An internet forum is a discussion area on a website where members submit posts, and then others discuss them. A forum can deal with various topics or can be dedicated to a single issue. These forums are also called as Message Boards, Bulletin Boards and Discussion Groups.
For website owners, forums are an important area of the site where members discuss topics that are of major interest to them. So it is important to ensure that the forum does not run slowly, and most importantly does not get hacked into. bbPress is an incredible WP plugin that provides a complete solution to these problems for any site built on a WordPress platform. It provides a fully functional and feature rich forum which runs fast and which also preserves the safety of data. It is also a support platform as well as being simply a forum system.
Features of bbPress
- Easy to set up and moderate
- Fast loading and clean codes give the best possible experience
- One click installation
- One combined admin area
- It gives ability to split the site into sections
- Simple to use
- You can customize templates so that forums match your site theme
- Spam protection
- RSS feeds ability
How to install
It is easy to install and can be integrated quickly with your website by following these simple steps:
- First make sure you have GreenGeeks web hosting.
- Download bbPress from http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/bbpress/installation/
- Unzip the downloaded folder and place the bbpress folder in your /wp-content/plugins directory.
- Open WordPress admin, click ‘plugins’ from the left menu and activate bbPress.
- Visit ‘Settings > Forums’ and choose your configuration as per your requirements.
- Create forums and view your site.
- You can also adjust the CSS to match the forum theme with your site theme.
Add-ons for bbPress
While bbPress provides ease of integration, ease of use and speed, it misses some features that are vital for the successful operation of a support forum. These missing features are added via add-on plugins for bbPress that extend the bbPress plugins’ default capabilities. One of the missing capabilities is that it does not show ‘status’ when an issue or question has been resolved in the forum. The need for this capability can be solved by ‘GetShopped Support Forums Extension’. This shows every topic of question within the forum as having been resolved or unresolved. Additionally, you could also assign topics/tickets to the correct departments/staff using ‘GetShopped Support Forums Extension’.
Another very useful extension available for bbPress in the extension forum provides the ability to send private messages or confidential information. This may include sending a URL to reset the password when user requests for password reset, login credentials or other similar information.
Plugins for bbPress
Unlike add-ons, plugins do not become part of the program. Plugins are usually the third party software added to your program. bbPress also has a huge gallery of plugins available though only some of the plugins are listed below:
- Orbisius bbPress Signature: You can provide for signatures in your bbPress forum using this signature plugin.
- bbPress Admin Bar Addition: A great plugin for the bbPress forum admins which provides with the links to all settings/tab pages.
- bbPress Search Widget: A plugin that supports bbPress 2.3 + versions in placing a widgetized search area in the forum. It also provides almost thirteen additional features.
- bbPress Quotes: You can create a provision for all your users by giving them a chance to easily quote another user by adding on this plugin to your forum. You can find a quote button at the bottom of posts upon activation of the plugin.
- bbPress String Swap: The bbPress String Swap is a special plugin that allows you to tune your strings, change the Forum User Role names and change the Breadcrumbs parameters. You can adjust settings through the bbPress Main Settings page.
- bbPress Topic Thumbnails: It provides support for topic thumbnails in your bbPress forum. It would place the first picture in your topic and display it along with the topic title on the index page.
- bbPress Pencil Unread: Using this plugin you can classify the topics/forums that have already been read by the logged in users.
Without doubt, bbPress is one of the best forum systems to fulfil the needs of multiple forum owners, keeps the website safe, uses fewer resources and loads quickly. Do consider using bbPress if you need a forum on your WordPress site that provides many useful features to users and site owners, keeps every information safe and secure, and gives smooth navigation experience to users.