Administration and Setup Manual for
Anyboard

WWW Message Board System

 

Table of Contents

  1. Administration 
  2. Configuration

Thank you for choosing AnyBoard! After using AnyBoard, we're sure you'll find it to be the BEST Web message board system available anywhere.

AnyBoard is better by design. We worked with message board administrators and others who have used other web bbs programs, and we incorporated their suggestions and ideas into AnyBoard to bring you the best program with the features you need. AnyBoard gives you complete control over the appearance and operation of your message board.

AnyBoard was designed to meet the needs of the most demanding live message boards, which have very heavy traffic and suffer from various abuses and attacks. It was designed to provide rich and reliable functionality to both users and administrators.

AnyBoard is the most fully featured discussion board program you will find. AnyBoard's essential features include: threaded/non-threaded forum, file uploading, private discussions, email notification, integrated survey, integrated chat room, pre-moderation, peer moderation, strong anti-abuse capabilities.

Top

AnyBoard’s main advantages:

AnyBoard Features

From users point of view
(each of these features may be enabled by the administrator independently of the others)
  • Multi-page threaded or non-threaded message board 
  • Register and protect your identity with a password 
  • Auto fill-in of your name and e-mail address after you login for each session. 
  • Once logged in, you do not need to enter your user name again during the session. 
  • The ability to modify your own posts. 
  • The ability to delete your own posts. 
  • The ability to prevent replies to any of your posts 
  • The ability to send/receive email notifications for new posts. 
  • The ability to upload a file when you post, which is then automatically linked. If a .gif or .jpg image file, it will be displayed automatically. 
  • Identify new posts easily (by different color) 
  • The ability to use HTML in the message body (HTML will not work in the Subject field). 
  • The ability to add link URLs. 
  • Automatic detection and linking of URLs in message body. 
  • The ability to add image links. 
  • The ability for the message body to be empty, sometimes called NT (No Text)  posts. 
  • Posts with an image are so indicated on the main page. 
  • Register just once for multiple forums on the same site. Login and password for each user will work for all forums. 
  • You can search message body (CPU intensive) as well as subject field for keywords (Find feature) within a date range. 
  • You can use the Overview feature to read top level posts (without replies) 
  • You will be banned automatically after a setable number of violations :-) 
  • Easy access to information. Very readable layout. At a glance of the message line, a user knows whether the post is new (coloring), size of the message, whether it has an image link inside, rating of the message (if enabled), number of replies to it, and the number of visits to it (if enabled). One can also collapse or expand the threading. 
  • Where am I? function allows a user to find out where he is among a big thread of discussion. 
  • Modifiable user profiles. Registered users can create and modify their profiles and passwords. 
  • Rate posts or articles and see stars and vote counts next to them. Detects and rejects "double rating" on the same page. 
  • Peer moderation when enabled, posts rated below certain point will not be shown on the main forum. 
  • Private discussions between any two registered users. 
  • Unlimited number of suveys. 
  • Chat room. 
  • Many more.

  •  
From administrators' view 
  • Reliability.  Forget about crashes, lost data and other problems with other boards. Reliability is the first feature we built into AnyBoard. 
  • Security. All aspects of AnyBoard are secure. Administrative work, such as message board creation and management, are authenticated from the beginning to the end. Unlike some other boards, which can easily be broken into by programmers who read the code, AnyBoard has no security holes. 
  • Fast. Generated html pages are compact and fast to load through highly efficient algorithms and other means. Mod_perl compatible, compile once for mod_perl enabled server. 
  • Easy to install and configure. Just set the paths to perl 5 and the master config directory, everything else is done through the web browser. Even a beginner can have a board up in a few minutes. 
  • Multiple boards from a single program. No need to have different installations of the main program. A single script can run all the different message boards you want. 
  • Highly customizable. Have your AnyBoard forum match the rest of your site or make it look like anything you want, from style to colors you choose, with features you select and enable. 
  • Use pre-configured templates or create your own. We make it easy for you to get started right away by choosing any of our stock settings 
  • Frame / noframe interfaces. Make your choice. Change your mind? Easy to change your board and all messages, even those already posted. 
  • Threading / no threading. Choose if you want messages to be threaded or not on the board. 
  • Highly configurable. It allows you to set the depth of threading, whether text is inlined, number of articles per page, colors, fonts, backgrounds... With over 100 configurable parameters, you can create Internet forums of completely different styles at the click of a button. 
  • Regeneration Board and existing messages can easily and rapidly be regenerated to reflect changed configuration. 
  • Index recovery even after operating system crash. 
  • Powerful and easy to use administrative functions, such as delete or archive by subject, IP address, date or author. 
  • Admin activities are logged with IPs and resolved host names. 
  • Forbidden word & name features can prevent posting of unsuitable language and names and automatically ban users who have a predetermined number of violations. Banned user will find it hard to get back in. 
  • Detection and prevention of "posting bombs". E-mail alarm of possible attacks is sent to admin. 
  • Two level administration - administrator and moderator. Administrator has all rights while moderator has those assigned by the administrator. Moderator rights always exclude the ability to configure the message boards. 
  • Pre Moderation. When enabled, messages must be first reviewed and approved by moderator before showing up in the board. 
  • User registration.  Users can be required to register and login to post and for other functions. 
  • Email validation on user registration. If enabled, when user registers, an e-mail is sent to user provided e-mail addresses with a unique activation link to activate the account. The user may also need to acknowledge acceptance of the forum rules. 
  • Users will find themselves exposed if they try to assume multiple identities. All names used by a poster are indicated on individual message pages posted by that same person. 
  • Visit counters. AnyBoard can track and display number of visits to a message. 
  • Email notification of new messages to a set of e-mail addresses, of responses to original posters, email to all users. 
  • Many more.... To see the complete list of features, simply create an AnyBoard forum yourself, go to the admin page, and look at the available Notification, Posting Policy, Control, Presentation and Label configuration parameters. 

Top

AnyBoard Usage

The AnyBoard Main Forum screen (see figure 1) is composed of several parts. It's helpful to understand what the basic parts of the screen are to assist you in understanding where to make changes and what does change when you want to customize the display.

Figure 1 - Example Main Forum Screen

The nine basic parts of the AnyBoard Main Forum screen are:

Forum header
Forum top banner
Top navigation bar
HTML between top nav bar and message area
Message area
HTML between message area and bottom nav bar.
Bottom navigation bar
Forum bottom banner
Forum footer HTML

Starting from the top, the first part of the screen is the Forum Header area, starting from <html>. In this example, we do not have any visible elements, but we have set the background to white, using <BODY bgcolor=white>. The background could also have been set to a background .gif or .jpg image with the <BODY BACKGROUND="...> HTML tag. The <BODY> tag is also the place for setting link and visited link colors.

