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Administrative Help Center
Introduction
As you are well aware, YaBB is a fantastic community platform. Easily installed; easily managed. It's the perfect solution for growing and maintaining a solid, proactive relationship with your user base. This help section will help you understand some of the many new and powerful features you now have at your fingertips. If you would like to skip ahead to a specific subsection of this help, please use the navigation menu to the left.

For a more complete manual, please visit The YaBB Codex.
For support and troubleshooting, please visit YaBB's Support Community


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Manage Categories
Accessing the Category Functions
This YaBB version comes equiped with powerful tools to manage and control the conversational flow of your community. The cornerstone of which is the ability to group boards into an unlimited* number of categories. In order to access these functions, you must, of course, be logged in as an Administrator (or Global Moderator with proper access rights). Once you are, look at the main menu. You will notice a link titled "Admin Center". Clicking this will bring you to a large control panel. On the left hand menu, search for the section titled "Forum Controls" and click on the first link titled "Categories".

* YaBB is only limited by the space allocated to you on your web hosting server.


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Editing a Category
Editing a cateogry with YaBB is fast and easy thanks to the hard work our fantastic team of developers. While inside of the Categories function of your Admin Center (see above for details), you will see a list of existing categories, each with a corresponding check box. Clicking on this check box will flag this category for editing.

Once you have checked all the categories you wish to edit, scroll to the bottom of the list and search for the set of radio buttons titled " With selected:". Click on the radio button for "Edit", then press the button to the right titled "Go". Inside you will find the following items for each category:

  • ID
    • This is for internal use only. It lets YaBB keep track of things, and it will be used in the URL to view that category.
  • Name
    • This is the title of your category. It's the name your users will see. You may edit this however you wish.
  • Allowed to View/See Category
    • If you wish to make this entire category private, you may choose which Member Groups will be allowed to view this category. Leave this blank to allow everyone (including guests) to view it, OR if you will have any boards in this category you want all to be able to view.
  • Allow Collapse
    • Check this box to allow your users to expand and collapse this category on the front page.

When you've finished making your edits, search for and click the button titled "Save" at the bottom of the list of categories.


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Deleting a Category
If you would like to remove a category, follow the directions above to access your category management page. In the list of categories, you will notice a check box that corresponds to each title. Check this box for each and every category you wish to remove. Once selected, scroll to the bottom of the category listings and locate the set of radio buttons titled "With Selected:". Click on the radio labeled "Remove" then press the button to the right titled "Go".

WARNING: DELETING A CATEGORY WILL ALSO DELETE ANY BOARDS YOU HAVE IN THAT CATEGORY

A small popup will ask you to confirm that you want to remove these categories. Click "OK" to remove them or "Cancel" to keep them.


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Adding New Categories
YaBB now allows you to add many new categories all at once. To do this, access the forum's category management functions as shown above. Once there, scroll to the bottom of the list and find the function titled "Add Categories:". Enter the number of new categories you wish to create in the box and press the button titled "Add".

On this new page, you will be given a set of options for each of the new categories you want to create:

  • ID
    • This is for internal use only. It lets YaBB keep track of things, and it will be used in the URL to view the category. Entry must be alphanumeric (No symbols and No spaces)
  • Name
    • This is the title of your category. It's the name your users will see. You may edit this however you wish.
  • Allowed to View/See Category
    • If you wish to make this entire category private, you may choose which Member Groups will be allowed to see this category. Leave this blank to allow everyone (including guests) to view this category, OR if you are going to put any board in this category you want guests to be able to view.
  • Allow Collapse
    • Check this box to allow your users to expand and collapse this category on the front page.

NOTE: Your new Category will not be visible on the main page of the forum until it has at least one board in it.


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Manage Boards
Accessing the Board Functions
Now that you have created your categories, you can use YaBB's amazing board-creation utilities to manage the postable sections of your community. YaBB allows you to create an unlimited* number of boards in every category. In order to access these functions, you must be logged in as an Administrator or Global Moderator with proper access rights. Once you are, look at the main menu. You will notice a link titled "Admin Center". Clicking this will bring you to a large control panel. On the left hand menu, search for the section titled "Forum Controls" and click on the second link titled "Boards".

* YaBB is only limited by the space allocated to you on your web hosting server.


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Adding New Boards
YaBB now gives admins the ability to add multiple boards from a single screen. To do this, access the forum's board management functions as explained above. Once there, scroll to the bottom of the list of existing boards (if any) and find the function titled "Add Boards". Enter the number of new boards you would like to create in the text box then press the button titled "Add".

