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  1. #1
    Non-Member Kelar's Avatar
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    Jul 2001
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    A lot of problems....

    After walking around a while with some problems, I decided to post them here in this thread, so that I may find some answers to them.

    First of all, you should know that I am thinking about creating my own Community online, let's say basically a SitePoint-Community-like-Community (okay, that's a new word ). So far so good, the idea is there.
    But the problem lies within the creation, development and maintanance of the website.
    Let me just list a few of the major problems I have:

    - My parents won't allow me to spend money on websites and stuff, so paid hosting, getting a copy of VBulletin when the Community starts rolling, and other things like that, are out of the question.
    - I had a solution for the hosting part, start my own webserver. Everything has gone well until now, only getting past my Netgear Gateway RT314 Router has given me some problems. Those will be dealt with in the near future, nothing I worry much about. But my parents also won't allow me to run a webserver 24/7. The risk of my pc starting to burn when no one is at home, the extreme use of bandwith and so on, are not things they are willing to take.
    - This leads me to my only solution on the hosting part, free hosting. Okay, since I want to use PHP and MySQL, my choice fell on Freedom 2 Surf, F2S. When trying to register, I found out in some dark past, I, or someone else in my family, had already created an account with F2S. Basically, the message was, I was using to many accounts . So I send a mail to the F2S-support team, of whom I haven't received any notification, a week has passed now.

    - Offering content for the website will be not a problem, managing will be a challenge. I like that, having a few challenges along the line, so I am looking forward to that. Since I am quite new to PHP and MySQL, I will have a lot to discover, about which I am quite enthousiastic. Developing a general layout for the site made me run into a slight problem. I don't seem to be able to come up with a professional design. Creating some neat, professional looking buttons and logo's is still something that won't work for me. Using Fireworks, I am still looking for a good online tutorial, which will teach me to create a professional looking design for a webpage.

    Maybe I want too much, but I would really like to hear your ideas on this problem. Mainly the site design part is bugging me, because while I am looking for a hosting solution, I can already be working on the site on my local-webserver. But without the design, I am nowhere, just about where I am now.

    I am stuck with a great idea, only it won't unfold , so if you have any comments, ideas, tips, or something in that direction, please, don't hesitate to post. I would be forever grateful, well, make that very grateful, forever is quite long, and one might never now .

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard Aes's Avatar
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    Okay, first of all, talk to you parents! The rule of thumb is: "you get what you pay for." And when you didn't pay anything, then you're not going to get much. There are some decent hosting companies that will host and give you PHP/MySQL access for $10.00 a month or so. And that is CHEAP compared to most.

    As for your design problems, just keep working with Fireworks. Tutorials can help you do certain things, but it really just takes practice to make excellent designs, not tutorials. The more you practice, the better your designs will be -- it's as simple as that.

    For the community part -- if you're going to have any members that post regularly, you really are going to need something better than a free host (which brings this back to the first part of my post). You may not be able to front the $85 or $160 dollar price tag for vBulliten, and in that case you should learn PHP and MySQL and make your own. I know it won't be nearly as good as vBulliten (seeing as they have several years behind them [plus I have thought about making my own commercial bulliten board -- and suffice it to say -- I don't think it would be able to compete with vBulliten; at least not for several years of development]). But you can make a nice, less feature rich board that will allow you to have an amazing community just by working at it.

    So, I think you're main problems are getting money for a cheap and decent host, and then finding the time and patience to work on it. It will pay off in the end though, so don't give up!
    Colin Anderson
    Ambition is a poor excuse for those without
    sense enough to be lazy.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy
    beley's Avatar
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    May 2001
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    I have to say I agree with Aes... you get what you pay for. Even if you have to do odd jobs like mowing grass or something to scrape up a little dough, get a good host. There are a lot of good inexpensive hosts out there (check out www.hostsave.com)

    As for the vbulletin - I'm sure you could find some shareware or freeware that would suffice. Check out www.getscripts.com, www.download.com - there are others as well. I'm almost positive you could find something good for real cheap or free.


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