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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all

We have been working with Mike and Robb to take over the WFM site. It has been move to a new domain and our server. We will keep that site separate from GTT, it’s own entity if you will. The goal is to fix any software issues and keep it rolling as it is.

It will have to be converted to VBulletin, that software is not sustainable as it is. Sorry…

This takes nothing away from GTT yet will hopefully add some more stability to the backend/software at WFM. We do not want any issues over there at all. It’s just the only way to keep the future alive there as we can see it. Robb and Mike both have been great in helping with all this. Any questions post here or send me a PM.

THANKS all!
 

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Super Moderator
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2,699 Posts
Thanks, Kev. I know you and Lee have been working on this for quite some time. I'm glad it's done and we can move forward now to keep WFM stable.

Thanks, again.
 

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Bonehead Club Lackey
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10,214 Posts
Great! I've been on that site even though I don't have a Garden Tractor or an old one. I like the info on there and like to see the older stuff. If I ever get the 140 I want, that's a great place to get info. Thanks for keeping it alive.
 

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Premium Member
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Very cool. There is way to much info there to lose and I'm glad you guys are trying to keep it going.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Registered
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Wfm

can I or shouldn't I ask What happened to WFM site? I have not heard what happened to them.
 

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Super Moderator
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can I or shouldn't I ask What happened to WFM site? I have not heard what happened to them.
WFM is and has been active since January 2002 when it was introduced. If GTT didn't take over, it will still be active. But, it uses 2002 software that is no longer supported and has been known to crash for a day or two. A big crash occur back in 2006, but they were able to recover it but a lot of archived data was lost. The last crash was a couple of weeks ago when it was down for about 3 days. But Robb and Mike got it back up and running again. The owners and founders of WFM, Robb and Mike, have been wanting to upgrade the software for quite some time, but were afraid it would lose too much data and it would lose it's character that it has built over the years. Robb has wanted to sell it for some time also, but wanted the right fit. I know GTT has been trying to secure WFM even before Kev and Lee took over GTT. I can not speak of how GTT was able to do this, but now they have finally come to an agreement. Even though WFM might have live on a few more years, a software upgrade was badly needed. I believe this guarantees that there will be a WFM for years to come. I don't know how Robb and Mike were able to keep it going with the old, unsupported software, but they did an excellent job of keeping the site going these last 13 years.
 

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Premium Member
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6,593 Posts
It will have to be converted to VBulletin, that software is not sustainable as it is. Sorry…THANKS all!
You might want to check out Xenforo instead of VBulletin. We just did that over at Hobby-Machinist for numerous reasons. I'd hate see you go down the wrong path from the start.
 

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Premium Member
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Xenforo Info - if you're interested.

What is Xenforo? And why did we change to it?
Xenforo is a relatively new forum platform released in 2011 by the original developers of vBulletin. These guys built vBulletin and grew it to be the market leader in forum software. But while vBulletin is, in my opinion, failing in the hands of new owners, the Xenforo team have moved on to create an efficient, user friendly, innovative, contemporary forum platform which we will all benefit from using.

The nitty gritty
For 12 years, we used Jelsoft's vBulletin software to run AVForums.
As late as 2013 we used vBulletin 3.8.2 while the latest currently available version is vBulletin 5 Connect. For a number of considered reasons, we, like many other vBulletin forum admin* had declined to upgrade to the newer versions of the software since 2009, after the key developers left the company following its purchase by Internet Brands.

The vBulletin 3 key developers, Kier Darby, Mike Sullivan and Scott MacVicar, wanted to redevelop vBulletin from scratch as far back as 2007. Internet Brands, however, insisted on working on the vBulletin 3 code to release vBulletin 4 as soon as possible. Kier, Mike and Scott all left Jelsoft in 2009.

In my opinion, Internet Brands has mismanaged the development of vBulletin, producing generally poor code in vBulletin 4, creating security problems and pricing structure issues. vBulletin 5 Connect has received considerable criticism for being a premature release absent many important features, containing old code inherited from vBulletin 2 and being ineptly inefficient.

When vBulletin 3 was developed, the future formatting of websites to maximise Search Engine Optimisation (SEO - primarily for Google) was not foreseen.
On our installation of vBulletin 3, we used an addon called vBSEO which helps make the forum more search engine friendly. It's kind of a standard addition to a vB3 forum.

vBSEO is dead
On July 13th 2013 I received notification that vBEO is suspending operations. There is a video from one of the co-founders about it and a discussion at Admin Talk.
Dear vBulletin Forum Community - vBSEO is Suspending Operations
I was aware that there were problems with vBSEO. There has been no development for some time, though the vBSEO product on AVForums will, of course, continue to work indefinitely. SEO evolves. If our SEO addon does not, it will become increasingly useless.

We had already made the decision to move away from vBulletin some time ago, so this news about vBSEO didn't really affect us. But it might give other forum owners the impetus to also migrate away from vBulletin.

What do others think about vBulletin?
I posted a link above to a single thread at Digital Point where people criticised vB5 soon after its release.
In the above thread at Admin Talk, several admin also comment on the status of vBulletin:

vBulletin is as good as dead


My professional opinion- vb is dead. 4 sucks, 5 is worse. Jump to xenforo 1.2 when it's final and leave all this behind like everyone else has....


vBulletin after being taken over by Internet Brands became a total failure, looking at vBulletin 5 should explain what I mean. Even if vBSEO started development again, do you really think people will come back to vBSEO?
vBulletin is losing customers daily to IPS or XF or other competitive forum softwares.
The current condition of vBulletin is dire and we don't know when Internet Brands will pull the plug on vBulletin if they stop generating positive revenue.


a> VBulletin 4 is no longer developed. It's a matter of time before it becomes too obsolete.
b> VBulletin 5 is a failed software. The current market share of VB5 is about half a percent.

