Global Settings Manager

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The Global Settings Manager admin control panel allows administrators to alter the various system settings of the forum. Pay careful attention to what you are doing while making changes on this control panel, since it is possible to break your forum by entering wrong values in certain places.

Due to the importance of this control panel there is basic help for every option on the control panel itself.

Primary Forum Options

Forum Title

The title of the forum. This title will appear inside the forum header and HTML <title> tag.

Forum Description

Description of the forum. This description will appear inside the forum and HTML header (description meta tag).

Forum Enabled

This toggle shows you whether or not your forum is enabled as well as allows you to enable and disable your forum.

When your forum is disabled the users will see the message you put inside Disabled Reason when they try to access any of the forum's pages.

Disabled Reason

When your forum is disabled this message, which can contain HTML will be displayed to anyone trying to access the forum's pages.

Allow Registration

This toggle allows you to enable or disable new user registration.

Forum Directory Paths

WWW Root

This is the base URL of your forum.

Info Symbol NOTE: Do not alter this option unless you are 100% certain of what you are doing.

WWW Root (disk path)

The location on the disk where the forum's images are stored.

Important Symbol IMPORTANT: If you change this directory make sure the webserver has write permissions to it. Safe Mode users also must make sure the directory is owned by the same account as the webserver.

Data Root

The directory where the forum's internal data is being stored.

Important Symbol IMPORTANT: If you change this directory make sure the webserver has write permissions to it. Safe Mode users also must make sure the directory is owned by the same account as the webserver.

Database Settings

Database Server

The IP or UNIX Domain Socket of your database server. We recommend using the UNIX Domain Socket since it is much faster then TCP/IP.

If you decide to specify a UNIX Domain Socket you need to put ':' in front of it. For example: :/tmp/mysql.sock.

Database Login

The login name for the database you intend to store forum data in.

Database Password

The password for the database you intend to store forum data in.

TIP: You need to change the password in the forum's Global Settings Manager BEFORE changing it on the database (i.e. MySQL). Alternatively, administrators can change it directly in the forum's GLOBALS.php file.

Database Name

The name of the database you intend to use to store your data in.

Use Persistent Connections

Use persistent connections when connecting to a database. This is a performance enchanting feature which if enabled will make your forum somewhat faster. Improvement is the result of PHP not needing to open a new database connection each time a script is executed, but rather use an existing connection instead.

This option does have it's drawbacks, on forked web servers such as Apache, every Apache child will create a persistent socket for itself. This can potentially exhaust number of allowed database connections if the number of Apache children with open connections to database exceed the allowed number of database connections, thus preventing topics without an open connection to connect to the database server.

Use Temporary Tables

Use temporary SQL tables to optimize some operations (dependent on the ability to create temp tables).

Use Database for message storage

If enabled, regular and private messages will be stored inside a database. This is not recommended for performance reasons!

Private Messaging

Allow Private Messaging

Whether or not forum members can send private messages to one another.

File Attachments in Private Messages

How many file attachments a user can attach to each private message. Setting this option to 0, will disable file attachments for private messages.

Maximum Attachment Size

The maximum size, in bytes, of the file(s) a user can attach to their private messages.

PHP has it's own limitation on the size of the file uploads, via the 'upload_max_filesize' php.ini setting. If the php.ini value is smaller, then the value set in the forum, then the php.ini will be used to limit the file uploads.

Allow Smilies

Whether or not smilies/emoticons in private messages will be converted to their graphical equivalents.

Allow Images

This option allows you to limit how many images can users include inside their private messages.

This limit will only work if the tag style is FUDcode, won't work if you allowed your visitors to use HTML.

Tag Style

What kind of text formatting options are available to the user.

  • FUDcode Users can use FUDcode styling tags to format their messages.
  • HTML The users can use HTML inside their messages.
  • NONE only plain text is allowed.

Maximum Private Messages Folder Size

The maximum amount of data, in bytes, the users can store inside their private message folders. This does not include the space taken up by the file attachments attached to private messages.

Maximum Private Messages Folder Size (for moderators)

The maximum number of bytes of private messages that a moderator can have at a time.

Maximum Private Messages Folder Size (for administrators)

The maximum number of bytes of private messages that an administrator can have at a time.

Cookie and Session Settings

Cookie Path

The path of cookie used by the forum. Outside of this path the cookie will not be accessible.

