Installing vBulletin

1.Editing the vBulletin Configuration File

Before uploading the vBulletin files to your web server, you must edit the vBulletin configuration file (includes/config.php) to tell vBulletin how to communicate with your database.

To edit the config.php file, you will need to open the file in a text editor such as Windows® WordPad. (Note that we do not recommend that you use Windows® Notepad to edit config.php, as Notepad has problems displaying the line breaks in some file types.)

Editing the config.php file is one of the few times in vBulletin where you will need to edit raw PHP code. The file is heavily commented in order to help you fill in the necessary information.

Of the settings in this file, only a few need to be edited in order to create a working vBulletin configuration file. These settings are:

$config[‘Database’][‘dbname’] This value should be altered to state the name of the database that will contain your vBulletin installation on the database server.

Note:

Please note that Jelsoft / vBulletin Support can not provide the values you require for $config[‘Database’][‘dbname’], $config[‘MasterServer’][‘servername’], $config[‘MasterServer’][‘username’], and $config[‘MasterServer’][‘password’]. These variables are only available from the web host providing your web/database server.

If you need to create a new database for vBulletin to use, instructions for doing so in a variety of systems are available here.

Also note that you only edit the info to the right of the equal sign. Do NOT edit the names in the brackets to the left of the equal sign. For instance in this line:

$config[‘MasterServer’][‘username’] = ‘root’;

You change ‘root’ to the appropriate database username and leave everything else as is.

This is correct:

$config[‘MasterServer’][‘username’] = ‘your_dbusername’;

This is NOT correct:

$config[‘MasterServer’][‘your_dbusename’] = ‘root’;

Never edit anything to the left of the equal sign.

On Yahoo Small Business Server, $config[‘MasterServer’][‘servername’] should be set to ‘mysql‘.

The remaining variables in config.php do not need to be edited in order to make a working vBulletin configuration. For most, it is recommended that you do not alter them until after the installation process is complete, unless you are confident that you know what you are doing beforehand. A description of these remaining variables follows.

$config[‘Database’][‘dbtype’] If you are using PHP5 in combination with MySQL 4.1.x you may want to change this variable to ‘mysqli‘ to take advantage of the MySQL Improved engine

Note:

The variables $config[‘SpecialUsers’][‘canviewadminlog’], $config[‘SpecialUsers’][‘canpruneadminlog’], $config[‘SpecialUsers’][‘canrunqueries’], $config[‘SpecialUsers’][‘undeletableusers’] and $config[‘SpecialUsers’][‘superadministrators’] should all contain a single userid number, a comma-separated list of user id numbers, or nothing at all. For example:

$config['SpecialUsers']['canviewadminlog'] = '1,15,16';
$config['SpecialUsers']['canpruneadminlog'] = '1';
$config['SpecialUsers']['canrunqueries'] = '';
$config['SpecialUsers']['undeletableusers'] = '1,15';
$config['SpecialUsers']['superadministrators'] = '1';

Note: When editing config.php, make sure there is no whitespace or extra lines either before the <?php or after the ?>. If there are any extra lines or space, you will see an ‘Unable to add headers’ error when accessing your forums.

Note:

Later versions of vBulletin may not have the ?> at the end. This is to help prevent this kind of error from happening.

Once you have finished editing your config.php file you should save it again and prepare to upload the file to your web server.

2.Running the vBulletin Install Script

Once all the vBulletin files have been successfully uploaded to your web server, you will need to run the vBulletin Installation Script in order to prepare your database.

The Installer runs as a PHP script using your web browser. To start the installation process, open your browser and type the HTTP address of your forums directory, followed by /install/install.php, then hit the <Enter> key or press the [Go] button to open the script.

The first thing you will see from the install script is a log in prompt, asking you to enter your customer number. This is done to prevent other users from accidentally stumbling across your install script and running it. Only you should know your customer number.

Note:

Your customer number is the string of numbers and letters used as the login user name for the vBulletin Members’ Area. You should type your customer number carefully to avoid errors. Note that your customer number is not the same as your vBulletin license number.

When you have entered your customer number, hit the [Enter Installer] button and you should be taken to the first step of the install script. If after hitting the [Enter Installer] button you are brought back to the customer number entry dialog, there was an error verifying your customer number. Please check for mistakes and try again.

The first page of the installer script will greet you and give you some basic instructions relating to what will happen during the rest of the install process.

Having read the information on the welcome page of the installer, you can click the large [Next Step] button at the bottom right of the window to proceed to the next step of the installer.

Warning:

Certain browser plug-ins, most notably the popular Google Toolbar can have an adverse effect up the vBulletin installation and upgrade scripts. We recommend that all browser plugins be disabled while running install and upgrade scripts for vBulletin.

Clicking the [Next Step] button will take you to the first installation step, which tests that your config.php file exists and is readable by the system.

A further click will bring you to step 2, in which the installer attempts to connect to the database. If the connection is made successfully, the installer will ask you if you want to empty the database. If you click this link your database will be totally emptied. All data stored in that database (including any data not related to vBulletin) will be irreversibly erased.

Warning:

Don’t click the ’empty database’ link unless you are really sure that’s what you want to do!

The next few steps offer no choices during the installation process, other than to click the [Next Step] button at the bottom of the page to proceed to the next step.

However, you will soon be present with a page entitled Obtain Some Default Settings. This page does not have a [Next Step] button, as it requires that you fill in a few details about how you are installing vBulletin.

The settings required here are:

BB Title This is the title you will give to your vBulletin forums. It appears in the title of every page, and items such as notification emails sent from vBulletin to your members will identify the sender using this name. (BB Title is short for bulletin board title).

After filling in these values and clicking through the next few screens you will be asked to set yourself up as the forum administrator.

You will need to provide a username with which you are going to log-in, together with a password and an email address. These will be the details with which you will log in to your installed vBulletin board.

Note:

When choosing a password, we would suggest a combination of letters, numbers and punctuation characters in both upper and lower case, and a length of at least eight characters.

Fill in the required boxes and hit the [Continue] button to proceed with the installation process.

After a few pages the installation process will complete, and you will be presented with a link to your Admin Control Panel. Before clicking this link, you should open up your FTP client application again and browse to the install folder inside your forums directory.

You should delete the install.php and upgrade*.php files now as a security precaution. It is safe to leave the other install directory files intact since they may prove useful in the future. Once you have deleted these files you can return to the installer script and click the link to enter the Administrator Control Panel of your freshly installed vBulletin!

Note:

You will not be able to enter the Admin Control Panel until you have deleted the install.php file.

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