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YaBB is completely free to use. All we ask is that you keep the copyright in tact and visible on the bottom of your forum. This is to ensure that the project and all of the developers are given credit for their hard work. YaBB is distributed under the YPL (YaBB Public License), which is a slightly modified form of the GPL. You can read this license in the Quick Guide distributed with YaBB. If you would like to remove the copyright, redistribute YaBB, or use it in any other non-standard fashion, please consult the Licenses page.
To be allowed to use YaBB, you must keep all copyright notices, both in the script files and all other files, completely intact. You must also keep any license notices provided in the package in tact. Further usage is free, as long as the copyright notices and links to http://www.yabbforum.com remain.
In order to install and setup YaBB, you must first have an existing website. You also need knowledge on how to upload files to your website via a file manager or an FTP client. You should know how to upload files in ASCII and Binary modes and how to set file permissions on your webserver; (such as CHMOD) for read/write/execute access levels. If you want to edit your forum template (and you probably do), you need basic HTML and CSS knowledge as well. Although not required, having basic Perl knowledge will help you further customize your YaBB forum to your own specifications. Of course, you also need a web browser and a basic text editor such as Notepad++.
If you want to just change the colors of your forum, you can use YaBB’s built-in CSS Editor. Most of the changes can be done visually. Nothing Else needed.
If you wish to have new Icons and graphics you can either create new or rename elements in the Default images folder. Still no more work.
If you want to change or re-order the layout of the Main elements of YaBB, use the Template Editor to work on the primary HTML container. (Main Page Display/BoardIndex) That’s it.
If you want to REALLY change the presentation of individual content pages/screens in YaBB, we have .template files to edit. This creates new Template Sets.
If you want to add a new language, we have methods/tools for that — Language Packs and CSS Buttons that make it easy to create language-specific buttons (zero graphics skills needed)
/yabb2/Templates/Default/default.html is the YaBB Page Container. It contains the layout of the basic page (primarily as divs) and YaBBTags to generate the main (forum level) content
/yabb2/Templates/Default/*.template are the ‘action type’ containers. These contain Perl assignments + formatting (primarily as divs with some inline styling) to generate specific levels of content. (the content filler) + the YaBBTags + DisplayTxts needed for the details. A couple of examples Loginout.template (login screens) and Display.template
/yabb2/Templates/default/*.def are special purpose Definition files. micon.def and menu.def — used for Icons and Menus
What is a YaBBTag? A YaBBTag is a ‘call’ to YaBB’s main code to return a value i.e. yabb location returns the location information from a User Profile.
What is a DisplayTxt? — It is a combination of a Code (a scalar value or ‘string’) that is associated with a Phrase (prompt) e.g ’21’ => ‘Posts’, ‘118’ => ‘Topic’, … this mechanism allows YaBB to be language independent. The Display Text can be skinned in any language.
YaBB is built in English first (although you do NOT have to offer English once your forum is installed). The ./Language folders structure allows you to create new complete translations of YaBB (even RTL or non-Latinate). Each translated display element is mapped by its YaBBCode to the translation.
Even the buttons and icons that use text can now (Since YaBB 2.6) be translated using language definitions for their overlay. No more language bt language button sets. The feature is called CSS Buttons and consists of a background image selection (many built into the default installation) and the overlay text. Yes, you can ‘roll your’ own in all languages, or change an existing translation.