PhpBB is a free, open source software for server-side deployment of an Internet forum in the style of a bulletin board that is based on the PHP scripting language and many databases such as MySQL and PostgreSQL support. It is under the GNU General Public License.

In addition to the phpBB database support provides additional functions:

  • Use of templates (templates ) to allow you to conveniently customize the look of the page.
  • Width internationalization with translations into 47 languages ​​.
  • 4.1 Revision history
  • 4.2 Overview of functions
  • 4.3 administration area with a new authorization system


The development of phpBB was started by James Atkinson as a simple, held in the style of Ultimate Bulletin Board forum for his own website on June 17, 2000. Nathan Codding and John Abela joined the team after phpBB has been moved to a CVS repository at SourceForge, and began work on version 1.0.0. A functional pre-release version was completed on 1 July 2000.

PhpBB 1.0.0 was released on 16 December 2000 with many improvements to the code in the following two major versions ( phpBB 1.2.0 was released on February 16 and 1.4.0 on 25 April 2001 ). The last release in the 1.x line was phpBB 1.4.4, released on 6 November 2001. Meanwhile, Bart van Bragt, Paul S. Owen, Jonathan Haase and Frank Feingold had joined the development team.

The development of phpBB 2.0.x was started on 17 February 2001. It was developed from scratch, as the ambitions of the developer exceeded the capabilities of the original code. Doug Kelly joined the group development in it. After a year of development and testing, phpBB 2.0.0 was the " Super Furry " edition (English " super- furry " ), released on 4 April 2002. Last phpBB joined by frequent bug fixes in appearance. The last official release in the 2.0.x line was 2.0.23. New Releases in the 2.0.x line are now limited to the removal of bugs and security vulnerabilities. On 1 January 2009, the official support for phpBB2 has been set.

The development version of phpBB 3.0 has the code name "Olympus ". Initially, they should bear the version number 2.2, due to massive changes to the core of the software but it was changed to 3.0. On 17 June 2006, the first beta version 3.0 beta 1 was released on August 12, 2006 saw phpBB 3.0 Beta 2 released on January 27, 2007 Beta 5 has been superseded by the RC 1 20 May 2007, on 24 June was followed by the RC 2, RC 3 on July 8 and July 28, the RC 4, who brought again many changes. On 13 December 2007 the final version was released.

The development of phpBB 3.0 has been marked by several changes in the development team. After Paul S. Owen has left unexpectedly in September 2005, the team, Meik Sivertsen took over the management of the development team. Since then, the development team was again enlarged by David M., Nils Adermann, Graham Eames and Ludovic Arnaud joined the team.

On 15 January 2010 Meik Sivertsen came back after 4 years as head of the development team. The line was then taken over by Nils Adermann.

PhpBB 1

PhpBB 1.0 was the first version of phpBB line. This has contributed to the widespread use and popularity of today's phpBB. The first version was 1.0.0 and was released on 16 December 2000. This was followed by phpBB 1.2.x 1.4.x as well, then the major version number has been increased since the changes to the code of phpBB 1.4 were too extensive. The last version was 1.4.4 phpBB (published on November 6, 2001).

PhpBB one could only work with a MySQL database. Because it was written for older versions of PHP, this version is now only limited with current software to run. From the use of these versions are generally discouraged, especially since they are no longer officially supported, have known security vulnerabilities and potentially dangerous features of PHP recourse ( register_globals ).

PhpBB 2

The development of phpBB 2.0 began on 17 February 2001 and lasted almost 14 months. The final version of phpBB 2.0 was released on 4 April 2002.

PhpBB 2 is a common forum system. The code is largely kept simple; the fact that it is free software, and the large number of templates and modifications make it flexible. Since phpBB supports a variety of databases, it can be run on many servers.

The installation is simple in order to allow even beginners to set up a forum in a few minutes. The same applies to the administration area and the moderator control.

On 16 April 2008 it was announced that as of 1 January 2009, the Support for phpBB 2 should be set to 1 February 2009, there was yet, if necessary, give security patches.

Overview of functions

At the time of publication phpBB 2 was an advanced forum system. Meanwhile, however, lacks some features that are required of Board Administrators and users often. The main functions of phpBB 2 are:

  • Unlimited Forums and Categories
  • Group and user -based permission management
  • Private message system
  • Comprehensive administrators area

As a central element lacking effective functions for fighting spam.


The free license of phpBB allows anyone to edit and redistribute the code itself. This has the consequence that some Forks exist. These consist in part from the phpBB core and some MODs, some of the code has also changed significantly. Among the most famous German Forks count phpBB Plus, that is no longer being actively developed, and Orion Forum CBACK, which is now no longer also developed on the basis of phpBB2.

PhpBB 3

PhpBB 3 (code name "Olympus " ) is the successor of phpBB 2 and was released on December 13, 2007. Olympus brings many changes in the code as well as many features are released, which were integrated at the request of the user community.

The development started shortly after the release of phpBB 2 and has been driven long term. Recently, the major version number has been increased to make it clear that since the publication of the previous version greater advancements have been incorporated.

Revision history

On 18 June 2006, the Beta 1 was released by phpBB 3. The last previous version (RC 8) was published on 1 December 2007. On December 9, 2007, the developer announced - on the occasion of the 7th anniversary of phpBB 1.0 - the release of phpBB 3.0 Gold for December 13, 2007, 17:00 GMT clock at.

Overview of functions

PhpBB 3 includes all the features of phpBB 2 as well as some additional features:

  • A new default theme
  • Forums are no longer tied to categories and can be nested to any depth
  • A new administration area with better authorization system
  • A new update system should take into account code changes
  • Warning system
  • Advanced settings for User Groups
  • Advanced User CP (eg notifications via XMPP )
  • Attachments in posts and private messages
  • Full UTF8 support.

Administration area with new permission system

Compared with the functionality of phpBB 2 of the administration area with all its options and settings was significantly more extensive. In particular, the authorization system has been greatly expanded in phpBB 3, but also simplified. So the permissions are now in the three stages " Yes", " No" and "Never" mode: " No" describes that the corresponding right is not assigned to the user at this point, although it may be elsewhere, however. A "yes" gives the user the appropriate rights, a set elsewhere "No" does not change anything. Only through a "Never", a right to the user extracted in principle, even if it is given to him in another place. Furthermore, there are predefined roles to users, moderators and administrators which make it unnecessary to set all options individually.

Styles and modifications

The fact that anyone can view and edit the source code of phpBB, favors the creation of modifications ( " mods " ) for phpBB. These bring new features or changes to existing functions and can be built for the most part within a few minutes. There are several databases modification for phpBB. The official database has more than 400 modifications in October 2011.

The template system of phpBB allows you to change the appearance of the board without changing the PHP code. In addition, your own dynamic content can be inserted into the view through a template with small changes to the PHP code. Same as for modifications, there are several style databases; the official database has more than 500 styles in October 2011.