By default the cookie path is the path to the forum. For example, if your forum URL is "" the cookie path will be "/forum/". If you wanted your entire site to be able to access the forum's cookies, change the value of this option to "/".

Cookie Domain

The domain name for which a cookie is being set, the domain MUST be the same as the one used to access the forum, as specified in the WWW_ROOT option. For example, if your site is at, this would be

For browser compatibility this values MUST have no less the two '.' in it.

Info Symbol NOTE: Do not alter this option unless you are 100% certain of what you are doing. A minuscule error here can have not so minuscule side effects such as preventing you from reaching the admin log in screen, after which you will only be able to change settings in the GLOBALS.php file.

Cookie Name

The name of the cookie that will be used by the forum. By default a random value is picked for this option to prevent conflicts with any other cookies you may already have. In the very unlikely event that you already have a cookie with such a name, change the value of this option to something else.

Cookie Timeout

This is the period of time, in seconds after which the browser will remove the cookie. The user who's cookie expired will then need to re-login in to the forum.

By default the cookies are set to expire 7 days they are set. Each time the user access the forum the cookie is renewed for another 7 days.

Session Timeout

If cookies are not used or are not available sessions will be used instead. They work by passing the information normally stores in a cookie via GET/POST across the forum. Each time a user access' a page their session gets renewed.

This option defines the amount of time, in seconds after which the session expires and a user will be required to re-login. For security reasons do not set this to a high number.

By default, sessions will expire after 30 minutes.

Enable URL sessions

Allow session ids to be passed not only via cookies but, via URL variables.

Use Session Cookies

Make the cookie last only for as long as the browser window is open. If a security is a major concern, turn this option on.

Session Referrer Check

Always check to make sure that the referring URL is on the same domain as the forum.

Session IP Validation

Whether or not to validate session's against user IP While this may increase security it will cause annoyances for users who's IP address frequently changes as they will need to re-login each time their IP changes.

Custom Avatar Settings

Avatar Approval

This toggle defines whether or not the administrator(s) need to approve all the URL and Uploaded avatars before they are activated.

Tip Symbol TIP: Leave this option set to YES, unless you have absolute faith in your users and are certain they will follow the size limitations you've defined.

Allow Flash (swf) avatars

Allow users to upload Macromedia Flash avatars, not recommended unless you trust your users implicitly, since Flash animation can potentially trigger various browser events.

Custom Avatars

FUDforum allows for a number of ways that a user can specify their avatar, if avatars are allowed. This option allows you to define is avatars are allowed and if so, what type of avatars the users may use.

The URL and Uploaded avatars will first need to be approved by the administrator before they are activated, unless you specified in the Avatar Approval option, that the administrator does not need to approve those avatars.

  • URL The user can specify their avatar by entering a URL of an image.
  • Uploaded The user can upload an image from their hard drive to be their avatar.
  • Built In The user choose an avatar from the ones available in the forum's avatar gallery. Note: You can add avatars into the avatar gallery via the Avatar Manager control panel.
  • ALL The user can specify their avatar by specifying a URL to an image, uploading one to the server or choosing from the forum avatar galleries.
  • OFF The avatars are disabled.

Note: The actual control panel will have additional values allowing you choose a combination of any of the first three options.

Maximum Size of Custom Avatars

This is a limit, in bytes, on how big of an image a user can upload as their avatar.

Maximum Dimensions of the Avatar Image

This the maximum width x height dimensions of the avatar the user can specify.

Signature Settings

Allow Signatures

Whether or not forum users can specify signatures that will be appended to their messages.

Tag Style

What kind of text formatting options are available to the user.

  • FUDcode Users can use FUDcode styling tags to format their messages.
  • HTML The users can use HTML inside their messages.
  • NONE only plain text is allowed.

Allow Smilies

Whether or not smilies/emoticons in signatures will be converted to their graphical equivalents.

Allow Images

Whether or not images are allowed in signatures.

Maximum Number of Images

This option allows you to limit how many images can users include inside their signatures.

Note: This limit will only work if the tag style is FUDcode, won't work if you allowed your visitors to use HTML.

Spell Checker

Spell check enabled

Whether or not the spell checker is enabled.

This option will only work if your PHP has the pspell module enabled.

E-mail Settings

Allow E-mail

Allow the users to send E-mails to other forum members using the forum's internal E-mail client. If this option is enabled, you will note a "Click here to e-mail the user" link in users' profiles.

