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What Forum Software should I use?

I am looking to create a commercial or business trading discussion board. I plan to get a forum software to install to my hosting.

  1. My main concern is the security, as I need to ensure the discussion info is shared safely among the board members only, not lack to outsiders.
  2. Cost whether Free/Paid is fine with me.
  3. Feature: Account management, Theme of forum is customizable

On my mind, I have phpBB, Simple machines, bbPress but I am not sure which will fill my need. Thus, please advise what forum software will be the best choice and recommended.

Thank you

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marked as duplicate by danlefree Feb 12 '12 at 0:36

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

vBulletin is a winner for this sort of thing. It's been around for ages and is well maintained, and has loads of great features that you don't get with the free ones e.g. phpBB. Also the SEO module for it is was what gave our site the initial kickstart it needed. Eventually we moved to Drupal (as we expanded into a bigger site), and Vbulletin was easy to port away from.

We started with vBulletin, now we run a company of 8 people and growing.

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Thanks for the advice. Just curious I saw out there another paid forum script called IP Board. Looks similar to vBulletin. How was it compare to vBulletin? – user6181 Mar 20 '11 at 6:47

when it comes to forum script, I definitely recommend vBulletin. Few reasons :

  • There are many number of plugins available ( most of them are free )
  • Theming it is also easy and you can also find excellent skins ( both free and paid) .
  • Regarding security , they release updates frequently and they also offer help via email and forums. The community is pretty good and helpful.

Regarding the features that you want :

You can easily set permissions who can view/edit/delete threads via group settings and also you can edit the permissions individually.

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