User testing of new TDIClub Forum software

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VW Derf

Administrator
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Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Hi Everyone,

It is long overdue, but we are finally at the last stage before moving the TDIClub forums over to a new software. This will deal with a large number of unresolved issues people have noticed with the forums over the past few years such as modern browser support, mobile support, https support, etc. After evaluating a number of different forum software systems and migrating the TDIClub forums to these formats I ended up selecting Xenforo as the next forum software. While it isn’t a direct migration of everything, there is a way to ensure that very little data is lost and most of the features you have grown accustomed to are still working. As we move forward after the migration a few additional feature will also become available. Please note that I plan to drop the Tapatalk integration as the new system is much more mobile browser friendly.

That said before I do the final migration I wanted to get some feedback from the membership on the new system and determine if there are any major issues before the final migration happens. To do that I’ve opened up the test site with the latest data migration (August 3, 2020). While I won’t be able to address every item you may find, please note the issues in this thread: http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?p=5608673
I’ll address any show stoppers before the migration and clean up the other items after the migration that I currently have planned for the evening of Friday August 21, 2020. I expect the forums to be back up and running later in the afternoon or evening of August 22nd.

Anyways the test site is located at https://xenforo.tdiclub.com and to ensure no confusion with the main forums and ensure search engines don’t index this, you’ll be prompted for a username and password first. Use “tditester” as the username and “tdiclub” as the password.

Here are some comments:

1) Most of the data has been migrated into the new system. This includes:
a. Posts
b. Media (jpg, png, gif and other images and video files) from photopost (the images section of the current forums) and it can be modified, deleted.
c. User accounts
d. PMs
2) The following was not migrated:
a. Non image media (ie PDF, xls, doc, etc) from photopost.
i. So that this data is not lost, the old set of files will still be accessible to download, however it will no longer allow for modifications, deletions, etc
ii. To deal with fact the new media gallery does not permit PDF, XLS, and other not image files, there is a ‘resources’ centre where these items can be uploaded. I added a PDF of a MkIV timing belt change as a display. Hopefully this work around won’t be too cumbersome.​
b. Some other minor items​
3) The look and feel is pretty much the XenForo default. For now I just made minor changes as I felt the migration was most important and the visual can be dealt with later
4) Forum redirections. This was most important.
a. Due to how the old photopost system worked, I was not able to setup a redirection of the old images that were directly linked. This is another reason the old image files will be directly accessible using the old URLS.
b. All the major links, images, etc should now be migrated. This is where I require assistance in finding problems. For almost any page you should be able to just replace forums.tdiclub.com with xenforo.tdiclub.com or pics.tdiclub.com with pics-xenforo.tdiclubcom in the URL and you should see the same content in the new software. Please note this is only for posts prior to August 3, 2020. For example:
5) A few features worth noting:
a. The interface is modern. It is mobile enhanced. Yes, finally it is up to modern standards.
b. When posting you can access the media gallery directly.
c. No more login issues between the picture server and the forums.
d. More items than I can mention right now… I’ll let you discover them. ��​

Again, please have a look and note any issues you find such as permission issues, limits on PMs, uploading files or other things. The link for specific problems you find is here: http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?p=5608673

Thanks in advance for your feedback and testing.
 
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TDIMeister

Phd of TDIClub Enthusiast, Moderator at Large
Joined
May 1, 1999
Location
Canada
TDI
TDI
2) The following was not migrated:
a. Non image media (ie PDF, xls, doc, etc) from photopost.
i. So that this data is not lost, the old set of files will still be accessible to download, however it will no longer allow for modifications, deletions, etc
Hi Fred,

Is there a way (already in place or a script that can be written up) to have all of a user's content in photopost packaged up and downloaded? I think this will be a very helpful migration tool. Speaking only for myself, I know that some of the non-image files (e.g. pdf, xls) I've uploaded over 20 years are exclusively here and nowhere else. It would be great simply to be able to download everything at once (like one can with PMs as a txt file) instead of individually going through a multitude of entries individually.

