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The ultimate nowhere-land. Whatever doesn't seem to fit in any of the other categories, post it in here. For example, discussions on Mahatma Gandhi and the latest news on CNN should go here. forums - Coming soon

Mina - Fri, 09 Jan 2004 02:54:57 +0530
Should be up and running shortly - maybe even this evening. Just have to wait for the web hosting company to complete migration to a new server and I can set up the phpBB software.

Do we really need yet another Vaishnava forum site? you may be wondering.

I wanted the hands in experience of working with phpBB -- plus who knows what interesting discourse may result?

I shall followup with another post when its finally up and running.
Madhava - Fri, 09 Jan 2004 03:10:09 +0530
But why phpBB? InvisionBoard is more resource-friendly, thanks to a more sane skin solution, and has heaps of useful features phpBB lacks. I've played around with both quite a bit.
Mina - Fri, 09 Jan 2004 06:37:21 +0530
Because you can download it for free. Also, the client I am designing a website for prefers it, and you know what they say - the customer is always right. (Well, maybe not always, but one has to let them think that they are, if we are to keep the peace.)

The forums may not be ready until Saturday, as there is a longer turnaround on the server migration than I was led to believe by my less than spectular web hosting company.
Madhava - Fri, 09 Jan 2004 07:42:03 +0530
You can also download Invision for free. You can have an "unlimited and unrestricted trial". Paying is just for personal support and possible additional features (as if you needed some).

I looked at the web hosting company you're with, and they sure have a hefty price tag on the basics. It is, right?

The domain resolves here to the right place. I don't know what's the delaying issue.
Mina - Fri, 09 Jan 2004 23:16:58 +0530
I did not notice that when I was looking at their site. Thanks for the info.

The delay was because Interland had to upgrade my service and I had to move my sites to one of their other servers. A friend of mine owns and said he would host my sites free of charge. I just have to wait for him to get everything set up by one of his employees, who is currently out sick.
Mina - Sat, 10 Jan 2004 22:27:41 +0530
It turns out that not only are they high priced, but sub-standard as well. Now they tell me that their server only supports SQL Server and not MySQL, so I am stuck with phpBB until my friend has everything in place to move the site to his server.

The most aggravating thing about Interland is that they do not give clear instructions and I waste way too much time tinkering around and putting in multiple calls to their tech support to get the simplest things accomplished.
Madhava - Sun, 11 Jan 2004 04:32:17 +0530
Surprising that they don't have MySQL available. It's easy enough to install on any Windows platform, and is pretty much standard with Linux. This is the first hosting company I've come across that doesn't support MySQL.
Mina - Sun, 11 Jan 2004 04:43:46 +0530
They do support it, but on a different server. Now tech support tells me that the plan I am on is not provisioned for SQL Server, even though they told me yesterday that I was. The salesperson originally also told me that I would be when he sold me the upgrade. In fact I believe he told me that both MySQL and SQL Server would be available on their BlueHalo plan.

I am going to check into what plan offers php scripting and MySQL and what kind of money they want for it (I am sure it will be a ripoff like everything else over there, plus the added aggravation of all of the misinformation and disinformation they provide). Its a great web hosting company for masochists, I guess.
Madhava - Sun, 11 Jan 2004 04:51:14 +0530
You can get 500MB space and 10GB transfer with PHP, MySQL and all the other standard sfuff for less than $15 from very decent hosting companies. The customer service doesn't work, and the prices are high. I wonder what's keeping you there?
Mina - Sun, 11 Jan 2004 06:25:39 +0530
I just have neglected paying attention to the market place and doing the necessary shopping around. Nitai found a very good hosting company for a good price, but I can't recall who they are. I sent him an email the other day and am waiting to hear back from him. He has to check his email remotely from London, so it could take a while.

At least I am on their month to month plan, and I don't think there is any cancellation penalty. They tried to talk me into signing up for a full year, but I resisted their high pressure sales tactics. As I said before, I will be moving to my friend's server soon, which has a great price tag (zero dollars per month).
Madhava - Sun, 11 Jan 2004 06:40:38 +0530
People who push you into deals are desperate for customers. I don't like big hosting companies at all. I like the companies where I can speak to the guys who run the day-to-day show. Sometimes the people who are hired for sales or regular tech support hardly know the difference between PHP and FTP.

It's always a good idea to check out a couple of popular forums dedicated to discussing web hosting and searching them for entries on the company one plans to sign up with. Helps you avoid a lot of hassle in the long run. Migrating from one company to another is a pain, particularly if you have twenty-something websites to move. Been there, done that (a couple of times), and I don't want to do it again anytime soon.
Mina - Mon, 12 Jan 2004 01:27:21 +0530
I think these people know php as one of their buzzwords, but apparently they don't know the difference between Microsoft's product, which is called SQL Server, and any old SQL DBMS product up on a network server (which include just about everything under the sun from Oracle to DB2 to Access). I know I can set up the phpBB board with MS-Access, because that is available on the server they had me move the sites to, but I would rather have a more industrial strength backend database, such as MySQL or SQL Server.

