Vanilla 1 is no longer supported or maintained. If you need a copy, you can get it here.
HackerOne users: Testing against this community violates our program's Terms of Service and will result in your bounty being denied.

There are so many excellent free forums these days...



  • The latest source is available for download at The 'next revision' isnt out yet which is why its entitled 'next', but will be out sometime in the very near future, we hope. It's not going SVN/CVS untill version 1 when mark is ready to truly release his little baby to the brutal fighting of public developers :)
  • Just out of curiousity, how long has Vanilla been in development? And what are the goals/roadmap for the 1.0 release?
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    There is no real "roadmap" at the moment, and from what mark says, there probably won't be one since Vanilla is at the moment, only a side project. Vanilla from what I know has been in development for either nearly or over a year and is entirely the work of Mark. At least as far as the core program goes.
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    The next rev will be available in the latter half of november. I have recently been hired by a very exciting client who is going to pay me to get it out quickly. The great news here is that among all of the fixes and new improvements, it will also include distributed user authentication - allowing you to have a single login for vanilla and any other application you want to attach it to. I'm very excited :)
  • Ohh, sounds cool. You should come up with a creative name for the distributed user authentication, like "Unity" or something like that. I dunno, IPB did it, so I think Vanilla can too.
  • That distributed user authentication sounds exactly like something I would use. Perfect :D
  • Great mark. Although I've mixed feelings about the late November release date. On the one hand, "yay! a date! and it's pretty soon!" while on the other, "aww, it's coming soon ... should I bother writing my extensions and modifying so much of Vanilla 0.9.2 if 1.0 will either do what I need - integrate logins with another service - or force me to re-write whatever extensions or modifications I make to 0.9.2 to fit 1.0 (or whatever the next version will be). I can understand if it's not meant for everybody and their dog to install on a web server, but could you at least give people the code, or even just diffs of the changes, so we know what we should avoid and what we can work with safely, knowing it'll be stable for the next few weeks and perhaps beyond? I mean, look at Mozilla or Linux or OpenOffice or other open source products. Their mottos are "release early, release often". Which means even when you don't think it's ready, you release it anyway, knowing that *someone* will find value in it, or have suggestions for improvements. And if you want, you can make the link hard to find, or email it personally only when people ask, with tons of disclaimers on it - even a huge DEVELOPMENT heading stamped over it, with a red backgrouind. I - and others - probably wouldn't care. I personally just want to be able to work with the stuff so I know I can launch a forum sometime next month or the month after, and not worry about upgrading when I need to think about Christmas shopping. The idea of extensions - particularly if they're now easier to write - makes me feel all fuzzy inside, after seeing that strategy work so effectively with Firefox, or SMF. As I've written in a few other threads recently, there are a lot of small things that bug me about the layout of Vanilla, nothing major, just things that would work great as extensions (easier for me to upgrade to newer versions that way, and share my work with others) or have already been fixed according to the change log, but have not seen the light of day. You don't need SVN or CVS to post a small .zip or whisper it to people ;)
  • lechlech Chicagoland
    Louis, more than likely, a great deal of the code base has been rewritten, modified and the such with an update so far and in between. Most likely, this version will be 0.9.3 and you will be allowed to template the forum in any way you please. At least this is what I've gathered over the stretch of time and tidbits of information.
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    edited October 2005
    If I had bajillions of dollars, I'd do it the way you're talking about. But I don't. I don't even have very much spare time, and vanilla is a "spare time" project. Sadly, the $200 in donations that I've received since 10,000 people downloaded it doesn't exactly allow me to quit my day job. A cvs/svn will be opened up after the next revision comes out. The current development version would be useless to anyone because it doesn't work *at all* right now. Extensions, however, will work exactly the same as they do now - with a few extra abilities. So, most of the current extensions will still work in the next revision, but the next revision will make a lot of those extensions easier to program if anyone is so inclined to revisit them.
  • a bajillion you say... I recon we could organise that for you. *hacks the banks systems and transfers all the money out of everyones account into marks then runs off.
  • edited October 2005
    That's odd, because I've managed to find free hosting for all the open source stuff I've worked on, and none of those projects have attained the um, sucess and usability that Vanilla enjoys right now. So I find it hard to believe that it would cost too much to set up SVN or CVS. But I can sympathize with your time restraints. So I'll be patient and live with whatever you choose to do. But other new groundbreaking web software projects have benefited from sharing their source, like or - both use Trac with SVN to manage source, track bugs and keep developer docs (Trac's a wiki too). RubyOnRails, in particular, is an example of an application developed in-house by only a few people, while doing consulting work with its own time constraints, that only took off after they open sourced it, giving the source to everyone, etc. Suddenly, people are submitting patches left right and center, activity is taking off, and the 1.0 release for RoR is much different from when they first released it to the world. (Just take a peek at the change log. It's huge, and many of the changes come from patches.) So it's not as if you're alone, or that this hasn't been done before. There are people out there who will give away free tools, like SourceForge or or if you host with them, will set everything up for you and help you get started, like TextDrive - And there are a zillion guides out there for getting started with any of this, as I'm sure you've noticed.
  • Trac is super-cool.
  • Louis i think you slightly mis-read what mark said. When he was talking about needing a bajillion dollars he meant so he could quit his day job and spend all his time writing vanilla perfectly instead of doing the best he can with the time he has (which is allbeit still pretty darn impressive) - setting up a cvs/svn/whatever we want to use to allow updates and track bugs etc wont be a problem atall - there have been working prototypes running with offers of hosting, although mark has his own VS anyway which i'm pretty sure he'd have regardless of whether vanilla was opensource/private/non-existant given his position. And i'm 99% certain there will be one setup within the year.
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    Mini is correct. I don't need money to open up a CVS/SVN. I need money to quit my day job and work on open-source software full time. I am working on that, too.

    So, let me be absolutely clear:

    The next revision of Vanilla (0.9.3) will be released before the end of NovemberI will set up Vanilla (and the filebrowser) on a CVS/SVN after the release of 0.9.3
  • Mark any idea on how far out 1.0 is? Not meaning that as an impatient statement, I'm just wondering what you are looking at.
  • MarkMark Vanilla Staff
    0.9.3 is basically version 1. As soon as we have tested it thoroughly and removed any immediate and obvious bugs, I'll re-release it as version 1.
  • Vanilla is the best! Whatever you do.. leave the original layout in place. This is why this forum stands out above the rest.
  • Thanks Mark and mini, for not flaming me for my assumptions. I knew what Mark meant, really, I just couldn't believe he'd gotten so far without it, actually. :) And I can't wait to get started with this stuff. Suddenly I've so many ideas for my forums, not just tweaking themes or making it look the way I want it to. When someone mentioned that Vanilla looked a lot like a blog, it got me thinking about the similarities. Sure, this already has Atom, but what about RSS? Or working in ways for people to get notified of what they want, like new comments to bookmarked discussions or whispers? And what about integrating posting/reading with something Web 2.0 like Flock? Ahh, so many ideas, so little time, but a bright SVN-filled future. :)
  • edited October 2005
    I'm pretty sure someone made an rss feed extension or something but i could be wrong. And yeah, i'm looking forward to seeing what people come out with with this new version and easier extensions/theming. I can see the extensions repository on the site growing pretty fast and it could get quite exciting. p.s. never underestimate the power of the mark!
  • Replace your feeds/index.php file with this one (obviously renaming it as index.php), and add in the this extension, then you should be RSS2 enabled as well.
This discussion has been closed.