Introduction & review of popular open source applications such as wordpress, joomla, drupal, dotnetnuke and open cart etc. We also do comparison of similar apps and recommend the right choice for different web application purpose.

10 Best WordPress Forum Plugins

Wordpress is the most powerful blog system. But while the blog grows up, we might want to introduce a new system for user interaction. The ideal choice is to have both wordpress and discussion board together. Thereby we concluded the following 10 best wordpress plugins to setup a powerful forum.



The best light weight forum solution by wordpress official people. It's also used by wordpress official support forum. Bbpress was firstly a stand alone forum software and then integrated to wordpress as plugin with complete redevelopment.

  • Open Source, always and forever
  • Less (code) is more Code is poetry
  • Simplicity is a feature
  • Speed & security are paramount to a great user experience

Bbpress official site:
Download at wordpress plugin directory



The most popular downloads from wordpress plugin directory. Unlike any other solution, buddypress can also install its own theme/plugin to fully customize the forum(more than 330 plugins available). Same like bbpress, buddypress is also managed and supported by wordpress official people. Moreover, buddypress has been translated to multiple languages for local users so we can integrate easily.

Buddypress official site:
Buddypress download page



A complete forum system as its advertised. Other than a simple wordpress plugin, forumpress is full functinoal as traditional forum softwares. We can configure User Groups & Moderators, Move, Edit & Delete topics & posts the same way like dedicated forum. The most important is it's easy to get started, either admin or visitor interface is pretty clean.

Forumpress official download

Vanilla Forums

Vanilla forum

Vanilla can be integrated with wordpress in few seconds, and is the ONLY forum solution to provide a native mobile version for easy browsing and posting from any mobile device. Vanilla is supported by over 10,000 developers with over 500 addons that can make your community do anything you need it to do. Users can also migrate from vBulletin, phpBB, bbPress, and more.

Vanilla forums project site:
Vanilla forums plugin download

Talki Embeddable Forums

Talki forums

Simple and clean forum solution for wordpress. The forums work with WordPress along with global login systems such as Facebook, Twitter, Google, and a dozen others. It's the only one with social network integration. Following advanced features are included:

  • Customizable with CSS
  • BBCode
  • Easy-to-use Admin Panel
  • Private and Public forums
  • Automatic Security Patches and upgrades
  • Create as many sub-forums as needed
  • Drag and drop ordering of sub-forums

Talki project site:
Talki download page

WP Symposium

WP Symposium

More than a simple forum purpose, wp symposium turns a WordPress website into a Social Network! It provides a forum, activity, member directory, private mail, notification panel, chat windows, profile page, social widgets, activity alerts and more.. advanced features for commercial could be purchased seperately.

Project site:
WP Symposium downloading

Simple: Press

Simple press

Probably the deepest modification of Vbulletin. Simplepress has the same layouts, functions. Other than dedicated for wordpress only, simplepress could be integrated with lots of projects like buddypress. Users can also customize the forum by themes/plugins and backend CSS.

Simple press download site:

CM Answers

CM Answers

CM Answers is a plugin for WordPress that enables users to post questions and answers (Q&A) in a Stackoverflow style.Plugin also includes social media registration using Facebook, LinkedIn or Google+, Twitter & Microsoft Live authentication

Plugin official site:
Download at wordpress plugin directory



Best question and answer plugin for WordPress. Made with developers in mind, highly customizable. Similar like CM Answers with or style. AnsPress is a most complete question and answer system for WordPress

Demo & support forum:
Download Anspress at wordpress plugin

Zingiri Forum

Zingiri Forum

Seamless integration of mybb to wordpress. It has all available functions of mybb software even the layouts. However, since the plugin author does not provide any support any more, we have to deal with problems by our own if there's any. But this does not affect its popularity because of it's powerful system.

Zingiri forum download

Is iPage WordPress Hosting Worth the Try?

ipage wordpress hosting

iPage launched their dedicated wordpress hosting plan for bloggers and wordpress fans. Their people announced to conquer all competitors by superb server features and support service. Is that true? How users talk about this service and how is compared to some reputable wordpress server plans?

iPage WordPress Hosting Overview

Aside from their traditional single shared hosting, iPage provided two extra plans dedicated for wordpress site purpose – starter & essential plan. Comparing to their old budget service, the wordpress hosting plans have everything configured for this software such as server setup, plan features and even hosting control panel. From official announcement, they configured SSD server to power expert wordpress sites with sitelock protection. To be more specific, the ipage wordpress plans come with following:

Dedicated for wordpress. No any other kind softwares hosted on this server, only wordpress acceptable so their people can apply any necessary maintenance efficiently. Especially when there is any problematic site on server, they can easily track down for urgent fix. Because there's only wordpress on server, the tech team can deeply optimize the environment without worring compatibility for other softwares. It's super point for those who wants blazing fast wordpress server at affordable cost.