Use SMTP To Send E-mail

Whether or not to use FUDforum SMTP gateway to send E-mail instead of standard PHP mail() function.

Note: Not recommended, unless you need SMTP AUTH or wish to use alternate SMTP server on UNIX systems.

SMTP Server

The IP or host name of the SMTP server to use when sending out E-mails via SMTP.

To send all E-Mails via GMail's SMTP server, enter into this field. This will only work if you have enabled "Use SMTP To Send E-mail" in your GMail settings.

SMTP Server Port

The the port on which to connect to the SMTP server. The default port is 25. The port for TLS connections, like GMail, is normally 587.

SMTP Server Timeout

The number of seconds to wait for the SMTP server to respond to a request. The default is 10 seconds.

SMTP Server Login

If your SMTP server requires SMTP Authentication, use this field to specify the login name that will be used when accessing the SMTP server.

For GMail, enter your full gmail address into this field. I.e.

SMTP Server Password

If your SMTP server requires SMTP Authentication, use this field to specify the password that will be passed to the SMTP server.

For GMail, enter your gmail password.

E-mail Confirmation

If enabled each new registration will need to be confirmed via E-mail. A special URL will be sent to the e-mail specified by the user during registration, which once accessed will activate their account.

Unconfirmed accounts will be removed after a set amount of days as defined by the UNCONF_USER_EXPIRY option.

Administrator E-Mail

The e-mail address of the administrator.

Notify From

All of the system e-mails sent from the forum, such as e-mail post notification, registration confirmation etc... will come from this address.

Notify W/Body

If enabled, then e-mail notifications will include the complete HTML body of the message, allowing the user to read the message's text via their e-mail client as well as reply to the message by clicking on the reply/quote buttons.

In the event the user's e-mail client does not support HTML, the e-mail contains a text version of the message as well.

Smart Notification

Enable 'smart' e-mail notification mechanism that would only notify users if they read previous notification. This prevents filling up of the user's mailbox with notifications if they are not reading them.

Disable e-mail notifications

Disable the system for sending e-mail notification pertaining to new messages and topics being posted to the forums regardless of the user's settings.

General Settings

New Account Moderation

Whether or not every new registration will need to be approved by the administrator before the new account is activated. Newly registered users will be listed in the Account Approval admin control panel awaiting approval.

New Account Notification

This setting will only be used if you have chosen to manually approve all new registrations. If enabled, then every time a new user is registered all forum administrators will receive a notification via e-mail.

Public Host Resolving

Toggle the showing of the partially resolved host name of the message's author to other users. For example: will appear as

This may slow down the posting process, especially, if the user's host mask takes a while to resolve.

Logged In Users List Enabled

Whether or not the list of currently logged in users is displayed. By default this list is shown on the forum's front page.

Logged In Users List Timeout

The amount of time, in minutes, after which a user is considered to be no longer logged in.

Maximum number of logged in users to show

Maximum number of currently logged-in users to show on the front page. The default is 25.

Allow Action List

If enabled it allows other forum users to see what their counterparts are doing on the forum at the time (I-SPY system).

This option requires that the Logged in List be enabled.

Online/Offline Status Indicator

If enabled, this option will indicate whether a user is online or offline beside all their message.


If enabled the users, will be required to indicate whether or not they are older then 13 years of age before registration. If they are not, then their legal guardians will be required to confirm the the account via Fax or E-mail.

All US based sites must leave this option enabled to comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA)

Maximum Smilies Shown

The maximum number of smilies/emoticons to show shortcuts for on the message posting forms. To see the rest the user will need to click on the "list all smilies" link.

Maximum Shown Login Length

The maximum length (in bytes) of user's login name and alias.

Maximum Shown Location Length

The maximum number of characters of a user's location to show on all pages with the exception of user info page.

Posts Per Page

How many messages to display per page.

Topics Per Page

Indicates how many topics to show per page.

Message icons per row

Number of message icons to show per row on message posting form.

Allow Tree View of Thread Listing

Whether or not to allow tree view of the thread listing. Since this form can be fairly CPU intensive, if you have a high traffic forum and/or limited CPU capacity, it is advisable to leave this feature disabled.

Disable Tree View of Message Listing

Disable the threaded view of the contents for a single topic.