On this new page, you will be given a large set of options for each of the new boards you are trying to add:

  • Board ID
    • This is only used for internal YaBB functions, and it is used in the URL used to view a board. You may enter any alphanumeric name you wish with no spaces.
  • Name
    • This is what your users will see. You may enter anything you wish here.
  • Description
    • Describe this board so your users will know what the subject/topic will be.
  • Moderators
    • Enter the username of the members you wish to give Moderator access for this board (separate with commas if more than one).
  • Category
    • Choose which category you would like this board to be a part of.
  • Board Picture
    • Here you can assign a small picture to represent this board.
  • Zero Post Count Board?
    • Check this box if you would like to prevent posts made in this board from increasing users' post counts.
  • Show to All?
    • Checking this option will ensure the board title and description are shown to all who are able to view the category this board is in, even if they are not allowed access to view the board contents.
  • Allow Attachments
    • Checking this option will enable users to attach files to their posts in this board provided the "Allow file attaching in posts?" option is checked in the Admin Center/Forum Configuration/Advanced Settings under the "File Attachments" tab.
  • Global Announcements
    • Checking this option will ensure the messages in this board are shown as important on top of every board. No matter how the permissions are set, only Administrators and Global Moderators can start new topics or reply.

      Note: YaBB only allows a single board to have this label.

  • Recycle Bin
    • Checking this option make this board a recycle bin for messages deleted by moderators. It can also be used as a recycle bin for Administrators by unchecking the box found in the Admin Center/Configuration/Forum Settings under the "Staff" tab.

      Note: YaBB only allows a single board to have this label.

  • Mininum Age to Access
    • Restrict access by mininum age.
  • Maxium Age to Access
    • Restrict access by maximum age.
  • Gender Allowed Access
    • Restrict access by gender.

      Note: The age/gender restrictions are based on the information users enter in their profile for birthday and gender selection. If a user does not enter/select age/gender data, YaBB has no way to know their age or gender, thus they will not be allowed access to any board that uses these restrictions.

  • Allowed to Start Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups can start a new topic.
  • Allowed to Reply to Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to reply to topics.
  • Allowed to View Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to view topics.
  • Allowed to Create Polls
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to create polls.

      Note: To allow guests to do any of the above 4 functions, select no member groups.

Once you have filled out all the information for your new boards, scroll down to the bottom of the list and click on the button titled "Save". Your new boards will be created and opened for posting!


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Deleting a Board
If you would like to remove a board, follow the directions above to access your board management page. In the list of boards, you will notice a check box that corresponds to each title. Check this box for each and every board you wish to remove. Once selected, scroll to the bottom of the board listings and locate the set of radio buttons titled "With Selected:". Click on the radio labeled "Remove" then press the button to the right titled "Go".

A small popup will ask you to confirm that you want to remove these boards. Click "OK" to remove them or "Cancel" to keep them.


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Editing a Board
If you need to make changes to any of the boards you have created, simply follow the directions above to access your board management section. In the list of boards, you will notice a check box that corresponds to each title. Check this box for each and every board you wish to edit. Once selected, scroll to the bottom of the board listings and locate the set of radio buttons titled "With Selected:". Click on the radio labeled "Edit" then press the button to the right titled "Go".

On this new page, you will be given a large set of options for each of the boards you are editing:

  • Board ID
    • This is only used for internal YaBB functions, and it is used in the URL used to view a board. You may enter any alphanumeric name you wish with no spaces.
  • Name
    • This is what your users will see. You may enter anything you wish here.
  • Description
    • Describe this board so your users will know what the subject/topic will be.
  • Moderators
    • Enter the username of the members you wish to give Moderator access for this board (separate with commas if more than one).
  • Category
    • Choose which category you would like this board to be a part of.
  • Board Picture
    • Here you can assign a small picture to represent this board.
  • Zero Post Count Board?
    • Check this box if you would like to prevent posts made in this board from increasing users' post counts.
  • Show to All?
    • Checking this option will ensure the board title and description are shown to all who are able to view the category this board is in, even if they are not allowed access to view the board contents.
  • Allow Attachments
    • Checking this option will enable users to attach files to their posts in this board provided the "Allow file attaching in posts?" option is checked in the Admin Center/Forum Configuration/Advanced Settings under the "File Attachments" tab.
  • Global Announcements
    • Checking this option will ensure the messages in this board are shown as important on top of every board. No matter how the permissions are set, only Administrators and Global Moderators can start new topics or reply.

