System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« on May 28th, 2013, 04:14 PM »
Carrying on from my tour around vB 3.8.7, I took a look last night at MyBB. I thought for about half a second about learning just enough to go troll MyBB but that seems a bit much :niark:

OK, so I hear a lot of MyBB fanboys squealing about how much better MyBB is than SMF, and not once have I ever heard why it is so, so I thought I'd try and figure it out for myself.

First reaction
I'm looking at the default theme and my very first reaction is "This reminds me of vB 3.8.x". It's not an exact knock-off but somehow it reminds me more of vBulletin than anything else does; phpBB and SMF have very much their own identities, even back in SMF 1.1.x days.

The second thing is how cluttered it all seems - as per first screenshot. MyBB claims to support a threaded view but I'm not sure it works properly or if it does, it isn't working properly for me, as I can't consistently get something to be a nested child. Strike one for MyBB.

And HOLY FUCK IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS HOLY... I know a lot of people dislike the whole 'return to the board' thing but then we have the interstitial screen, the infamous 'Thank you for posting, you will now be returned to...' with an option to dive out to the board. Eeeeew. Fortunately, it is disableable in the admin panel, but still...

OK, one thing I did see that impressed me, AJAXive quick reply. But that's not that much right now. Other than that it's not really much different; though the layout of information above the post itself makes it clumsy IMO, if you have an inch+ header on top of every post to put the user information in.


Admin panel
OK, so let's take a look through the admin panel.

The front page is not really surprising - admin notes, some interesting mini-stats (MyBB/PHP/SQL versions, number of threads/posts/users, subdivided by totals, new and awaiting approval)

Oh, that's weird... there are two different themes in the admin panel. Classic and Sharepoint, I'm using Sharepoint because it looks slightly nicer to me.

Then I see something learned from vB: a page whose sole purpose is to link you to page after page of settings. They're very long pages, too... see attached. I'm all for comprehensive options - and the options seem pretty comprehensive without going overboard, but the layout needs some serious work IMHO. There's only 25 options on this page, but you can see how long that page is. And there are 21 pages of just settings, if that makes sense.

Most of it is pretty straightforward stuff until I see this particular option in the Server and Optimization page:
Quote
Enable XMLHttp request features?
This will enable or disable the XMLHttp request features.

() Yes            () No
Say whaaaaaaaat? And no, there's nice help popup or anything to explain it... And there's a typo elsewhere on that page >_<

And WTF... I've seen this elsewhere but it truly makes no sense to me: Add New Setting. You can actually add new items to the admin panel directly, but unless you're actually doing something with it, it seems a bit redundant and if you are doing something, you might as well make a plugin out of it.

That leads me to something else that *really* grates on me: display ordering. Various controls give you the option to set their order (like custom fields being ordered, settings/setting groups)... and you set this by putting in numbers. Want a new custom field to be the second one down? Put in a display of 2 then order the rest to move them down too... because that's a nice user experience.

Other stuff seems fairly straightforward, though I slightly baulk at the 'MyCode' new bbc options. You create it with straight up regex, their example:
Regular Expression
Code: [Select]
Example: \[b\](.*?)\[/b\]

Replacement
Code: [Select]
Example: <strong>$1</strong>

A history lesson: SMF used to do their bbcode with this back in 1.0. One of the main reasons 1.1 dropped the old ubbc function and replaced it with the scary beast that is parse_bbc is because of ReDoS vulnerabilities. If you have regular expressions, it's possible to craft a post that can mess with them to cause the PCRE library to poop itself and create incredibly slow-parsing situations which can DOS the server (hence ReDoS - regex denial of service)


All in all, it doesn't strike me as being anything that exciting and certainly not being deserving of the fanboyism... hell, even the Apple vs Android fanboys have valid arguments in their favour but this doesn't seem like it.

In fact the only thing I can see that has any advantage so far is the plugin system but when I looked at the plugin architecture... whooo... my exact comment last night was that it blows monkey chunks compared to Wedge, it looks like the plugin's actual file must be loaded at startup to initialise it (as opposed to us which doesn't explicitly have to load anything, just validate its existence)

What I will say is that it does have a bunch of things in the core, like thread prefixes (where you pick a prefix out of a set list), as well as stuff like announcements (setting predefined messages in a board above all the topics like super-pinned topics)[1]

Permissions are weird though, see attached. You set the default permissions per group elsewhere (where it's a simple tickbox, yes/no) and set per board overrides here. There doesn't seem to be deny permissions so it is simply allow/disallow as we know them and you drag the permissions between the two or you can press the 'Set Custom Permissions'. It does seem very clunky compared to SMF's let alone what I've talked about for Wedge.

So yeah, pretty much as expected, MyBB stacks up reasonably well to SMF in terms of features but the admin navigation is ugleeeeee... and yet it's much like how XenForo does it and that's considered good... I dunno what goes through these peoples' minds sometimes.
 1. Which I might add to Wedge, though before I saw it in MyBB

 mybb_ugly_stick.png - 91.73 kB, 966x1054, viewed 249 times.

 mybb_admin_classic.png - 62.1 kB, 996x948, viewed 213 times.

 mybb_admin_sharepoint.png - 58.37 kB, 997x938, viewed 214 times.

 mybb_long_list_is_long.png - 51.73 kB, 998x1070, viewed 213 times.

 mybb_permissions.png - 64.52 kB, 1003x1076, viewed 222 times.