The forum banner above the top navigation bar can physically grouped with the forum header, as they are adjacent to each other, however, logically, they can be set to for different purposes, so they can be modified independently.

The Navigation bar hosts the command links such as Post Message, Register and Login. These links can be set to use icons through the Label configuration. The numbers 1112-1124/1147 on the left edge of bar tell us that there are 1147 messages in this board, and the current page (p.3) is displaying #1112 to #1124. Other pages of messages can be accessed from the page drop list left to the Go button. The Search forum command allows user to find messages based on search pattern and posting time. The Overview command collapses the links, so that only the top level threads are shown. The Register command is for new users to register their names. The Login command is for users to login to the board, so they don't have to type in their names each time they post.

Below the top navigation bar, there is a survey embedded using Java(tm)script.

In the middle is the Message Display area, with the Topic lines (also called Subject lines) and Reply lines visible.

The Topic line background color and the Reply line background color have both been set to different color, providing a contrast between them.

The message lines contain various information:

Depending on configuration, your board may display information differently. For example, if visit counter is enabled, the number of reads will be shown. You can also let anyboard display the size of the message body and use different date format.

Finally, at the bottom of the screen is the Forum Footer area. No changes have been made to the Forum footer area on this board.

This is just one example of how AnyBoard can be customized. With all the available AnyBoard options, the number of possible configuration styles runs into the thousands. The "look and feel" of AnyBoard is limited only by your imagination.

 Top of Page

Post a message

Clicking on the Post message link on the navigation bar brings up the post message form

If the board has registration feature turned on but the author did not go through the login process, there will be a password entry box right to the author name. If the author login first, he does not need to enter his name/password when making posts, as shown above. AnyBoard can force users to login first in order to post messages.

This board has enabled private discussion feature. If one enters a recipient name in the "Private message for" entry, then only the recipient will see this message in his/her "My Forum".

Since this board has notification enabled (only available in Gold version), there are various check boxes to allow the author to specify whether email notification is to be sent. If the author check the Email notification box right to the POST! button, an email will be sent to the board administrator. Since Support is an administrator of the board, there is also a "Notify all users" check box, if checked, every registered user would receive notification of the new message.

Also, the author can attach a file along with the message by clicking on the Browse button and selecting a file on his/her PC.

Top of Page

Rate messages

AnyBoard can be configured to allow users to rate messages. Furthermore, AnyBoard can be set to hide messages below certain rate after certain number of votes. The rate can be negative, and the range of rates is configurable, .. The rate message screen looks like,

Of course, the icons for positive and negative rates are configurable.

Search messages

The Search forum link brings up the form below:

The search pattern must be a PERL regular expression, for example, to search for words delete OR remove, the pattern is delete|remove. (words separated by the pipe to symbol of |. The meaning of other fields is obvious.

Note, if you do not enter a value for a field, that field won't be used in the search criteria. For example, if you only specify a date range and no value for others, the search will return all messages posted in that date range. Another example, to find out all messages that contain images, check the "Only if contain image" box and clear out all other fields.

The result from a search looks like this

Top of Page

Overview of all messages

For a busy message board, there might be thousands of messages and it is impossible to show all messages on the front page, to get an overview of all the messages, one can use the Overview command, which shows the top messages only for all the threads. An overview looks like this

Note the 1-938/938 p.A label on the navigation bar, which means it is displaying all messages.

Top of Page

View previous pages

Click on the Previous link to with the next older page.

The generic command (link) to page N is ?cmd=view_page&pgno=N&depth=d, where N is the page number, and d the link depth to show. For example, to view page 3, but only show the top message of each thread, the link is ?cmd=view_page&pgno=3&depth=1.

Top of Page

Inside a message

The message html file is laid out as follows

Message header HTML code
Message banner html, below the message header
Top message navigation bar 
Separator between message header and message body
Message body, including related link, image link, link to uploaded files
Delimiter at the end of message body
Bottom message navigation bar 
Follow ups label (configurable to arbitrary HTML code)
Links to replies area
Message footer html

Top of Page

AnyBoard Installation

Follow these steps to install AnyBoard (tm).

To be able to create new message boards via the Web, AnyBoard (tm) needs to have a Master Administrator, who has special privileges to create and delete message boards. Each message board has its own board administrator, who can configure the boards, delete or archive messages, delete or disable users, etc. AnyBoard needs one common directory to store crucial password information for Master Admin., which is called the Master Config Directory. This directory also stores user passwords if the user registration feature is enabled. You should choose a directory that is NOT accessible from the Web.

Installation procedure:

  1. Download anyboard.tar or anyboard.zip. Unpack anyboard.tar or anyboard.zip to extract the AnyBoard installation directory "anyboard" to your disk.
  2. Follow instructions in the "install.html" file.
  3. At this point you should have a script named "anyboard.cgi" (or with whatever extension you enter) in your working directory.
  4. Copy this script to your CGI directory. Make sure the permission for the CGI file is set to 755.
After these steps, AnyBoard is successfully installed and ready to use through the URL

http://yoursite/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi.

You may now proceed to create message boards.

Top of Page

Create a Message Board

To create new board, you need to access the CGI with the URL:

http://yoursite/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi?cmd=init

Examples:

http://netbula.com/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi?cmd=init (system cgi)

http://netbula.com/~ydx/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi?cmd=init (user's private CGI)

This URL should bring you to a form with the following fields:

This form asks you for the Master Admin name and password which you have entered during installation process, plus the information for the new forum. Each new forum must be in its own directory. The most important one is the Virtual Path to the directory of the new forum.

Top of Page

Forum Domain Virtual Path

The virtual path is the path name after the domain name in the URL. This is most important, since AnyBoard will figure out the physical path from the virtual path and create the directories for you. If the wrong virtual path is entered, it will most probably result in a directory creation error.

Examples:
for a URL of: enter as Forum Dir Virtual path:
http://netbula.com/products/powerrpc/ /products/powerrpc/
http://netbula.com/~ydx/test/ /~ydx/test/

If you choose the virtual path of /forum/, AnyBoard will create a forum that is accessed at http://mydomain/forum/index.html (or whatever extension you've chosen).

After entering the information, submit the form. AnyBoard will try to create the directory for the new forum. If successful, it will bring you to the Admin Login page for the new forum. If there is an error, it will display the error, which is probably due to lack of permission for the script to create directories. In that case, chmod the top directory (change the mode, or set permission).

Initially, there is no password for the forum admin, simply enter the user name you chose (leave password empty) and submit the form, and you will be brought to the administration page for the new forum.

You must now change the password for the admin immediately, then login again.

