Can you import threads from proboards to discourse?

Hi there,

I’ve recently set up discourse here:

I have an old forum here:, I was wondering if there’s a way to export threads from Proboards & move it into Discourse? My discourse instance is set up via a droplet on Digital Ocean. I looked around the support forums and saw migration threads for most major forums but not proboards?

I guess the big question is does proboards have an exporter?

Discourse can technically ingest any well-formed data, and many importers already exist.

You may not be able to find an exporter for proboards if they don’t facilitate the export of data. I would start by answering that question.


Proboards does not provide a way to export data. This is done intentionally to prevent you from leaving their platform.

While technically possible, it’s a lot of work to retrieve all posts. You have to scrape every user, topic, post and like (which is made challenging by Cloudflare). You then have to sanitize the data by fixing weird HTML, quotes, URLs, etc. Finally you need a custom import script to move the scraped data to Discourse.

You basically need to decide if the effort necessary is worth it unfortunately because there is no easy option

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I’ll look into exporting guys thanks for your insights! There is definitely a way to do it, the owner of moved from proboards to discourse and moved all their accounts/posts with it. I reached out to the owner but he had help doing it so he wasn’t entirely sure but I’ll see if I can find out more.

It is probably as you say @piffy very difficult, very closed of platform to get things out of. I’ll do some digging and feed back if I find out anything.

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To be fair that’s how they make money.

Lock someone into the free product - if they grow then they’ve no choice but to start paying.

Yea that’s fair. I did pay for a long time in the past. The premium version of proboards doesn’t add a whole lot to the service, it removes ads, allows a custom domain and lets you change your forum URL.

They’re within their rights to keep everything in house. I’ll keep researching but if there isn’t an option for exporting data, then i’ll assume it’s likely not within their terms of service.

You could potentially scrape the post data, but it’s going to be painful. Their TOS may prohibit such stuff but :man_shrugging:


Personally I don’t view coercive anti-consumer, anti-competitive practices as anything but, simply because it allows a company to profit.

On the flip side of that coin, I’m happy to be using Discourse instead that takes the complete opposite approach and still manages to have income


Sure, nobody is saying it’s right. If the site owner agrees to the term at sign-up though there’s not really much we can do.

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Okay so the other forum admin didn’t get back to me, but I found a way to export only my data. My threads/posts…in csv format. I don’t think that’ll be any use to anyone tbh.