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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Login and registration issues

Why can’t I log in?
There are several reasons why this could occur. First, ensure your username and password are correct. If they are, contact us to make sure you haven’t been banned. It is also possible there’s an error in how the forum is working, so just get in touch with us via the website contact form and report the difficulty you’re having. We’ll check it out and get back to you.

Why do I need to register at all?
If you wish to read the public areas of this forum you can do so without registering. However, registration will allow you to start posting, although all postings by new members are pre-moderated before going live.

Premium Members also have access to additional features not available to guests or free members such as use of avatars, forum signatures, private messaging, etc, as well as access to our premium content areas.

If you want to participate, we therefore recommend that you register.

Why do I get logged off automatically?
If you do not tick the Log me in automatically box when you login, the board will only keep you logged in for a preset time. This prevents misuse of your account by anyone else. To stay logged in, tick the box during login. (NBThis is not recommended if you access the board from a shared computer, eg library, internet café, university computer lab, etc.)

How do I prevent my username appearing in the online user listings?
Within your User Control Panel, under “Board preferences”, you will find the option Hide your online status. Enable this option with Yes and you will only appear to the administrators, moderators and yourself. You will be counted as a hidden user. Please note that this feature is only available to certain categories of members.

I’ve lost my password!
Don’t panic! While your password cannot be retrieved, it can easily be reset. Visit the login page and click I’ve forgotten my password. Follow the instructions and you should be able to log in again shortly.

I registered but cannot login!
First, check your username and password. If they are correct, then it’s likely that your registration hasn’t been activated yet. This board requires new registrations to be activated by the new member. You should have been sent an email when you registered; if so, read it and follow the instructions if you haven’t already done so. If you did not receive an email, you may have provided an incorrect email address or the email may have been picked up by a spam filter. If you are sure the email address you provided is correct, try contacting an administrator.

I registered in the past but can’t login any more?!
It is possible an administrator has deactivated or deleted your account for some reason. Also, many boards periodically remove users who have not posted for a long time to reduce the size of the database. If this has happened, try registering again and being more involved in discussions.

Also check that you are on the correct forum and not one with a name similar to the one you originally joined.

Alternatively, try contacting us and asking if we know the reason for your exclusion.

Why can’t I register?
It is possible that we’ve banned a range of IP addresses that includes yours, or disallowed the username you are attempting to register. Contact us for assistance.

What does the “Delete all board cookies” do?
“Delete all board cookies” deletes the cookies created by phpBB which keep you authenticated and logged into the board. It also provides functions such as tracking read and unread forums, topics and posts. If you are having problems logging in or out, deleting board cookies may help.

User preferences and settings

How do I change my settings?
If you are a registered user, all your settings are stored in the board database. To alter them, visit your User Control Panel; a link can usually be found at the top of board pages. This system will allow you to change all your settings and preferences.

Note that some settings may depend on your level of membership. For example, free members cannot change their forum signatures or avatars, as these privileges are only available to Premium Members.

The times are not correct!
This forum uses GMT (all year round) by default. Therefore it’s possible the time displayed is from a timezone different from the one you are in. If this is the case, visit your User Control Panel and change your timezone to match your particular location, e.g. Paris, New York, Sydney, etc. Please note that changing the timezone, like most settings, can only be done by registered users.

How do I show an image along with my username?
These images are known as avatars and are fairly widespread across the Web. They’re generally chosen by the user personally to identify them on the websites they frequent, or else chosen (or supplied) from a limited range of default avatars available on any given website. On this board, they’re only available to admins, moderators, Premium Members and Supporters.

What is my rank and how do I change it?
Ranks, which appear below your username, identify certain categories of user, eg moderators, administrators, new users. You cannot directly change the wording of any board ranks as they are set by the board administrator. Please do not abuse the board by posting unnecessarily just to increase your rank. Like most boards, we won’t tolerate this and will simply lower your post count. In extreme cases of such abuse, it may even lead to you being banned.

Posting Issues

How do I post a topic in a forum?
To post a new topic in a forum, click the relevant button on either the forum or topic screens. You’ll need to register before you can post a message. A list of your permissions in each forum is available at the bottom of the forum and topic screens. Example: You can post new topics, You can vote in polls, etc.