Top of Page

Optional Setting variables

These are variables that are at the top of the script.


 Top of Page

AnyBoard Administration

Administer Admin and moderators

At the top of the admin panel are the commands for modifying the administrator and adding/modifying/deleting moderators.

Top of Page

Change Admin Login and Password

This allows you to change the Admin login name and the password associated with it.

Top of Page

Change Moderator Login and Password

This allows you to change the Moderator login name and the password associated with it. From this screen you may also select whether or not Moderators are allowed to delete users and/or messages.


 
 Top of Page

Regeneration and backup

The html pages, including the forum index page and individual message files are generated from an index file (.msglist) and message data files under the /postdata directory/. Sometimes, you may need to regenerate the html files. For example, when you move a forum from one server to another, the html files may have links referencing the old site, and you need to recreate the pages to match the current site. You don't need the html files under the posts directory, instead, just copy the postdata/ and archive/ directory, and you can regenerate the files under the posts directory.

AnyBoard does not regenerate individual messages by default, but you can force it to do this by checking the first box in the above figure. When you reconfigure the forum, AnyBoard only regenerates the index page, to make existing messages reflect the change you made, you need to regenerate the individual messages using this function. When you also check the "Delete all files under posts" box, all existing message html files are deleted first, this ensures that the posts/ directory is cleared up. The Date range limit the number of messages to be regenerated. For a large forum, there might be thousands of messages, regenerating all of them may take quite a while, by limiting the date range, one can choose to regenerate part of the messages.

The "Validate index" function is for verifying the consistency of the index files for the active board and archive, and it can repair the index file when you check the "remove bogus entry" box. Index corruption can occur when an abnormal condition happens on your server, such as system crash or out of disk space.

The recover function is for restore a board after a fatal operating system failure which resulted in the corruption of the index file. In this case, the index file may be totally lost, fortunately, the data files under postdata/ directory contains redundant index information, and the recover function uses this to recreate an index. Note, however, upon a recovery, the posters' IP address will be lost.

Backup uses the archive command set in the script (default is zip) to pack/compress the board files and return it to your browser, you should save this file with zip extension.

Top of Page

Deletion, archive and approval of messages

The delete function remove messages and their associated files from the server, deleted messages can't be restored.

The archive function compact and move the messages to the archive directory, archived messages can't brought back to live discussion and can't be modified (at least, not from AnyBoard).

If you check the "Private messages only" box on delete, then only private messages are selected in the deletion screen.
 

When delete by subject or author, you can specify optionally a match pattern for the subject/author and a thread depth to display. For a board with thousands of messages, it is time consuming for your browser to render a page with large and complex structures, by setting these restrictions, you can reduce the size of the page for the delete form.
 

The delete by subject form looks like this,

to delete the unwanted messages, check the boxes left to the subject, and then click the submit button (not shown). If the "include whole thread" box is checked, then the messages and their replies are all removed, otherwise, only the messages themselves are deleted. Once the form is submitted, a window pops up with the detailed information about the messages that were deleted.

The Archive message screens look similar to the figure above.

When you enable pre-moderation features (in the Forum Control configuration), all posts must be approved before showing up on the forum. An additional button, "Approve" will show up in the admin panel (you need to reload the admin panel to see it). Clicking on this button brings you to a page similar to the deletion pages, but with two choices, you can either delete or approve messages from that screen.

Approve/delete new messages in queue

Entering "Support" in the pattern box, and click on the "Approve.." button, we get:

The Approve/Delete screen

The delete by author form looks like this:

if you check the author's name and submit the form, all messages by that author will be permanently removed.

Top of Page

User management

The delete user function removes a user's registration entry from user database, if the "Disable it" box is checked, then this user is added to the .kill file under master configuration directory and is permanently banned.

The change user's password function can set a user's password by the administrator. If the "create if not exist" box is checked, and the user does not exist, AnyBoard creates the user, this can be used by the administrator to control the registration of users. A AnyBoard forum can be setup to require user registration but does not allow user to register themselves, and the admin can use this facility to manual register users.

Top of Page

Administer online surveys

AnyBoard's integrated survey function allows you to conduct unlimited number online surveys. A message forum, due to its high visit count, is a very good place to conduct surveys. By using AnyBoard survey function, you can take advantage of the user access control already setup in your forum configuration.

To add a survey, click on the "Add a survey button", a page like this shows up:


 

You must enter a id for the new survey, which must be alphanumeric. Here we choose id "ab". The choices of answers are entered in the format index=answer, one per line. The "List this survey in index" check box determines whether the new survey is listed on the polls/index.html page. After submitting the form, a set of Java(tm)script and HTML files are created/modified, under the polls/ directory of the forum.

File name Purpose
ab.html survey html page
ab_res.html survey result page
ab.js survey javascript
ab_res.js survey result javascript
index.html survey & result html page for all listed surveys
index.js survey & result javascript for all listed surveys

The HTML pages can be linked from other pages. The Java(tm)scripts are for embedding the survey/result into another page. To embed the survey form on a page, add the following code:

<SCRIPT SRC="http://your-site/your-forum-dir/polls/ab.js">
</SCRIPT>
If you don't see the voting booth, go to <a href="http://your-site/your-forum-dir/polls/ab.html">here</a>

Of course, the Java(tm)script only works on a Java(tm)script capable browser (such as IE3 and Netscape 3 and up), for this reason, we also added a link to the HTML survey page.

Top of Page

Other functions

The "Send test message" function allows you to test if email will work (even for non-Gold versions).

The "View login records" function allows you to see the login activity on your forum.

Sample admin login record

The "Upload" function allows the administrator to upload files to the forum directory.

Top of Page

Configurations

Configure board options

Click here to view all the configuration options

AnyBoard has a large set of configuration options, almost all these options can be set independent of each other. Therefore, the number of configuration AnyBoard can have is astronomical (2^300). The configuration is organized in the following sections.

