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Is BBPress Any Good?

  • In vBulletin, if I want to pay $180, I could get the Porsche (reportedly) of message boards. In phpBB, if I want to grapple with a sizable infrastructure, I could get perhaps the most seasoned of the free forum systems.

    What do I get with bbPress? Is it secure? Will it get spammed to death? Is it stable? Is it designed for personal sites or can businesses use it with confidence?

    Here’s one very specific question: How do I add a link to bbPress to take people back to my WordPress home page?

    BTW, the installation was a breeze. :)

Viewing 9 replies - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)

  • chrishajer


    > What do I get with bbPress?

    Free forum software that is under active development

    > Is it secure?


    > Will it get spammed to death?

    No. It comes with Akismet to prevent spammers from posting, and you can use the Human Test plugin to prevent them from registering in the first place.

    > Is it stable?

    Yes. Even the latest Alpha version has been stable for me.

    > Is it designed for personal sites or can businesses

    > use it with confidence?

    It’s designed for people who need forums. Businesses and individuals alike use it. Check out these people using bbPress.

    > What do I get with bbPress?

    The most coder-friendly Engine Core I ever seen :P. If you know how to code of course – coding plugins for bbPress is a pure pleasure.


    Notice : there is no pun intended in what follow, no troll intended, no critic, no aggressive talk and so on.

    Pat1953 question is an interesting one, a question that I asked to myself sometimes.

    The « problem » with BBpress is that for an average user (perhaps it’s different for developers) there is no clear direction about where the software is going.

    I was very early WP user (and I’m still a very happy WP user) so when BBPress appears a lot of years (in internet time) ago, i tried it.

    Then I used several other package more polished, more feature packed and so on.

    I came back to BBPress learning that Automattic was founded hopping this could mean a strong development for the forum software and hopefully a real integration with WP.

    What is strange with BBPress is that despite it’s a rather old forum software, it is still (from a user perspective) far behind scripts that are developped by a single guy (for example in the WP world, Simple :Press is far more sophisticated and integrated) and it has a very strange way of describing it self.

    For example reading The Philisophy it’s written “Put the user first”… despite the fact BBpress is now probably the only forum script without any editor (even a BB code functionality requires a third part plug in), the only one which end users are supposed to know a little bit of HTML.

    The integration with WP is also a very strange aspect. By integration I’m not talking about sharing users base and connection, but real semantic integration.

    WP lacks a forum part. I maintain a personal website since now close to 10 years and it’s clear for me now (it was not clear at first) that comments, and forum discussions are not the same things, and that they address different needs.

    A comment will be buried in the weblog archives after a few days so finding it will be near impossible for a classic visitor.

    On the other hand, forum post are better ordered, easier and more natural to find out and son on.

    So if I write a blog post about my holidays and two readers answer “cool, it seem it was great”.. comments are exactly what I need.

    If I write a blog post about a very interesting thing that will be still of a great interest two years later (even two months later) its better to redirect people to a forum topic, because the discussion will be interesting and deserve to be kept and easy to find out.

    So after many years of WP use, I think BBpress is a required integrated part of WP.

    But nothing is very clear in BBpress documentation about where the project is heading.


    For me it’s clear – bbPress puts user first, but it sucks without developer – I’m talking about board developer, not script developers ;). Someone need to set up forum first, and he is using this great engine-core as I’m calling it with additional plugins he need – if one is creating forum for php coders, then he don’t need bbcode or any form of editor, as users will know stuff. This forum for example don’t need editor because its target is people who are developing using bbPress.

    For me, it’s a library of functions ready to set up a great, huge and fast forum – if you want a board like “set up and forget about it” then go and use phpbb3 – huge, slow with thousands of useless options. But if you’re a developer, then there’s nothing better than bbPress for you.


    Thanks for this clarification.. it’s exactly the style of things that are not clearly announced by BBpress.

    This forum script is released as a simple, elegant and quick forum not as a set of library for developpers… and viewed this way it’s highly different from WP that is a weblog software for the rest of us, not at all a tool for developers.

    Hopefully, thanks to “magic _ck_” and the marvelous plug in he provide to the BBPress comunity, the set of library starts slowly to get a new face, the one of a classical good forum software…

    Sam Bauers


    bbPress is designed to be light and extensible. It’s aim is to create a robust framework which can be extended with plugins and themes.

    It is designed to be adapted by developers into what they want it to be while it takes care of the core behaviour.

    WordPress is very similar in this regard, it just has a much older ecosystem of extensions and a much more active community.



    bbPress is also very young so expectations should not be as high as WordPress (ie. robust plugin library). It’s about equal to WordPress back in 2003. While it benefits from code development on WordPress, it’s still 5 years younger.

    But writing plugins for bbPress is as easy for WordPress (and in some cases easier because of improvements over WordPress’s legacy design). I’m definitely an example of this as I had never written a full PHP program or plugin of any kind before my bbPress plugins.

    Thanks for responses. bbPress shows great promise.

    Sam Bauers


    We also use bbPress to dabble in some new ideas, as our users are generally very nice and don’t shout at us when we break things.

    : )

Viewing 9 replies - 1 through 9 (of 9 total)
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