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3:43 pm on Feb 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Hello everyone,

I am looking for ways to make some extra income. I would like to give adsense a try. But I am new to it, although i have done some reading about it, on this and some other sites.

I want to start a forum with google ads.

There are a few questions i have and i need some suggestions:

1) is phpbb the way to go?
2) any suggestions on free phpbb hosting? and does google allow these free hosting sites?
3) does google allow free url redirection services like co.nr?

I am a programmer, but i haven't indulged too much in web programming yet. So any links, tutorials that might help me start a forum are welcome too.

I understand that paid hosting might be the way to go, but i would like to earn some money using freehosting at the moment.

Any other suggestion is appreciated
Thanks

4:58 pm on Feb 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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1) is phpbb the way to go?
2) any suggestions on free phpbb hosting? and does google allow these free hosting sites?
3) does google allow free url redirection services like co.nr?

1. Yes phpbb is very good, vBulletin is better but VB is not free. Get all your SEO and security mods for phpbb or it's a waste of time. Server must have PHP and MySQL in order to work.
2. No idea. I never do "free". I always feel you get what you pay for.
3. No idea but I don't recommend experimentin with it either. A static website that you control seems to be the "benchmark" to shot for.

5:10 pm on Feb 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Having used both phpbb and vBulletin, I would not use phpbb on any site where I intended to make money. That may change if and when the new version comes out, but right now I would choose vBulletin.

Most free hosting services for phpbb already put ads on your site. My wife has a vBulletin forum hosted for a small monthly fee with a service that is frequently recommended on vBulletin's forums, and their service is great.

Given the issues in starting, managing and building a forum, if it wasn't worth the investment of $200-$300 for software and hosting in the first year, I would consider putting my energy into something with a more significant return for the amount of time invested.

6:40 pm on Feb 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I would not use phpbb on any site where I intended to make money.

I use phpbb on one of site and make quite good money out of it. Can you explain why not to use phpbb? Sure you need to apply few mods but it is nice and open source system.
7:25 pm on Feb 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Because even if I were to value my time at minimum wage, I would still save hundreds per year in terms of site administration by using vBulletin instead of phpbb. And my time's worth a lot more than that.

I made good money with my forum using phpbb. I make good money with my forum using vBulletin, but I spend a fraction of the time on customization, maintenance, user management, spam management, etc.

9:25 am on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Thanks guys.

I cant pay, so vB is out of the question. How about SMF? what would you choose between phpbb and SMF (easier to use, easier to start, easier to implement adsense, security, etc)

I was thinking of starting out with a free host which will give me some long url, and then use url redirection services like co.nr. (maybe buy hosting later if i am making money). But i am still wondering if google will mind this or not.

Also i have heard that google wont approve if the forum doesnt have many users/posts. So whats the safe time (how many users/posts) to apply for adsense?

[edited by: Ambiguous at 9:27 am (utc) on Feb. 4, 2007]

10:18 am on Feb 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

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[mybboard.com...] can be another option.free
4:23 am on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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phpbb is simple to admin, I can't see it could be any worse or better than VB.
5:01 am on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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all forums have a low CTR, I just use them to attract users to my main site. its working ok for me.
5:23 am on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I added a forum to one of my sites recently and phpBB was a good option because of the mods but after a while I got tired of dealing with all of the spam.

You said you are a programmer so why not throw your hat in and try to program your own forum? I used PHP and MySQL and created my own forum in about three days. It's not as complex as phpBB but it allows my site users to use the forum and I have not had one spammer yet. (I think it's because of the fact that it's a completely unique forum setup so there is no bot set up to use it.)

Not to mention that if I want a feature I can easily add it because I understand the code I wrote and I can come up with new features as they are needed.

3:20 pm on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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all forums have a low CTR

This is soooo untrue. I have a forum that gets 7%ish CTR and that is really good compared to some of my other sites.

4:44 pm on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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any suggestions on free phpbb hosting? and does google allow these free hosting sites?

Would not suggest. It is sometimes hard to find reliable PAYED hosting. Usually for free you'll get slow hosting, with a lot of restrictions, and likely you'll have to place their banner somewhere on the page.
10:42 pm on Feb 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

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The free hosting sites are free because they run THEIR AdSense code on them. They are a waste of time. They usually disable server-intensive features like Search, for example, and they don't give you access to the board system files -- these would be necessary if you want to customize your board.

I use phpBB and am totally happy.

8:55 am on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Thanks everyone for helping. I am going to do some more reading and research before starting my first site.