Thank you again so much for all you've done and continue to do for this awesome community - now halfway through its second decade; may it continue for at least another 2 decades. :)
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
2) The following was not migrated:
a. Non image media (ie PDF, xls, doc, etc) from photopost.
i. So that this data is not lost, the old set of files will still be accessible to download, however it will no longer allow for modifications, deletions, etc

Hi Fred,
Is there a way (already in place or a script that can be written up) to have all of a user's content in photopost packaged up and downloaded? I think this will be a very helpful migration tool. Speaking only for myself, I know that some of the non-image files (e.g. pdf, xls) I've uploaded over 20 years are exclusively here and nowhere else. It would be great simply to be able to download everything at once (like one can with PMs as a txt file) instead of individually going through a multitude of entries individually.
Thank you again so much for all you've done and continue to do for this awesome community - now halfway through its second decade; may it continue for at least another 2 decades. :)

Hi TDIMeister,

I might be able to do something after we migrate, but it would at least require manual work. Also file sizes are large as we have about 75GB of images on the system right now. Let me get back to you on this topic.

That said I want to stress that nothing is lost. All the items in the picture section will be accessible via the old URLs. The new system will have everything except about 193 XLS files, 83 DOC files and 1604 PDF files. Those last set of files will no longer be associated with a user who uploaded them unless the files are manually migrated to the new 'resource' system. I'm planning after the migration to manually move the most accessed items into the resource section so that they are easier to find. Some examples are timing belt change instructions, injectors, etc.

Perhaps the process for the two items can be partially scripted at the same time.​
 

Nero Morg

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2017
Location
OR
TDI
2003 Jetta wagon, 2001 Jetta TDI, 2014 Passat TDI
I'll poke around, so far it is pretty slick.

Right off the bat something I noticed is on mobile, there's no "go to last page" straight from the forum index. Have to open the thread then click last page.
 

cevans

TDIClub Enthusiast, TDI Parts Ninja Vendor , w/Bus
Joined
Sep 24, 2002
Location
Hingham, MA
TDI
2015 Jetta TDI 6spd // 2015 Bettle Conv. 6-Speed
Wonderful!!

Nice work Fred! Please let me know if I can assist!
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Nice work Fred! Please let me know if I can assist!
Thanks cevens. Please have a look around on the test system and see what data I missed migrating or if there are things not working. If someone breaks it or finds missed items, I would prefer to know now and not after migration. ;)
 

Farmboy

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 29, 1999
Location
Bloomington (Minneapolis), MN, USA
TDI
'15 Golf SE TDI 6spd 60k miles; '00 A4 NB 5spd 207k; '96 B4 Passat Sedan 220k
Didn't break anything on first contact, didn't find any reportable functional issue/s, will keep trying as I am able.

I'm probably overdue to offer to pick up some slack if there are any tasks that it would be helpful for you to assign. Help with migration, rollout, as a mod, etc.
 

[486]

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Mar 1, 2014
Location
MN
TDI
02 golf ALH
aww man
this is literally the last forum I'm still on
everyone else has gotten rid of simple efficient easy to navigate vB3 for some new phone garbage with a UI that destroys my wrist from all the scrolling

Nice knowing you all. :c
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis (where it's safe)
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Looks fine to me, but under my avatar it now says "Certified Volkswagen Nut Vendor".... Which sounds.... well.... :p

New thing to learn, many of us have done it before, we'll do it again!
 

TDIGAZ

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2008
Location
Eastern Ontario, Canada
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS Grey 5 spd; 2003 Jetta GLS Silver 5 spd (R.I.P.-Collision)
The UI looks very similar, so navigation should be a quick learn.
A couple of comments though; in a post, the user's profile picture is contained in a circle, which cuts off most of the pic. Also, is the user's signature feature gone for good?
Big THANKS for continuing this great site, and thank you for not cluttering the site with annoying ads like many other VW sites have done.
 

Vince Waldon

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Apr 25, 2009
Location
Edmonton AB Canada
TDI
2001 ALH Jetta, 2005 BEW Wagon
\I] Please note that I plan to drop the Tapatalk integration as the new system is much more mobile browser friendly.[/I]
Missed this my first read through.

