I sometimes take a lot of grief for still using phpBB2. To be honest, most of my boards are quite far from a “vanilla” board, so it can hardly be said that I use phpBB2. I’ve been saying for a while that I didn’t see a need to upgrade since I had all of the features that I thought that I needed.
Then the other day something occurred to me… what if I didn’t? What if I really did need to upgrade to phpBB3 because the number (or usefullness) of features that I am missing is more than the number of features that I have? How closely had I recreated phpBB3 on my phpBB2 core using my own MODs? I thought it was an interesting concept, so I decided I should see how I could compare the two.
Before I get flamed too badly, I certainly realize that there are many more improvements in the code behind the scenes as far as tuning and optimization. I’ve made many similar changes myself. For example, as soon as I saw someone post the function name “request_var” in an IRC conversation one day I knew immediately what it was for, and what the advantages were. So I wrote my own version, and have been using it ever since. It’s not used throughout the entire code base (yet) but I do have it. I have tuned queries by denormalizing where appropriate, splitting some, combining others, and caching whenever I could. And I have added features that aren’t even in phpBB2 or phpBB3, at least not yet. It seems that topic prefixes (a subject I posted about implementing a while ago) are on the “to do” list for 3.2, and I already have them.
So the goal for this series of posts will be to sit back and try to take an objective look at the feature comparison list posted at phpbb.com and determine the following:
- Do I have that feature already as a MOD?
- If so, does it meet or exceed what is provided by phpBB3?
- If not, do I have a compelling need for this feature, enough that I would either consider writing it as a MOD or upgrading?
I plan to go through the feature chart section by section, and at the end of each section I will assign a point value of +1, 0, or -1 based on where I think I am. By the end of the analysis I expect to have a much better idea of where I stand with my own code, or just how important the things are that I am missing. There are 21 categories in all, including:
- Basic Features
- Data Management
- Profiles / Memberlist
- Search System
- User Control Panel (UCP)
- Private Messages
- Moderator Control Panel (MCP)
- Administrator Control Panel (ACP)
I think it will be interesting. Maybe it will only be interesting to me, but I’m going to post it anyway.