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    Claudio Pires

    You can set whether users need to be registered and control the registration process.

    These two controls give you various degrees of control

    Public viewing, public posting

    By default forums are available to be publically viewed. If you set anonymous posting to be on (see 4. Above) then anyone can also post. This is the most public version of the forum. It can lead to lots of spam being posted, and does hand control of what’s said in your forums to the internet community, with you effectively being able to only delete afterwards.

    Public viewing, registered user posting

    Here anyone can view the forums, but only registered users can join in and post. Registration can be automatic or manual – see 6. below

    private viewing, registered user posting

    Here you have a private forum. Only registered users can view and post. Here it would be very unusual to allow automatic registration, and this will be typically a manual process. To set a forum as private go into dashboard>forums and select edit for the forum you wish to be hidden. Under the forum attributes on the right hand side, set visibility to private.

    Claudio Pires

    If you do not permit anonymous posting, then your users will need to register with your site. It is up to you to decide which method is preferable.

    Automatic registration is easier and it does allow people to quickly sign up, but by the same token gives you less control over who is contributing to your forums, and can lead to spam postings.

    Manual signup involves you in more administration, but does give you complete control over who has write access.

    Neither is better overall, but one will be better for you !

    To allow automatic registration, go to Dashboard > Settings > General settings and under membership, tick “anyone can register”. Then in Dashboard > settings > forums tick the auto role, and ensure this is only at participant level.

    To set manual registration, go to Dashboard > Settings > General settings and under membership, and ensure “anyone can register” is not ticked. Then in Dashboard>settings>forums tick the auto role, and ensure this is only at participant level.

    In both cases, you will then need a screen for users to register – we’ll come back to where to put this screen later, but for the moment go into dashboard>pages>add new page and create a page. You can call this page anything you like but “register” or “registration” would be logical when users view or access its URL.

    If you are doing automatic registration, then put whatever preamble you’d like (“to register for our forums” etc.) , and then add the following shortcode [bbp-register]. Save the page.

    If you opt for manual registration, then you’ll either need to get your users to email you, or set up a contact form for them to use.

    To get you going quickly, maybe just set the page to have you preamble followed by an email link such as

    email us your details here

    Remember to write this in the “text” tab of the content, so that the html is understood.

    There are lots of contact form plugins, which you can use later to get a registration form going on this screen. By all means set this up now, but a placeholder email will get you enough to see how it works.

    So now we have a page where our users can register.

    Claudio Pires

    Manually adding forum users to your site and editing them.
    If you have opted for manual registration (and it’s what I do), then when you receive either a contact form or email as set up in 6 above, you’ll need to add each user.

    Go into Dashboard>users>add user

    Enter their details as required. You can use the “send email” to automatically send them their details from within your site, or you can email external to the site afterwards using your favourite software. I use an email template within outlook as I can then send “joining instructions” and “forum rules” as part of the signup.

    You’ll not see any bbPress forum related user options/settings at this stage.

    If you want to set/amend access level – say to make a user a moderator, then you’ll need to create the user first, and then go back into edit, and now you’ll see an option at the bottom of the amend screen to allow you to change access levels.

    Manually adding users also allow you to take away the “toolbar” , which I feel always draws away from the look and feel of the site. We’ll give profile access later in this setup, so it’s not needed.


    So we now have a forum (or two) on a page which is accessible from the menu. We’ve decided if any/all forums will be hidden, and who and when people can contribute. We’ve set up a registration process (albeit the manual one might be a bit basic).

    However we’ve not given anyone a place to logon, or indeed register, or anywhere where they can see the latest posts.

    You can do this by adding these into a sidebar, or if you are using a full-width page, but adding them to a menu.

    But first you need to see if you need to change what page template bbPress is using for your site.

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