Default Topic View

Allows the administrator to specify the default message and topic view.

  • Flat View thread and message list Standard bulletin board view.
  • Tree View thread and message list Draws a tree like view of the messages. Similar to how messages in the newsgroups are displayed.
  • Flat thread listing/Tree message listing The thread listing will be displayed in flat format, while the individual threads will be drawn as trees.
  • Tree thread listing/Flat message listing The thread listing will be displayed in tree formar, while the individual threads will be drawn in flat format.

Note: The last two options will only be available if the Allow Tree View of Thread Listing is enabled.

Maximum Depth of Thread Listing (tree view)

If a a tree reaches a level greater then this number, a 'more' link will be drawn and further levels will not be displayed beyond that point.

Maximum Shown Subject Length (tree view)

Subjects longer then the specified length, will be trimmed to the length specified in this option. This is done to prevent long subjects from ruining the layout of the form.

Polls Per Page

The number of polls that will be displayed per page on the poll list form.

Word Wrap

This setting defines on how many characters to wrap message bodies on, any text string longer the the number of characters specified in this option will be broken down into 1 or more strings using a space as a separator.

Set this to 0 to disable word wrapping.

Unconfirmed User Expiry

The number of days unconfirmed forum members are held in the database. They will be removed from database after this period of time.

Flood Trigger

The minimum time delay, in seconds between message posting. This option is used to prevent automated posting scripts that would attempt to post many messages at once.

Messages before allowing users to post links

Prevent new users from posting spam. Users are required to post more than this amount of messages before they can embed links into their posts.

Moved Topic Pointer Expiry

The number of days to show a pointer (shadow topic) of a moved topic from the original forum to the new forum. The pointer will be removed after this period of time.

Use Aliases

If enabled, each user would have the ability to specify a nick name other then their login name, the specified nick name, would then be displayed on the forum instead of that user's login name.

Multiple Host Login

If enabled, this option would allow the user to have more then 1 simultaneous logged in sessions from different browsers/computers. This is useful, if many of your users use more then 1 computer to connect to your forum and do not wish to re-login each time they switch between computers.

By default this option is disabled, because a left over session on a computer could allow another person with access to that computer use the forum under the logged in person's account. Normally, when a user logs in, all of that user's other sessions are immediately invalidated by this action.


When a user is banned set a special cookie that will try to make sure that this user remains banned.

Server Time Zone

The server's time zone. Pick the correct timezone from the drop down list. If incorrectly set, your forum's will display incorrect dates and times.

Forum Search Engine

If enabled the users will be able to do full text searches on the content of the posted messages. If you wish to increase the speed of the posting process or save on space used by MySQL you should turn this option off.

In the event Forum Search is disabled the search index will not be populated at the time of posting. If you later on decide to enable the search engine you will need to Rebuild Search Index.

Search results cache

Due to the complexity of the searching process the search results are being cached. This option allows you to define the maximum age of entries (in seconds) stored inside this cache. By default the cache age is set to 2 days.

Member Search

If enabled it will allow forum visitors to search for registered forum users by login and/or email.

Members Per Page

How many forum members to display per page on the members list page.

Anonymous Username

The name that will be used to refer to all unregistered forum users.

Quick Pager Link Count

How many page links to display beside a topic that exceeds 1 page in length as defined by the THREADS_PER_PAGE option.

General Pager Link Count

This is the number of direct links to pages that will be shown in the pager, excluding the << < ... > >> pointers.

Show Edited By

If enabled then all the messages that were later edited by the author of the message will have an indicator showing that the message was edited by it's author.

Show Edited By Moderator

If enabled then messages edited by the moderator or the administrator will have an indicator indicating showing that the message was edited by someone other then the message author.

Edit Time Limit

The time limit, in minutes, past which the users will no longer be able to edit their own messages.

Set the value to 0 to allow unlimited editing time (the default) or to -1 to completely disable editing.

Display IP Publicly

Whether or not to display the IP address of the message's author for all forum users.

Note: All forum administrators and moderators will be able to see the IP of the message author regardless of this option.

Max Image Count

The maximum number of images a user may include in their forum messages.

Note: This limit will ONLY work if the FUDcode style is being used.

# Of Moderators To Show

An indicator of how many forum moderators to show beside each forum on the front page. Set to 0 to prevent displaying for moderators.