Essential plugins pre-installation. iPage wordpress team has some essential wordpress plugins pre-configured when installing the software in control panel. Some reputable plugins like W3 total cache & Jetpack already included. Also, their people provide a list of some great themes to power your new site installation quickly.

WordPress control panel. Completely for wordpress! The team has completely revised the control panel for wordpress user. All we see is about wordpress management like installation, backup and database operation etc. Either wordpress professional and start user be able to familiar with it in short time.

Enhanced security. For essential plan users, account is created on SSD servers with sitelock protection. Except for daily vulnerabilities scanning every day, it will automatically removes any potential threat and admin will get notified. Not only potential security issues being scanned, some popular issues like comment spam and attack are also filtered by the firewall. What people get is a clean and safe site.

As we see, it's complete new service comparing to their all-in-one shared hosting plan. Regardless those advantages they announced, is it really so cool? Especially when comparing to some leading providers? Let's see


Actually, they have provided a comparison list to other providers like godaddy and even wpengine. Following is screenshot

ipage wordpress hosting comparison

They compared to multiple popular wordpress hosting using ipage essential plan. The result is ipage wins on almost each crucial points like price, disk space and number of visits etc. The only I can tell is there's no much proof their server can work better than those competitors. Because their wordpress service is pretty new while their competitors have collected plenty experience. What ipage really can do is to gain more users by competitive price and high quality service. Only in this way, they can receive lots of positive feedbacks then they can proudly show the comments to the world.

How to Choose?

iPage provides two plans for wordpress with big difference for initial registration. However, difference for renewal rate is pretty small according to their policy. Let's see following about the actual rate

Starter plan:

  • 36-month term: $8.99 a month (billed $323.64 for 3 years)
  • 24-month term: $9.99 a month (billed $239.76 for 2 years)
  • 12-month term: $10.99 a month (billed $131.88 for 1 year)

Essential plan:

  • 36-month term: $10.49 a month (billed $377.64 for 3 years)
  • 24-month term: $11.49 a month (billed $275.76 for 2 years)
  • 12-month terms: $12.49 a month (billed $149.88 for 12 months)

The answer is clear. If we want to use all ipage wordpress server advantages, essential plan is the best choice. While the starter plan is priced half for less features, the renewal price is very close to essential plan. So why should we select starter plan in the begining?

Check out ipage wordpress hosting plan details

ipage wordpress hosting plans

Guides of Arvixe DotNetNuke Hosting

DNN hosting with arvixe

DotNetNuke(known as DNN) is the most famous open sourced CMS. The use of DNN software vary for small to large size websites since from the very start. For lots of hosting plans, dotnetnuke support is critical to get clients. In this article, we provide step by step guidance on how to get DNN running with arvixe – one of the best DNN hosting providers.

There's huge improvements for dotnetnuke itself recent years. Because of the windows and IIS server development, lots of service are integrated by its web platform installer(WPI). In this way, we no longer have to deal with many web services independently. Instead, we can centrally manage everything on the same platform. Either server end GUI or web based control panel, we can complete most tasks without leaving the interface.

Get Started with Arvixe DotNetNuke Hosting

Arvixe ensures you get the latest microsoft technologies support on latest hardware setup. Each hosting plan provides more than basic requirements for DNN installation at very good price. So the first is to select your prefered hosting plan based the following promotional offer

DNN plan PersonalClass PersonalClass Pro BusinessClass BusinessClass Pro
Price $3.5/mo $5.6/mo $18.9/mo $28/mo
Disk/Traffic Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
Free domain 1 1 1 1
SQL Server 2012 Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited
SSL/Dedicated IP No No Yes Yes
Promo Claim Claim Claim Claim

Installing DNN via Websitepanel

Arvixe .net hosting plans are 100% websitepanel powered with full automation. The "Web App Gallery" includes various and php applications including DotNetNuke. Unlike any other auto installer script, the app gallery updates directly via software official release by API, so what we get is always the latest stable version. Please be noted, the installer will only download the package to our specific website directory with basic configuration. We will still need to complete the installation wizard on actual website as usual. Following is a complete video show about the process.

If you encountered any problem during installation, click support for online assistance. Arvixe support person will be more than happy to fix it.

Why Arvixe DNN Hosting Plan?

Obviously, there're not too many hosting providers who can provide good feature supports with good price. They either provide a dedicated DNN hosting plan with high costs or simply doesn't support it. The server has to be configured by leading hardwares with good selling policy in order to support a health DNN site. Arvixe is outstanding because their championship from side by side comparison.

