Is installing Discourse for free impossible?

I’d like to use Discourse but if the only way to use this is to fork over 100$ then I would just stick to something like myBB or phpBB

Discourse is 100% open source and can be installed without licence fee.


well to me the only way to install it is to either learn coding or just fork over 100$ (of course I don’t got that type of money)

Have you looked at our 30 minute install guide? Read more about it here:


are you saying theres no absolute way to install it using windows or mac? I mean if you guys can’t make a mac or windows version then I understand (I can only make basic programs for windows) but you guys did make a forums software so…

Free? No. Here’s why:

  • You need to pay for hosting your server, which at the very least is a few dollars a month.
  • You need to pay for your domain annually (not discourse-related, but still required).

Also, you have the promised options of having the Discourse Team themselves take care of your forum, which will run you around $100 at least, a month.


see? the “team” says its free and it is but if you dont pay them then get ready to get no support I guess

also btw I already have my domain so I don’t need to buy one

also no im not letting you on my domain

EDIT (to prevent triple post): i’d prefer if no one flocks to my domain ok?

You have overwhelming sources of support, regardless whether you self-host your forum or have Discourse own it. You have this wonderful, extremely active and well-moderated Meta forum that goes out of their way to help you with your questions.

I wouldn’t be so passionately developing my website if it wasn’t for the support of Meta. They’ve motivated me to get into programming and learning several web languages. In return, I’m looking to give back to the community and you are someone I’m willing to help as well.

So please, don’t say “get ready to get no support”. That’s ignorant.


what about people who dont want to code huh? im not motivated to code at all and im not going to learn that. software is suppose to be user friendly and even though there is stuff out there to help… most of the times they suspect you love linux or that you’re a excellent coder or something like that

look if the only thing ill get is “learn coding” or to “use a os I dont even like” then maybe installing this isnt the ideal way to get a forums website

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look im just trying to install discourse on my website im not going to pay 100$ or use a os I dont like… I just want a more modern like forums website because phpBB and myBB just feel a little outdated

Discourse isn’t your typical forum software. This isn’t BBPress or vBulletin. Discourse has the potential to produce social networking sites at a global calibre. A platform this great will require some work to get it off and running and if you aren’t willing to do that, that’s your decision.

Also, I never mentioned that you needed to learn a programming language to utilize Discourse. I’m just using that statement you quoted as a measure of the capabilities of what the discourse community can do with the help they offer.

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NO WAY do you get no support unless you pay! Thousands of us users have got support from the Discourse team without paying them a single cent. This forum is full of examples.

There are examples of people who don’t get further support: only those who install it in an unsupported configuration and those who refuse to listen to the advice they’re given here.


yea but why does it feel like installing this is only possible if you put so much dedication on it… again what im saying is that I dont like linux and I perfer a mac or windows version

This conversation is unproductive. Discourse has recommended requirements for your web server. There are other ways to run it, but we can’t support an endless amount of options, so ymmv.

You can run an instance for $5 a month on digital ocean or a similar hosting provider by following a 30 minute guide. Very little additional knowledge is needed.

If you’re running into specific issues, search for solutions here or ask.