How To Use The Forum


You must be registered with the forum before you may start any threads.
To register click on the 'Login/Register' button on the top right of the window or follow the link from the home page. Then you must fill in personal details plus optional profile details such as personal image url, home page and signature plus confirm that you accept the Forum terms and conditions.

Once you have entered a valid set of details you will be registered as a member and logged in to the Forum.

Logging In/Out

You may login via the 'Login/Register' button at the top right of the window or the link from the home page.
Enter your user name and password. If these are recognised you will be logged in and relocated to the home page.
Once you are logged in the 'Login/Register' button will change to a 'Logout' button. Crazily enough you can use this to log out.


Along with changing any details given at registration (other than your user name), you can use your profile to set the following:

Your email will only be displayed to users of the forum who are logged in.


From the home page you can click on any board you would like to view or select the 'First Look' page to see the most recent posts.
You may hide boards that you are uninterested in using the 'hide' links to the right of each board title. If any boards are hidden a 'Show All Boards' link will appear in the 'Forum Extras' menu which will return them all to your front page.
If there are more than threads to a board then a set of links will appear at the top of the page offering to show you the the board in thread chunks. You will default to the the first threads.
From the board page you can click on any thread you would like to view.
In a similar way to the boards, if there are more than posts to a thread then a set of links will appear at the top of the page offering to show you the the thread in post chunks. You will default to the the first posts.
If you wish to view all posts in a multi-page thread at once then you can hit the 'Show All' button on the top right of the page.
Threads and posts are displayed from oldest to newest.
Administrators' names will all be shown preceded by an asterisk.


The search page allows you to scour the forum according to boards, usernames, titles, post bodies and thread tags.
You can also search an individual thread for keywords or sort a review thread by title or rating via the 'Search' button at the top left of the page.

New Threads/Posts

At the top and bottom of each board and thread page there is a link entitled 'Start New Thread' and 'Post to this Thread' respectively. When clicked the new thread/post window will appear. Only on a new thread will the option to enter a title and thread tag appear. This may be a maximum of 128 characters. There is no limit to the size of the post body.
You may decide whether you wish to display your signature, home page url, avatar (personal image) or email address with the post. All except for the signature are defaulted to on.
You may also set whether URLs in your post will be automatically converted to hyperlinks via the 'Links' checkbox.
Once you have composed or updated a message you can click the 'preview' button to view the post body as it will appear in the thread to check that images and links will display properly. You may make anonymous posts by following the 'Make Anonymous Post' link from a thread. Also registered users who are not logged in are able to enter their username and password on the new post form to submit the post in their own name without logging in."; ?>


If you are logged in then every post you view will have a button labelled 'Quote' at the lower right side. When clicked, this will take you to the new post page with the text of the post you were viewing already inserted beginning with a note of who you are quoting and encased within the tags '[quote] and [/quote]. All text within these tags will be reformatted to distinguish it from the rest of the post.


If you are the author of a post or have administrator rights, a button marked 'Edit' will appear. This will open it for editing.


There is a set of custom tags for general posting usage. Note that these will not work in titles or personal messages or in the chatroom:

Styles Special Text Colours
[bold][b] Bold [/b][/bold]
[italic][i] Italic [/i][/italic]
[underline][u] Underline [/u][/underline]
[large][big] Large/Big [/big][/large]
[xlarge][xbig] XLarge/XBig [/xbig][/xlarge]
[small] Small [/small]
[xsmall] Extra-Small [/xsmall]
[superscript] Superscript [/superscript]
[subscript] Subscript [/subscript]
[scroll] Scroll [/scroll]*
[strike] Strikethrough [/strike]
[hidden] [[Hidden]] [/hidden]
[url=""]Check It Out![/url]**
[red] Red [/red]
[green] Green [/green]
[blue] Blue [/blue]
[purple] Purple [/purple]
[aqua] Aqua [/aqua]
[yellow] Yellow [/yellow]

Special Smileys

* May not work in some older browsers
** double quotes and leading "http://" optional

Posting Images

To post an image you simply need to add the tag '[img]' at the front of the link and '[/img]' at the end. e.g. [img][/img]
If you wish to resize an image then you can add the dimensions you wish it to display in by using any of the following formats:
[img 300x400] [img=300x400] [img "300x400"] [img="300x400"] [img "300x400"] [img="300x400"] - The first value is the width and the second is the height.