My comment would be: if it's easy enough to leave Tapatalk integration on I'd personally say leave it on; Tapatalk has a few advantages for people with multiple forums on the go and certainly makes popping in to see what's new very very quick on a cell phone.

That said, I also get that it may be a bunch of extra work to maintain... so if it needs to go it needs to go. I'll cry a little bit... but will quickly progress thru the various stages of grief to acceptance. :)
 

TDIGAZ

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2008
Location
Eastern Ontario, Canada
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS Grey 5 spd; 2003 Jetta GLS Silver 5 spd (R.I.P.-Collision)
I guess I jumped the gun by commenting too soon. I spent more time digging through the features and it looks like Username picture/avatar can be uploaded/edited and Signatures can enabled
 
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VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Missed this my first read through.
My comment would be: if it's easy enough to leave Tapatalk integration on I'd personally say leave it on; Tapatalk has a few advantages for people with multiple forums on the go and certainly makes popping in to see what's new very very quick on a cell phone.
That said, I also get that it may be a bunch of extra work to maintain... so if it needs to go it needs to go. I'll cry a little bit... but will quickly progress thru the various stages of grief to acceptance. :)
I don't think you missed it, as I added it shortly after my original post as I overlooked mention it. :(

Some of the reasons I'm thinking of dropping it are:
* The new forum software works well in a mobile environment
* TalkTalk changes the experience of using this forum
* Ads may be added to the browsing experience and we are add free website.
* I've read of some issues with the plug in for Xenforo. I'm sure this can be resolved.
* When attachments and images are uploaded, many stay on their servers. that could impact images at some future point in time.
* Probably most of all, I'm not a fan of their privacy policies and previous security issues.

That all said, I'm willing to revisit this idea if there is enough support and justification. For that and to ensure this issue is not missed, I started a thread and poll here: http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=509303.

Thanks for raising this so it isn't overlooked.
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
I guess I jumped the gun by commenting too soon. I spent more time digging through the features and it looks like Username picture/avatar can be uploaded/edited and Signatures can enabled
Were you logged in? I believe globally signatures are disabled unless you are logged in, but I may change that setting.
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
aww man
this is literally the last forum I'm still on
everyone else has gotten rid of simple efficient easy to navigate vB3 for some new phone garbage with a UI that destroys my wrist from all the scrolling

Nice knowing you all. :c
Sorry to hear that. I evaluated several forum software systems and did full migrations on Xenforo and one other forum software. One of the reasons I went with Xenforo was it's similarity to VBulletin which is probably due to the fact that some of the original vB3 developers ended up there after vBulletin was sold.

Unfortunately vB3 isn't really supported anymore and there was no choice but to move on. My hope is the learning curve isn't to steep and there are short cuts to deal with things like scrolling. :) Some phones browsers have desktop mode which may help.
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Nice work Fred! Please let me know if I can assist!
Thanks again for the offer. I was just thinking and some of the old forum FAQ and how to threads for using the forums probably need to be updated after the migration. For instance there will be no need to do the complicated upload to the picture server as it is more integrated. Post migration that is something that may need to be address and could help some with the learning curve.

Cevans, this isn't directed directly to you directly, but really anyone who wishes to help out. If you do wish to do something like this, just send me a heads up so we don't have two people creating the same instructions twice. :)
 
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andy2

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2004
Location
Bowmanville,Ontario,Canada
TDI
99.5 Jetta,94 Golf drag car 490bhp,Samurai buggy BHW 300bhp,97 Ram cummins
aww man
this is literally the last forum I'm still on
everyone else has gotten rid of simple efficient easy to navigate vB3 for some new phone garbage with a UI that destroys my wrist from all the scrolling

Nice knowing you all. :c



Does the forum below use the same vB3 ? or is it the "new phone garbage". Just curious,



http://www.competitiondiesel.com/forums/index.php?
 

