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Thread: Skadi Forum Upgrade : Please Read This!

  1. #31
    New Member HerrSchulze's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norman Pride View Post
    If the cooperation must come to an end, XenForo looks more modern and seems to have more customizable and varied layouts than vbulletin 4 and onwards. If it's considerably more expensive than vbulletin, a customised donation campaign might help to raise the extra funds?
    Despite being new to membership here, I've enjoyed reading this forum for quite some time and would hate to see it taken offline once again. If the current owner and staff are in need of funds necessary to keep Skadi alive and online, in whatever format that may ultimately be, I would be happy to donate. I will eventually donate either way but if this becomes an issue of urgency, please do not hesitate in contacting me, we can discuss the goal amount, etc. and I will see what I can do.

  2. #32
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    I'm also interested in donating at some point, which I'll never do for Wikipedia. It'll have to wait for at least another month. I can't get enough vBulletin, but understand if it's unsupportable. One cool feature of Anthropology Biodiversity Forum, is automatic updating of previous posts, instead of having to click on the Edit button. I'm not sure about their software otherwise, since it is critically vulnerable to hackers.

  3. #33
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    As you may have noticed, we registered some downtime. We are trying to run the upgrade again ourselves with some changes and more PHP memory… so far we really can’t find any error, although we are on super-debug mode already…

    We cannot estimate for sure how long this may take, in the event that the upgrade is successful, it could be anywhere between 6 and 48 hours, maybe more, maybe less, as we expect to run into the usual issues. Please bear with us and keep your fingers crossed.

    We've reopened forums.skadi.info in the meantime, however please note that threads and posts you make while the upgrade is running may be lost. Should you intend to post, make sure to copy the most important information. We'll let you know how this progresses.

    Thank you for the support and to those who donated.

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  5. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aeternitas View Post
    As you may have noticed, we registered some downtime. We are trying to run the upgrade again ourselves with some changes and more PHP memory… so far we really can’t find any error, although we are on super-debug mode already…

    We cannot estimate for sure how long this may take, in the event that the upgrade is successful, it could be anywhere between 6 and 48 hours, maybe more, maybe less, as we expect to run into the usual issues. Please bear with us and keep your fingers crossed.

    We've reopened forums.skadi.info in the meantime, however please note that threads and posts you make while the upgrade is running may be lost. Should you intend to post, make sure to copy the most important information. We'll let you know how this progresses.

    Thank you for the support and to those who donated.
    I guess the 'Thanks' column will eventually be lost (like lots of other stuff), since it is a third-party add-on, but I gave you a 'Thanks' nonetheless.
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  6. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thorburn View Post
    !
    thanks for all of your work.

  7. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aeternitas View Post
    please note that threads and posts you make while the upgrade is running may be lost. Should you intend to post, make sure to copy the most important information.
    You can disregard this note about the posts, since it's taking longer than we expected. (We might need to enlist the help of a SQL/PHP expert.) We're going to make a new backup including the new posts in the meantime, so feel free to post away.

  8. #37
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    As you can see, the upgrade to 4.2.5 has finally been completed.

    We lost a few posts from last night while the upgrade was in progress, sorry about that. As we are planning to upgrade to vbulletin 5, this is likely to be just a temporary/tranistory version so we won't invest much into modifications and customizations. The forum should be mostly functional though. There are a few new features, such as blogs, social groups and visitor messaging. We are also back on the .net domain.

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  10. #38
    Holiness is in right action, and courage on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves.
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    Thank you both of your work to upfrade and to keep alive the Skadi Forum!

    "Remember that, even when those who move you be kings or men of power, your soul is in your keeping alone. When you stand before God, you cannot say, "But I was told by others to do thus,"or that virtue "was not convenient at the time." This will not suffice."
    /King Baldwin IV in the Kingdom of Heaven/

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  12. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wulfaz View Post
    Thank you both of your work to upfrade and to keep alive the Skadi Forum!
    Where is the 'Thank You' button? *kidding*

    Well, not really, because vBulletin 4 simply has no built-in 'Like' and 'Tagging' system that most users demand these days, simply because they are familiar with Facebook. So we would have to resort to third-party plugins again. Facebook has in general pushed the user expectations way upwards, as far as smoothness, drag-and-drop functionality, and intelligence of the interface are concerned.