Leading server platform. All arvixe windows servers are brand new DELL production with server 2012 OS configuration. SSD raid 10 is configured on every server for blazing fast speed. Because of this, your dnn site performance is greatly guaranteed.

Leading account features. Every hosting accounts are offered a free domain name for life, a dedicated application pool for each website. For business account users, one FREE ssl certificate and static IP is provided. It's definitely great offer if you're running shopping cart website!

Competitive price. As low as $3.5/mo, we get all needed supports for DNN configurtion. Up to 30% discounts for all hosting plans and the most important thing is such discount will be applied for every renewal. Means we can always take the great price as long as our hosting account is alive with arvixe company!

Super friendly support. Support in arivxe company is 24*7 like most reputable hosting providers. The difference is ther support people are not working in a single office. Instead, they're everywhere in united states with free working style. In this way, they ensure each incoming inquiry can be accepted in time and properly supported. They're available via web chat, email and ticket platforms to handle every custom requests efficiently.

arvixe dnn hosting promo

Check out arvixe DotNetNuke hosting plan promotion details on

Best 6 Free WordPress Security Plugins

Millions of websites are created by wordpress fans. However, it has been targeted attacking based the software popularity. From web analysis report, the daily attacks are millions on multiple famous sites using wordpress. Because of this, lots of companies make good business by offering wordpress securing service. In this article, we'll introduce 6 best FREE plugins to secure a wordpress site in few minutes.

1. Wordfence Security

The top recommended security plugin for enterprise class security and performance. Wordfence provides a fast caching engine, firewall and anti-virus scanning. It can quickly report malicious URLs and doubtable traffic. It's also announced to be the only wordpress security and performance plugin that can verify and repair your core, theme and plugin files without a backup.

Wordfence official download:
See video introduction here:

The plugin also provides premium paid support and features including scheduled scanning, country blocking and more. It would be great for enterprise users to automate the full system. However the free option is already perfect for small to medium users.

2. Stealth Login Page

An advanced wordpress plugin for login protection. Using this plugin, we can fully customize the wordpress login URL instaed the default one. We can also disable the wp-login.php file directly for further protection. Things we can configure:

  • Define the wordpress site login URL such as http://mysite/login
  • Redirection of unauthorized login attempts
  • Authorization code on login form

stealth login page

Plugin download:

3. Sabre

Sabre(Simple Anti Bot Registration Engine), a plugin dedicated for anti-spam registration on wordpress site. The plugin will auto analyze if its real user registration and block those well know spammers directly. At the meanwhile, captcha authentication is added to registration form so spam registration is almost 100% avoided.

Sabre download:

4. Bad Behavior

An outstanding plugin to filter spam links. Acting as a gatekeeper, bad behavior prevents spammers from ever delivering their junk or ever reading your site in the first place. It's not only good to keep your wordpress site clean but also helpful to avoid DOS attack.

Bad Behavior:

5. TAC(Theme Authenticity Checker)

The sole purpose of TAC is for theme verification. TAC will check each theme source file and find out malicious codes if any. Once founded, TAC will show the path to the theme file, the line number, and a small snippet of the suspect code. There're many theme resources on internet but not all are 100% clean. Especially for those free themes trying to collect user information, tac will ensure its cleanness before applying to your production site.

TAC download:

6. AskApache

A network level protection to prevent automatic attacks. Beyond a simple security plugin, it's a powerful firewall and dedicated for wordpress protection. AskApache makes full use of available apache modules & rules and load the commands to .htaccess file. Not only the wordpress login page is protected, all site files are secured.

See full description on official page:

Best 5 WordPress Beautifier Plugins

No matter what kind website you create using wordpress, you always need to do lots of customization via themes & plugins. An attracktive design simply shortens the distance between our sites and visitors. Every site owner is trying to enable various functions for better success. We have collected 5 best rated plugins to beautify your wordpress site in minutes.

NO.1 Unique Cursor

This plugin allows you to replace your default mouse cursor from 50+ custom image files. It's extremely helpful if you operate a game related website. Screenshot as below

unique cursor

Plugin download:

NO.2 WP Google Fonts

It's connected to google's free font directory where hundreds of great fonts are provided. The fonts development never stops so we can always get big surprise when refreshing the page. Google fonts let developers do not have to make custom design in order to display special charactors and you don't have to upload various js files to web directory to slow down its response. Not only perfect for web developers but also great for users to setup a professional site

google fonts

Plugin download:

NO.3 WP Login Pro

This is a commercial plugin developed by site. Users got the opportunity to customize wordpress login page by multiple professional design. Logo, layout and background are all customizable with your needs. Take a look for example below:


The plugin can be purchased through directly which costs you $17. However, not everybody would like to pay for such solution. Hence, there's an alternative solution provided by wordpress enthusiast. Just go ahead to download this package, unzip it then upload to your theme directory. Once done, open your theme's functions.php file then add the following:


You can upload your own logo and background pictures with your preference.

