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What options are available
What forum/message board should I use?
Mukeboy

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3140236 posted 9:13 pm on Oct 30, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi All,

Firstly I hope I have posted to the correct area.

What options are open to me with regard to forums/message boards?

Requirements:
There will only be a few users, no more than 100.
Security is paramount.
To run using Apache and php.
If possible could the threads not be spidered?

Not sure if there are any others factors that I should be considering?

Any suggestions or experiences in this area would be much appreciated.

Kind Regards
M

 

bill

WebmasterWorld Administrator bill us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3140236 posted 7:50 am on Oct 31, 2006 (gmt 0)

Welcome to WebmasterWorld Mukeboy.

You get more control with the forum packages you have to pay for, like vBulletin. However, even with the free packages like phpBB you can make the forums private so that registration is required to view them.

Clinton Labombard

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3140236 posted 7:16 am on Nov 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

You'll also need SLL; otherwise, packets intercepted from log-ins can be used by hackers. It's fairly common for a non-SLL supported board to be pranked every now and then by a hacker with a packet sniffer.

jtara

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jtara us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3140236 posted 5:10 pm on Nov 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

You'll also need SLL;

I assume you meant SSL?

otherwise, packets intercepted from log-ins can be used by hackers. It's fairly common for a non-SLL supported board to be pranked every now and then by a hacker with a packet sniffer.

I doubt this is a significant concern for most boards.

A packet-sniffer can't just arbitrarily sniff packets. It can only sniff packets that the hacker has access to. The hacker has to be "on the wire" somewhere between your website and your user. There are surprisingly few such access points - especially since the wholesale switch from Ethernet hubs to switches many years ago.

Maybe 10-15 years ago, (when hubs were still used) somebody at a company could sniff packets from adjoining cubicles (on the same hub), or somebody in a dorm room could sniff packets from adjoining dorm rooms. Or an insider at your ISP, etc.

The only significant sniffing threat today would come from an insider at an ISP or transport provider (ATT, Level3, etc.) who would have administrative access to switches, and access to a physical switch port. (Most switches can be set to echo all traffic to a given port for diagnostic purposes. This allows "sniffing" on switches.)

Unless your board is hosting discussions by the Federal Reserve or the Group of Seven, I doubt you have to worry much about this. :)

Your user accounts are much more likely to be hacked by simpler exploits - spyware installed on their computers or on public Internet terminals.

Security is paramount.
To run using ... php

Pretty much mutually-exclusive requirements. :)

If possible could the threads not be spidered?

Has nothing to do with your selection of message board software. You do this with robots.txt, firewalling, web server plugins, or all of the above. robots.txt can be set-up to make "good spiders" go away. "bad spiders" you can ban individually, if you know their IP addresses (updated lists are available), and there are firewalling solutions and web server plugins to detect spider-like activity and ban others on the fly.

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