Moderating your phpBB forum




Sometimes when you have large forums with thousands of users you will start to lose control of your forum. Bots can spam your forum, users can be disruptive and you will need to start recruiting moderators to help keep the peace. But it can make your job harder if you're not properly equipped to deal with these kinds of problems.phpbb hosting Moderating your phpBB forum

Assigning a global moderator

For the sake of example I have created a new user "Jsmith" who I will appoint moderator permissions to.

To grant Jsmith global moderator permissions you will first need to open administrator control panel. Next from the left hand side click manage users and enter Jsmith and then find a user. Click select next to Jsmith and then submit.

From the top right you will then see a drop down box saying select form, from this drop down box select groups.

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Next from the groups section, click add user to group and select global moderators to the users group.


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You will also need to make sure that global moderators have full control over all forums so that the user can properly moderate.

Banning and warning users

Using your global moderator status on the Jsmith account you can now moderate the forum to some degree. Global moderators by default can ban or warn users. I will now create a user called "Mjane" who I will use as an example to show you to ban users.

Once you have created your user, log back in as Jsmith and click members from the top bar of the phpBB forum. Next find your user Mjane and click on her name to view her profile. From here you will be able to see 3 options, banning, view user notes and warn user.

If you click warn user you will see a small box which you can use to send the user a warning. This warning will then be posted to them and they will have 1 warning on their profile.

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To ban a user you will then need to go back to the profile, click banning and as you can see there are two main types of banning. You can either ban the user for a period of time or you can ban them permanently. You can also ban multiple users by clicking find a member and adding their name to the list.

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In this example I will ban Mjane for 30 minutes and submit. Next I will logout of Jsmith and onto Mjane to show you how the user is warned of their ban. As you can see below, the user cannot login and is given the time that their ban expires as well as the reason which was entered.

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If you go back to the moderator control panel on the top left hand side and click banning. You will notice you can now also unban this user. Simply click the users name and then click submit to unban the user.

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Moving and deleting topics

Logging in again as Mjane, I will now create 3 new posts with some spam in them. Next log back in as Jsmith and enter the software forum where the spam is located.

If you open up the first post you will notice you can ban and edit posts unlike other users. This allows you to edit individual posts without the need for deleting the whole topic.

If you go back to the software forum you will also notice you can click moderator control panel to the top right. Entering the moderator control panel allows you to moderate all posts in that forum. To delete a topic you simply need to mark the topic you want to remove and select delete from the drop down box. Similarly you can also lock and move topics to other forums, which can be useful if a user posts in the wrong forum.

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Pruning users and forums

Pruning is a particularly useful tool if you have a small site with not many users. Take a scenario for example that you have a forum and you go away for the weekend. While you were gone you noticed that several hundred users have come in to your forum and created hundred of spam topics. You could go around to each forum searching for the topics the user created and individually delete them all, but that would be tedious and time consuming. So instead you could try pruning the topics and users before a certain date.

To do this you will need to be logged in as the administrator and login to the administrator control panel. Next you will need to click users and groups, and scroll down to the button on the left hand side which sais prune users.

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As you can see you can enter all the users that you want to prune and select weather you want to delete their posts or just deactivate their accounts. You can select to prune between a period of time or just by username. By default pruned users are deactivated, which is better than deleting because if you delete the user they can simply reregister with their details.

Similarly you can prune a forum by clicking forum from the top of the administrator control panel and then clicking prune forum. You then will need to select the forum you want to prune click submit and then enter in the details of the posts you want to remove. For example if the spam is 2 days old you can enter 2 in the days sine last posted and it will remove all topics in that forum from the last 2 days.

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Mo Moumenine
Mo Moumenine, a media professional with more than 20 years experience in setting up media companies and managing them. Previously founder and CEO of the first Integrated converged media house in Dubai. Vice President of Programming for CNBC Middle East ( to 2006). Currently enjoying my free time in South East Asia, working on my first book on Social Media and writing for my blog. google

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