Discourse is the most awesome open source forum that there is :-)
I originally set up an instance of the Discourse forum platform for E-Health Insider and the CCIO Leaders’ Network (now known as the wider Digital Health Networks ) in January 2015, as part of a discovery project into new social collaboration platforms for the Networks. Since then I’ve been running that platform and have taken on running Discourse fora for other groups, both commercially and pro-bono. I also wrote the Google Group-to-Discourse migration/import script, which is open source and is likely to be come part of the core Discourse codebase in the future.
If you want a Discourse forum, I’d suggest you check out the Discourse services available direct from Discourse.org themselves. However, if you require a UK-hosted solution, which Discourse don’t offer, I can provide this for you, as well as a number of bespoke Discourse services.
Here’s a rundown of the package I offer:
- Set up your instance of Discourse on a UK cloud server (or alternative location if preferred)
- Set up SSL (HTTPS) via LetsEncrypt for industry-standard security
- Set up the required email sending SMTP service
- Initial configuration of the ‘look and feel’ of Discourse to your exact requirements - Discourse can be themed/branded to match your existing branding/colourways
- Setup of daily off-site backup to a separate server (on a different EU-based cloud services provider, for ultimate reassurance)
- Setup of Social logins (any or all of Google, Facebook, Twitter, GitHub, Yahoo according to the needs of your users)
- Regular server updates to the Ubuntu OS
- Discourse updates within 24 hours of them being released (usually releases are every 2 weeks or so)
- Addition of new sections (Categories) as per your requirements, with advice on how to design your community’s sections and how to manage security/permissions
- Bulk invites for users, setup of custom user groups and security/privacy settings for each section as per your requirements
- Initial help with moderation of the forum
- Training of your team to get the best from Discourse - on-site if initially required
- Tips and tricks for growing your community - based on my experience of growing the DHI CCIO Network from less than 100 people up to its current 2000 engaged highly specialist audience.
- Rapid response to emails (always <24 hours, sometimes responses in realtime!)
Extra services I can offer
- Development of custom functionality on Discourse (all subsequently also released as open source contributions to share with the rest of the Discourse community)
- Custom integrations with other web services you are using in your team
- Discourse plugin development
- Migrations of discussion content from other forums/platforms.
Contact me to discuss your requirements and pricing.