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The Forums root, or Forums Index, is going to be the death of me.

  • Using WordPress 3.4.1 and bbPress 2.1.2.

    Ever since I began using bbPress, about two years ago, one thing has driven me up the wall– the forums root, or forums index, or forums archive– whatever you want to call it. It’s the page that you land on when you go to the forums, the page that you get to when you click the root page “Forums” in the breadcrumbs, the same “Forums” link after “Home” in the breadcrumbs. No other forums system except bbPress uses a slimmed-down, so-bland-it’s-not-worth-looking-at template for the root of their forums like the Forums Index.

    I tried several ways to make the root page of the forums look like a Single Forum page, in all its not-slimmed-down glory:

    • Rename the Forums Base on the settings page to “forums-index” and use a WordPress page with “[bbp-single-forum id=####]” in it for the landing page of my forums. This, however, still keeps the breadcrumbs link, “forums”, linking to the Forums Index. Since I can’t figure out how to change that link, this method doesn’t work.
    • Edit content-archive-forum.php so that it displays the content of my WordPress page with “[bbp-single-forum id=####]” in it, and nothing else but the site header and footer and whatnot. Having a custom Forum Index page like this would be ideal, but for some reason it glitches out, displaying like the normal Forums Index, but with the entire forums index, including all categories, under a single category header. For every new single-forum shortcode you add to show another forum, it just repeats what the first shortcode did, too.
    • I could rename the forums base to “forums-index” like said before, and redirect “forums-index” to my WordPress page, but it’s a little ridiculous that I would have to rely on something as sloppy as a redirect hack…

    Somebody please help me figure out what I can do. Every other forums out there shows their forums index in what bbPress calls “single forum” view. I just want to do that with bbPress too.

    • This topic was modified 11 years, 6 months ago by MTPrower.
Viewing 12 replies - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
  • It’s been 24 hours, and this is one of the most fundamental, and seemingly one of the easier-to-fix, problems in bbPress. I’m sure everyone who uses bbPress can benefit from this.

    So bump, since I’m pretty sure I’m allowed to do that. It’s been allowed from me before, seemingly even by the great J.J.J.

    It’s been 24 hours again. Bump

    Been 24 hours again. Bump

    I see that a lot of people have an issue with this in some form or another, but I’ve only seen one fix– a non-explained hard-coding. It’s unfair to everyone.

    I want to be able to change loop-forums.php to look exactly like loop-single-forum.php. That means a new table for every category, a Freshness (author name and avatar, as well as latest post time) for every parent forum inside a category, and the displaying of “content” below the forum title, if we have content on the forum edit page (people usually use that for a description of that particular forum).

    Changing the CSS to make each forum have its own line is easy. The REST of the things you have to do to make the forums root, or forums index, look like a single-forum page, is hard.

    This is a much-needed tweak. Pretty much everyone would benefit from it. I will keep bumping this as long as I need.

    I do want to say that I love bbPress though. I’m not giving up on it in the foreseeable future.



    Can I say “HAHAHAHA”? I racked my brains out last night.
    Here’s the best solution. BBRESS Just doesn’t like you theme, plain and simple.
    Tried 23 themes before I found out there’s special themes for BBpress that you have to use,
    other themes won’t work.
    I was having the same exact problem you where

    So what themes do you want me to use? What suggestions do you have?

    John James Jacoby


    In the receiving end, bumping topics here is really annoying, so I’d recommend not doing it. 🙂 These forums don’t move quickly enough to necessitate it, and we’re all volunteers that will help you whenever we have the opportunity to do so. A bump, even with friendly intentions, just ends up making us feel bad because we took a few days off, and making us look like we’re lazy to everyone else.

    Also, cryptidwolf is incorrect, and offers nothing to this conversation that helps you with your issue(s) of which it seems like there are 2; the first being you can’t get the forum index sorted, and that once you do, you want it to look differently than the default templates look.

    The way I suggest fixing it, is to create your own custom page template with the look and feel that you want your index to have. It’s no different than a WordPress theme; if you want it to be different than it is, you sometimes have to do it yourself.

    The forum/category sections are a layout that a few people are working on, and certainly could be a bbPress core feature. Since bbPress has always been topic and content focused, the forum layout isn’t something that gets a lot of attention. Sorting out the forum/category hierarchy and layout is actually a pretty complex set of loops to automate, as it involves checking depth and walking a tree of forums that could potentially be outside of the current scope.

    I haven’t bothered looking too far into it since it’s something that will take concentrated time and effort, and there are other things bbPress needs before that becomes the top priority to put time towards. If you, or anyone else wants to put the time in because it’s important to you, I’d happily review and commit a patch to make sure it’s included in future versions.

    I know this isn’t the best set of answers you were looking for, but it’s all I have for now.

