Switching to IPB Soon


Tony
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I figured I'd mention most likely tomorrow and if not tomorrow on the weekend we'll be switching from vbulletin to invision power board. We've just had our fill of the bots overrunning our forums and just vbulletin in general being a major annoyance.

So expect a new look soon and probably a whole lot less annoying bots showing up on our forums. Which I guess means more people are going to need to post to make up for the bots :D

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There are converters that make it easy to go from one software to another so everything will be kept. It might just be possible that users will have to reset their passwords to login for the first time. That happens sometimes in conversions depending on how the password is stored and what software you are moving from/to.

It is a good choice to upgrade to IPB. vb is going down hill and vb 4 is absolutely terrible with their price hikes and the way they treat customers is terrible. Can't wait to see the forum using IPB.

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There are converters that make it easy to go from one software to another so everything will be kept. It might just be possible that users will have to reset their passwords to login for the first time. That happens sometimes in conversions depending on how the password is stored and what software you are moving from/to.

It is a good choice to upgrade to IPB. vb is going down hill and vb 4 is absolutely terrible with their price hikes and the way they treat customers is terrible. Can't wait to see the forum using IPB.

Ever since Jelsoft was acquired it's been a mess.. don't even get us started on v4 licensing..

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Ever since Jelsoft was acquired it's been a mess.. don't even get us started on v4 licensing..

You're right about that.

The company that acquired Jelsoft is Internet Brands, a company with experience in automobiles, home loans, and vacation rental properties but no experience whatsoever in software development or in community building software. Most of the vbulletin original developers, including the lead developer and co-founder left Jelsoft.

There's a lot of anger from its users over the new license fees for vbulletin 4 upgrade and it's a great shame how Internet Brands treated their customers.

Apparently the new vbulletin 4 has a lot of problems, including some serious security issues like XSS vulnerabilities.

It's sad to see such a promising forum software fail due to the inexperience of the company that acquired it. This is a really interesting case study on how to lose customers and destroy a good brand.

Glad that Hawk Host has decided to go with IPB instead.

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Nice conversion. The forum looks good. :)

However, you may want to change the IP Board header to the HawkHost logo.

Also, you may want to change the board name from "Invision Power Board" to "HawkHost Community Forums" or something like that.

We'll be cleaning up the details throughout tonight as well as finding a theme more fitting however we figured we should still enable the forums as it's not mission critical.

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Apparently the new vbulletin 4 has a lot of problems, including some serious security issues like XSS vulnerabilities.

It's sad to see such a promising forum software fail due to the inexperience of the company that acquired it. This is a really interesting case study on how to lose customers and destroy a good brand.

The latest vb releases kind of shows how much of a mess it is. Latest release is 4.0.2 PL4 (yes Patch level 4) and 3 of those were within the space of 5 days. Two were because of a Potential XSS vulnerability and the other one was because of Potential XSS vulnerabilities (notice the "S" on that one) and the PL 2 release looks like it was a bit messed up and had a file omitted which was corrected later. I know all software has issues but vb 4 seem to be alot worse the others at the moment and alot of people are not happy especially with the changes with the fees and licenses.

IPB is the way to go and it looks a lot more professional in my opinion. vb has had it's day i think.

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We're fully switched over now and along with that have the spam monitoring service running. Only issue we ran into were attachments for whatever reason they would not link back to the posts. Since we only have a few posts with them I just reposted my mascot ones and the rest are lost.

So I guess over the next week we'll see how many bots we get signed up posting links compared to when we were running vbulletin.

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Good job! That was fast.

Forum looks great. Nice features, too.

Spam service also doing an excellent job: http://forums.hawkhost.com/user/1065-joshuaanave/

This user was auto banned because they're a known spammer :) No more us blocking large IP ranges can rely on the service to pick them up and the odd one that does not is not a huge deal it's a quick mark as spam anyways.

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It didn't take the spammers long to start spamming :lol:

IP range bans are dangerous to do. IPB's spam monitoring thing is alot better. With IP ranges you can end up blocking most of the world and alot of real users if you are not careful.

We were blocking certain countries ranges where most of the spam was coming from. Malaysia was a big one if my memory serves me right. So it start something like this:

1.2.3.*

Then we start seeing anything 1.2.* being spam so we block 1.2.*

It helped reduce the spam users quite a bit as we blocked a few hundred bots who had signed up (not a single legitimate user on the IP ranges we banned)

So there are some ranges that make sense to ban. Also obviously server IP ranges are smart to ban as well.

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Ever since Jelsoft was acquired it's been a mess.. don't even get us started on v4 licensing..

Agreed, I was running three vB3 sites, none of which used the full capability of vB3. So when vB4, with even more features, and a healthy licensing fee increase, came along, all three asked for alternatives. In my case, phpbb was the solution. The upgrade was painless (*except* for the custom user fields), and like IPB, all accounts were maintained.

But yes, it is sad to see what's happening to vB ...

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I understand all the other reasons but as far as spam bots go how is IPB better? (last I ever looked at IPB was years ago)

I am still using 3.x.x of vBulletin and having 'question and answer' instead of captcha (or anything else) has stopped spam almost completely

It's spam monitoring service has been a nice addition with it banning the majority of them just after they register.

It wasn't just about the bots though our license with vbulletin expires in a few months no interest in paying their price increase or using vbulletin 4. So IPB is a nice change of pace and has come a long way from when I last used it that's for sure.

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I am still using 3.x.x of vBulletin and having 'question and answer' instead of captcha (or anything else) has stopped spam almost completely

The 'question and answer' approach works for automatic registrations but it still won't stop manual registrations by spammers.

It's spam monitoring service has been a nice addition with it banning the majority of them just after they register.

IPB's Spam Monitoring Service is a brilliant idea - it continually learns from the collective data sent from all IPB forums with this service installed. This is probably IPB's greatest selling point.

How it works:

1) During registration, the new user's IP address and email address are sent to IPB Spam Monitoring Service.

2) The spam service checks these data against a central database of known spammers.

3) The service assigns a score (1-4) to the new account. Based on the score, you can configure the system to automatically ban the account, accept it, or require manual approval.

4) Anytime an account is manually marked as a spammer, the account's information is fed back to the service to update the central database. The service will then check this spammer account on all the other IPB forums and ban it.

(If you're concerned about privacy issues, this service only keeps information of spammer accounts. Any valid account's information are temporary and eventually get deleted.)

Only power in numbers can combat spam.

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Some simple question and answer questions can be cracked by bots though. Questions like 2+2= ? can be worked out (using google for example).

Making unique questions relating to your forum will help stop bots and some human spammers. If you have a forum about a football club and the question is what is the main colour that is assosiated with this team? Members interested in your forum would know and could sign up and some human spammers from Malaysia, India or wherever might struggle as most don't speak good English anyway and would prefer to move on or take a couple of guesses or try and find the answer.

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