When we unite against a common enemy that attacks our ethos, it nurtures group solidarity. Trolls are sensational, yes, but we keep everyone honest. | Game Memorial

MultiformeIngegno

  • Posts: 1,337

godboko71

  • Fence accomplished!
  • Hello
  • Posts: 361
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #2, on May 29th, 2013, 12:17 AM »
MyBB almost requires a premium theme to be useable on the front end. The backend is like a bad version of vB 3.8. It works though so who am I to complain
Thank you,
Boko

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #3, on May 29th, 2013, 12:21 AM »
Yup, that is the underlying thought I've had about it. I have no idea why it's so popular or why its fans are so militant. I can't help but think there's almost something like Stockholm Syndrome :/

godboko71

  • Fence accomplished!
  • Hello
  • Posts: 361

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #5, on May 29th, 2013, 12:28 AM »
So I've heard. I find it interesting given how the people who claim MyBB's support is lovely are the people who bitch loudest about SMF's.

I can't wait for that when it happens here :niark:

xrunner

  • Posts: 192
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #6, on May 29th, 2013, 02:35 AM »
Quote from Arantor on May 29th, 2013, 12:28 AM
I can't wait for that when it happens here :niark:
It'll be interesting to see how the support forum for Wedge evolves as compares to the others. Tough love or be nice at all costs, or something in-between.

godboko71

  • Fence accomplished!
  • Hello
  • Posts: 361

xrunner

  • Posts: 192

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #9, on May 29th, 2013, 03:10 AM »
I'm waiting for the day when someone mouths off that I don't know what I'm talking about. Because you just know it's going to happen.

Wanchope

  • Posts: 232
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #10, on May 29th, 2013, 04:41 PM »Last edited on May 29th, 2013, 05:32 PM
Some time ago, I just decided to just seat back here and read as much as possible but the truth is - silent is boring.

I am using mybb and here is what I have to say
Mybb default theme for 1.6.8 cannot be used by any serious webmaster, it's nothing but a joke. How can they be so backward? I have to get a premium theme.
I like the stats summary in the admin panel a lot, SMF should consider this. The admin panel is ugly and so is smf.
Apart from the default theme, the forum is unusable without doing some edits like
1. The threaded move - removed instantly (why are they still leaving it in the core)
2. Thread ratings stars - removed as it makes the forum looks childish.
I did many manual edits that I can't really upgrade to the latest version because I am not free now to re edit after upgrade.
Server Resources
My forum is hosted in shared server and I find myself breaking my hosts tos because of the server resources the forum is consuming, (I'm getting only about 50k - 60k hits/month as my forum is still new). The guy that hosted me have to upgrade my account to a better plan though am still paying the shared hosting fee, he's just a great guy. What I want to point out is that mybb is killing my server resources, most time users will see mysql error... Pls mysql.sock bla bla bla.
I was reading how great the version 1.8 is so I downloaded it and installed it on wamp. The only clear progress I noticed is the improvement on the default theme but smf 2.1 default the he is far better (in appearance) than it.
The mod I liked a lot at mybb is mybb Seo mod and it's free. As off there support, they are average and I have to say it's unfair to be comparing them with smf as smf has the best support community around because almost every user of smf is ready to help one another and smf have great guys like N3rve, K@,and yes Arantor! The only support I know is good in mybb is one guy with username - polerbear (?). Most others looks like American teenagers looking for some few bucks :)
A yes mybb handles themes much better than smf.

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #11, on May 29th, 2013, 06:17 PM »
Well, threaded is gone in 2.0. (Just like it is gone in vB 4 and IPB 3.4)[1]

They're also adding "SEO friendly" (blah) URLs by default and some other stuff that just makes me feel all meh about it.

I get what you mean about premium MyBB themes, but to a point the same is true of SMF, most of the free themes are fairly dull and insipid.

As far as our admin panel is concerned, it is a bit different to SMF's. I actually don't like MyBB's admin panel. It's organised but it's stark, even with the Sharepoint theme and having a huge page for 25 options seems intimidating. I would draw your attention to http://wedge.org/pub/feats/7097/don-t-know-if-i-shared-it-publicly-or-not/ - while it's a picture from last year using the old Wedge default theme (yes, we've been through more than one already, that's Wine as opposed to Weaving), the sentiment is still exactly the same. (I haven't changed it that significantly in the intervening time, though there are more icons and stuff than before)

There is also the thing I mocked up as http://wedge.org/pub/feats/7159/some-admin-menu-changes/msg274290/#msg274290 though it has a few more options in it now IIRC.

As far as resources go, so far Wedge looks like it might be lighter in some respects and heavier in others compared to MyBB, but we're still in active development and changing big things so that may well change.

SMF doesn't have me any more, btw.

What do you mean that 'MyBB handles themes much better than SMF' exactly?
 1. As an aside, we've talked about adding it in Wedge because it does have a place and a use, but the UI invariably sucks.

Wanchope

  • Posts: 232
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #12, on May 29th, 2013, 06:37 PM »
Most smf mods needs manual code edits to work in custom themes and some leave some mess after uninstallation.

Arantor

  • As powerful as possible, as complex as necessary.
  • Posts: 14,278
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #13, on May 29th, 2013, 06:39 PM »
So that's a mod problem not a theme problem. It's not a problem with Wedge since mods cannot make any code edits whatsoever. And our plugin system runs faster and more cleanly than what I've seen on MyBB's.

(Did you know we run several plugins on here?)

Wanchope

  • Posts: 232
Re: System visitations: MyBB 1.6.10
« Reply #14, on May 29th, 2013, 06:47 PM »Last edited on May 29th, 2013, 08:27 PM
I was thinking it was due to smf clean xhtml format, you miss a tag,it labels you as a criminal.
Most smf mods works on default theme but gives error in custom themes.
And yes smf 2.1 theme is just BEUTY!