[486]

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Mar 1, 2014
Location
MN
TDI
02 golf ALH
Does the forum below use the same vB3 ? or is it the "new phone garbage". Just curious,
http://www.competitiondiesel.com/forums/index.php?
I think they're vB4, with a custom theme that'd be easy enough to fix with the element hiding feature in any decent adblocker. Like on here I've got it blocking everything up top, so the page starts out with the directory bar (where it says "welcome, x you last visited...")

either way compd has always been basically dead for small engines
the 100hp my 7.3 IDI puts to the truck's wheels is fine with me
 

turbocharged798

Veteran Member
Joined
May 21, 2009
Location
Ellenville, NY
TDI
99.5 black ALH Jetta;09 Gasser Jetta
Spent a few mins with it and so its not bad at all. I normally hate any sort of new web design but its pretty much just a newer version of what we have.Mobile support will be a huge plus and will likely increase traffic. Only thing I suggest is maybe some more background contrast to make it easier on the eyes.
 

TDIGAZ

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2008
Location
Eastern Ontario, Canada
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS Grey 5 spd; 2003 Jetta GLS Silver 5 spd (R.I.P.-Collision)
Were you logged in? I believe globally signatures are disabled unless you are logged in, but I may change that setting.
OK that makes sense now. Initially I had only used the "tditester" access, but after I logged in with my username I could see signature details.
But my signature picture was missing, it was showing SIG/SIG where the pic would be, but I think I may have originally uploaded this from my computer and it is not on the tdiclub photos site.
Tried editting my avatar... Will they be limited to the round image shape?

Also, the second link to the list of reported problems thread is not correct in your OP
 
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VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Thanks for all the feedback. Things seem solid enough to proceed with tonight's migration. Related to that the test site will not be available shortly as I prepare for the migration.
 

turbobrick240

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 18, 2014
Location
maine
TDI
2011 vw golf tdi(gone to greener pastures), 2001 ford f250 powerstroke
Thanks for all of your efforts going into this Fred! We all appreciate it. I'm really glad the photos are making the migration too.
 

scooperhsd

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Location
Kansas City KS
TDI
NB, 2000, RED(5 Speed conversion) 2015 Golf SE
Is there a way that you can set the number of posts per page ? This was a quick scan and I didn't find one, but I may have missed it.
 

Nuje

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Location
Island near Vancouver
TDI
2015 Sportwagen; Golf GLS 2003; 2016 A3 e-tron
First off - congrats, Fred! Great update. Making this mobile-friendly is a huge step forward.

One request: Is there a way to allow users to set the number of posts per page? Default here is 20, and doesn't seem to be adjustable in PREFERENCES; I liked having 100/page in the old system so I wouldn't have to keep paging through in reading a long thread.

Also, not sure if this is due to first encountering the page from a Google result, but I came upon this situation;
When I first saw the new UI, I clicked on the link in the "Welcome to the new TDICLUB....read more in this thread" banner, and got the scary "not secure" warning, and when I said clicked "yes, allow anyway", I got (and continue to get) a 404 page.
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
First off - congrats, Fred! Great update. Making this mobile-friendly is a huge step forward.

One request: Is there a way to allow users to set the number of posts per page? Default here is 20, and doesn't seem to be adjustable in PREFERENCES; I liked having 100/page in the old system so I wouldn't have to keep paging through in reading a long thread.

Also, not sure if this is due to first encountering the page from a Google result, but I came upon this situation;
When I first saw the new UI, I clicked on the link in the "Welcome to the new TDICLUB....read more in this thread" banner, and got the scary "not secure" warning, and when I said clicked "yes, allow anyway", I got (and continue to get) a 404 page.
Can you send me the URL that you were referred to? PM is fine. I'm trying to fix all those pages that may not have gotten caught with the main set of fixes.

Let me see about number of posts per page.
 

VW Derf

Administrator
Joined
Jul 3, 1996
Location
Richmond, BC, Canada
TDI
2010 Blue Graphite Pearl Golf Variant
Nuje, I think I fixed that issue you noted. As for the number of posts per page, I think that may need to be something added on as it is not there out of the box. Please keep items like this coming.
 

Nero Morg

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 19, 2017
Location
OR
TDI
2003 Jetta wagon, 2001 Jetta TDI, 2014 Passat TDI
Not sure if it's because I'm using an ad blocker or not, but Nuje your sig says page not found

Also, found out viewing page as desktop on mobile, the button appears for going to the last page of a thread. Neat.
 
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