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Compiled list of useful website utilities

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Summary

I'm compiling a list of useful guild website utilties. This will include CMS, forums, and other freely available php scripts and such. It will focus primarily on web utilities and not gui plugins.

Please post your suggestions for inclusion below and I'll update the top posts as the thread populates.

Quick Start Guide for new guild leaders Edit

  • Find a free webhosting site. Search for "free guild hosting" and you'll find plenty of sites (or scroll to post #5). View some of the guild sites hosted there to get an idea of the speed, capabilities, if there are mandatory advertisements and how intrusive they are, etc. Select a host that appeals to you and sign up. Some hosts allow you to have your guildname in the URL - try to get one that does. Some sites also offer paid services such as arbitrary php scripts, ventrilo or teamspeak servers, etc, so if you expect to need it in the future, consider upgrade options and the cost when choosing a host. (Free isn't always "free", and some free sites really charge a lot for extra services.) More advanced sites might be able to sell you a domain name for your guild (about $10) and have them host it.
  • Configure forums. You want both a public and private section. Don't go overboard with number of forums, as they will just be unused, even with a large guild. Make five sections: news section (some sites provide one that displays on the front page), public general chat, public quest signups, private guild-only chat, and invite-only officer forums.
  • Configure the look and feel (skins). Use colors that contrast a bit, but not too much. For example, never use black text on red background, but similarly, bright yellow on a large red background is painful to read.
  • Make your front page look good! If you aren't artistic, find a guildie who is good with photo editors and put something entertaining or at least interesting there. Proofread the front page and get rid of all misspellings! Make it easy to get to the forums, to read about your guild values, etc.
  • Advertise your completed site! Put it in your message of the day, and make it an integral part of your guild. Your guildmates will use it if there's a good reason. Post it on your local realm forums and make sure it's added to any big lists of guild websites. Submit your site to Google so that it gets indexed quickly so that someone looking for you can find your guild.
  • Maintain and update your site. Make sure news is updated at least once a month, even if it's something small. Frequent updates cause two things: first they get indexed by search engines more often, and second, it makes your guild look active. If there's ever any heavy drama in the public general forums, move them to the private forums immediately and continue there. Deleting threads often just causes them to reappear, but locking them or talking it out in a private section usually causes it to die off. (There's nothing worse than a prospect going to a guildsite and seeing a ton of drama.)

That will give you the bare minimum for a guild website.

Advanced usersEdit

For those that want more or are finding themselves very successful, you will want your own domain and website utilities such as DKP tracking, better forums, RSS feeds, etc. Search for "register domain" and you'll find a ton of sites that want your business. Although the free guildsites above cater to gamers, they often won't allow you to install your own php scripts such as rosters or raid point tracking plugins. If you want your own domain name or your own php website scripts, you might have to go with a different provider or shell out the cash to a "free" site. But if you search around, you can often find very inexpensive sites.

The rest of this thread will list website scripts for the more advanced users. Beware, installing these on your website and making them run can be difficult, but it is the best way to fully customize your site.

Free "Webpage-In-A-Box" ServicesEdit

BattleStandards

GuildPortal

EZGames - Forums Only

ProBoards

Webs

iGuild

Guild-O-Matic

Wowstead

DKPSystem

GuildLaunch

Do It Yourself and Other Tools Edit

phpBB phpBB offers a rock solid forum engine. It has a very large number of users and developers working to improve and modify it. The out of the box features are somewhat limited compared to other CMSs, but news and galleries and other features can be provided if you are willing to install Mods and AddOns for it. Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: simple Flexibility: medium

Nuke phpNuke PostNuke DotNetNuke There are many flavors of Nuke out there, and I will do my best to link Nuke sites that are popular and stable. I am not as familiar with this system, but I know it is a popular one. I know it supports forums, but I am not sure what else. There are many WoW related modules for the Nuke systems. Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: Medium Flexibility: High

e107 e107 has a full offering of forums, a calendar, news, articles, uploads/downloads. It also has a very robust permissions system that will allow tons of flexibility in allowing your guild to contribute things to the website. This is the engine I have chosen for my guild to use. AddOns and Mods are also readily available for this engine, as well as easily developed. Plugins: http://e107coders.org/ http://e107hacks.org/ Themes: http://e107styles.org/ http://e107themes.org/ Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: Medium Flexibility: High

