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Is there a free, open-source question and answer (Q&A) application similar to StackExchange?

I'm looking for a good, open source (if possible) q&a (questions & answers) module for websites in php, with a rich functional scope and highly configurable (interface, implementation languages ...). I'd like to know what you can recommend.

Thanks in advance

  • 4
    i recommend stackoverflow ;)
    – Ibu
    May 30 '11 at 22:22
  • 1
    Get Satisfaction ain't bad for SAAS. getsatisfaction.com May 30 '11 at 22:22
  • @Ibu - so would I, unfortunately not all websites are about IT stuff :)
    – Argoron
    May 30 '11 at 22:28
  • the stack exchange network is not all about it, check it out , there is so much more
    – Ibu
    May 30 '11 at 22:29

There are only 3 options that are worth considering (in my opinion):

  1. Question2Answer uses PHP and MySQL. I've used it myself and it's by far the best option for PHP.
  2. OSQA uses Python and the Django framework. It's based on CNPROJ which was a Chinese exact clone of Stack Overflow. So at its heart it probably has the best interface.
  3. Stack Exchange's Area 51 allows you to submit new site ideas and the most popular ones will get turned into sites, with the backing of Stack Exchange. The problem here is of course you will not own the site and it may take several weeks or months to get the site up and running, if it floats at all.

You can check out this question on Meta Stack Overflow for some more clones. I have looked at most of them and Q2A is clearly the best PHP one. OSQA is probably the best overall. Apart from these two none of the others even come close to matching the interface and functionality.


Check out Question2Answer. It runs on PHP and MySQL- I haven't personally tried it, but it looks like it might do what you want. It's also open source, under a GNU GPL license.


I'll suggest Answer wordpress theme.

Wordpress is a framework build on PHP and use mysql as DB. Its installation and configuration is very easy.

I already had tried this theme and found it very good. I added some plug-ins like wp-favorite, comments voting etc. to make it like stackexchange.

*This will be good if you are planning to start on shared hosting with minimum investment.

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