Section Name
Configuration affected
Examples
Label Various fixed strings in AnyBoard, such as the words "Post Message". In most cases, you can set them to a <IMG> link to use graphic buttons instead of text. By changing labels to use another language, one can use AnyBoard for that language. To use a small font for the "Post Message" label, put 
<small>Post Message</small>
Fonts The font attributes of dynamic text, such as message subject, message body, author name, posting date, etc. Set author name to small font in green color,

size=-1 color="green"

Colors The background or text colors of various areas in AnyBoard, such as the background of post message form. Set "Text color for the date of newly modified messages" to red, enter

#ff0000

Name & file The filename of the index page, alternative location of password files, etc. To use SSI, set "File name of the main forum page" to:

index.shtml

Style This controls the overall style of the forum. Options include whether to display the forum as a threaded message board, whether to column justify fields, whether to use frame interface, etc. To always stick the whole thread together, check the box for 

"Always show the full thread"

Presentation This section mainly controls the header/footer sections of various pages. If you need to add banner ads to your pages, this is the place to look at. To add a new line between each topics, set "Separator between topics" to:

<br>

Moods This is for you to set the icons for various emoticons. To set the smile icon to an image,

<img src="/images/smiley.gif">

Confirmation Setup the confirmation page which displays after accepting a user's post. To say "Congratulations, your message has been added", change "Thank you," to

Congratulations

Error Standard error messages. Especially useful for non English environment. Change this for another language.
Navigation bar Configures the navigation bar for the main index page and the archive index page. To hide the admin link from the nav bar, remove ADMLNK from the layout configuration. More on this later.
Control General control options for the forum. To record posters' domain name, check the box for "Record posters' hostname besides IP address"
Posting policy Control how posting is restricted. To allow file uploading, but do not display the uploaded file, check the box for "Enable file-uploading" AND the box for "Do not show uploaded files in message".
Notification Control how email notification is used. If you want users to receive notifications, check the box for "Allow registered user to choose to be in Notifiee list"
Chat Configure the chat room. To set the number of messages lines to 20, change the setting for "Number of messages to display".

The administrator can configure the board by selecting one category and click on the Configure button. One can also reconfigure a forum using one or all configuration sections of a template, such as the one for AnyBoard support, included in the AnyBoard distribution.

The configurable parameters are entered in the following three types of html form entries,
Type General guideline for data
Single line text field Labels, colors, fonts, sizes, etc. No single quotes (' ) allowed
Multi-line text area Usually used for html code. Any text data.
Check box Checked for true, not checked for false.

For instance, a portion of the Colors configuration screen looks like this

The Mood configuration looks like

This page list all the configuration parameters, and their meaning are explained in more detail below.

(The following is not a complete list, as new features are getting added frequently)

Top of Page

Configure Control Options

The "Control" screen allows configuration of the following options:

Require posters to enable Cookies:

When enabled, users cannot post if they do not enable cookies. AnyBoard uses cookies for several functions, including registration, counting user violations, allowing users to edit messages, tracking and exposure of posters with multiple identities, and more.

Display Posters Aliases:

By tracking the IP Address of a user, AnyBoard can determine when a user is creating multiple user accounts and "expose" the user. Tracking still occurs even if this feature is turned off.

Auto fill E-mail address:

Automatically fill in the email address for registered users when they post.

Do NOT show link to forum on login/register form:

When this is checked, there will be no link to the forum on the login and register form.

Enable user registration with name and password:

Allows users to register so they can "claim" a particular User Name. A registered user will have an (R) sign after the name.

Enforce user password registration:

This forces Users to register to be able post messages.

Enable moderation function:

Posts must be approved before showing up. When this is enabled, an additional button, the Approve button will be displayed.

Require e-mail validation on user registration:

When enabled, an email with validation information will be sent to the user when they register. A user account is not activated until he/she accesses the activation link. You must setup the SMTP server information during installation for this to work.

CC validation e-mail to admin:

CC the validation e-mail, which contains user's password in plain text to admin.

Do not share user/password among different forums:

If unchecked, user name and  password are shared among all forums, otherwise, a user has to register for each forum.

Enable user login:

Once logged in, the user does not need to enter their user name again, AnyBoard will enter it for them automatically. This can be enabled with or without tuning on the registration function.

Require user to login first:

This option forces a user to Login before they can post any messages.

Require user to login first to read message:

As it says.

Allow user to search message body:

This option allows users to do text searches on the message content and author's names. This is very handy for finding a specific post, or for finding posts on a specific subject..

List of forbidden names separated by |:

This text box is where you would the list user names that you don't want to be able to Register, Login or Post. Applies to the "Subject" or "Posted by" fields.

(For example, "Test|Make Easy Money|Make Money Fast!"

Disallow user after this many violations:

After this number of violations (using Forbidden Words), the poster will be locked out from the message board. Setting this number to nothing (leaving the field empty) will effectively turn this function off.

Automatic purge when number of messages is greater than:

This number sets the maximum number of messages that will be kept. When the number of messages is greater than this number, AnyBoard will delete the excess messages automatically.

Archive purged messages:

Works in conjunction with "Automatic Purge". Instead of deleting excess messages, AnyBoard will archive them.

Log errors:

Determines whether or not AnyBoard will record errors to a log file for later viewing.

Enable file locking for maximum system integrity:

Most UNIX servers have file-locking capability (flock). This prevents messages from being overwritten or merged if server traffic is heavy (or if many users are all posting at the same time). ALWAYS use this feature if your system supports it. AnyBoard will check for the availability of file locking and return an error if it is not available on your server.

 Top of Page

 Configure Posting Policy Options

The "Posting Policy" screen allows configuration of the following options:

Disallow posting. Freeze the forum:

Just what it says. Nobody can post new messages when this option is selected.

Disable follow-up:

Prevents posters from replying to messages, but allows then to post a new top level message.

Disable message link threading:

Shows message links linearly, rather than threaded.

List of forbidden words/patterns, separated by | (or any Perl RE):

This text box is where you list any words or word patterns that you don't want a user to be able to use in a post. If they do use any of these words, a configurable message is displayed, warning the user. Each time the user does this, it counts as a "violation" against them. Once the violation count is met, the user is automatically banned from the forum. NOTE: "RE" stands for "regular expression".

List of blocked IP addresses, separated by | (or a general RE):

This text box is where you list any IP Addresses that you do not want to be able to use the forums. IP Addresses in this box will be "screened out" and will not be able to access the message board.

Warning message when forbidden words are detected:

This is where you set the "Forbidden Words" error message you want displayed to an offending user. HTML is allowed in this text box.

Warning message when failed admin login is detected:

Put some warning message here. Note: failed admin logins are logged.

Allow HTML in message body:

Sets whether or not user may embed HTML code in the message body. This a very desirable feature for the advanced user, as it allows them to display images, make selected text bold or italic, etc. With this set, any legal HTML tag is allowed in the message body.

Do NOT carry subject line over in reply

By default, when user reply to a message, AnyBoard carries the original subject over, prepended with "RE:", uncheck this box to disable this.

Quote original text when reply:

By default, AnyBoard does not quote the original text in the reply form, checking this box enables the quoting.

Allow user to add link URL:

With this checked, the user is provided a text box at the bottom of the "Post Message" screen, where they may enter a "clickable" URL that will be available to anyone who reads the message. The URL could, for example, lead to the posters home page or a web site of interest.

