Re: bbpress v. other forum software
My friend, this is the ONLY way to go. I previously had used PhpBB, and I was in the same boat. I wanted something simple, powerful, yet it HAD to integrate with WordPress. I was reluctant to go down this path, but I was swayed by two things:
First, I love WordPress, the community, the customizability, etc. I was impressed with the simplicity available, with more complexity/power possible depending on what the user needs. Second, I was extremely enticed by the prospect of a “seamless” integration. I won’t say that it’s been a total breeze, but compared to the PhpBB/4Images integration I did last year, integrating BBPress with WordPress was a breeze…AND A HALF! Don’t be fooled, though, this can be as simple as installing it and adding two plugins. Just depends on what your needs are.
95% or more of what I’m modifying is template based files, NOT core files. This is quite different from my PhpBB/4Images integration, where I had to hack the core to the point that an update would have been disastrous. (Consequently, I never updated it, though it didn’t matter since the site never really went live.)
So, yes, this is a beta product. And yes, some of the administration options and a few specific features present in other bb systems aren’t here.
Would I use something else if I could do it over again? NO
Do I miss any features from PhpBB? NO. In fact, what I suspected is exactly what has happened, that being that I’m as happy with what BBPress DOESN’T do as I am with what it does. Anything that I’ve needed so far has already been addressed in the forums, usually with a plugin. That makes modifying core files safe and simple. Bottom line, it works great, and I haven’t looked back.
Hope this helps.