - So you are saying MyBB is more secure than SMF, but you still had a spam problem like I describe? If it is true that it's on a register somewhere for spammers, I guess it's going to be the same if I change to phpBB. In which case all I need to know is which software handles this best.
 

Hybrid Names

Top Contributor
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@Hybrid Names - So you are saying MyBB is more secure than SMF, but you still had a spam problem like I describe? If it is true that it's on a register somewhere for spammers, I guess it's going to be the same if I change to phpBB. In which case all I need to know is which software handles this best.
Secure means it is not easy to hack / not easily vulnerable
Many big forums are running on Mybb. You can find plugin for spam protection
It has more plugins and more active community

You can also find used licence for xenforo or vbulletin
 

ulterios

The Bear is Sticky with HoneyTop Contributor
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myBB is the way to go for a free open-source forum script. Easy, secure, doesn't look like something a teenager threw together and has a great community to help. I have dealt with them in the past and getting help is easy. Lots of free themes. Has a great SEO plugin as well. I have used all 3 of these and overall myBB is the best option, hands down. I have also been an admin and mod on all three forum softwares and myBB is my favorite.

Any forum I built would be built on that or Xenforo, just depending on cost issues.
 

Kate

Domainosaurus RexTop Contributor
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If spam is the problem, then what you need is a captcha or some form of challenge at registration to thwart the automated registrations.
There must a plugin for that.

Have a look at your logs, perhaps you could ban certain IP addresses causing repeated trouble. Preferably at firewall level.

Also, new members should be moderated, that means their first post will be placed in a queue and not be visible until approved by a mod/admin. Even if they post crap, members won't see it.

Also, it would be good to enforce posting limits ie. 2-3 post/day for new/moderated users.

Anyway, it should be easy to delete problematic users and their posts. If you can't find the right plugin, a bit of SQL code will take care of it :)
 
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I trap about 98% of these spammers with my challenges. Yes they get registered. but need my approval to post. It is a bit of a problem deleting about 300 spammers/week. But it's the 2% which get through, which cause all the problems to the board itself. Having to delete over 1k messages. I'm pretty sure SMF has a way to delete the messages with the spammer delete, but most of the time I cannot find that feature. And if you delete a member without using that feature, by mistake, you are left with having to delete each message. It's a PITA.

Well you say. Just don't accept any automatic registrations. Then I have to go through every registration and decide which are spanners, and which aren't. This is a niche community board. Probably there would be only 500 users max. Currently about 30. I'd like some more suggestions before I do anything. And I will look into your other suggestions, @Kate.
 

GoKaizen

Always be LearningTop Contributor
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@Adam27 - Why should I wait for Flarum? When will it be out of Beta?
 
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Easiest way to deal with spams I found was to send a random generated password through the same emaiil they used to register.
Also add the email verification feature too.
I used mybb for this.
 
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Does anybody know which other forum software has this email verification feature? All, some, few? Does it work 100%, or do spammers still get thru?
 
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@-EM- OK. I checked my settings. I'm already using email email verification. So this method is far from foolproof, it seems.
 
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Maybe all of them have it, but it is not sufficient.

But in your first post you made it sound like it was infallable. What else are you using besides that to fight the spammers?
 
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OK. I tweaked my MOD Stop Spammer settings. This could have been where the 2% were getting through.Let's see if that helps.
 
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But in your first post you made it sound like it was infallable. What else are you using besides that to fight the spammers?
It kinda was infallible.
It actually stopped spamming almost 100%.You should give it a try.
 
Fwiw, they are probably finding you by using automated software to search for the forum software's "footprint". (And auto poster / captcha solver to post to what they find). One way to thwart that is to remove as many of those telltale signs as possible. For example, the most obvious is to take any "powered by..." text out of the footer. Not a cure-all but makes you a smaller target. Most spammers dont scan for anything more sophisticated than that.
 
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@enlytend - Nice tip. Now to find that damned footer :)
 
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Been going back and forth about building up a forum
MYBB is the best I have ever seen and so will create a new forum on a domain using that software.
It is on cpanel in the softalucious scripts.
 
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The future looks a tad preordained. 3.5 votes for MyBB. 0 votes for SMF or phpBB. If what I've tweaked doesn't work. I think I'm going to move to MyBB. I don't think I can justify the cost of Xenofora :(

When I was considering which Forum to use when changing from phpBB. I considered it MyBB, but felt it was inferior to SMF. Guess my judgment was not so great :(