Mambo / Joomla Joomla and Mambo are both built on the same foundation. They are full featured CMS engines. If someone using Mambo wants to give a two sentence summary I would appreciate it. Technologies: php, mysql ItemStats Mod Difficulty: Medium Flexibility: High

VBulletin More advanced than phpBB this software is not free, but well worth the price if you have some funding available. The most customizable web forums available today includes build in calendars customizable user profiles and themes with built in editor. One utility for extending VBulletin can be found at http://www.vbadvanced.com Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: medium Flexibility: high

Drupal Includes everything you need for a dynamic site, has a forums module, and all kinds of stuff. Theming and extending the software can get tricky. Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: medium Flexibility: high

Wordpress A very straight forward tool, this is more intended for blogging, but some people prefer it. If someone using Wordpress wants to give a two sentence summary I would appreciate it. Technologies: php, mysql Difficulty: Simple Flexibility: Low

A note about wordpress: Wordpress is a Blogging platform that has many other capabilities and is extremely flexible in its feature list. On my guild's website, I've integrated the Wordpress user database with my guild member database, so guild members can log into wordpress and create items. I don't give them permissions to publish directly, however, they then send me a message on the forums so I can review and publish their content.

Simple Machices Forums

A portal mod that goes with SMF, check it out (has many great features and continues to get better, still in beta): TinyPortal


DKP ManagementEdit

DKPTable to view dkp in-game.

DKP Log Parser is a tool to administrate a time based dkp reward system.

EQDKP is a method for recording you guilds dkp.

Suicide Kings DKP Management is an alternative to the dkp system named after teh guild who created it.

VoIP Communication SoftwareEdit

Teamspeak

TeamspeakOverlay Same as VoiceOverlay, but only for Teamspeak; worth trying if VO has problems.

These are particularly useful to a guild leader to make sure she gets to know people's voices more quickly.

Ventrilo

VoiceOverlay Allows you to see who is talking on Ventrilo or Teamspeak in-game.

Both the Teamspeak and Ventrilo software are professionally developed and fully supported software packages. I believe the client software is free to download however it is illegal to run the server software with out paying a licence fee. Please be aware of this if you wish to use the software.

Skype Probably not that useful for raid orginisation as its p2p although it does have conference call capabilities but its free and potentially useful.

Event ManagementEdit

GroupCalendar This AddOn allows you to create/schedule/manage future raid instance directly in-game.

RaidNinja is an event signup and management tool, specifically designed for clans and guilds.

Roster, Bank. Profiling ToolsEdit

CharacterProfiler, GuildProfiler, and Roster Roster extracts data from the CharacterProfiler and GuildProfiler addons for use in a website to display the guild member list, common quests, levels, etc. WowRoster RPGOutfitter

Character Profiler lets you to grab info about you character/s from stats to recipes you know to whats in your bank, so that the info can be used in tools and websites.

Guild Profiler is a mod that grabs info from the in-game roster to be used in other tools and on web-sites requires character profiler.

GuildManager



Other notesEdit

If you're setting up a website for your guild using some of these php/mysql-based programs, it's extremely helpful to put everything into the same database. In fact, some integration can only be done when things are performed this way.

Pretty much everything out there seems to be able to plug into the phpBB user database. Users create a user there, you put the user into your 'guild' group, then other things, like Roster or phpRaid can use that for user authentication.

Contributors Edit

  • Written by Vuelhering of Knights Who Say Ni - Icecrown Server
  • Contributing authors:
    • Anaea - Aerie Peak
    • Evol - Akama
    • Rte - Arthas
    • Ashling - Greymane
    • Psyche - Doomhammer
    • Lloydpalatini - Alexstrasza
    • Deadlysinner - Turalyon
    • Tiquor -
    • Elderan - Dalvengyr
    • Sneakysmurff - Gnomeregan
    • Ashestoashes - Wildhammer

Original Post: Guild Relations Forum

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