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Thread: Major Forum Changes Ahead

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Posts: 31-40 of 308
2017-05-07 21:49:05

I've made plenty of great progress getting the PM system up and running. It is basically finished and ready for beta testing with one exception. I still need to write the transition to convert the existing PMs to the new system. That shouldn't take long, and I will try to work on it more today. Look for a real call to beta test very soon.
2017-05-11 00:41:36

I had the day off work today, so I spent even more time on this than normal. I've done tons of great work getting the old PMs to transfer over, and all of that is complete. I also got some other things sorted that needed work like the delete and mark-as-unread tools. I thought I would be ready for beta testing once the old PMs were converted over, but it has shown the need for more work. Mainly I need to get the pagination working, otherwise the Inbox/Outbox can take a long time to load. I was hoping to avoid pagination for a while, but it looks like I have to do it now.

So, once I get pagination working, and a few other small little bits it will be time for beta testing. I'm aiming for this weekend.

Sorry for the delay here. I've been trying to average one feature a week and have been able to do so up until now. I thought PMs would take 2 weeks, maybe 3 at the most, and allotted for that kind of time in my estimate. It's looking like PMs will take a full 4 weeks to complete. Obviously this pushes everything out to the future, but such is life. I know how important this is to everyone and it can't come soon enough.
2017-05-11 17:22:06
You're doing great! I'd still be staring at the screen...
2017-05-14 16:46:41

I have the pagination technique sorted out functionally and stylistically. I also took care of the other little things I wanted to before beta testing PMs.
It's time to beta test the PM system. In prepping for that, I finally ran the PM conversion on the entire DB. There are ~158,000 PMs to convert. The conversion times out around ~21,000 so I need to get that sorted and then we can test.

Edit: I have the conversion script running in automated batches now. It's taking a while, but the conversion process is moving along smoothly. In another 30 minutes it might be finished and beta testing can begin.
Last edited by BenFenner on 2017-05-14 at 19-09-49.
2017-05-23 22:19:57

Beta testers for the PM system weren't super eager, so I took the opportunity to flesh out a few more things with the PM system that I'd forgotten about (the advanced Reply button, along with the Forward feature).
There are still two things to eventually add (PMs don't display user avatars and such like they should, and the unread messages notification doesn't work yet) but those will come later as they aren't super important.
It is now really time to test this, so here are the directions:

1) Log into the beta test site using your forum credentials from 5 months ago. Get the URL from the chat.
2) Click on the Private Messages sub-navigation button.
3) Spot-check your Inbox and Outbox PMs, making sure you see only your own PMs, and that they are listing as coming or being sent to the right people. Also spot-check they are marked as read/replied/forwarded appropriately.
4) Make sure your maximum allowed PM storage count is correct for your user type.
5) Try deleting some PMs and make sure the PMs delete, and the PM counts update.
6) Mark some PMs as unread (icon should change and title should get bold) and then read them again to see if that works.
7) Create a new PM from scratch using the Send New Message button and send BenFenner a test PM. Make sure a copy of it goes to your Outbox.
8) Send a PM to yourself. Make sure you get an e-mail about it. Make sure there is a copy of it in your Outbox and in your Inbox.
9) Pick a PM from your inbox and reply to it (preferably someone else who is also beta testing). Be aware that whomever you reply to will get an e-mail as well, so limit how many you send to avoid confusion. It will look like the real forum has sent the e-mail. Make it clear in your PM that you're sending a test message to test the beta site and that the PM should not be replied to except by other beta testers. Check your Outbox to see a copy of the PM there.
10) Pick a PM from your outbox and reply to it the same way as above (this is actually a new feature I added). Check your Outbox to see a copy of the PM there.
11) Send a PM to yourself. Make sure you get an e-mail about it. Make sure there is a copy of it in your Outbox and in your Inbox.

There are plenty of other things to test if you'd like. Test the Forward feature, the quick reply feature and the normal reply feature if you'd like. Try the BCC feature if you'd like, maybe BCC me on some of the test replies above? Also if you have PMs with multiple recipients, you can test the Reply-All feature (either quick or full featured depending on which button you click).

Again, be aware that each PM you send will cause an e-mail to go out to the recipient(s) and it will seem like it's coming from the real forum.

Please report any problems or bugs you find. Report successes too. Thank you in advance for all of your help!
Last edited by BenFenner on 2017-05-23 at 22-29-38.
2017-05-27 02:18:16

There was minimal beta testing, but it did reveal one issue. Duplicate e-mails were going out when PMs were sent. I fixed that relatively easily, and now it seems the PM system is ready for prime time. I still want to add some settings (like the ability to turn off e-mail notifications) but for now it is good enough.

I have cleared my schedule for this 3-day weekend and plan on making tons of progress on the last part now. I'll be getting threads and posts working. This is the last piece of the puzzle, but it's a big piece.
Here we go...
Last edited by BenFenner on 2017-05-27 at 22-08-04.
2017-05-27 12:36:03
Here we go!

Thanks for all the hard work!
2017-05-28 00:28:24
Originally Posted by NissanEgg
Here we go!

Thanks for all the hard work!

That's what I'm saying...been (Ben?) a long time coming!!!
2017-05-29 23:29:49

I made strong progress this long weekend, forgoing a vacation at the beach to power through lots of back-end work. I have the forum sections basically converted, and almost have the threads fully converted. Next up is making sure the polls are converted properly, change up the way classified ad threads work a bit, and then get regular posts converted.
Then I can work on the front-end stuff.
I'll have another update soon as usual.
2017-06-10 20:06:19

These past two weeks I've had to attend to family and my general sanity, so I took a bit of a break from hitting this as hard as I have these last couple months. With that out of the way, I'm back into this full throttle. I got the thread conversion sorted out and fully complete in the database. I also sorted out the new classified ad thread technique in the DB. Next up for DB conversion are posts, including polls. This is the last bit of back-end work that needs to be done, then I can work on getting the front end for them sorted out. I'll see how far I get by tomorrow and will update again.
Last edited by BenFenner on 2017-06-10 at 20-09-40.
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