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Tools needed to set up & customise phpBB


Staff member
May 19, 2021
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Description: Here's a recommended list of tools and programs for setting up and customising phpBB.

Tools needed to set up and customise phpBB


While you don't need any extra tools or programs to run phpBB as it's ready to go out of the box, you will need an uncompression/unzip program to unpack the phpBB download and a FTP program to upload the files to your host. Or if you want to customise phpBB or install any MODs manually, then you will need some tools as well. All of the programs I mention are either open source (read: free) or freeware. However, there may be paid programs or other programs not on this list you'd like to use. That's fine -- this is just a list to get you started. If you find other great open source or freeware programs not listed here, please feel free to send me a PM, and I might add them to the list.

Uncompression programs

An uncompression program will uncompress the zip or bz2 phpBB package you downloaded.

We don't recommend using the utilities in host control panels for uncompressing packages. It is better to uncompress the package locally (on your computer) and then upload the uncompressed package.
FTP programs

You need a FTP (File Transfer Protocol) program to upload phpBB files from your personal computer to the web server.
Text editor programs

A good plain text editor is essential for installing MODs and making tweaks to your board. An editor for phpBB should have at least two features
  1. able to respect the correct end of line (EOL) convention. phpBB uses the UNIX (LF) line ending format.
  2. able to encode files as UTF-8 without BOM (see phpBB3 and UTF-8 without BOM for more information)
We do not recommend Windows Notepad or Wordpad because they are unable to meet either of those requirements.

Editors are largely a matter of personal preference as most have similar features like syntax colouring, line numbers (very useful for tracking down errors!), etc. Important note: Do not use a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor like FrontPage or Dreamweaver with phpBB as those will likely add extraneous markup that will cause problems.
File comparison programs

Used to compare files or folders to each other and show any differences, for example, if you are unsure how your file has been edited you could compare your file to one from the standard package to find any differences.
Graphics programs

You'll need a graphics program if you want to create or edit images for use with phpBB.
  • GIMP (cross platform including Windows) - “a versatile graphics manipulation package”.
  • Paint.NET (Windows) “a free image and photo editing software for computers that run Windows”.

A way of searching a directory and sub-directories for all occurrences of particular text is also useful, particularly when troubleshooting or developing MODs. For example, you may want to find all lines in all files in the software which contain the variable $script_path[/list]
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Do the FTP programs work on a locally hosted phpbb forum or they are simple online based
Do the FTP programs work on a locally hosted phpbb forum or they are simple online based


FTP SERVER: https://www.webforum.co.zw/resources/filezilla-server-for-windows.10/
FTP CLIENT: https://www.webforum.co.zw/resources/filezilla-client-for-windows.11/

First, you need to install an FTP Server on your computer. After Installation check if the FTP service is started or not if not then restart the service. Create FTP user accounts. Some FTP server softwares automatically integrate with the user accounts on your Linux / Windows operating system; if so, you can use your operating system’s username/password to log on to your FTP server.

The localhost is the default name describing the local computer address also known as the loopback address. When setting up a web server or software on a web server, is used to point the software to the local machine. Tip: This IP address is the local one, not the IP address used by your computer to communicate with other machines on your network or the Internet.

you can then connect to this FTP server with an FTP client.

Once the FTP server is running, you can connect to it using “localhost” or as the address and port 21, typically. Unless you change the port, which you can do.

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