NO.4 Auto Highslide

It's probably the best light weight image slider plugin for wordpress. By default, when we add an image by media uploader, it'll auto link via picture absolute path. When clicking on it, picture will be opened in seperate window. It's absolutely not what we wanted. Auto Highslide fixed the problem perfectly. Just get the plugin installed with no further configuration required. Once you image is clicked, it will be prompted up with slider option to view other pictures on same page.

Usage: <a href=""><img alt="highslide showcase" src="" width="500" height="300" /></a>

It's highly recommended you can define the picture width so it can render properly.

Plugin download:

NO.5 Rconix Shortcodes

Developed by John Gardner. With this plugin you can easily add various kinds of styled boxes, buttons and tabs etc by short codes. See samples below:

shortcodes plugin

The purpose of this plugin is to style your words and other elements in a color box for professional management. The advantage of Rconix shortcodes is you don't need complex setup for this effect, everything is done through multiple sets short codes. We can fully customize it with our personal skills.

Plugin download:

Best PrestaShop Hosting

best prestashop hosting

Prestashop is modern choice for successful store sites. A fully compatible prestashop hosting service is crucial to power your healthy business. Based the frequent requests for best prestashop web hosting service, we have done side by side research of the software and do needful testing from multiple reputable hosting providers. This article provides our readers in-depth guidance on how to choose the right prestashop hosting plan and why you need this software comparing to other leading solutions.

Best Prestashop Hosting – InmotionHosting

InmotionHosting is the offical recommendation by Prestashop company. With their seamless partnership, users currently can get 50% discount price by singning up inmotion business hosting plans. By choosing inmotion, you'll be hosted on blading fast hosting server with full optimization for prestashop scripts. Their people guarantee no overloading on any hosting server and ensure you always receive the same performance. Other advantages with InmotionHosting for prestashop including:

  • Free prestashop installation
  • Free domain name registration
  • Half priced hosting plan
  • Max speed zone network configuration

At the meanwhile, inmotion provides a full range hosting plans to fulfill your different website requirements. The upgrade to higher hosting plans is seamless and zero downtime guaranteed.

inmotion hosting prestashop promo

Best Prestashop Hosting – Arvixe

Arvixe is outstanding for its super affordable service and SSD support on all hosting servers. They're also featured for it's support on linux and windows with top industry standards. Prestashop hosting with arvixe means easy and fast. Especially for developers who would like to start second development over the software, their leading support for both server platforms can simplify your debugging efforts. Before arvixe launched their offical support for prestashop, their team had fully tested on hosting server and do needful optimization. Thus we don't have to make any server side changes to maintain a secure and high perfomrance prestashop cart. Leading advantages with arvixe such as

  • Free domain name for life
  • Up to 30% discounts hosting
  • Free prestashop installation
  • Unlimited SSD account storage

The biggest advantage on arvixe is they have prestashop hosting plans for different purpose. For people who just like to get a small cart site hosted, they can reduce the cost to as cheap as $1.8/mo. If we need enterprise cart support, their business or VPS class hosting can be fully customized with the best deal.

arvixe prestashop hosting promo

More about Prestashop

The name prestashop got its branding effect in recent years though it's already setup in 2007. Prestashop is an open sourced shopping cart software with powerful and knowledge support. Though it's opensourced, it's leaded by a solid company with multiple headquaters in paris and Miami. From their official announcement, there're over 160,000 store sites powered by prestashop software. Comparing to most available shopping cart solutions, prestashop is awarded by following advantages

Easy setup & maintenance
Prestashop require few steps to go live from source codes. If you have a control panel available, it's included from most installers like softaculous and simplescripts. Once the shopping cart configured, administrators do not need much efforts to maintain a secure store. Backup and client management etc can be fully automated.

Cross platform support
Prestashop provides support for both windows and linux while most other softwares are best for linux environment. For windows users, prestashop provides a store manager that allows live editing on database without opening your site.

Lots of modules & themes
The software provides a list of nice modules to fulfill your store requirements including

  • Catalog management
  • SEO
  • Shipping
  • Payment gateways
  • Marketing
  • Client management
  • Translation
  • Localization/Taxes
  • Analytics and reporting

Depends your needs, lots of modules/themes are not free. However it's worthy of paying since we get full support from official team. Especially when we don't have a developer available, such offers can help maintaining our sites in safe hands.

Semaless migration from other platforms
From their official description, shopping carts that created from almost all other platforms can be semalessly tranafered to prestashop. Their people provide dedicated service for migration if people have the needs.

Prestashop Further Resource: