Forum Software comparison

I’ve recently started using the Invision Power Board (IPB) IP.Content component on the Yellow and Black website.  IP.Content is a CMS that integrates into the IP.Board software to enable the publication of articles and the creation of databases that can be used to display various data on the site.

Having tested it for a few months and now implemented it, I’m not sure if it’s what I want on the site.  Much to my dismay, I’ve found that the database component isn’t a relational database.  I had hoped to use it to drive the Yellow Sash Award on the website but this isn’t possible the way that the IP.Content databases have been written.  I may have to learn some PHP and do everything directly from a MySQL database myself.

In any case, I’ve migrated a copy of the current database onto another server and have a working copy of the IPB site there.  I’ve also converted this to run on vBulletin 4.1.3 and am in the process of migrating to XenForo 1.0.1.  The end result will mean that a backup copy of the data from the production site will be able to run in my “lab” on 3 versions of software.  I’m looking forward to testing them all to see which software performs the best.

At present, the current IPB installation is performing terribly slowly.  I’m having difficulties migrating to vBulletin 4.1.3 as the post attachments are unable to be migrated without throwing an error.  I’ve raised a ticket with the vBulletin support team but have yet to hear back from them after over a week.  I purchased XenForo this morning and am currently migrating the IPB database over to run on this software.  So far, (51.85% into the Thread and Post migration) everything has gone well.  Fingers crossed that it migrates without any issues so I can give it a good test.

From what I’ve seen so far, XenForo is pretty responsive and easy to use.  If XenForo continues to perform this well, I may seriously consider moving Yellow and Black to use this software in the future.

I’ll post my findings here when I can.