Allow user to add image:

With this checked, the user is provided a text box at the bottom of the "Post Message" screen, where they may enter a URL to an image file. Users that view this message will see the image specified in the URL.

Allow user to upload file:

With this checked, an additional text box appears at the bottom of the Post form, which allows a user to select an attachment file to be sent along with the message text. The uploaded file is stored in the uploads/ directory for a forum. If the attachment is a GIF/JPEG file, it will be automatically linked with a <IMG> tag.

Allow user to modify message body after posting:

If set, the user name on the main page will be linked to an "Edit message" page, which allows the user to go back and edit the messages that they post. This is an excellent feature for things like correcting spelling mistakes, adding additional text to the message, etc. To use this feature, you must also enable the registration feature, because the user must be authenticated to modify his/her message.

Message can be modified only if posted by registered user:

If registration is optional on your forum, checking this box disallow the messages posted by a unregistered user to be modified, even if the user register the name later.

Allow user to delete message after posting:

When this is set, a registered user can delete his/her own posts.

Allow message body to be empty:

When checked, users can fill out the Subject line without having to put any text in the message body itself. This is very handy for quick, one line replies to a message or to ask a simple question that doesn't require any explanation.

Allow user to disallow replies to his/her posts:

If checked, the user has the ability to make his/her message stand alone, so that others can't post a reply for it.

Allow duplicated subject

By default, AnyBoard rejects a post which has identical subject line with one of the last 20 posts (maybe the user posted the same message twice?). Check this allows duplicated subjects, always.

Allow user to rate the posts:

When enabled, a user can rate the messages in 5 star rating scheme. AnyBoard detects attempts by a user to rate the same article two or more times.

Show rating only after this many votes:

Don't display the average rating until this many votes have been received.

Maximum length of message subject:

Sets how many characters maximum the Subject line can contain.

Maximum length of author name:

Sets how many characters maximum the user's name can be.

Maximum length of message body:

Sets how many characters maximum the message body can contain. Use this setting to prevent posters from pasting in 500K of text, for example.

Minimum time interval (in seconds) between two posts from the same IP:

Used for detecting "message bombing", where a malicious poster uses a program to "flood" the board by sending (for example) 1000 messages. A good base setting is in the range of 30 to 60 seconds. Set to 30 seconds, an e-mail robot will only be able to send two messages a minute.

E-mail Admin if 20 messages arrived within less than this many seconds:

Sets the number of seconds that 20 messages can arrive in before AnyBoard will notify you by email. This feature is used to detect a suspicious "flood" of messages that suddenly begin arriving. (From a "posting bomb", for example.)

Allow user to view configurations of the forum:

Lets the users see how the board is configured, but does not allow them to change any of the settings.

Physical path (not URL) to the forum usage agreement (rules) file:

Enter the physical location to your "Rules" file into this text box. This is the file that AnyBoard will show to new users, who must view and agree to the contents when the "email registration" feature is turned on. (For example, "No flaming", no advertising", etc.)

The path is NOT an "http:" location, but is the server's directory path to the file (for example, "/usr/home/yourdomain/newuserfaq.htm")

Top of Page

Configure Navigation Bar

The navigation bar is enclosed in a table, and the command links are enclosed in table columns. To allow maximum flexibility in configuring the navigation bars, AnyBoard uses macro substitution for the various commands on the bar. One uses the predefined macros for the commands to specify the layout. At the page generation stage, AnyBoard replaces the macros with the appropriate html code.

The following table describes the macros and their meaning:
Macro Symbol (case sensitive) Meaning
POSTLNK Link to post message command
FINDLNK Link to search message form
OVERVIEWLNK Link to overview command
PREVLNK Link to previous page
NEWESTLNK Link to newest page
REGLNK Link to user registration page, and my forum page.
LOGINLNK Link to login page
OPTLNK Link to options display page
ADMLNK Link to admin login page
GOPAGEBTN The HTML code that shows the selection list of pages and the go button.
MAINLNK Link to the main forum (on archive index page)
ARCHLNK Link to the archive page
CHATLNK Link to the chat room.

The AnyBoard support forum's (the one used as example) navigation bar is laid out as follows.

<td>GOPAGEBTN</td>
<td bgcolor=#99ddff align=center>POSTLNK </td>
<td>CHATLNK</td></td><td>FINDLNK OVERVIEWLNK NEWESTLNK</td>
<td bgcolor=#ffffcc align=center>REGLNK LOGINLNK OPTLNK </td>

Top of Page

Configure Presentation

The "Presentation" screen allows configuration of the following options:

Separator between topics:

May be set to an image of your choice, a horizontal rule <HR>, a line of text, or may be left blank.

Depth of links on main page:

Sets how "deep" links will be displayed on the main forum page. Typical settings are from 4 to 128.

Show subject in bold text:

Shows the "Subject:" line in bold text so it stands out more clearly.

Show dates in short format:

This makes the message link lines shorter.

Show size of message body:

Adds a small text line in the Subject line that indicates how big the message body is.

Show number of follow ups to a message:

When set, a message topic has a +n sign to indicates that it has n immediate follow ups.

Indicate on main page whether the user is registered:

If checked, a registered user will have a (R) sign after their name on the front page.

Indicate if there is an image link in message:

Allows users to see if a particular message has an image link in it. Ref: img label in label configuration.

Don't show author's email address in message:

If checked, author's email address is not shown in the message. The email information is still captured and stored, so the user can receive notifications.

Show number of visits to a message:

Display number of visits to each message.

Show message which has more than this many visits as hot:

Messages has more this many reads will show the number of visits in red color.

Show navigate/command bar at bottom:

Adds an additional Navigation bar at the bottom of the screen. Mainly a convenience for users so they don't have to scroll back to the top of the page.

Show forum name on nav bar:

If unchecked, the forum name won't show up on the navigation bar.

Show message less than this many minutes old as new:

Set the number of minutes a message is considered to be "new". Messages marked as "new" have the time and date field shown in a dark green color.

Text color for the date of new messages:

Default color for new posts are dark green, but can be set to a different color with this configuration.

Inline follow-up messages:

Put the contents of a message and the contents of its follow-up messages into the same HTML file.

Inline all messages (like a guest book):

Put the contents of all messages into the main page of the message board.

Thread inline message text:

The inlined message text will be indented according to its depth just like message links on the main page.

Adopt orphan message:

When you delete a message in the middle of a thread, you are breaking the links to any messages above or below it. The message below the now deleted one is "orphaned" and would normally become a top level message. However, when this option is enabled, the orphaned message will be placed under a "zombie parent", maintaining the threading.

Add link to URL in the message:

Automatically make a hyper link to URLs present in the message.

Replace new line with <br>:

If a user's PC sends a "new line" character, AnyBoard will change it to the HTML "<BR>" tag. This box would normally be left "checked".

