Considering a move from vbulletin - Questions

22 posts in this topic

Posted

Hello,
We are a big community website in existence for the last 7 years that is considering a move from vBulletin to IPB. Some of the key reasons why am considering a move are:
1) Presence of a IPB Nexus
2) A good functional Portal
3) Integration with sphinx

However, am not sure about a few things that i hope someone from the staff or a senior member can help me with
1) How good IPB is for a big board (2000 users online all the time, 3 million posts) performancewise? Any examples of a big board on the newest version of IPB?
2) Specifically with Nexus, is there a module that allows us to integrate it with ccavenue? If not, any developers who can help us integrate the two?
3) We would need some of the popular mods that vbulletin has to be available on our site; if we do migrate. One of the must have mods we need is iTrader. Is something similar available for IPB?
4) Are there any professional developers available who can help us migrate and port some of our custom mods from vbulletin to IPB. (Am looking for people who have handled big website migrations and have strong coding skills and who can show us a portfolio of work they have done)

Thanks

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Posted

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311455931' post='2138552']
1) How good IPB is for a big board (2000 users online all the time, 3 million posts) performancewise? Any examples of a big board on the newest version of IPB?
http://www.neowin.net/forum/

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311455931' post='2138552']3) We would need some of the popular mods that vbulletin has to be available on our site; if we do migrate. One of the must have mods we need is iTrader. Is something similar available for IPB?
http://community.inv...eedback-system/

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311455931' post='2138552']4) Are there any professional developers available who can help us migrate and port some of our custom mods from vbulletin to IPB. (Am looking for people who have handled big website migrations and have strong coding skills and who can show us a portfolio of work they have done)
IPS offers a paid conversion service for $120, and custom coding services.

You should contact sales@invisionpower.com for a custom quote. smile.png

stoo2000 and Rhett like this

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Posted

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311455931' post='2138552']
Hello,
We are a big community website in existence for the last 7 years that is considering a move from vBulletin to IPB. Some of the key reasons why am considering a move are:
1) Presence of a IPB Nexus
2) A good functional Portal
3) Integration with sphinx

However, am not sure about a few things that i hope someone from the staff or a senior member can help me with
1) How good IPB is for a big board (2000 users online all the time, 3 million posts) performancewise? Any examples of a big board on the newest version of IPB?
2) Specifically with Nexus, is there a module that allows us to integrate it with ccavenue? If not, any developers who can help us integrate the two?
3) We would need some of the popular mods that vbulletin has to be available on our site; if we do migrate. One of the must have mods we need is iTrader. Is something similar available for IPB?
4) Are there any professional developers available who can help us migrate and port some of our custom mods from vbulletin to IPB. (Am looking for people who have handled big website migrations and have strong coding skills and who can show us a portfolio of work they have done)

Thanks


I cannot comment so much on the Nexus, iTrader, or development part of this post, but the one regarding performance I can.

First of all, forum performance is a measurement that has too many variables to accurately gauge. Differences in hosting platforms, configurations, database optimization, and other aspects can severely help or hinder performance for a large forum. However, out of the box IPB (at least in my tests and in my usage) is faster than vBulletin.

For the technical side of things, with such a large forum I would suggest sticking to MySQL (or an alternative SQL database platform) that supports INNODB. Some advantages of INNODB vs. standard MyISAM is that INNODB is safer and less error-prone should it crash. It is a lot easier to backup and restore than MyISAM, and god forbid you lost your MyISAM table data it will be almost, but not completely, impossible to restore. INNODB stores the database information in a single file, which is almost two times the size of a standard MyISAM database. However, this allows for easier importing, exporting, and backups of the SQL database. INNODB also supports row-level locking, instead of table-locking like MyISAM. This results in better performance, especially for a large database such as yours.

There is one disadvantage that is apparent to INNDOB and IPB - full-text searching is not functional. However, since you said you were going to be interested in or using Sphinx, this would not be much of an issue. However, for a larger forum I would look at a different route, such as creating two separate databases. You can have your primary "hot" forum database running INNODB replicating to a "stale" database that is running MyISAM, and redirect all search queries to the "stale" database.

