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What is XMB Forum?

XMB Forum is a lightweight, free, and highly-customizable message board application. It is available from many hosting providers as a one-click install, and makes adding a community component to your site quick and easy.

One of the best ways to increase customer engagement and enhance user experience on your site is to incorporate a community component such as a forum or message board application. XMB Forum (“XMB” stands for “eXtreme Message Board”), a free and open-source message board application that's know both for its ease of use and high “hackability,” or customization, capabilities, is a very popular package that's used to create community components on sites around the Web.

With a variety of popular choices out there for messaging board applications, it can be difficult to narrow the choices down to one. If you’ve been considering implanting a messaging board and forum application, it makes sense to look at one of the most dynamic platforms to come along in that sector of applications.

XMB forums are direct descendants from the early day where the internet was filled with bulletin boards. Early bulletin boards were utilized to managed content that was created by users, which led to the forums we know so well today. At its root, a forum allows users in the community, which is the audience of the site, to post messages, share messages and comment on other user’s messages in return. Forum software enabled the topical organization of information into a threaded format and integrated search functionality in its early deployments. Internet forums and the software that drives them have propagated to countless sites in all corners of the world.

A Forum's Forum

Today XMB powers forums of all persuasions, as there are many themes that benefit from the sense of a virtual community that a forum provides. Topics such as sports, technology, video games, religion, politics, hobbies and more are all common areas where you can find forums in use. The key to any forum is having regular users and the key to keeping users coming back is delivering a high amount of interaction with users with features that let them own their presence.

Innovative tools include rankings, post counts, authority, email notifications, online friendships, customized profiles, and much more. At the end of the day, users become invested in this profile and participating in the forum, so you can see why it is such a powerful tool.

Focused entirely on creating professional and easy-to-use forums quickly, XMB Forum installs quickly and can have a new forum up and running on your site in as little as fifteen minutes. Users register for your site with the included interface, and can customize their accounts based on whatever design and information limits you set. Administration and security are handled through the administrative control panel, and every forum and sub-forum can be customized to suit your requirements.

Customization

And customization of all kinds is where XMB Forum is at the top of its game. The open-source community that uses and develops for this application has created innumerable themes, plug-ins and “hacks” designed to extend the capabilities of XMB Forum. Using these add-on components, you can also create thumbnail galleries, incorporate social media and search engine optimization (SEO) features, set up a community ranking and “karma” system, and more.

As features are one of the ultimate determining factors on whether users return to a forum, XMB is powerful in regards to delivering those features easily. Choosing XMB as your web forum platform is a compelling choice to make. As with other open technologies, the support that comes from the community is outstanding as chances are that a situation you are in or a question that you have can be answered by somebody who has been in that same situation before.

Hosting Considerations

Many hosts provide XMB Forum as a one-click install via their included hosting control panel. If your host doesn't offer it, you can also download and install it on your Web server yourself if your host supports the PHP HyperText Preprocessor (PHP) language and MySQL (Structured Query Language) database management application (most hosts support these natively).

Just remember to consult your hosting provider for full information on compatibility and resources before installing this or any other application on your Web server.

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