Indent the follow-up links/texts:

Pushes replies to a message "in" from the left edge so they can be easily distinguished from the parent message This box would normally be left "checked".

Width of the message area:

With the message links area in percentage or absolute value.

Color Selection Settings:

The following items are all color selections, their meaning should be obvious. All are set with an RGB-hex format number tag, such as "#00FF00" for pure blue, or "#FF0000" for pure red.

Play with these settings to give your message board a unique look, with your own personalized color scheme. Remember, that in general, dark text on a light background is easiest on the eyes. Try to avoid garish or contrasting color combinations that will give your users headaches.

Background color of next topic header (This one may be set to empty)

Background color of topic header

Text color of topic header

Text color of next topic header

Background color of follows:

Background color of follows of next topic

Background color of the navigation bar

background color of the follow up links in message

Background color of the post message form

background color of the command forms

 Top of Page

HTML Code Boxes

The following text boxes allow you to place HTML tags in the AnyBoard screens. This is where you can really customize the look and feel of the message board. Any legal HTML tag is allowed. This means you may put text, images, tables, or any other HTML formatting you want on to the AnyBoard screens listed. The first three are grouped together- think of them as the "beginning" and "ending" location where your HTML code goes.

Forum header html, starting from <html>

Html between top navigation bar and message list

Html between message list and bottom navigation bar (if present)

Forum footer html

Message header html, starting from <body>

Message footer html, ending with </body> </html>:

Post form header html, starting from <body>

Post footer html, ending with </body> </html>

Separator between message header and message body: (Typically set to a horizontal rule <HR> or to nothing.)

Delimiter at the end of message body

Appears at the bottom of the message text. This is often set to a horizontal rule <HR>.

Number of message links per page

Controls the maximum number of links that will fit on the Main Forum page. Older messages go on separate pages, accessed from the "Previous" link.

Use frame interface

As it says.

Frame set attribute

Attributes of the frameset. Default is COLS="40%, *", for a two column frameset. Change COLS to ROWS for horizontal frames.

URL of the welcome page

Url of the right or bottom frame. Default is about:blank.

Top of Page

Forum Font Configuration

This section allows you to set font attributes for various texts.

Suppose you enter the font attribute as

size=-1 face="Arial"

AnyBoard will wrap the affected text with the tag

<font size=-1 face="Arial"> </font>  

The following font settings are available

The last font setting allows the admin/moderators to have a different font in their names, so their posts stand out.

 Top of Page

Configure Label Options

The "Label" screen allows configuration of the text on the links or command labels that the users will see. Note that some of these labels/links may be used in more than one place in the message board screens.

Any of these labels may also be set to display a graphical image (like a button) by using the <IMG SRC=...> tag, referencing an existing image file on your server. The image URL you provide should be an absolute URL to the image file, for example http://site/images/image.gif or simply "/images/image.gif".

Alternatively, labels and their associated links may be hidden by simply deleting the text in the corresponding text field.

"(N)" next to a command label indicates that this command link appears (or could appear) on the Navigation bar.

"(P)" next to a command label indicates that this command link appears (or could appear) in the Post Message screen.

"(R)" next to a command label indicates that this command link appears (or could appear) in the Read Message screen.
 
 
Command Label
Affected Item
Label for Post Message (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar for the "Post a new message" function
Text for Reply (R) Sets the text in the link for the "Reply to message" function
Label for Register (P) Sets the text in the link for the "Register" function so the user can get a password
Label for Login (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar for the "Login" function
Text for Re Sets the text for the "Reply To" field in a message
Text for Star used in rating: This is used to show the stars for the rating of a message. By using a <IMG> tag, you can make it look very nice. Default is *.
Text for the label that indicates image presence Default is img in red color. Change it to a small icon may be cool.
Text for Rate: The label for the rating command. Default is "Rate it" in small font.
String for Posted by (R) Sets the text for the "Posted By" field in a message
Text for Post button (P) Sets the text for the Submit button used for submitting a post to the message board
Text for Reset button Sets the text on the Reset button of the Post Message form
Text for Submit Sets the text on the Submit button of other forms such as the configuration screens
Text for Reset Sets the text on the Reset button of other forms such as the configuration screens
Text for E-Mail label (R)(P) Sets the text that indicates an e-mail address field in a message or reply screen
Text for name label (R)(P) Sets the text that appears before the "Name" field in a message or reply screen
Text for password label (P) Sets the text that appears before a password box (for login, post, etc.)
Text for Subject (P) Sets the text used in the message and reply screens for the "Subject" line
Text for Message (R)(P) Sets the text used in message and reply screens
Text for Message body ???????????????
Text for Link (P) Sets the text in the Post Message screen "Link" field (if used)
Text for URL (P) Sets the text in the Post Message screen "URL" field (if used)
Text for Title Sets the text used in message and reply screens
Text for Original Sets the text in the link that takes you to the current messages
Text for Image (P) Sets the text in the Post Message screen "Image" field (if used)
Text for Main Forum link (R)(P) Sets the text for the link to go back to the Main Forum
Text for link to earlier messages Sets the text in the link to previous messages
Text for Overview (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar that "collapses" the Main Forum screen to show only top level Subjects (see "Newest message link")
Text for Find (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar for the "Search" function
Text for Options (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar to allow users to view the board's configuration settings
Text for Newest message link (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar that expands the Main Forum screen to show Subjects and all Replies (see "Overview link")
Text for Follow ups Sets the text in the message screen that indicates replies to the currently displayed message
Text for Admin (N) Sets the text in the Navigation bar for the Admin Login screen. (You may want to hide this text or use a transparent ..gif file so users don't see the command link.)

 Top of Page

Configure Notification Options

The "Notification" screen allows configuration of the email Notification settings.

Enable e-mail notification on new message:

Sends an email to the addresses in the "List of e-mail addresses" text box every time a new message is posted. This can be useful when your message board is for technical support (notify support), or for work discussions (notify people in a mailing list).

Let user decide whether to send notification (if enabled):

Gives the user the option of whether or not AnyBoard will send e-mail notification. This option is only seen when e-mail notification is turned on.

Message telling user choose notification admin

As it says.

Include full message body in notification:

When selected, the entire message is put into the notification e-mail that is sent.

Inform posters about notification email delivery status:

When enabled, lets posters know their message has been delivered.

List of e-mail addresses to be notified, separated by comma:

Enter the e-mail addresses to be notified in this text box. (For example: [email protected],[email protected], [email protected]). Entries must have a comma separating them or no mail will be sent.

E-mail address from which notification is sent.

