WordPress plugin: bbPress WP Tweaks

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Adds bbPress forum specific sidebar, wrapper, widgets, user columns, login links and other tweaks.

bbPress WP Tweaks replaces regular sidebar with forum specific “bbPress sidebar” to your WordPress. To setup forum specific sidebar you should first select correct forum wrapper file which has sidebar. Then select what action perform with existing sidebar: replace, prepend or append. Then select which sidebar to target with this action. You can also choose “none” option for target sidebar, in that case no bbPress sidebar will not be added to wordpress.
If nothing in forum sidebar then regular sidebar will be shown.
You can choose which forum wrapper template to use in plugin settings page or specify other custom wrapper file that exists in your theme.

Features

default wrapper for forum pages

bbPRess uses wrapper file in your theme in this order: ‘bbpress.php’, ‘forum.php’, ‘page.php’, ‘single.php’, ‘index.php’. First existing template file will be used. You can choose which template file to check first. Most themes don’t have sidebar in ‘page.php’, ‘single.php’ files, if you choose them then no sidebar will be shown in forums. On the other hand most themes ‘index.php’ file always has sidebar. If you cannot see forum sidebar then change this value to index.php in plugin settings (settings -> bbPress WP Tweaks ) page. If your theme has other non standard template files like “page-fullwidth.php” for example then you can use it by selecting “custom” option and writing page-fullwidth.php in text input field. If that file exists then it will be used as forum wrapper.

bbPress login links widget

If you want to display login and register links instead of login form in your sidebar then use this widget. By default bbPress will not show login links to visitors if they want to post in forum. Use this widget instead of login form in your bbPress sidebar.

bbPress users widget

Used to display users linking to their profile pages ordered by:

  • most topics with count
  • most replies with count
  • recently active with time
  • online users with time
  • new users with registration time
  • old users with registration time

Show forum description

By default forum description is shown only on where forums are listed, not in forum page. With this options enabled you will show forum description on Forum page, on sub forums, on topics, on replies. So user will know what this forum about. If it is a product forum then you can add product image, links or buttons to product page, pricing/purchase page etc. This will make navigation between product and forum a lot easier.

Forum related columns for users view in admin area

This is must have feature to have for any forum administrator. With this option enabled you will have forum related sortable columns “number of topics”, “number of replies”, “registration date”, “last active date” in “Users” admin page. Topic and reply counts are linked to user profile pages. You can sort by those columns and see latest registered users or users with most topics. Each column seperately can be switched off using “Screen Options” inside users page.

Disable not used features of plugin

You can disable sidebar by selecting “none” as target sidebar. Disable widgets by unchecking related checkboxes in plugin options page. All other features also can be individually enabled or disabled in plugin options page.

Screenshots

Back story of bbPress WP Tweaks plugin

I was using bbPress, version 1.0  and smaller versions, which was great as forum but separate from wordpress. Then they released version 2.0 of bbPress as a wordpress plugin which is great but it is missing some integration features to my wordpress theme. I redesigned my wordpress theme to match rest of my site using Teventy Eleven theme provided by worpdress. With some tweaks forum integrated correctly to it. Main disadvantage was sidebar which is shared with blog. You do not want to have exact same sidebar in forum and blog. You can if you want but in forum you need more forum centric sidebar with necessary widgets to login. I was running my forum without login not even knowing it. It was displaying ‘You must be logged in to reply to this topic.‘ message without login or register links. Which is must have links in every forum. So instead of adding them to my theme files I decided to create a plugin that will add those features in any wordpress theme.

I hope that this plugin will save lots of your time. bbPress WP Tweaks took me 3 days to understand wordpress, bbpress and plugin building process. I am open to suggestions and bug fixes. Feel free to report bugs here.

Demo of bbPress WP Tweaks plugin

Check out my forum that uses bbPress plugin.

Download plugin

Download latest version from wordpress.org repository. bbPress WP Tweaks

FAQ:

Q: Sidebar  is not showing in forum pages, how to fix it? [via]

A: There are couple thing that you should check to use bbPress sidebar. To easily check if sidebar will be replaced do steps 2,3,4. And then switch wrapper and view your forums page in front end.

  1. Make sure that forum wrapper has sidebar that you want to replace. Try switching to other wrappers, in most cases index.php wrapper will have sidebar.
  2. Select “Replace” as sidebar action.
  3. Select existing sidebar in your wrapper for sidebar target option. This fields shows all sidebars in your theme, it will not detect which sidebar your selected wrapper has. Usually sidebar target with name “Sidebar” has in most index.php wrappers.
  4. Make sure that you added some widgets to “bbpress sidebar” in wordpress widgets page.

Q: Can I display different sidebar for each forum, topic or reply in my forums?

A: “bbPress wp Tweaks” plugin will display same sidebar for all your forum related pages including forum, topic, reply, user profile pages.

Suggested bbPress plugins

  • bbPress New Topic Notifications – get notified when new topic posted, instead of checking your forum periodically for new posts and questions get notification directly to your email address. Good for admins and moderators to know when new post added and respond timely on forum.

ChangeLog

Version 1.4.1 (release date: 14.12.2017)

  • Removed setting default value to forum wrapper. It was breaking forum for some themes that was generating excerpts when called index.php file.
  • Fixed error related to some php versions used in users widget
  • Translated plugin to Russian and Turkish.

Version 1.4 (release date: 12.12.2017)

  • Chaneged sidebar auto detection to selecting in admin area
  • Added more forum wrappers and admin definable custom wrapper
  • Added Forum users widget
  • Added login links to places where login required for adding new topic and reply. Added option formatting those links.
  • Added option to show forum description
  • Added forum related columns to users table in admin area
  • Added last activity time usermeta value
  • Added option to disable not used widgets offered by this plugin
  • Added option to redirect 404 page for authors to related forum profile page
  • Fixed login links widget

Version 1.3.1

  • Minor bugfixes

Version 1.3

  • Added compatibility to WordPress version 3.5 and greater

Version 1.2

  • Added compatibility to bbPress version 2.1 and greater
  • Displaying existing forum wrappers in bold in plugin settings.

Version 1.1

  • Changed how main sidebar is detected. This adds compatibility to more themes.

Version 1.0

  • Initial release of my edition of the plugin.
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