Custom Thread Input Fields, Best Answer, and more Administrative Improvements

  • In the second part of our five-part spotlight series for version 5.2 of WoltLab Suite, we highlight two new features coming to WoltLab Suite Forum, custom thread input fields and best answers, and present three additional features for administrators.

    Custom Thread Input Fields

    Categories and sub-forums are great options for structuring topics but depending on the context, additional information is either helpful or required for answering questions. WoltLab Suite Forum 5.2 offers a relevant new feature for this scenario: custom thread input fields. These fields are displayed at the top of the form to start a new thread and are to be filled out by the user. After the thread is created, the entered values are listed before the actual message of the thread.



    The input fields are set up per forum so that you can require users to enter different information depending on the context of the forum.



    There are different types of input fields you can choose from, for example, a simple yes/no selection or multiline text, and you can also set whether the input field has to be filled out or whether it is optional.


    Best Answers

    Forums generally deal with two types of threads: Those that discuss contemporary matters and those that aim at a solution for a problem or a question. The upcoming version of WoltLab Suite Forum improves the user experience for Question & Answer style threads by introducing a new feature that lets the thread starter mark one answer as the “best answer”. In addition to its normal position within the post list of the thread, the best answer will also be shown directly below the first post of the thread.


    Stop Forum Spam

    Spam is the scourge of the internet and any successful community has historically became a target of those rogue users. WoltLab Suite 5.2 extends the existing set of powerful tools with another proven and reliable layer of defense: Stop Forum Spam. The detection works by matching the username, IP address and email address of new users against a local database with known sources of spam. For each of these three data points, you can set whether it should be used for detection and also set the weight you want them to play when determining whether the checked user is a suspected spammer.



    As you are using the information of your newly registered users to detect spammers, data privacy is relevant. The detection process does not send any information to third parties, WoltLab and Stop Forum Spam included, and uses checksums to detect matches. To achieve this data-sensitive comparison, Stop Forum Spam’s data is processed and optimized on our servers which saves you storage space and processing power.


    After installing or updating to WoltLab Suite 5.2, a local database is built on your webserver in the background based on the data on our servers. New data is added and old data is removed periodically.


    Once a user has been flagged as a potential spam account, you can let their registration be immediately rejected or require manual approval by an administrator. Users that have been flagged have a dedicated icon next to their username in the user list in the admin panel.


    Global Modification Log

    Modifications to threads and posts, for example, are already logged in the current version and specific modification logs can be accessed in the frontend via the relevant modified content. With version 5.2, we have added a new global modification log in the admin panel that provides an overview of all modifications accross all installed packages that support modification logs.


    The modification log list can be filtered by the user responsible for the modification, the modification action (which also supports filtering by all actions from a package), and the time interval in which the modification occurred.


    Delete User’s Content

    The best protection against spam might not be enough in rare situations and a spammer might start new threads, posts on existing threads, or comment on events and images. Deleting the content of a user is now much easier: The user list in the admin panel offers a new “Delete User’s Content” option that opens a dialog in which you can select the content to delete.


  • The features above: "Stop Forum Spam", and, "Delete Users Content" are what interests me the most - and a good reason why I will upgrade from 5.1 to 5.2 when the final completed version is available.


    One thing I noticed - and hopefully Matthias Schmidt and others at Woltlab Development - have noticed the several misspellings, and words which are not needed, in a few of the sentences under "Stop Forum Spam".


    Looking forward to 5.2! Good work guys!!:)

  • Hi

    One thing I noticed - and hopefully Matthias Schmidt and others at Woltlab Development - have noticed the several misspellings, and words which are not needed, in a few of the sentences under "Stop Forum Spam".

    I just looked at the screenshot and noticed one typo (“ignore” instead of “ignored” for “do not check”). But as none of us are native speakers: Could you clarify where you would make changes?

  • Hi

    I just looked at the screenshot and noticed one typo (“ignore” instead of “ignored” for “do not check”). But as none of us are native speakers: Could you clarify where you would make changes?

    Here is one sentence I discovered that should be changed:

    "The database is carefully maintained, but it there will be always be a margine of error, ..... "


    Change to:

    The database is carefully maintained, but there will always be a margin of error, ....

  • Are the values stored inside the Post ore are they stored elsewhere?

    I'm actually interested how this data can be searched and if a post search is able to find those posts.

    Could you clarify on that, please?

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    Browser: Firefox Nightly (64bit)

    Betriebssystem: Windows 10

  • Delete User’s Content

    The best protection against spam might not be enough in rare situations and a spammer might start new threads, posts on existing threads, or comment on events and images. Deleting the content of a user is now much easier: The user list in the admin panel offers a new “Delete User’s Content” option that opens a dialog in which you can select the content to delete

    This is needed, but I think what was requested was a "one click" stop spammer option, which not only deleted the spammer's content, but banned the spammer at the same time. Could that be considered, please?

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    I am a Newbie Admin. Please be gentle, I don't understand technical things.
    (Please can we have a full manual for this software)

  • This is needed, but I think what was requested was a "one click" stop spammer option, which not only deleted the spammer's content, but banned the spammer at the same time. Could that be considered, please?

    Yup. If a user account is a spammer you simply want to ban the account and nuke all posts it made - via the thread tools (floating menu bottom-right on screen) or the admin drop-list on the user-profile page - not something buried behind login to the admin GUI. In a high-profile forum (like ours) that gets spam a moderator needs to be able to deal with it as a daily task. In our forum it's either a small number of +1/me-to posts in popular threads trying to expose URL links in forum signatures (link farming to boost SEO of some dodgy site) or bulk spamming of 20+ posts (usually in Chinese or Korean text). In both cases the action is the same - ban the account and remove all content. In the ~decade I have been admin/moderating our projects' forums(s) if an account is used for spamming I have never needed to pick and choose the content to keep .. the account is either good, or bad and everything associated with it needs to be purged.

  • How long before the BETA version is released to install it. Is it due out this month?


    When I came back recently installing WBB again, didn't know the new version was close to release as Beta for testing out, so I'm going to hang on now until that is released.