      Note: YaBB only allows a single board to have this label.

  • Recycle Bin
    • Checking this option make this board a recycle bin for messages deleted by moderators. It can also be used as a recycle bin for Administrators by unchecking the box found in the Admin Center/Configuration/Forum Settings under the "Staff" tab.

      Note: YaBB only allows a single board to have this label.

  • Mininum Age to Access
    • Restrict access by mininum age.
  • Maxium Age to Access
    • Restrict access by maximum age.
  • Gender Allowed Access
    • Restrict access by gender.

      Note: The age/gender restrictions are based on the information users enter in their profile for birthday and gender selection. If a user does not enter/select age/gender data, YaBB has no way to know their age or gender, thus they will not be allowed access to any board that uses these restrictions.

  • Allowed to Start Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups can start a new topic.
  • Allowed to Reply to Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to reply to topics.
  • Allowed to View Topics
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to view topics.
  • Allowed to Create Polls
    • Limit which Member Groups are allowed to create polls.

      Note: To allow guests to do any of the above 4 functions, select no member groups.

Once you have made your changes, scroll down to the bottom of the list and click on the button titled "Save".
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Manage Members
Accessing Member Controls
Since YaBB is built to encourage and facilitate an active community of users, it comes with several tools to assist administrators in the management of members. To access these controls, ensure you are logged in as an Administrator and enter your "Admin Center". Once inside, look for the 6th section down on the sidebar titled "Member Controls".
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Manually Add Member
It may become necessary from time to time for an administrator to manually create a new member account. For example, this can often be useful to help those with a disability become a member.

From your Member Controls section on the Admin Center sidebar, click on the very first link titled "Add Member". This new page will give you a simple registration form that will allow you to add a member without having to logout. Simply fill out this form with the new member's username, password and email.


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Banning Members
Unfortunately, users are not always filled with the great sense of community that YaBB provides. These users can become rude, break rules, harass other members, or even spam your board. This is why YaBB gives you the ability to block these troublemakers from disturbing your board. To begin banning a member, access your Admin Center and find "Member Controls" as described above. Find the link titled "Ban Members" and click on it. This new page will give you three methods for banning a member: by IP address, email and username.

IP Address
Banning by IP address will prevent anyone from accessing your board if their IP address is listed here. While effective, this could prevent a legitimate user from logging on. It may also fail if the user is behind a proxy or has a dynamic IP. To enter a specific IP address, enter all four octets of the users IP address (example: 192.168.255.8). You may also use wildcards to block a range of IP addresses by only entering in the first few octets of the address (example: 192.168. ). Enter only 1 IP address per line.

Email Address
The second method allows you to prevent anyone using a specific email address (example: bad@user.com) from registering or logging in. Enter only 1 email address per line.

Username
Finally, the simplest way to ban a user is by their username. Enter only 1 username per line.


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Member Groups
Member Groups give you the ability to assign a group or classification to a member. These groups can then be used to grant special privileges and/or access to your forum or simply be used for the fun of it. If you would like to create a group, enter your Admin Center and find the section titled "Member Controls" as described above then click on the link "Member Groups".

This new page will then show you the three group types. The first are system/static groups. These can be renamed by clicking on the "edit" button for each entry, however, because of their importance, they cannot be removed. The second are "Post Independent Member Groups" and are assigned to a member by an Administrator or Global Moderator as they are not tied to a user's post count. The third and final group, however, is based on how many posts a user has. YaBB will automatically assign these when a user reaches the listed number of posts.

To create a new Member Group, click on the link titled "Add Group" next to either "Post Independent" or "Post Dependent" Member Groups. This will bring up a new page with a form to add new groups.

Name: This is the Member Group name that will be shown to everyone.
# of Stars: How many stars should this group have?
Star Type: Choose a default star type from the drop down box, or enter the path to a different one.
Color: This gives the displayed name of a group member a special color treatment. Leave blank for no color, or choose a color by color name or by hex value (valid range is 000000 (6 zeros) to FFFFFF).
Post Independent Group: Check if you want this group to not be assigned based on post count.
Public? Check this box if you want this group name to be displayed to all members.
Post Dependent Group Check if you want this group to be assigned based on post count, and enter minimum number of posts required to be in this group.