On a side note, master-slave replication, and database backups for a forum of that magnitude are especially important to having your forums stay up as much as possible, and in the unlikely event of a bad crash, the ability to restore as quick as possible. If you guys need any help in this regard, I can offer some advice/suggestions/resources in order to help you.

Collin S. and SECTalk.com like this

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Posted

[quote name='eruffini' timestamp='1311458252' post='2138570']
There is one disadvantage that is apparent to INNDOB and IPB - full-text searching is not functional.

Small nitpick here - MyISAM's lack of full-text search support has nothing to do with IPB. It is an inherent flaw in the engine.

Carry on.

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Posted

[quote name=' Jay ' timestamp='1311458462' post='2138572']
Small nitpick here - InnoDB's lack of full-text search support has nothing to do with IPB. It is an inherent flaw in the engine.

Carry on.


I know that. I didn't meant to say it was IPB specific. However, there are complex work arounds for full-text searching in INNODB available. Just not very economical to do so..

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Posted

It looks like both people before me have given some great answers - eruffini, thanks for that great answer about INNODB vs. MyISAM.

Since it looks like most everything has already been answered in detail, I won't repeat what's already been said. I did want to add some unanswered information, however.

ccavenue.com is not currently one of our supported gateways, however, we do have a Nexus Gateway API so that you can write and setup your own configuration to use this gateway.

We do have a large modding community, and while I cannot recommend specific people, I'm sure that you can ask for some member optinions and they would be able to point you in the right direction.

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Posted

Thank you guys for the detailed replies. I am extremely pleased to see that such a dynamic and helpful community exists around IPB.

@eruffini, great suggestions. I was already contemplating a master slave configuration option. As for INNODB, again, that was something i was planning to shift to as we move to IPB. We will offload our search to sphinx (With the database we have, search is an important resource hog for us and its also a critical resource for our users. So we have to work on that)

One final question, Is there a place like "paid service requests" or commercial developer database with some ratings where i can browse who all are coding for IPB. I am focusing on this issue as getting a skilled developer is critical for us to move over. And yes, i will mail the staff over here also :)

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Posted

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311490520' post='2138819']
One final question, Is there a place like "paid service requests" or commercial developer database with some ratings where i can browse who all are coding for IPB. I am focusing on this issue as getting a skilled developer is critical for us to move over. And yes, i will mail the staff over here also smile.png

Under Community Resources,

Modification Requests

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Posted

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311490520' post='2138819']
Thank you guys for the detailed replies. I am extremely pleased to see that such a dynamic and helpful community exists around IPB.

@eruffini, great suggestions. I was already contemplating a master slave configuration option. As for INNODB, again, that was something i was planning to shift to as we move to IPB. We will offload our search to sphinx (With the database we have, search is an important resource hog for us and its also a critical resource for our users. So we have to work on that)

One final question, Is there a place like "paid service requests" or commercial developer database with some ratings where i can browse who all are coding for IPB. I am focusing on this issue as getting a skilled developer is critical for us to move over. And yes, i will mail the staff over here also smile.png


You're welcome! My forum is not quite nearly as large as yours (~100,000 posts, ~3,000 members, up to 50 members on at a time on average), but I am moving it to a new Windows-based application server so I have been experimenting with different setups and MySQL configurations. I am still not sure if I want to go with Sphinx or the master-slave replication myself yet. Sphinx would probably be the current choice as my forum is still relatively small and I don't need to offload the searching to a separate instance of MySQL for performance reasons yet. However, everything I do with MySQL is INNODB based because of the way I run my backups.

Speaking of which, how do you backup your database? I find the older MySQL Administrator tools to be very good at coordinating backups and restores, as well as automating the process. Right now I have all my databases (more than just forums!) set to backup nightly, weekly, and monthly.

