Free forum hosts?

Bass

Surprisingly Adequate
Apr 18, 2015
30
4
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#1
Do you guys use free forum hosts - such as Forumotion, IcyBoards, and ZetaBoards. Personally, I do not think free forum hosts are a very good idea - but they are a decent way for webmasters new to the whole forum niche to get started. Forumotion is decent, and I used it to create my first community. Their support is "meh", however. IcyBoards is good which I used for my second board. However, they do not allow you to install your own plugins. For that reason, I now run my forum on MyBB. And, lastly, ZetaBoards. I think they are excellent. Many great forums use it. They have excellent themes and the software itself is great.

So, do you guys use them? What do you think of them?
 

Thomasss

Retired Moderator
Retired Staff
Nov 19, 2015
937
104
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The Clouds
#2
IcyBoards is probably the only one worth trying, ZetaBoards is horrible when it comes to support, themes are everywhere so that is a plus but still, it's really not worth the troubles. IcyBoard hosts myBB software which is more widely known and supported.

Don't even get me started on Forumotion, the themes and forums I usually see on it are less than mediocre.
 

Belthazar

Ex-Shot Caller
Retired Staff
Mar 4, 2015
1,290
146
281
America
#3
Zetaboards is okay. They have a huge library of themes and plugins for you to use, so that's definitely a plus. ForumMotion is awful. I'd never recommend them to anyone. IcyBoards is decent. They've done a really good job of fixing MyBB's poor security, which is why you cannot install your own plugins. I'd personally recommend IcyBoards first, and Zetaboards second.
 

Joshua Farrell

Constantly Improving
May 18, 2015
96
12
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#7
In terms of forum hosts that I actually like, due to how they work and eas of use in the ACP, I would rather use ProBoards, than Zetaboards and the like, due to the ability to choose how you want the admin section to display it's selections (light, normal, advanced).
 

xXInfectedXx

Quite the Aristocrat
Mar 26, 2015
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10
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#8
I have actually used Free Forums hosts in the past and I still do. My favourite host which is my current is prophpBB. What I like about prophpBB is that you can request a backup when you want and your forum has hardly any advertisements on it and you get unlimited bandwidth. An disadvantage would be getting a free sub-domain, but this can be changed if you buy a domain with namecheap and then follow the steps from there. So overall, a great experience on the free forum host, prophpBB.
 

Allenafaith

Former Councilman
Jun 9, 2015
200
25
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#9
I used to use a free forum host, but now I used a paid host. Free forum hosts are okay to start off with, but eventually, I like to move to a paid host to get more benefits from it.
 

Shortie861

Constantly Improving
May 23, 2015
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11
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#10
Right now me and my boyfriend run a forum on free forum hosting and we are using Zetaboards which I feel is the better option if going for free forum hosting as you can purchase Zetaboards premium which does give you the ability to do more but I will admit that it doesn't give you a lot more. I run a forum on my own with paid hosting and on Xenforo and the amount I can do on there compared to Zetaboards with premium there is a huge difference. Free forum hosting is good but I wouldn't say it's good for long term.
 

Ronan

Constantly Improving
Mar 22, 2016
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#11
I've used proboards in the past, but in my experience you get what you pay for, so free=crap unfortunately.
 

Tiffany

Quite the Aristocrat
Mar 28, 2016
124
3
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#13
I think that free means that there is a catch. Nothing is free and if it's free you will definitely sacrifice quality. I think it's wiser to invest a little money into something that people will want to use. Better that than do a lot of work for nothing.
 

Hissae2

Despairingly Simple
Apr 6, 2016
9
2
11
22
#14
Free forum hosting is good if your forum is just a hobby or just starting out. Zetaboards is the best free forum software in my opinion, it's easy to use and very customizable, and it has some amazing themes. I also tried forumotion a long time ago and it was awful.
 

Charge

Quite the Aristocrat
Mar 29, 2016
101
2
31
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#15
Free forum hosting is good if your forum is just a hobby or just starting out. Zetaboards is the best free forum software in my opinion, it's easy to use and very customizable, and it has some amazing themes. I also tried forumotion a long time ago and it was awful.
Forumotion has to be the worst forum software out there. Or maybe they aren't? Haha. I wonder what's the worst forum software on the market now.
 

NastyGravy

Surprisingly Adequate
Apr 15, 2016
40
9
11
#16
If I was serious about starting a forum as a business, then I would not use a free forum host. I have used some in the past just to play around with and I think Proboards and IcyBoards were my favorites.
 

Baley64bit

Quite the Aristocrat
Apr 14, 2016
135
2
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#17
I have tried a few that were mentioned here and for a personal or hobby forum, I can see this being fine but if you want to make something of your blog in the future you are better off going with something like Xenforo.
 

Christopher

Former Owner
Retired Staff
Mar 11, 2016
838
73
106
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#18
If I was serious about starting a forum as a business, then I would not use a free forum host. I have used some in the past just to play around with and I think Proboards and IcyBoards were my favorites.
Proboards and icyboards seem like the best!
 

JennyorAlice

Quite the Aristocrat
Mar 24, 2015
180
10
31
U. S. A.
s15.zetaboards.com
#19
I've used Forumotion in the past and I currently have a forum through Zetaboards. I can't really rate any of the other ones since I've never really used them before. But I don't really have any complaints with Zetaboards, especially if you are new to being a webmaster.
 

Golddisk

Constantly Improving
Jan 21, 2016
54
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#20
I have experience with Zetaboards and Proboards. I think both are good for being free hosts. One of the big things that I've noticed about Zetaboards is that it has a huge community backing it, so you can finds tons of themes with varying styles. There is also a lot of custom codes and such that the community makes. Proboards seems to have some of that, but not on the same scale.