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Old 03-19-2012, 05:59 PM   #1
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Forum Software Upgrade

We are currently working on the import script to convert our current forum software over to a popular platform called vBulletin. *The import will allow us to have a foundation for which we can add many new features. *Shortly after the conversion we should have our new iPhone, iPad and Android apps which will offer a very streamlined way of accessing the forums.

There are a couple of things that everyone should prepare for in this conversion.

1) Private Messages will NOT be Imported - Due to privacy issues the current host will not export the private messages. *That means you will need to read and archive any private messages you want to save ASAP. *They do this because no one is allowed to see the private messages (Admins and Mods included).

2) Everyone will require a password reset - The current host will not provide the old passwords so everyone will have to reset their password after the conversion. *Please make sure your email address on file is up-to-date so the reset email will get to you. *We will also have the help desk to assist members via email as needed to make sure everyone gets back in.

We will post updates ASAP as our import testing continues.
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Old 03-20-2012, 01:04 PM   #2
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
Andy R wrote:
We are currently working on the import script to convert our current forum software over to a popular platform called vBulletin. *The import will allow us to have a foundation for which we can add many new features. *Shortly after the conversion we should have our new iPhone, iPad and Android apps which will offer a very streamlined way of accessing the forums.

There are a couple of things that everyone should prepare for in this conversion.

1) Private Messages will NOT be Imported - Due to privacy issues the current host will not export the private messages. *That means you will need to read and archive any private messages you want to save ASAP. *They do this because no one is allowed to see the private messages (Admins and Mods included).

2) Everyone will require a password reset - The current host will not provide the old passwords so everyone will have to reset their password after the conversion. *Please make sure your email address on file is up-to-date so the reset email will get to you. *We will also have the help desk to assist members via email as needed to make sure everyone gets back in.

We will post updates ASAP as our import testing continues.
Andy R - Being a business person*I wish you best in your new developments for this Forum.* Hope they please enough constituents.* Thanks for keeping us abreast.* Cheers! Art*
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Old 03-20-2012, 01:51 PM   #3
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Greetings,
Mr. Andy R. Thanks as well for the update but a question from this computer Luddite. Password reset? Means resubmitting the current password or picking an entirely NEW password? Heck, took me 6 months to remember my current one. Hmmmm....irrepressible????
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Old 03-20-2012, 10:15 PM   #4
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Good luck.* These things are what we call a PITA.* I wish I could help, but unfortunately you don't pay me :-)
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:40 AM   #5
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
RT Firefly wrote:
Greetings,
Mr. Andy R. Thanks as well for the update but a question from this computer Luddite. Password reset? Means resubmitting the current password or picking an entirely NEW password? Heck, took me 6 months to remember my current one. Hmmmm....irrepressible????
*I think you can use the same one but you will have to reset it.
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Old 03-21-2012, 11:16 AM   #6
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
Andy R wrote:
1) Private Messages will NOT be Imported - Due to privacy issues the current host will not export the private messages. *That means you will need to read and archive any private messages you want to save ASAP. *They do this because no one is allowed to see the private messages (Admins and Mods included).

*
*Is there a way of archiving private messages within Trawler Forum?
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Old 03-21-2012, 12:39 PM   #7
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
RT Firefly wrote:Password reset? Means resubmitting the current password or picking an entirely NEW password?*
*You can use the same password you currently have. *Here's how the password reset will work:

1) After the software conversion we will email ALL members with a link in the email. *You follow that link and set your password.

2) If someone does not see the email (sometimes there are issues with spam folders), when they try to login they will see a big bold message that tells about the software conversion and has a link to the password reset page.

3) There will be a Contact Us link on the bottom of every single page. *If someone is having issues they can simply click that link, fill in the form and we will help them via email.

4) We will also have support [at] trawlerforum.com setup so if someone needs support they can simply email us. *We are here to help.

We understand that having to re-setup your password is an inconvenience it's the only way we can move from the current software to any other software. *We feel the benefits of being on a self hosted and more robus software will be worth it in the long run. *If anyone has issues during the transition, we will be here to help.

@Delia Rosa - I don't see any export for the current PM system. *The new software will have that feature but that does no one any good with their current PMs. *I think printing them out (to PDF if possible) might be the best way.
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:56 AM   #8
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

A reminder,

Passagemaker board went DEAD after the "upgrades".
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:53 AM   #9
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

LOL, don't worry, this community won't have the same fate of the Passagemaker forums.

I wanted to post an update on the upgrade. We are hoping to upgrade the site next week (March 26-30th). We don't know exactly which day but it could be as soon as Monday. Once all the pieces are in place we will close down the current site so no new posts can be made while the data export is taking place. The export takes a while but once done we will transfer the content over to our server and then start the import. The total downtime could be as much as a whole day but we will make every effort to get the site open again as fast as possible. We will probably open the site up so people can get to posting again even though we will have lots of tweaks to make. So please be patient as we will be "tuning" things considerably over the days to come after the import.