I am not a database developer, but if you need any help I can try to help.

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Posted

snapback.png• Jay •, on 25 July 2011 - 08:57 PM, said:


Under Community Resources,

Modification Requests

Hello,

We have still not quite made up our mind. We are very much inclined towards IPB but the lack of large forums running IPB3 and lack of visibility on the developer market is holding us back. Frankly, spending $150 just to see if there is an active developer community is not good business sense.

Not trying to undermine anything but just need help in getting convinced. Can you guys help us by suggesting developers who have undertaken complex add-ons and are looking for work? We do have a budget of over $1K.

Also are there enough guys who would do a custom skin? We need to port our VB skin. We tried contacting two skin developers for quote but never heard back from them.

All this is forcing us to stay back on VB, whose future is not clear at all.

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Posted

[quote name='SubStrider' timestamp='1315378726' post='2166760']
snapback.png• Jay •, on 25 July 2011 - 08:57 PM, said:


Under Community Resources,

Modification Requests

Hello,

We have still not quite made up our mind. We are very much inclined towards IPB but the lack of large forums running IPB3

http://www.diskusjon.no/ is one very giant norwigian community running 3.1.x series. Just a example.

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Posted

[quote name='SubStrider' timestamp='1315378726' post='2166760']
snapback.png• Jay •, on 25 July 2011 - 08:57 PM, said:


Under Community Resources,

Modification Requests

Hello,

We have still not quite made up our mind. We are very much inclined towards IPB but the lack of large forums running IPB3 and lack of visibility on the developer market is holding us back. Frankly, spending $150 just to see if there is an active developer community is not good business sense.

Not trying to undermine anything but just need help in getting convinced. Can you guys help us by suggesting developers who have undertaken complex add-ons and are looking for work? We do have a budget of over $1K.

Also are there enough guys who would do a custom skin? We need to port our VB skin. We tried contacting two skin developers for quote but never heard back from them.

All this is forcing us to stay back on VB, whose future is not clear at all.

http://www.neowin.net runs IPB 3.2, I don't know the size of your site in comparison to theirs.

Our Board Statistics Total Posts 10,193,100 Total Members 274,570 Online At Once Record 4,362 28 April 2011 - 23:34


While I don't know if he has the time for complex custom modifications, I would highly recommend getting in touch with Michael here on the IPS company forums. He's an outstanding developer, and a wonderful asset to the community.





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[quote name='Andrej' timestamp='1315397753' post='2166855']
http://www.diskusjon.no/ is one very giant norwigian community running 3.1.x series. Just a example.

Very nice that. Thanks. So far we knew only about Neowin. Any idea what kind of server config must they be running on?


[quote name='• Jay •' timestamp='1315398167' post='2166859']
While I don't know if he has the time for complex custom modifications, I would highly recommend getting in touch with Michael here on the IPS company forums. He's an outstanding developer, and a wonderful asset to the community.

I see he has submitted a lot of add-ons. Let us try and get in touch with him. Maybe he can refer someone else if he is busy.

My concern was if there are enough people looking for paid add-on work for IPB.

Thanks for your replies. More references are welcome.

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Posted

[quote name='Acers' timestamp='1311455931' post='2138552']
3) We would need some of the popular mods that vbulletin has to be available on our site; if we do migrate. One of the must have mods we need is iTrader. Is something similar available for IPB?
Trader Feedback System also has a converter for iTrader (available on request), although I do believe it will need updating, We can work on that.

Regarding the other comments about finding out about developers, there's quite a few of us about, so don't worry about that :)

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Posted

[quote name='SubStrider' timestamp='1315405988' post='2166913']
I see he has submitted a lot of add-ons. Let us try and get in touch with him. Maybe he can refer someone else if he is busy.

My concern was if there are enough people looking for paid add-on work for IPB.

Thanks for your replies. More references are welcome.