Public Stats

If enabled, at the bottom of each page forum users will be able to see how long it took to generate the page as well as how many MySQL queries were ran and their timings.

Forum Info

If enabled forum statistics will be displayed on the front page. These include total number of approved posts, number of topics and registered users and the last registered user.

Forum Info Cache Age

Generating forum statistics is somewhat expensive (CPU wise) therefore the results are being cached for a small period of time, which should significantly reduce the front page load on popular forums. This option allows you to define (in seconds) the maximum time for which the forum stats will be cached.

Registration Time Limit

This limit allows you to define how often can a registration can occur. Set the value of this field to -1 if you do not wish to limit registrations.

Topic Rating

Whether or not to allow users to rate topics.

Track referrals

Whether or not to try to track forum referrals by setting a cookie with referral id to new incoming users.

Profile Image

Whether or not to allow users to enter a URL to an image in their profile that will be displayed on the user info page for that user. The danger of this feature is that the user could potentially link to a page other then an image and some browsers like Internet Explorer will parse that page executing any potentially hostile Javascript that may be present.

Moderator Notification

Notify forum moderators via e-mail when a new message is posted in a forum where a message must first be approved by the moderator before shown to the rest of the visitors.

Max History

The maximum amount of days the users may go back in history when using the message navigator. Set to -1 for unlimited.

Max Message Preview Length

The maximum length of the message body to show on the search page & message navigator.

Show PDF Generation Link

Whether or not to show a link allowing users to generate a printable PDF of the page they are viewing.

Show Syndication Link

Whether or not to show a syndication link, linking to help on how get XML/RDF feeds of forum's data.

Attachment Referrer Check

Check HTTP_REFERER of users before allowing users to download file attachments. If enabled, users who's HTTP_REFERER does not contain WWW_ROOT will be prevented from downloading the attachments.

Show Reply Reference

Whether or not to show a link (beside the message subject) to the message that the current message is a reply to.

Obfuscate e-mails in NNTP posts

Whether or not to obfuscate user e-mails when sending e-mails from FUDforum to newsgroups. Hide user profiles: If enabled, anonymous and unconfirmed forum members will not be able to view profiles of registered users.

Use PHP compression

Whether or not to use php to compress forum's output. By turning this option you are likely to save a fair bit of bandwidth. However, for performance reasons it is recommended that you use native compression built-in into most webservers like mod_gzip or mod_deflate for Apache.

PHP compression level

If PHP's compression is used, this indicates how extensively should the data be compressed, the values can range from 1-9.

Use PATH_INFO style URLs

Whether or not use PATH_INFO based URLs, this will make forum's URLs look like This makes forum's URLs much easier to remember as well as more search engine friendly. Unfortunately this feature mostly works with Apache based servers and may not work with other web servers. To see if your web server supports this feature, click on the provided test link. If you see the forum's front page, then you can make use of this feature. To make use of this you will also need to select or create a new template based on the 'path_info' template set.

To enable PATH_INFO for Apache (if not already enabled), set the AcceptPathInfo parameter to On. For example:

<Directory /var/www>
       Options +Includes
       AcceptPathInfo On

Disable Captcha Test

If disabled users will not need to complete a turing test intended to prevent automated account creation bots. Captcha test involves identifying a series of random letters that are displayed in ASCII form.

Disable AutoComplete

If disabled the browser will not attempt to 'remember' the values for the login form.

Anonymous User Captcha Test

When anonymous users post messages perform captcha test.

All Message Forum Notification

If enabled, subscribers to a forum will receive notifications about every new message in the forum, rather then just new topics in the forum.

Whois Server Address

Hostname or IP address of the whois server to use for IP address analysis.

Time between login attempts

Minimum time between login attempts in seconds. This option is intended as a throttle mechanism against dictionary attacks on forum passwords.

Disable caching for anonymous users

Disable sending of page-cache headers to anonymous users, this may solve extended caching by browsers non-complaint with web specs.

Disable actions list for anonymous users

Disable displaying of the action list to the anonymous users.

Disable who's online for anonymous users

Disable displaying of who's online to the anonymous users.

Enable Geo-Location

Enable country identifier flags beside each message poster, requires import of Geolocation database, see the Geolocation Management control panel for more details.

Update Geo-Location on login

If enabled then user's country (name and flag) will be updated each time they login. This option depends on Geolocation being enabled.

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