Information for Codoforum is not really on hand or at least not any that I could find, based on what I can see the process started before May 2014 and was created as a product for clients of codoforums commercial entity codologic, unsure but all in all history-wise pretty poorly documented.
Given the number of installers I have already gone over so far I have now reached the point where it's difficult to impress or disappoint, many installers have the same info and just a flashy look with some having a little more information or configurable out the box options than others.
The Codoforum installer did manage to disappoint not because it's ugly or difficult but it does the annoying please delete/rename install folder, rather than tickbox delete and perhaps worse than this would be all passwords are shown in plaintext - this was just weird to see and despite probably not being a security issue just made me a little uncomfortable.
So after a meh installer, I was happy to see that the admin dashboard is similar in design to WordPress, not a ripoff just similar. A fixed panel of options down the left with suboptions within and a nice dashboard in the middle so as soon as you login BAM info.
The info does consist of 4 key items of the site, total posts, 2 user registrations, new topics and total views right at the top .. then a massive iframe for the latest news that didn't work on my local setup.
So into global settings we go and .. unorganised mess, no categorisation or topic headers just options which in fairness are presented cleanly and the left sidebar can be collapsed if you need more room for overview.
This felt a little weird but it's not the first forum to dump some of the one-off options into a single column layout so, onto spam settings, I wanted to find a section where some form of consistency would be applied but it was more confusing when I headed into Spam Control -> Spam Detector and found a SINGLE button (on/off) for the spam filter.
No explanation of what it does, no configurable options just a switch - I did try the documentation - nothing helpful or obvious here... I thought it cannot get much weirder than that? Wrong, we have a section called "Mail Settings" this has two subsections, configuration and templates... then we find "Mass Mail" under "system" and are left questioning why oh why this is not under Mail Settings.
I actually did like the gamification systems and was actually discussing with a workmate the concept of forum elevation in an automated manner via reputation and codoforum has this built right in and while it's simple it's very functional and makes a lot of sense but it does fail in the admin UX .. things are just not clean or as polished as they should be.
Mods / Plugins / Styles
8 Plugins do ship with codoforum 2 of which are enabled out of the box for single sign-on as well as social login services, beyond that a few sprinkled plugins do exist on the site and on GitHub but it's not a massive array of plugins.
This isn't overall a negative point as you may be happy with codoforum as it is and if you are fantastic but if it's lacking that one missing feature you may want to get your head into the docs and start developing your own plugin.
Ships with 3 themes and that's about it.
The password plaintext thing was really quite a surprise to see, tho in fairness to codoforum it's only on my radar because of the original post I'm basing my list on covers this forum.. otherwise, it would not be on the list probably at all... it's a near forum for a small community of friends but I even encountered bugs on the author's website with paging.
It's not like anyone can fork the product either and fix things up as it's shipped under a non-distribution license.
- lightweight, easy on the eyes
- topics are upfront and first, a somewhat Facebook wall type of logic.
- uses markdown out the box and the live preview system is a smart choice for those unfamiliar with markdown
- gamification option in the core is quite well done
- auto close topic on a date is neat, I like this.
- plaintext passwords on the installer
- doesn't auto nuke install folder and doesn't remind you to should you forget, it does however lock the file so it seems somewhat safe.
- configuration is rough and needs cleaning up
- dashboard is a good idea, but wasted space on project news.
This post is part of our "best forums 2022" series, you can see the hub post here and you can also use that post for suggestions on other forums we should look into.
Otherwise, let us know what you think of our review of this forum in a response below, did we make a mistake? has it evolved in some massive way so needs a re-review?