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phpBB – force your users to subscribe to threads by default

It is really annoying when you have a forum where you often have members who come and never return, even to check their own topics. A partial solution for this is to run the following query, which will change all users preferences so that they have topic reply notification enabled by default:

UPDATE [your phpBB database name].[the phpBB table prefix]users SET user_notify=1 WHERE [the phpBB table prefix]users.user_id >=53

NB: replace 53 with the ID of the first real member (this is to avoid modifying settings for bot users).
This was tested with phpBB 3.0.1. The most efficient way to do this would be to run this query everytime someone signs up (include the code somewhere on the sign up page…), or to a lesser degree, run it regularly with a cron job.

Update (2014-07-04)

For a technique which doesn’t involves running a script on the whole database, cf the first comment (basically, edit the source code to chance the default value for new users).

If you’re a user looking to edit this setting, it’s located in User Control Panel → Board Preferences → Edit posting defaults. If you’re familiar enough with URL manipulation, you can also use this direct link (just adapt it for the board’s domain name):

Posted in phpBB, web development.

2 Responses

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  1. Meleniumshane90 says

    Thank you for this, I will give it a go. There’s actually a workaround so this script won’t have to be run each time new users join.

    open includes/function_user.php

    find ‘user_notify’ => 0,
    change to ‘user_notify’ => 1,

    • patheticcockroach says

      3 years later I realize I forgot to say thanks. Probably comment moderation was off at that time ^^ Added a note to the post.

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