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Simple Machines Forum

Simple machine forums (SMF) is a free software package that can deploy an online community for its customers. The message board internet forum program is written in the PHP script and uses the MySQL, PostgreSQL or SQLite databases. It is offered under the BSD license. Some of its exclusive features include

SMF is a good and ideal platform for the first time web owners looking to start a forum or message board. It is an easy to use message board platform and does not require much technicities. Tracking of read and unread messages, multi-lingual support, open and well documented source code, designed with scalable features, improves SEO capability, log to allow search engines to crawl, search forum, category or board with a topic, ability to install and uninstall mods or hacks etc.

SMF offers enhanced security features that include – authentication and access with authorization code, user id and password, limited logins from a particular IP and time lock, CAPTCHA authentication and anti-spam system. SMF allows integration of a website using SSI (server -side Includes), a collection of tools including customized themes backup utility and conversion tools that can help the consumer shift from an existing forum or bulletin board to SMF.

SMF came as an offshoot of a Perl based bulletin board YaBB. But need for a PHP version of YaBB led to the creation of YaBBSE. Soon some of its developers decided to separate off and revamp the entire structure. They changed the name to Simple Machine Forum(SMF) and released the first version in 2003.

Important Features of Simple Machines Forum:

  1.) Advanced Permission and User-level Management
  2.) Package Manager for installing updates (hacks) to Simple Machines Forum with a few clicks, without requiring to modify the code
  3.) Tracking of new as well as unread topics
  4.) Time and IP locked actions
  5.) Creation of sub boards under other boards
  6.) Cookie and Session-based authentication
  7.) Export of forum data by means of RSS/XML
  8.) Editing features such as Quick Reply, Spell Check, Insert Quote, etc.
  9.) Addition or Removal of polls to the existing topics
  10.) Wildcards for IP address, email address
  11.) Merging and Splitting of Topics
  12.) Support for WAP and I-mode protocols
  13.) Ability to show new replies to your posts


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