Most likely, Michael knows of quite a few developers. :)

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Posted

Another very notable large forum running IP.Board 3.x is the Minecraft forum: http://www.minecraftforum.net/

Over 7.6 million posts, and they apparently had over 50k users online the other day. It should be noted that they're running IPB 3.1.x and not the latest seres, 3.2.x. However, 3.2 is supposedly more efficient than 3.1, so it may perform somewhat better.

It sounds like you have quite a major forum you're looking into converting, Acers. You may want to have a look at IPS's enterprise services (http://www.invisionpower.com/business/services/), which include custom development, staff training, and dedicated support.

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Posted

To be honest it is not a VERY large forum but we want to look at the scalability aspect as well since we are going to expand in near future. Our concern was more towards the volume of users online at any given time.

We have bought a license and it seems that the modifications request section is not very active with most of thread starters unable to find developers. What could be the reason?

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Posted

[quote name='SubStrider' timestamp='1315548932' post='2167819']
We have bought a license and it seems that the modifications request section is not very active with most of thread starters unable to find developers. What could be the reason?


If I purchase IPB, I would need a custom modification coded for me. It's discouraging to hear that there's a long line of people wanting work done, but that they are not able to find coders here to do the work. Of course, there is also eLance.

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Posted

TheHappenen is a good coder.

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Posted

[quote name='SubStrider' timestamp='1315405988' post='2166913']
Very nice that. Thanks. So far we knew only about Neowin. Any idea what kind of server config must they be running on?


Hi, I didn't find this post until now. But I'll share some specs:

WWW: IBM HS21 4 x 4 GB ECC minne (PC2-5300) (16GB) 2 x Intel E5420 @ 2.50GHz 2 x 4 Gbps linker mot IBM DS3400 SAN (15K SAS disker i raid 5)

DB: IBM HS21XM 8 x 4 GB ECC minne (PC2-5300) (32GB) 2 x Intel E5420 @ 2.50GHz 2 x 4 Gbps linker mot IBM DS3400 SAN (15K SAS disker i raid 5)


Unfortunately we got performance troubles after our upgrade from 2.3 to 3.0 in Feb 2010. We've fixed it earlier this year, but it wasn't a quick fix and we had to do quite a lot of changes to the database tables, source code of IPB and had to move other services away from the server. The main reason for our troubles seem to be caused by the topic marking storage and shouldn't be a huge problem if you can live with cookie saving (but we cant). (We had topic marking saving to DB in 2.3 aswell without trouble)

But apart from the performance issues we've experienced we don't have any other major issues or problems with the software. I dont think a board with 3 million posts will experience the same issues we did, but it really depends mostly on your amount of users and visitors. It's during busy hours that the shipped version of topic marking storage seems to cause troubles.

A tip would be to have mysql version 5.5.11 or better and your tables be innodb. That was two of our improvements that helped.

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Posted

FWIW, Talkaudio.co.uk, the site I have the pleasure of keeping online is at 23k users and 4.2 million posts.
I converted over from a very hacked/modded VB3 forum. It took some doing, but I got it done.
I am running seperate web and DB servers, with a private LAN between the two, and the performance is not too shabby.

I also have a dev server where I roll out upgrades before putting them on the production servers.

The conversion was tricky, but I think that was down to the amount of modifications we had made to the source forum. In the end, I replicated the source DB, and dropped the modifications so it was back to a vanilla VB DB, and then the IPB converter worked rather well.
The upgrades since then (3.1 to 3.14 and now to 3.2) have been pretty much flawless.

I personally think that IPB is probably the best software of its kind now - VB4 was the other option for us, and IPB just destroys it. We have managed to make a fully unhacked/modded version do everything our modded version of VB did - plus more, and we now also have just one thing to upgrade.

If you want more intricate details of the trials and tribulations, feel free to shout.

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Posted

[quote name='CADguru' timestamp='1317414922' post='2177277']If you want more intricate details of the trials and tribulations, feel free to shout.

CADguru, could you tell me what addon you used for reviews?

btw: you seem to have an issue with avatar display.

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