The iPhone and Android apps are being developed and will be available for FREE in a few weeks.
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:15 AM   #10
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
FF wrote:

A reminder,

Passagemaker board went DEAD after the "upgrades".
*That was MY first thought too.* With each and every "upgrade" things got worse and worse until they killed it. Sadly the owners paid little attention to the issues that came up, (I was told by insiders that budget cuts were the main issue)* I have high hopes that won't happen here.* Best of luck with your new platform.......Arctic Traveller

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Old 03-24-2012, 12:57 PM   #11
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

I don't have a full understanding of the Passagemaker issues but I'd like to learn more so we won't repeat them. From what I have heard so far, they had a forum that had some activity but they started to mess with the platform and it became less and less user friendly. Does that about sum it up or were their other issues that also led the members to leave?
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Old 03-24-2012, 04:31 PM   #12
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

And I believe this community is strong enough and dedicated enough to be even stronger after this.
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:05 PM   #13
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

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GonzoF1 wrote:
And I believe this community is strong enough and dedicated enough to be even stronger after this.
*You guys built a wonderful forum full of great content and Andy seems genuinely interested in making it grow and prosper. Some birth pains are to be expected along the way but I have confidence in the leaders in place to do a fine job.
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Old 03-24-2012, 05:12 PM   #14
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Forum Software Upgrade

Greetings,
Mr. Andy R. I was a participating member of PMM's chat deck for a number of years during which time I experienced the evolution to extinction of both the magazine and the forum. The magazines' articles dealt initially with the types of boats, re-fits, equipment, problems and solutions etc. that the members here experience, ask about and report on but after Bill P. sold the mag' to Dominion Enterprises the article emphasis shifted to Advertiser's base "information". No longer could one read about the couple who bought a 45' vessel and re-furbished it into a cruising vessel, ALL of the articles seemed to be about multi-mega dollar new vessels outfitted with the latest and greatest gadgets, gizmos and electronics.
Their forum, to the best of my recollection, was "improved" several times with by far the GREATEST loss being the archives. Years of Q&A's gone. Data base lost. I don't specifically recall any major insults/arguments/dust-ups but that's just me.

** So whatever you do DON'T lose the TF archives!


-- Edited by RT Firefly on Saturday 24th of March 2012 05:13:46 PM
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Old 03-24-2012, 06:38 PM   #15
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

RTF, since TF isn't tied to a magazine, I hope we'll have a much better result.
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Old 03-24-2012, 07:20 PM   #16
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Forum Software Upgrade

Greetings,
I agree Mr. GonzoF1 no magazine but Mr. Andy R was looking for background as to the demise of THAT forum. I just offered my take on it. And to add, THAT forum had more than "some" activity. For a time, in the early days, it was a hive of activity with dozens of posts daily with a broad data base which was lost in subsequent "improvements".
A correction to my previous post...There was the forum section but the "chat deck" was a separate feature which allowed real time exchange between members. I recall one evening there was a conversation going on with some 7 or 8 of us all flapping our gums-good fun. I made several VERY good friends on the chat deck, all of which I am still in touch with.
I hope TF can continue to be a source of valuable information for the likes of us and may I reiterate, I feel there really IS a place for OTDE.


-- Edited by RT Firefly on Saturday 24th of March 2012 07:20:46 PM
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:10 PM   #17
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

RTF,

Thanks for the info. It's a shame to hear about forums which are "upgraded" and the owners just ditch all the old content. I agree that's it's of the utmost importance to keep all the old content as it's the amazing knowledge-base that the members have created together. Not to toot our own horn but the current forum provider only provides a crude export of the data and there is no import tool from our current platform to vBulletin. Jeff (our programmer) has spent many hours building a custom import script so we won't loose any of the posts or discussions.

I also understand that it's not really an upgrade if we loose features or make things harder to accomplish. The new software will offer a lot of new features and should be just as easy to use. It's a big like getting a new car where you have all the same buttons around the steering wheel and dash but sometimes they are in a slightly different location. It will take a bit of time to get used to but I am sure everyone will get settled quite quickly.

OTDE will be back after the upgrade. We will have two small changes to the way it's setup.
1) We will have an Off Topic forum for the general off topic discussions.
2) A special opt-in section for Hot Topics (such as politics, guns, religion, etc).
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Old 03-24-2012, 08:35 PM   #18
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
RT Firefly wrote:
I experienced the evolution to extinction of both the magazine and the forum. The magazines' articles dealt initially with the types of boats, re-fits, equipment, problems and solutions etc. that the members here experience No longer could one read about the couple who bought a 45' vessel and re-furbished it into a cruising vessel, ALL of the articles seemed to be about multi-mega dollar new vessels outfitted with the latest and greatest gadgets, gizmos and electronics.*

__________________________________________________ _

*

I have cut and chopped RTs post somewhat but ite reflects what are my sentiments as well.

*
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Old 03-24-2012, 09:17 PM   #19
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
Andy R wrote:

OTDE will be back after the upgrade. We will have two small changes to the way it's setup.
1) We will have an Off Topic forum for the general off topic discussions.
2) A special opt-in section for Hot Topics (such as politics, guns, religion, etc).
*Wondering if the subject of anchors needs to be under OTDE(2)? *...* Nah, anchors only needs to be tightly monitored.
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Old 03-25-2012, 12:48 AM   #20
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RE: Forum Software Upgrade

Quote:
Andy R wrote:
I don't have a full understanding of the Passagemaker issues but I'd like to learn more so we won't repeat them. From what I have heard so far, they had a forum that had some activity but they started to mess with the platform and it became less and less user friendly. Does that about sum it up or were their other issues that also led the members to leave?
*That pretty much sums it up, except that as RTF wrote, it was a real hive of activity in the early days. Each "improvement" reduced technical performance to the point where eventually there just wasn't any. There was a minimum to no moderation as I recall, and some heated discussions but things were generally civilized.

And, there was no OTDE.
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