    The first thing you said, as the fix to the problem, is correct. I’ve been mucking around with PHP files for a week. I’ve studied loop-forums.php, which seems to be the page I need to change, and loop-single-forum, which seems to be the page I’m trying to replicate the style of, but no matter what I try, I don’t know PHP well enough to find the fix. I use the default bbPress theme.

    My website is suffering because nobody is saying anything, and I am extremely annoyed. I was going to be much more impolite, but I decided that wouldn’t get me any answers.

    Don’t take it personally– I’m not making a statement about your guys’ skills or competence, but this is still very bothersome.

    It’s simple, so simple. The “forums index” or “forums root” puts all categories inside one table, and strips it of “forum content” (usually used as a description of the individual forums), sub-forum “freshness” ( including avatar, author name, and date), and sub-forum post and topic count.

    WHATEVER ends up replacing the current “forums index” or “forums root”, it needs to show all categories under their own table, and not strip “forum content”, “freshness”, or post and topic count out of forums or sub-forums.

    Like J.J.J. said, I could edit the .php file, but I don’t have time to learn PHP. I’m assuming all I have to do is copy some PHP from loop-single-forum.php or something, but I am at a loss as to figuring out what. I’ve tried and tried all sorts of things.

    A “normal” forums wouldn’t have a stripped-down index. I simple don’t understand why bbPress’ index is stripped down– and worse, why nobody knows how to make it NOT stripped down.

    Don’t take it personally. You guys aren’t doing anything wrong. It’s just that my site is going to stay practically dead until I get this problem solved, and I am losing what members I have slowly. Most people don’t have the patience I have, which is why I think most people don’t use bbPress…

    First of all let me just say it is nice of you to not be more impolite. Secondly I think you should trust him when he says:

    > Sorting out the forum/category hierarchy and layout is actually a pretty complex set of loops to automate, as it involves checking depth and walking a tree of forums that could potentially be outside of the current scope.

    My experience has been that people have embraced this style of forum and I have not had a single negative reaction so far (and I have asked them). So it might not be the forum software that is really the issue here.

    You really only have three options here: Wait for it to be added, find another forum software or pay someone to write a patch.

    I’m going to explode, here.

    You’re kidding me, right? Who or what are you getting defensive about? I’m not even TALKING about that! We can already DO exactly what I’m talking about inside a normal page with only several single-forum shortcodes! The problem is, because of breadcrumbs not linking to the new page I can create for that, I can’t use a different page. I have to use the .php page that is the forum-index.

    Let me make this as simple as humanly possible. This is all I want on my “forums index”: what you get when you put the following into a page:

    [bbp-single-forum id=$forum_id-1]
    [bbp-single-forum id=$forum_id-2]
    [bbp-single-forum id=$forum_id-3]

    Let’s assume those are the id’s of forums of my choosing. In this case, those are the id’s of my three top-level categories. Whatever you get when posting those three shortcodes into one page is EXACTLY what I want as my forums index page. (By the way, all other forums systems already look like this. And don’t assume that everyone likes bbPress’ current index page, which is the only index page of its kind. That is speculation.)

    That is all. Nothing more. We can do it on a single page or post, so I know we can do it on a .php file.

    And finally, don’t be smart with me. bbPress is the only forums system that integrates with WordPress as well as it does. To have a multimedia site with a completely separate forums is to KILL YOUR SITE. I understand why, if your forums isn’t the landing page of your site, you MUST have full integration between your site and forums in order to keep traffic. That is why I can’t use things other than bbPress.

    If you’re going to respond to me, at least read the first post. Just reading the latest two posts isn’t going to give you enough info to respond well without annoying the poster. Please, for the love of god…



    Well…it seems like you want a working solution more than an ideal one, so here goes. You could replace archive-forum.php with:

    Plus anything else you explicitly want in the page.

    DISCLAIMER: I don’t actually advise doing this. I feel like there are probably better ways to achieve the categorical forum listing that you describe. I implemented a categorical forum listing on my own site (, using the general method outlined by Lynq in this thread:

    What you are asking for is outside the default scope of bbpress functionality. It can definitely be modded in using some custom php functions and templates.



    Okay, I am throwing this out there… I THINK I have / had the same problem you are dealing with (again, I think) and may have figured out a solution? Sorry if this is a waste of time… So, I wanted the shortcode to immediately show my main category with all of my subcategories because as you said the index was totally boring, non-descriptive etc. So, I found the numerical ID in the URL of the category (a ### three digit number, mine happened to be 309) and plugged that into [bbp-single-forum id=309] and that worked? So, now when I navigate to that specific page, it automatically opens up to the main + sub category view and not the index view. Again, apologies if this was a waste….

Viewing 12 replies - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
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