In order to make and run a forum, one option is using a forum software, and we have picked the 6 best easiest free forum software solutions. Forums are a form of online discussion, differing from live chats in many features. They are based on diachronic messaging, and unlike chats, all posts are being archived (unless moderators and administrators rearrange them differently). Forums are based on posting in threads or topics, differently organized (depending on forum division, if there is any, on categories and sub-forums), usually arranged in time order (newer threads being on top).
The basic of any forum software is more or less the same, because of the same elemental features most forums share. Those are: forum division (on a topic arranged in different ways), registration form (enabling opening account and picking username), search, ease of administration and moderation. Usually, when deciding to choose a forum software for hosting a forum, the first thing to do is create MySQL database on a server. Although minimal knowledge is needed to get involved in running a forum, if you want to supplement your programming knowledge, you might also take a look at the 10 Best Freelance Websites for Programmers. Simply making a forum is just a beginning of the story, because the forum needs continual updating, managing, monitoring, archiving, reviewing, upgrading, etc. That means administrators are constantly being present, maintaining their forum, or the can use forum hosting as another solution. That is being done by hiring a hosting provider that maintains forum for you, although you remain the main administrator.
Ironically (or not), we have reached for help on the topic of best forum software, well, mostly on forums of course. We consulted Sitepoint, the Admin Zone, UK Business Forum. Huge Quora community was also consulted in order to get more subjective views on good beginner forum software choice. So our rating is primarily based on people’s experience with certain software. Apart from that, the Forum Software Reviews gives a good insight into pros and cons of the easy free forum software solutions, and Softaculos also gives forum software ratings.
There is a huge choice of free forum software nowadays, and it is not easy picking the best one. They differ in features they offer, complexity, stability or security and speed, and choosing the right one depends on user’s preferences. Perhaps finding the right one that offers all the features you need will be tough among the open source software, although all of them offer the creation of simple basic forums. But, luckily, there many new free forum software developing that enable creating modern forums (meaning they have options like tagging, reputation, badges, etc), as you will see on our list. So, let’s meet the best easiest free forum software solutions.