I guess shopping for hosting companies is a lot like buying real estate - there's always a high potential for buyer's remorse. We would never have bought the house we are in now, had we fully comprehended the impact of being on the dead end of an alley. Every time there is heavy snow, the trucks from the village push a big mountain of snow right in front of the garage door, blocking access for our vehicles, and there is nowhere to even move it to, since there is a big wooden fence on one side and some big bushes on the other. We are in the process of trying to get them to complete the job of clearing the alley of snow. After all, didn't we already pay for that service in our taxes? Why should I have to hire some snow removal service to come in after the plow truck comes by?
Gaurasundara - Mon, 12 Jan 2004 23:50:57 +0530
Just a quick question: What's Nitai doing in London and whereabouts in London is he? I could arrange to meet up with him.
Pagal Baba - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 03:07:00 +0530
All I know is that he is working on his publications and that they are living somewhere near Kensington Palace. You can email him by PM here or directly at his email address. He said he would be checking his email periodically.
Mina - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 04:21:32 +0530
The salesman that promised me provisioning for SQL Server now denies that he ever made that promise. They want almost twice as much money for that plan!

I am going to just go ahead and set it up with MS-Access, which will be fine as long as it does not get very busy on the board. I just have to wait while they solve some technical difficulties with their servers. That could be preventing the php script for the installation from running properly. Either that or something is wrong with the instructions from phpBB. When I try to run install.php it comes back with an error message - "No input file specified"
Madhava - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 04:34:58 +0530
And you are actually paying them something?

On phpBB, ensure that you've uploaded all files into appropriate places.
Mina - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 07:03:13 +0530
Sad but true. Can't wait to move the site to my friend's server.

I think all of the files are in the right places. It is in all in a folder called phpBB2, which is in a folder called www on the site's root directory. Do you think that the problem is that the phpBB2 folder is not on the site's root directory perhaps?
Madhava - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 08:05:11 +0530
That shouldn't pose an issue.

If you like, I can log in and take a quick look.
Mina - Tue, 13 Jan 2004 23:09:44 +0530
I sent you an email with that info.

Has anyone here used the CGI board software from It was recommended to me as very good.

Sooner or later the forums will be up and running. Hopefully sooner than later. I noticed about 45 visitors to the site since making this announcement. It was the first time I have run web traffic reports, so I have no way of telling how many of them were first time visitors. Some of the keyword searches bring up the site as number one in the hit lists on major search engines. It pays to have been around a while. (Of course these hit lists are relatively small - under 50 hits).

My friend's ISP site was one of the first 75 sites on the world wide web, and his domain shows up in the top three on hit lists with generic keyword searches when there are half a millions hits.
braja - Wed, 14 Jan 2004 01:34:16 +0530
IMO, Invision cannot be beat. I've set up several boards at different times, mostly phpbb but I have used Invision twice this week and was very impressed. The setup took two minutes (configuration obviously takes longer). I've never seen a board so well indexed by google and others, nor one where the searches are fast, the options make sense, and the appearance is not too difficult to adjust.

FWIW, I do ecommerce programming and cannot ever recommend using Windows for hosting unle$$ you have the budget, a lot of patience, and/or a specific need.
Madhava - Wed, 14 Jan 2004 01:38:43 +0530
BB software on CGI in general is not a good idea, and is frowned upon by most hosting companies. It's on a "if there's much traffic, forget about it, we may consider allowing it if you have low traffic" basis. PHP based boards are much more resource friendly.

One thing you might want to consider, Ramdas, is that you're in for a show if you now set up the forums with MS Access and later on try to migrate it to a MySQL environment.
Mina - Wed, 14 Jan 2004 01:59:23 +0530
I figured as much. I would not even bother with a migration down the road. I would just tell members to request stuff that they want from the Access archives, which I can easily pull out for them - and then switch to Invision. I have not used MySQL, but I am sure that it is not all that difficult to transfer data via dumping it into SQL Server and using DTS to export it for MySQL, once you have the mappings laid out. It might be labor intensive, however. Maybe more than what would justify the time spent.
Madhava - Wed, 14 Jan 2004 02:11:42 +0530
I suppose it's possible to export thedatabase if Access exports it in the proper format.

Isn't it that you're moving over to the new server soon anyway?

I'm moving this under Misc Disc since we're soon on the third page discussing things. Please post a new announcement in the announcements section once the forums are up and running.
Gaurasundara - Wed, 07 Apr 2004 16:44:31 +0530
QUOTE(braja @ Jan 13 2004, 08:04 PM)
IMO, Invision cannot be beat. I've set up several boards at different times, mostly phpbb but I have used Invision twice this week and was very impressed. The setup took two minutes (configuration obviously takes longer). I've never seen a board so well indexed by google and others, nor one where the searches are fast, the options make sense, and the appearance is not too difficult to adjust.

I would like to set up an Invision board. How would I go about it? According to the site, I will need PHP 4.0 and MySQL 3.22? Do I really need this stuff?

I need webhosting to host an Invision Board?

What I would like to have is a remotely-hosted board something like ProBoards, which seems to be hassle-free. Can't I do the same with Invision?
Madhava - Wed, 07 Apr 2004 17:00:29 +0530
Yes, you need all that stuff, and you also need webhosting to set up an invision board. It's not difficult though, and all instructions come along in the package.

If you aren't interested in investing much time for setting it up, you could give a try to My IkonBoard, also a remotely hosted board setup. Ikon and Invision have evolved from the same code base. I have no experience with ProBoards. In general, remotely hosted boards don't give you the flexibility a board of your own would.