Please note that all newly registered members go through an initial period where their posts are pre-moderated prior to going live. This is to prevent spammers from spoiling the board for the bona fide members.

How do I edit or delete a post?
Unless you are a board administrator or moderator, you can only edit or delete your own posts, and even then only within 15 minutes after your post was made. Please note that you cannot delete a post once someone has replied.

You can edit a post by clicking the edit button for the relevant post. If someone has already replied to your post, a message will be inserted which lists the number of times you edited it, along with the date and time. This will only appear if someone has made a reply; it will not appear if a moderator or administrator edited the post, though they may leave a note as to why they’ve edited the post at their own discretion.

How do I add a signature to my post?
Adding a forum signature is a privilege only available to Premium Members and Supporters. To add a signature to a post you must first create one via your User Control Panel. Once created, you can tick the Attach a signature box on the posting form to add your signature. You can also add a signature by default to all your posts by clicking the appropriate radio button in your profile. If you do so, you can still prevent a signature being added to individual posts by un-ticking the add signature box within the posting form.

Sometimes spammers insert fake sigs into their postings in the hope of fooling the admins. Please don’t waste your time and ours by trying this silly trick. You won’t fool us for a nanosecond.

How do I create a poll?
When posting a new topic or editing the first post of a topic, click the “Poll creation” tab below the main posting form; if you cannot see this, you do not have appropriate permissions to create polls. Enter a title and at least two options in the appropriate fields, making sure each option is on a separate line in the text area. You can also set the number of options users may select during voting under “Options per user” and a time limit in days for the poll (0 for infinite duration, unless the topic is subsequently locked).

Why can’t I add more poll options?
The limit for poll options is set by the board administrator.

How do I edit or delete a poll?
As with posts, polls can only be edited by the original poster, a moderator or an administrator. To edit a poll, click to edit the first post in the topic; this always has the poll associated with it. If no one has cast a vote, users can delete the poll or edit any poll option. However, if members have already placed votes, only moderators or administrators can edit or delete it. This prevents the poll’s options from being changed mid-way through a poll.

Why can’t I access a forum?
Some forums may be limited to certain users or groups. To view, read, post or perform another action you may need special permissions. If you don’t have access to a forum you believe you are entitled to have access to, then please contact us.

Why can’t I add attachments?
We’ve disabled the attachments facility on this forum.

Why does my post need to be approved?
All newly registered members posts go through pre-moderation. This means that a moderator or administrator will either allow or disallow your initial posts. This process protects our members from spammers dumping links on the forum and also saves the mods/admins from unnecessary work in keeping the forum clean. Don’t worry, the pre-mod phase is only until we get to know you a little bit better, and you’ll soon be out of it.

Formatting and Topic Types

What is BBCode?
BBCode is a special implementation of HTML, offering great formatting control on particular objects in a post. The use of BBCode is granted by the administrator, but it can also be disabled on a per post basis from the posting form. BBCode itself is similar in style to HTML, but tags are enclosed in square brackets [ and ] rather than < and >. For more information on BBCode see the guide which can be accessed from the posting page.

Can I use HTML?
No. It is not possible to post HTML on this board and have it rendered as HTML. Most formatting which can be carried out using HTML can be applied using BBCode instead.

What are smilies?
Smilies, or emoticons, are small images which can be used to express a feeling using a short code, e.g. :) denotes happy, while :( denotes sad. The full list of emoticons can be seen in the posting form. Try not to overuse smilies, however, as too many of them can quickly render a post unreadable and a moderator may edit them out or remove the post altogether.

Can I post images?
Yes, images can be shown in your posts if they’re stored on a publicly accessible web server, e.g. You cannot link to pictures stored on your own PC (unless it is a publicly accessible server) nor images stored behind authentication mechanisms, e.g. Gmail, Hotmail or Yahoo! mailboxes, password protected sites, etc. To display the image use the BBCode [img] tag.

What are global announcements?
Global announcements contain information of importance to all forum users and you should read them when they appear. They will appear at the top of every forum and within your User Control Panel.

What are announcements?
Announcements contain important information for the forum you are currently reading and you should read them wherever they appear. Announcements appear at the top of every page in the forum to which they are posted.

What are sticky topics?
Sticky topics within the forum appear below announcements and only on the first page. They contain information that has been of help (or is likely to be) to a large number of forum users. They are often quite important so you should read them whenever possible.