Notification e-mails will have this as the return address. This is also used as the FROM address of validation e-mails to the users when e-mail registration is turned on.

Allow user to choose to receive e-mail notification of responses (suggest use only if e-mail validation is set)

When a user posts a new message, he/she can check a box to indicate that e-mail notification of replies to the message is requested. Note, if the user is registered, she/he does not need to input an email address, as AnyBoard can take the email from his/her profile, however, if an email address is specified in the post, it is the one that will be used.

Allow responding author to send e-mail notification to original author

This allows a replying user to optionally notify the author of the message which is being replied to.

SMTP server for sending email (override script setting):

This allows the admin to specify a SMTP server name different from the one set in the script.

Top of Page

Configure Name Options

The "Configure Name" screen allows you to set the forum name that appears on the left side in the navigation bar. Note that HTML tags are NOT allowed in this field. It also sets the file name of the main forum page (default is index.html), and the extension of all other html pages.

For instance, if you want to add SSI (server side includes) tags into the pages, you should use shtml for the file extension.

Top of Page

Other Administration Options

 "Reconfigure With … Options"

Resets the message board with the stock options.

"Delete User" (and "Disable?")

This button does just what you'd expect- it deletes a user account, when the Disable box is checked, the user is banned forever. Note: This feature is disabled in the distribution version of AnyBoard.

"Show User List"

This allows you to view the user list, you can enter an optional regular expression to display only users that match the pattern.

"Delete Message By: Subject Pattern (*) Depth (*) Date IP Author "

This option allows you to selectively delete messages based on the Subject line, reply depth, the date of post, IP Address or author. If "Subject" is selected, all current messages will be shown, you can limit the number of messages displayed by supplying an optional match pattern and an optional limit for the depth of the links.

"Archive Message By: Thread Date IP Author"

Allows you to archive all messages that meet the criteria selected, such as a specific thread, or by date, IP Address or author. Note: This feature is disabled in the distribution version of AnyBoard.

Regenerate forum

In some case, you need to manually regenerate the forum from data and index files. For example, when you change an inline option, you need to regenerate both the main page and individual messages html files.

Recover from data files

The indexes from which main page is generated are stored in a separate file, this function allows you to regenerate the index from the individual data files. For example, if you had a operating system crash and the index is lost, you can recover using this function.

Please note, some of the features are disabled in the AnyBoard distribution version downloadable from the Netbula site. The rating, moderation, delete user, and archive functions are not available.

  Top of Page

Frequently Asked Questions

There are many message board programs out there, why did you create AnyBoard?

We used to use a very popular message board, but that one crashes frequently, and it is almost impossible to recover from the corrupted file. We also looked at other message boards, but they lack the features/look we need, so we decided to write our own.

Why the name AnyBoard?

It means it can be configured as any style message board and works perfectly.

What distinguish AnyBoard from others?

Total access, total control, total configuration, total integrity... for both administrators and users.

What are the system requirements?

Perl 5 and http server compliant to the CGI standard.
Note: IIS is not compliant to the CGI standard, we have a special code to handle it.

I am using Windows NT and IIS server? Does AnyBoard support them?

IIS has a broken CGI implementation, the normal installation procedure won't work for IIS. Follow the IIS installation instructions.

How did you make it reliable?

When two or more users are trying to post messages at the same time, they will be updating the main forum page simultaneously.  If this is not handled properly, the message board will be corrupted. Message boards like WWWBoard suffer from such problems. Whenever two people are modifying the WWWBoard at roughly the same time, the whole board will be corrupted and the information on the board becomes inconsistent or totally lost.

AnyBoard is designed to be robust under race conditions. In addition, on systems with flock, AnyBoard uses flock to protect all critical sections. With our superior design, even on systems which do not have flock, the risk of corrupting the whole message board is also zero (though individual messages may get corrupted). AnyBoard has built-in triple fault tolerance and error recovery. Even if you delete the crucial index files by accident, it can still recover.

How do you make it fast?

AnyBoard is designed and written by software engineers who have in-depth knowledge of operating systems, networking, and Perl 5. It does things as fast as possible. Firstly, don't be scared by the size of the AnyBoard script. When AnyBoard is executed, not all of its near 5000 lines of code is compiled by Perl. Instead, the code is compiled as needed. You can time the compilation time by doing a dry run of the script on the command line, it is fast. Secondly, AnyBoard uses very efficient algorithms to do things.

Is AnyBoard mod_perl compatible?

Starting from version 6.2, AnyBoard is mod_perl compatible. mod_perl allows the perl script to be compiled once and reused by the http server, thus greatly improve performance. Note, however, most ISPs do not provide mod_perl support.

How do you make it secure?

AnyBoard uses the UNIX password checking mechanism: passwords are one way encrypted. All vital operations are authenticated with user names and passwords before they are performed. Passwords are sent using a cookie, which makes the authentication process transparent. The cookie is destroyed upon the end of your browser session.

I want to edit the script to change some look & feel, can I do that?

You are strongly discouraged from doing that. 1) Almost every aspect of AnyBoard can be configured from the admin page. 2) Editing the code can easily break the program.
 

I installed AnyBoard, but got an "internal server error" from my http server.

The internal server error could be caused by syntax error in the script or missing modules. Make sure that Perl 5 is used and that there are no simple typos in editing the script. If you have command line access at the server, run the script on the command line, and see what errors Perl reports.

Netbula can install the script for you at a small cost (to be determined).

I want to download the passwords anyboard stored, but I can't access the files.

This problem is caused by the fact that your system's CGI is running as a user different from your ftp/shell login. To solve the problem, write, install and then run a one line CGI script to change the permissions. Example:

#!/bin/sh
chmod 777 a_file_or_directory  

What is the meaning of the URL

"http://site/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi/dir1/dir2/?cmd=log ?"

Here, the /dir1/dir2/ is merely an additional parameter passed to the script. It is called PATH_INFO. AnyBoard uses this to identify different message boards.

How do I setup a list of forbidden words or names?

The exclusion pattern must be a Perl regular expression. If you want to disallow a list of words, you must separate them by |. You can use other Perl expressions that will allow you to exclude groups of words without entering each one. \sex.* for instance, will exclude sex and any word starting with it, like sexy, sexual, etc.

I changed the inline message options in the Presentation settings, but I can't access the old posts.

AnyBoard only regenerates the main forum page on configuration changes. You need to let it regenerate forum pages AND individual messages.

What does "Require posters to send Cookies" actually do? I know what cookies are, but what purpose are they used for with AnyBoard?

When enabled, people can't post if they do not enable cookies. AnyBoard uses a cookie for several functions, registration, editing, exposure of multiple identities, and more.

What does "Disallow user after this many violations" do? What exactly is a violation? Can this be turned off?

