Friday, July 31, 2015

Simple Machines Forum joins the Bitnami Library!

Simple Machines Forum is now part of the Bitnami App Catalog!

Simple Machines Forum is a web forum that allows you to have your own community in a really simple way. 

It gives you every feature you need as a forum admin and also is a very easily customizable software. It is written in PHP and used the MySQL database, all included in the Bitnami Stack. Simple Machines Forum also offers the the following features:

Package Manager to apply hundred of modifications you will find online
Changeable themes
Easily integrated with other CMS as Mambo
Supports more than 40 different languages
Upgrade by the web interface

Liroy van Hoewijk, the President/CEO of the org and the server administrator the website, has kindly answered some questions about the project and the integration with Bitnami.

What is the goal of the Simple Machines Forum application?

Simple Machines Forum is designed for ease of setup and use for the beginning site admin, but highly customizable by the more advanced admins. With a lot of handy features, it can be used by anyone for a large variety of communities that the site owner wishes to run.

We want to make good, fast, stable and secure software available to everyone: free of charge. Hence our slogan: "Elegant, effective, powerful, free. It's that simple."

What are some of the features of Simple Machines Forum?

SMF will give you a powerful opensource tool to create an online community, that gives you full control.
- Posting is very easy thanks to a powerful post system, which includes a WYSIWYG editor, a quote option and a quick-reply feature.
- Modifying the appearance of SMF is easy to do, with the built-in theme editor and a large scale of themes available for free on our website.
- Adding functionality is as easy as downloading a free modification package in to the package manager that comes with SMF, which makes it as easy as adding functionality with a single click! 
- The SMF permission system is very strong and can, for example, work with groups so that some users can, or cannot, access/see and/or participate in specific areas of your community; you can limit what users can do, set access control, et cetera.
- The personal message system allows your users to community in private, if they want to.
- A powerful search system allows your users to look through posts/topics to find what they're looking for.
- The language system allows you to install pretty much any language there is, so that your users can use the functions of our software in their own language. This includes a spell check if the server supports it! 
- The warning system can, rather than instantly banning someone which is also an option, ensure you can give users limitations for a few days or keep them on close watch
- The large variety of caching systems that are supported can reduce the resources SMF needs even further.

... Etcetera. You will have a full and powerful community suite in your hands by using SMF.
For a full overview of our features, and to learn about using SMF whilst you're discovering just what SMF can do, I'd like to refer to our extensive online documentation:

Which projects or organizations are using Simple Machines Forum currently?  What kind of projects do they use it for?

From scientific NASA forums to fantasy WarriorcatsRPG, from security firms like COMODO to hacker forums, from bitcointalk to communities of banks: you name it! 
SMF is deployed on many different types of websites/projects as it can be used for just about any subject the user wants to start a community for. The software is very powerful, secure, stable and last but not least: very easy to use and customize, which makes it an easy choice. And hence why it should also be your choice! ;)

The userbase of SMF originates from many different countries, cultures and backgrounds. We pride ourselves in having a multi-cultural team from all corners of the world to cater to the wishes of our users, and produce one of the best products on the market with support in nearly all languages spoken on earth. Support that's not only given by our own team, but also by SMF users that love to help out other/new users! The (support) community on our website is not only staffed by our own team of experts, but is in a large part also driven by our users in a "for users, by users” fashion so that you can get very quick responses. For which we are very thankful!

SMF is not only used by companies, organizations or project websites: but also on a large scale by individuals who simply wish to add an awesome community to their website, in order to enable communication and/or discussions with their users on the subject their website is about. It greatly enhances the social interaction with, and among, the visitors of your website. 

SMF is light-weight, so it doesn't need significant amounts of resources to function: but it can scale as big as you need to as long as the hardware supports it. From a few hits to millions of hits, SMF can do it.

What do you expect will be the main benefits of having Bitnami packages available for Simple Machines Forum?

Whilst we do not endorse any specific vendor, for all the Bitnami users I'm very happy to hear that SMF will now be available to them in a pre-packaged system! It will of course lower the hurdle to get started even further. Making SMF even easier to use and install than it already is will hopefully be a welcome addition for Bitnami users, and therefore we hope that you'll give our software a try and start using SMF on your website! You will not regret it.


Simple Machines Forum is now ready to install in a few clicks with the Bitnami Simple Machines Forum Installers (available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X), Virtual Machine images(VMs), cloud images for Amazon EC2,Azure and Google Cloud Platform.

You can try Simple Machines Forum launching a free cloud demo server. If you are interested you just have to click on the following button to create a 1 hour free server:

Want your favorite app to be part of the Bitnami Library? Vote for it in our monthly contest!