What are locked topics?
Locked topics are topics where users can no longer reply and any poll it contained was automatically ended. Topics may be locked for many reasons and were set this way by either the forum moderator or board administrator.

User Levels and Groups

What are Administrators?
Administrators are members assigned with the highest level of control over the entire board. These members can control all facets of board operation, including setting permissions, banning users, creating usergroups or moderators, etc. They also have full moderator capabilities in all forums.

What are Moderators?
Moderators are individuals (or groups of individuals) who look after the forums from day to day. They have the authority to edit or delete posts and lock, unlock, move, delete and split topics in the forum they moderate. Generally, moderators are present to prevent users from going off-topic or posting abusive or offensive material. Moderators are also responsible for starting and continuing discussions in the areas of their responsibility.

What are usergroups?
Usergroups are groups of users that divide the community into manageable sections board administrators can work with. Each user can belong to several groups and each group can be assigned individual permissions. This provides an easy way for administrators to change permissions for many users at once, such as changing moderator permissions or granting users access to a private forum.

Where are the usergroups and how do I join one?
You can view all usergroups available to you via the “Usergroups” link within your User Control Panel. If you would like to join one, proceed by clicking the appropriate button. Not all groups have open access, however. Some may require approval to join, some may be closed and some may even have hidden memberships. If the group is open, you can join it by clicking the appropriate button. If a group requires approval to join you may request to join by clicking the appropriate button. The user group leader will need to approve your request and may ask why you want to join the group. Please do not harass a group leader if they reject your request; they will have their reasons.

Private Messaging

I cannot send private messages!
There are several reasons for this. Only Premium Members have private message (PM) privileges. If you are a free member then you can’t send or receive PMs. If you are a Premium Member and can’t access the PM system, then make sure you’re logged in. If you continue to have difficulty, then please contact an admin for assistance.

I keep getting unwanted private messages!
You can block a user from sending you private messages by using message rules within your User Control Panel. If you are receiving abusive private messages from a particular user, inform a board administrator; they have the power to prevent a user from sending private messages.

Pals and Pests

What are my Pals and Pests lists?
You can use these lists to organise other members of the board. Members added to your pals list will be listed within your User Control Panel for quick access to see their online status and to send them private messages. Subject to template support, posts from these users may also be highlighted. If you add a user to your pests list, any posts they make will be hidden by default.

How can I add / remove users to my Pals or Pests list?
You can add users to your list in two ways. Within each user’s profile, there is a link to add them to either your Pals or Pests list. Alternatively, from your User Control Panel, you can directly add users by entering their member name. You may also remove users from your list using the same page.

Searching the Forums

How can I search a forum or forums?
Enter a search term in the search box located on the index, forum or topic pages. A search started here will search the entire forum. Advanced search enables you to narrow down your search by user or forum, and can be accessed by clicking the “Advanced Search” link shown on all pages on the forum at the top of the right-hand sidebar.

Why does my search return no results?
Your search may have been too vague or may have included many common words (eg and, the, it) which the forum search engine does not index. Be more specific and use the options available within Advanced Search.

Why does my search return a blank page!?
Your search returned too many results for the server to handle. Use Advanced Search and be more specific in the terms used and the forums that are to be searched.

How do I search for members?
Visit the “Members” page and click the “Find a member” link. This facility is not available to Free members or to casual users.

How can I find my own posts and topics?
Your own posts can be retrieved by clicking the “View your posts” link in the right-hand sidebar, choosing “View your posts” within the User Control Panel or via your own profile page. To search for your topics, use the Advanced Search page and fill in the various options appropriately.

Topic Subscriptions and Bookmarks

What is the difference between bookmarking and subscribing?
Bookmarking in phpBB3 is much like bookmarking in your web browser. You aren’t alerted when there’s an update, but you can come back to the topic later. Subscribing will notify you when there is an update to the topic or forum on the board via your preferred method or methods.

How do I subscribe to specific forums or topics?
To subscribe to a specific forum, click the “Subscribe forum” link on that forum’s home page. To subscribe to a topic, reply to the topic with the subscribe checkbox ticked or click the “Subscribe topic” link within the topic itself.

How do I remove my subscriptions?
To remove your subscriptions, go to your User Control Panel and follow the links to your subscriptions.