It means that AnyBoard will lock out any user that has used banned words as specified in the forbidden words list, after a predetermined number of times. You can simply set that number to a large number or leave the field blank to turn it off, in effect.

How can I tell if my system can use the "Enable file locking" feature?

AnyBoard will try to see if it is possible to enable file locking, and will return an error message if it can't. If it can't, you're probably missing the "Fctnl" module. Ask your system administrator to fix or install it, as this is a standard module on most UNIX systems. You should ALWAYS use file locking if it is available on your server.

If my system does not have flock or I do not enable flock, will AnyBoard crash?

NO! AnyBoard will not crash. Without flock, it is possible that the some individual html files or even the main forum page get corrupted, but that is not the end of the world, since these files are merely products from the data files. You can regenerate them easily: just login to the forum and click the regenerate button.

I changed the inline message options in the Presentation settings, and I can't access the old posts.

AnyBoard only regenerate the main forum page on configuration changes. You need to let it regenerate forum pages AND individual messages.

How does a moderating message board work?

When you enable the moderating feature, a new message is placed in a queue for review before showing up in the message board, the administrator can then click the "Approve" button to view and approve the pending messages, or click the "Delete" button to delete unwanted messages.

Regarding "Physical path (not URL) to the rules file"- What is a rules file? What is it for and what does it do?

When you enable the "email validation on registration" feature, an email will be sent to the user with a validation link. The user needs to click on the link to activate his or her account. After the user clicks on the link, they will be taken to a page that has the "Rules file" in it. These are the conditions for participating on the board (whatever you want them to agree to). The user must check a box indicating that he or she accepts the rules, and only then can the account be activated.

If you do not want the email validation/activation, then this will not come into play (default).

What is the format of the "Rules" file?

It can be a text file, or a file containing html tags, but not the <html>...<body> header and the corresponding closing tags. AnyBoard simply copies the whole file and displays it in an html page.

AnyBoard can't send email notifications, it got error XXX.

1) check if Socket module is there.

2) check SMTP server setting

3) check Notifier email address, SMTP servers do not allow email to be sent from an outsider.

4) If got "550, relaying denied", ask your sys admin for help...

In "Overview" mode, the background image does not appear as it does in "Newest" mode where you see all the messages. Is there a way to set this?

You must specify an absolute URL (start from / ) for the image.

When reading the actual messages, is there a way to set the background image or color of these pages?

Use the message header configuration. Since it starts from <body> you can specify everything like color, font, background image, link color, etc. The same applies to the main page and the post message form.

How do I detect a "posting bomb"?

Set the minimum interval between two posts from the same IP address to some number, for example, 30 seconds. If set to 30 seconds, a posting robot can only post 2 messages a minute. You can also let AnyBoard send an alarm e-mail if new messages arrive too fast.

How do I ban a user?

You can ban users by user ID or IP address.

What are the names shown in parentheses after the poster's name?

Those are the names he or she used in the past. You can disable this by unselecting the "Display aliases" feature.

How do I use image icons for the labels (such as Post Message)?

In the Configure Label section, set the labels to a <img src="..."> tag.

How do I remove the "Admin" link on the front page?

In the configure Label section, set the "Admin" label to empty.

How do I upgrade to a new version of AnyBoard?

You DON'T need to go through the installation procedure again. Simply edit the new anyboard.cgi file to set the few variables (perl path, master_cfg dir, etc.) specific to your configuration and replace the existing anyboard.cgi with the new one.

Where is the configuration stored? When I upgrade AnyBoard, does the configuration remain unchanged?

The configuration is stored in a file named .forum_cfg under the forum directory. AnyBoard tries to maintain backward compatibility as much as possible, therefore the configuration will be mostly kept on upgrade. To be sure, backup your configuration files, and test any upgrades with a test board before upgrading your existing forums.

I created a forum with a good set of settings. How do I duplicate it instead of creating new forums afresh?

Simply copy the existing forum (with all its sub directories) to another directory and regenerate the forum main page for the new forum. You can do this by logging in to the new forum using the URL

http://site/cgi-bin/anyboard.cgi/new_forum_virtual_path/?cmd=log

then configure the forum name. The forum pages will be regenerated.

How do I make my cool configuration show up as a optional setting for other forums?

Copy the .forum_cfg file to the master configuration directory, rename it to a file with extension .conf. For instance, if you name it blue-fancy.conf, then blue-fancy will show up as a stock configuration for all forums to choose.

Can you explain the purposes of the directories for a forum?

postdata/: directory that keeps the posted data, from which html pages are generated.

posts/: directory that contains the html pages for individual posts, these are generated from data files, therefore, you can delete all the files in this directory and have anyboard reproduce the forum main page and individual pages.

archive/: directory that contains the archived pages. The archived pages no longer have their corresponding data files, and one cannot respond to posts in the archives. If you delete the files in archive, they are gone forever, unlike those in the posts/ directory, which can be regenerated.

uploads/: directory that holds the uploaded files.

Where are passwords stored?

They are stored in the .fYz directory under the master config directory or the forum directory, depending on whether passwords are shared among forums. By default, there are 32 password files, a hashing algorithm is used to decide which file is used to store a user's password and profile. This hashing is needed to reduce the size of each password file and improve performance. For example, if a forum has 3200 users, then each file would contain 100 entries only.

I lost the admin password, what can I do?

Don't panic. You can manually edit the .forum_cfg file to nullify the admin password. Afterwards, you can login (without a password) and then add a password for admin. (more detailed instruction will be provided on request).

How do I make file X (or directory X) inaccessible from the Internet?

Most web servers provide you with the mechanism to protect a page or directory. Consult your web server manual or service provider.

Top of Page

AnyBoard License Terms & Conditions

AnyBoard is NOT free software, use of AnyBoard requires licenses issued by Netbula LLC.

Please visit http://netbula.com/anyboard/license.html for details.

*The license terms listed above may change without notice, always check our web page for most recent information.

To obtain the Gold or Platinum Editions of AnyBoard, you must register and purchase the respective license. Only the Silver version can be downloaded directly.

In all cases, the licensee must retain the program's CGI file base name (anyboard) to allow users to identify the program.
 

About Netbula

Netbula is technological leader in RPC (Remote Procedure Call) development tools for distributed computing, its flagship products are PowerRPC for UNIX and Windows NT/95, ONC RPC for Win32, and ORPC for Java(tm). Its customers include enterprises such as CompuServ, Fujitsu, Nokia, Sony and Tektronix. Netbula has strong technical capabilities in areas of operating system,, networking, compiler, and general software development in C++/C and PERL. AnyBoard and AnyEMail are also important Internet products for the company.

Top of Page