There is also an interesting thread at The Admin Zone discussing the departure of Freddie Bingham, the last of the 'old guard' vB3 developers. The admin folks there really lay into Internet Brands.

These are just a taster of the general feeling amongst experienced admin. In the private vBulletin Licensed feedback forum, there is much dissent about the poor quality of vBulletin 5 Connect. It's criticised heavily for being slow (often unusably slow) and plagued by bugs.

So why not just stick with vBulletin 3?
The problem with sticking with vB3 is that modern internet users are used to websites with a better user experience. vB3 sites nowadays are starting to look pretty old.
That may not be a problem for existing and loyal forum users like most of you reading this right now, but new visitors to your site are less and less likely to be impressed by the clunky look and feel. And it is the retaining of new visitors which is so important for growing a community.

And believe me the look and feel of vB3 is clunky. It's also not particularly fast. Other forum platforms have taken advantage of the latest in framework development, CSS and jQuery widgetty niceties to make their forums function with fewer page loads (modal overlays instead) and faster page loads (inevitable from more evolved, efficient coding).
So to say vB3 is still fast may be true when running on a fast server with little traffic, but compared to different forum platforms, it is not necessarily so.

Because other forums use modern techniques (e.g. jQuery), they usually provide for a nicer, slicker user experience also. Less page loads, more slide-down notifications. Automatic message saving to draft for later, anyone? Drag and drop images into the new post form? Responsive design for people using mobiles? All these features and many more are missing from vB3 but available in competing forum platforms.

In my opinion, vBulletin is already a dead product. I would not recommend anyone choose vBulletin to run their community, and those currently using it should look now at migrating to an alternative forum platform.

Because vB3 is so out of date and vB4 and vB5 Connect are so poor, we could not continue using vBulletin to run AVForums.

[*] Other forums still using vBulletin 3 include:

1.5Series.net - Forums
2.AudiForums.com - Powered by vBulletin
3.Audio Video Revolution Forum - Powered by vBulletin
4.DVD Talk Forum - Powered by vBulletin
5.FlyerTalk Forums
6.Land Rover Forums - Land Rover Enthusiast Forum
7.Mazda Forum - Mazda Enthusiast Forums

(and these are all owned by Internet Brands!)
Plus vBulletin.org Forum - the 'community' development site for vBulletin is on vBulletin 3 and the admin have no plans to move to a later version.
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #13
We have a VB license to use for now and would have to go to it first.
Xenforo is really great, actually the first forum software I had used.

The guys that bought out VBulletin really messed it up. So 4.0 may not be great, but 5.0 is terrible. The old school guys still like the 3.0 versions, it just works well with how Google indexes sites.

It may be a good idea to consider it. Once we get it to VB, then converting to Xenforo would be easy.
 

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Bonehead Club Lackey
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10,214 Posts
RandyM, I liked what you said but haven't a clue what you said. :laugh: What I got out of it is one is good and one is bad. I like good. :thumbup1gif: I'm one of those people that rely on others for this kind of stuff. :dunno: :lol:
 

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Premium Member
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6,593 Posts
RandyM, I liked what you said but haven't a clue what you said. :laugh: What I got out of it is one is good and one is bad. I like good. :thumbup1gif: I'm one of those people that rely on others for this kind of stuff. :dunno: :lol:
Just trying to give the man options.
 

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Registered
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1,005 Posts
RandyM, I liked what you said but haven't a clue what you said. :laugh: What I got out of it is one is good and one is bad. I like good. :thumbup1gif: I'm one of those people that rely on others for this kind of stuff. :dunno: :lol:
You and me both!!! :munch:
 

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Bonehead Club Lackey
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Registered
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892 Posts
Have you ever looked at simple machines forum? I've used vbulletin before and personally feel it falls short of smf.

Jim


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Registered
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WFM is and has been active since January 2002 when it was introduced. If GTT didn't take over, it will still be active. But, it uses 2002 software that is no longer supported and has been known to crash for a day or two. A big crash occur back in 2006, but they were able to recover it but a lot of archived data was lost. The last crash was a couple of weeks ago when it was down for about 3 days. But Robb and Mike got it back up and running again. The owners and founders of WFM, Robb and Mike, have been wanting to upgrade the software for quite some time, but were afraid it would lose too much data and it would lose it's character that it has built over the years. Robb has wanted to sell it for some time also, but wanted the right fit. I know GTT has been trying to secure WFM even before Kev and Lee took over GTT. I can not speak of how GTT was able to do this, but now they have finally come to an agreement. Even though WFM might have live on a few more years, a software upgrade was badly needed. I believe this guarantees that there will be a WFM for years to come. I don't know how Robb and Mike were able to keep it going with the old, unsupported software, but they did an excellent job of keeping the site going these last 13 years.
T-Mo ; thanks for explaining what went wrong, sorry to here of that, I also like to pass time reading old threads about what people have done to their machines, so wo -hoo to gtt for saving them.:hi:
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #20
Just an FYI we could pull the old forum down within 24 hours or less. The conversion has been somewhat wonky but appears to be working well now. The only large issue we see right now is that everyone may have to reset passwords (We would announce that on the top of the site). We don't expect it to be down over 48 hours, hopefully under 24 hours.
 
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