In the new post/thread or update pages you may insert a smiley into the the post at the cursor position (IE) or at the end of the post (other browsers) by clicking the relevant image.
The following smileys will be automatically changed into their associated pictures:
:-) or :) becomes
;-) or ;) becomes
:-( or :( becomes
:-p or :p becomes
:-> or :> becomes


The 'Gold' board is an archive of particularly popular threads that are being stored for posterity.
Normal users are unable to start a new thread or post to a thread in this board.


Some threads will be highlighted in green and you will be unable to post to them or quote from them. These are 'stickies' and their purpose is to allow admin personnel to leave messages for general users without sparking a full blown conversation about whatever the subject may be. So if you see such a thread it may be some useful information about the forums and is probably worth a look.
Individual posts may also appear as stickys in which case they will be highlighted and you will be unable to quote from them. You will still be able to post to the thread.

Thread Rating

At the bottom of each thread you'll see a set of buttons (0-5) allowing you to rate a thread. 5 being the best, 0 (or just not rating it) being the worst. All ratings made will immediately update the indicators on the board view page. However once you have rated a thread you will not be allowed to rate that same thread again for the next two weeks.
You can also simply give a thread a 'Thumbs Up' or 'Thumbs Down' using the appropriate buttons.


The chatroom is a live conversation which can be entered by any registered member of the forum. You can select the room you wish to enter and then the rooms themselves are laid out in a similar style to Microsoft Messenger and need little explanation.
A list of the users currently within the chatroom will appear on the home page and the users within your room are shown on the right of the chatroom window.
All HTML tags will be stripped out of chatroom conversations. However the standard smileys (see above) will be converted to images and URLs will become hyperlinks.
When the chatroom is in use the 'Chatroom' link on the menu bar will become blue.
The checkbox marked 'Bring to front on new message' does exactly what it says. When checked, any time a there is a further post to the conversation, the chatroom window will pop up in front of any other windows you have open.

Personal Messages

Your personal messages can be accessed via the link in the menu bar. If you have any unread private messages then your front page will display a message.
You can navigate through your messages using the 'Inbox/Outbox' on the left of the page or via the previous/next buttons. Messages are displayed most recent first.
You can reply, reply to all, delete or compose new message using the buttons provided. When composing a new message you must select your main recipient and CC recipients from the drop down list. When using the 'Reply' and 'Reply To All' functions the recipients will be selected automatically.
By clicking the 'PM' button on a post you can also compose a new message to that user.
Once you have messages in your inbox it is regarded as full and, while you will still be able to receive new messages, you will not be able to send any more until you delete a sufficient number to take you below the limit.
As with normal posts, the following smileys will be automatically changed into their associated pictures:
:-) or :) becomes
;-) or ;) becomes
:-( or :( becomes
:-p or :p becomes
:-> or :> becomes

You can also use this feature to contact the Forum Technical Support. Scroll to the top of the 'To' select box and select 'Tech Support' to send your message directly to the Support Team.

Custom Titles

If you have a custom title set then it will appear in place of your rating (calculated by number of posts). You can change anyone's custom title on their profile page unless they have locked it or you have been banned from changing custom titles. You may be banned for the violation of any of the forum rules.
You may lock out your custom title which means that no title will appear on you posts and there will be no edit box on your profile. However this will also prevent you from being able to edit anyone else's custom title.


All Forummers now get their very own website. These can be created and edited via the button on your profile page and once created other users may view them via the buttons on your profile and your posts.
You may use all standard html and forum custom tags in your site.


The newsletter archive can be accessed via the link in the menu bar, initially this will show you the most recent newsletter. The archive can be navigated using the next and previous buttons.
When a newsletter is created it will be emailed to all users who have the option selected in their profiles.

Extra Features

Properly formatted URLs in posts, titles and signatures will be automatically parsed into links unless specifically turned off.
There are buttons at the top right of each thread page to take you to the bottom of the current page and to take you directly to the last post in the thread.
Birthdays will be announced in the Message Bar on the stated date of birth for any user that has logged in within the two months preceding the birthday.
All times are in GMT/BST.

All smileys courtesy of and