|This article relies on references to primary sources. (January 2010)|
A screenshot of UBB.threads at UBBCentral
|Stable release||7.5.8 / November 2013
(original release circa 1996)
UBB.threads (formerly WWWThreads) is an Internet forum software package originally written by Rick Baker. Written with PHP using a MySQL database backend, it is comparable to other forum software written in PHP.
WWWThreads was originally written in Perl starting in 1997, then a PHP version was made in 2000. WWWThreads was notable for being one of the first forum software packages to support both flat and threaded discussion. In 2001, WWWThreads was acquired by Infopop Corporation (later known as Groupee, Inc. and now known as Social Strata), owners of the Ultimate Bulletin Board software. It was consequently renamed UBB.threads. After WWWThreads' acquisition by Infopop, the Perl version of WWWThreads was discontinued. The last Perl version of WWWThreads was version 5.4.3. All subsequent versions of UBB.threads starting with version 5.5 were released in PHP only. UBB.threads 6.0 was released in the spring of 2002. The current version is 7.5.7.
On January 1, 2010, UBB.threads was spun off from Social Strata, and sold to Mindraven, Inc. However, in June 2011, UBB.threads was sold to UBB Systems.
While Groupee initially proposed a new forum software package designed to replace UBB.classic and UBB.threads, they wound up using several portions of the core of UBB.threads. While the name implies an upgrade to threads, the v7 branch is seen as more of a complete overhaul of the initial code base as well as heavy feature adaptations from UBB.classic.
While the v7 branch retains the UBB.Threads name, it is incompatible with prior versions due to the coding overhaul. Any "upgrades" to v7 are done as an import as if it were from any other 3rd party product. In addition to the importer for previous versions of UBB.threads, importers for UBB.classic v6.x, phpBB v2.x and v3.x, Simple Machines Forums 1.1, vBulletin 3.8.x, FusionBB3, YaBB 2, WowBB, and WWWBoard 2.x are also available.
Version 7.1 was released on February 20, 2007. Primary new features included some features that were trimmed out from the transition from the UBB.classic and UBB.threads 6.x series to UBB.threads version 7.0. Some of these features included custom titles, user-selectable languages, and user-defined forum sorting options. Other major new features included online mood indicators on posts, auto-deletion of pointers to moved threads, and CAPTCHA user registration.
Version 7.2 was released on July 16, 2007. The largest new feature in this version is the addition of an image gallery feature. Other significant new features included teaser forums and a spoiler BBCode tag, as well as some code cleanup.
Version 7.3 was introduced on May 7, 2008. Version 7.3 introduces improved spider-friendly URLs, with the option to add a fake .html extension at the end of each page, as well as group-based permissions. Other new features include the ability to hide user post counts, an improved pagination routine, a custom BBCode editor, and a drop-down search box.
Initially known as version 7.3.2, while version 7.4 is mostly bugfixes from previous versions, there are a few new features being introduced. Some new features being introduced include a search function for the user list, a mass permission copy page, unlimited custom islands, and two new portal islands (one that displays today's birthdays, and a "featured member" portal island that selects and displays a random user who is not banned) . Version 7.4 was released on October 16, 2008.
Major new features for version 7.5 include a redesigned user profile page, a UBB Buddies box, and a visitor comments section on the user profile page. An administrator option to disable the calendar was also added. Initially blogs were planned for version 7.5, however, they have been pushed back to version 8.0. Version 7.5 was released on February 24, 2009.
Initially, a blogging feature was planned for introduction of version 7.3, however, it was soon pushed back to version 7.4. However, with the renaming of version 7.3.2 to 7.4, it was then planned for version 7.5 .
On November 10, 2008, UBB.threads developer Rick Baker began a survey on whether the next major release should include blogs, or whether it should include a GUI redesign . An issue of concern is that if blogs are added in the version before the GUI redesign, the blogging feature would have to be reworked again in the next version afterward that the GUI redesign is applied to. Current plans for the GUI redesign call for true user-selectable skins, which will allow for complete changes in the GUI design rather than simply changing the color schemes, as well as a WYSIWYG editor.
On November 23, 2008, it was decided from the poll that the next major version will include blogs, and the version afterward will include a GUI redesign. However, in January 2009, it was discovered that a user created several disposable accounts to skew the results towards blogs, and that the GUI redesign was the true winner.
On January 22, 2009, it was announced that version 7.5 will be the last major release in the UBB.threads 7.x series, and that the next major version will be version 8.0 . Version 8.0 will include both a GUI redesign and blogs along with several other new features, including an API. Beta testing for UBB.threads 8.0 will consist of two phases; the first phase of beta testing (beginning December 2009) will be of the redesigned administrator control panel, while the second phase of beta testing will be of the user front end.
On January 1, 2010, it has been announced that the overall software package of version 8 will simply be known as UBB, with the UBB.threads name referring to the forums part of the software. At the same time, the gallery portion of the software will be known as UBB.gallery, and the blogs portion will be known as UBB.blogs.
Suspension of project
Shorty after the acquisition of UBB.threads by UBBSystems, it was announced that a new 7.6 version would be released as a stopgap, which will add several requested features and bugfixes. Currently, Version 8 is on hold due to it being incomplete and needing more work.