    As everyone can see, even without any 'skins' and customizations, vBulletin 4 simply looks more like the 2000s, while vBulletin 3, our old software, looked like the 1990s. But the truth of the matter is that vBulletin 4 is also at the end of its life cycle and is no longer developed and supported.

    vBulletin 5 is nowadays simply superior to vBulletin 4. It is coded fully mobile responsive, what is of crucial significance, while vBulletin 4 just offers a mobile template. vBulletin 5 has an integrated paging and messaging system. Its drag-and-drop features are closer to what people expect in the 2010s. And it has a superior social networking integration. After more than 5 years of development, it has now all features people were initially missing (the hook system, the plugins, the customization options via Sitebuilder, etc.), and it actually feels pretty smooth and good now. It feels and acts like the 2010s, but unlike other forum options, it still feels like vBulletin, i. e. more 'at home' for people who are accustomed to the vBulletin interface. And data migration will probably be easier.

    Since the database issue has been sorted out, I would suggest that we proceed rather quickly and upgrade to vBulletin 5. Nearly all customizations and improvements we could do here and now on vBulletin 4 would be lost again.

    By the way, thanks to Ahnenerbe for donating this vBulletin 4 license.
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  14. #40
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    We had to revert to vBulletin 4 because we discovered of a lot of errors and bugs in vBulletin 5... As you might have already noticed, many features that used to be standard before were also gone because the developers re-wrote the software from scratch and didn't consider them necessary.

    Basically, the following issues lead us to consider reverting:

    - postbit and avatar settings unflexible (avatars were purposely downsized by vBulletin to mimic a social media feel); many avatars had to be re-uploaded
    - predefined avatars not working
    - buttons for formatting, bbcode and the like were not (and could not be) turned on by default. One had to click on an icon to generate them
    - some signatures or signature images not preserved
    - common error: "Invalid Page URL. If this is an error and the page should exist, please contact the system administrator and tell them how you got this message."
    - common error: when members received notification that someone posted in threads they subscribed to and clicked on the thread in the notification, they were requested to log in with a different account.
    - errors when moving or renaming threads, importing products, etc.
    - mass move option of threads from one forum to another was no longer available
    - post reporting did not create an automatic thread
    - one was not able to give out or receive reputation comments
    - some posts by regulars or funding members were sent to the moderation queue
    - pagination was missing from some areas and one was re-directed to the first post in a thread
    - the forum was not accessible/compatible with some web proxies
    - site builder (admin option) did not work with some browsers and generated errors
    - generally slower performance (the vBulletin 5 database was almost 4 times larger, probably also more server intensive)
    - fewer (free) modifications (e.g. no forum images on the index)
    etc.

    A total disappointment, unfortunately, despite having been out for several years now. We tried to fix some of the issues by installing modifications or through tweaking the system, others were unfortunately outside of our reach. As time went by we bumped into more and more issues and we had to make a decision because one cannot downgrade from vBulletin 5... so the longer we waited the more data was going to be lost.

    Unfortunately, we could not automatically import the last couple of weeks' data (since after the upgrade to vBulletin 5, basically). This includes posts, accounts, private messages and chats. Sorry for the inconvenience, unfortunately there was no other way around it. If you registered an account within this time period, you will have to re-register. Let us know and we will promote your account manually. As far as posts are concerned, we have a backup of the vBulletin 5 database, so we will try to copy some of the most important discussions manually. Our priority however is finalizing the upgrade to vBulletin 4.

    vBulletin 4 is a good compromise because it is still rather new-ish and compatible with some of the latest PHP versions, it preserves a lot of the vBulletin 3 features we missed with vBulletin 5 (like reputation comments) but also encompasses new features like social groups or post autosave and is social media and smartphone friendly. There is also a “vBulletin 4 CMS & Blogs” version which we can access with the vB 5 license. Not sure if we really need it, we could look into this at some stage. There are also many more modifications out there for vBulletin 4 than for 5.

    There is still some work ahead, we have to rebuild threads, forum, attachments, etc., and rebuild the search index, adjust the URLs (yet again...), edit templates, etc. Once we are done we will be looking into installing the most important modifications (shoutbox, post thanks, etc.)

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