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Security
Security Intro
YaBB is very secure against all types of attackers. Your forum is safe against attack due to the many built-in features of YaBB, some of which are described below.
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Sessions
Sessions are a YaBB feature designed to protect administrative functions. If sessions are enabled in the Admin Center, Administrators and Global Moderators will be required to revalidate their session when their computer changes IP addresses.

To revalidate your session, simply click "Update Session" on the YaBB menu at the top of the forums. If this link isn't present, then your session doesn't need to be updated.

By default, it asks you for your password to revalidate. That can be changed in your profile, under the "Edit Profile" area, near the bottom of the items.

To check if sessions are enabled, go into the Admin Center/Security Center/Security Settings. Under the "General" tab you will see "Activate Session ID's." Sessions are enabled If the checkbox to the right of "Activate Session ID's" is checked.


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Stealth Mode
Stealth Mode is a YaBB feature designed to allow Administrators and Global Moderators the ability to discretely monitor the forum's activity without being "seen". When this option is selected, Administrators and Global Moderators "Online" status is concealed from all other member groups and guests.

This option is enabled by checking the box in the "Staff" tab found in the Admin Center/Forum Configuration/Forum Settings.


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Encrypt User IDs
This feature is designed to enhance security by allowing Administrators the option to conceal the user's log in name in the link to their profile. This is the link that appears wherever the mouse cursor is placed over a user's displayed name.
  • Option disabled: When this option is disabled, the link will end with "username=(user's login name)"
  • Option enabled: When this option is enable, the link will end with "username=(encrypted number)"

This option is enabled by default, and may be disabled by unchecking the "Encrypt User ID's" box in the "General" tab found in the Admin Center/Security Center/Security Settings.


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Activate Referral Security Checking
This feature is designed to enhance security by allowing Administrators the option to select what actions are allowed in a url outside the forum's domainname. When enabled, this allows the Administrator to select allowed actions individually in the list found in the Admin Center/Security Center/Referrer Security section.

This option is enabled by checking the "Activate Referral Security Checking" box in the "General" tab found in the Admin Center/Security Center/Security Settings.


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Show IP in Board Index
This feature allows Administrators the option to view an online guest's or user's IP number at the bottom right of each post. This option may be selected for Administrators, Global Moderators, or both.

This option is enabled by checking the appropriate box(es) in the "General" tab found in the Admin Center/Security Center/Security Settings.


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Spam Protect - Enter Percent
This feature is designed to limit spam by setting a limit on how many other members a user may send Personal Messages to at one time. The number you enter represents the maximum percent of members a user may send PMs to at one time.

This option is enabled by entering a desired percent in the appropriate box found in the "Private Messages" tab found in the Admin Center/Forum Configuration/Forum Settings section.


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Miscellaneous Things
General Observations
In the making of YaBB 2.2, we have done an overhaul to the admin panel's various sections.
As the number of functions have grown larger, we have re-grouped some of them a bit into tabs and some functions may have changed places.
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New Stuff
There are some completely new features in YaBB which naturally need some adjusting on admin level. These additions are as follows:
  • RSS
    Anyone can now use RSS (Really Simple Syndication, see this article in Wikipedia) to pull the latest headlines from your forum into an external document or to a browser.
  • Permalinks
    To make forum URIs look a bit more 'normal' you can set your forum to use permalinks.
    Be carefull when applying the settings, even smallest mistakes may make your forum unavailable!
  • Separate Search Engines from ordinary users
    In order to get a bit more accurate picture of your forum visitors, you can separate search engines spiders from ordinary guests.
  • Email Templating
    When you wish to edit the 'system emails' more fitting to your needs, you don't need to fight with the source code anymore, just use the 'Email Messages' templating tool.
  • Antispam tools
    Since the spam is here to stay, we need stronger tools against it and now we have one.
    Set your preferred spam rules to trigger a warning (and eventually a ban) based on unwanted post content, specify certain circumstances of the posting process and keep viagra sellers away.
  • Captcha
    To make it a bit harder for malicious bots entering your forum, use the captcha (visual confirmation, see this article in Wikipedia, but be carefull, it is possible that some human users find it hard to use.
  • Broadcast messages
    Communicate with your forum staff with Broadcast Messages and send messages on group level (moderators, moderator groups, global moderators and admins).

Then there are some smaller additions in the forum settings and in 'Referer security' which won't be further explained here but may appear as useful for you to go through.


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