Is there some technical course on Maintaining Discourse Forum properly

And whatever worth my words are, that site could rank highest in Google ranking in the coming years for Discourse training. And could grow alongside Discourse, as much as Discourse does.

I knew one such site, but that had only basic installation tutorials. That site only helped me install Discourse in the beginning. I may find that site name again by googling. But that was only 10-20% in the direction in which we are talking.
Today, if you search google for any discourse related problem, you’ll find only Meta (which we all know caters to only those who are in dire need, whose site as broken. As soon as they ask something like GCP/DOcean thing, or terminal sort of commands, they’re bluntly asked to Google the problem, unless the asker is an expert already). Meta wants to remain focused on the development of Discourse, not teach users how to maintain the site. Sometimes they clearly say also, which is not bad, that they are not there to teach people ruby/website development.

In other words, there is NOT A SINGLE WEBSITE catering to this type of user demand.

P.S.: I could give you the proof of such queries which were not answered, but the same are not only not answered, but they’re promptly deleted from the ‘meta’ also. May be developers don’t want to show novice users posts on this forum. May be they think it clutters the site and discourages new users to use the site.

This is a great set of ideas.

Have you compared it with what is already on YouTube?:

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Yeah, this was the resource/site which I was talking and by watching which I initially installed my site.

But I doubt, if any of the videos directly deal with any of the topics deal with.

It tells initial setup, which we didn’t cover/say in our points/syllabus. In fact, correct me if I’m wrong, not one of our above mentioned points has been covered with any of these or or any other, Youtube videos.

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Then there’s definitely a nice opportunity there for someone to create a new series of videos :slight_smile:


I would insist on a small ‘tutorial’ type website, which could thrive on small denomination subscriptions. In the way, that 60 to 80% of the discourse forum admins would like to subscribe permanently.

There could be a small monthly fees or a steep life time fees.

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Would you pay $30/month for a Discourse community where basic discourse / system administration issues could be addressed?

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Yes I would.

But honestly, I couldn’t perhaps sustain paying that amount month after month, for years. I think for many, including me, that is steep monthly fees.

Lynda, top of the line, takes only 20 dollars a month, watch any course out of hundreds.
But of course, everything is diff and not same. Every scene is diff.

So, I’d pay.

But when my forum has started earning some ad revenue, then this amount is nothing.

Then this amount will feel meagre.
This looks steep only when one’s forum is in infancy and attracts only 10 posts a day as of now.

P.S: I was tying to suggest something thru a PM to @pfaffman, but perhaps he doesn’t accept Personal msgs. Request @pfaffman to PM me so that we could talk separately.

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For that amount we can get you managed hosting for your forum so you don’t even need a course anymore :slight_smile:


I am a big old school fan of table of contents.
My point is: I don’t know what I don’t know. So I like to be able to trust one source point that will give me the whole picture of what there is to learn, with at least the minimum information needed in each part plus organised links to additional information.
Discussion forums are great to explore deeper or ask questions. It remains a very time consuming way and makes it hard to “plan” your knowlege acquisition and inherently, the progress of your site.

I find a structured body of knowledge is always needed.
If such resource exists about Discourse, I still haven’t found it. Granted, it is so well done that a lot of the beginning phase is learned intuitively. But some features such as the collapsing of quotes and such, I just learned by “accident” while searching here how to do something else.


Aren’t you veering off Topic, slightly? The OP is talking about the technical aspects of running a forum? Not a user guide. More an SA and Admin guide.

If you want a User Guide with a ToC, how about Discourse New User Guide?

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I might have. I apologise for that. Notwithstanding, that provided you the opportunity to helpfully point me towards a resource :wink: (and I am also an admin so I would also benefit from OP’s suggestion, in the ToC form I was referring to) Thank you!


I think that’s what I think. Either you know system administration so it’s not that big a deal to figure stuff out, or you don’t want to know and would rather not learn.

Back when I was a college professor, I used to tell my students that I know a whole lot of stuff that they don’t know but that most of it they don’t want to!


Good point.

But perhaps you’d agree that there might be two types of disco forum admins.

One that don’t have time to learn nor they want to learn (there may be different reasons for that).

Others, who want to learn, or keep learning whole their life. Howsoever slow that learning may be.

Imho, more people belong to the 2nd category. And I too.
I think, people like me have something in them, which makes them do diff things as much on their own as possible.
Even in many cases, there is a much easier way, but they don’t take that.

Take the example of bitnami implementation of discourse on Gcp. It’s just one click install. And thereafter bitnami will take care of all the updates etc. But don’t know, why that didn’t inspire any confidence in me. May be we are wary of depending on others for very long and so want to depend as less on others as possible.

I think if one’s community started thriving, then a person like me can/would pay 20/30 dollars a month, for years together if it not only helps to not only maintain his forum, but also keeps giving him something new to learn every now and then.

Finally: I don’t know what percentage of people have hosted their WordPress site on paid servers and what percentage keeps keeping their site on their own. But I’m sure, the percentage who keeps fudging on their own, even if it takes much effort, and may be, to some, it proves costlier even not hosting their site on WordPress servers, will be much bigger.
And that’s why WordPress training websites are so much in vogue/thriving.


This will sound condescending, but it isn’t really.

You don’t need much training to run a discourse forum. My experience was that I found it a challenge initially, but after a fairly short period I had found my sea legs.

The minor details of Discourse change fairly rapidly, but the basic admin tasks stay the same.

A block diagram of how the software works might help, especially when something has gone pear shaped, and you’re trying to phrase a question to post here on meta, as would a description of what the individual sidekiq jobs do.

How do you avoid things going pear shaped?

  • Run a supported install, on a machine with enough oomph for your needs.
  • Use an approved mail service
  • Make sure your import is clean before you go live
  • When in doubt, disable your unofficial plugins
  • Upgrade your site regularly
  • Stay active here on meta

Good that you replied.
Because these are all the points, which I completed rather well.
And problem starts only after these.

E.g. 2 days back, suddenly my forum went dead slow. Naturally, I tried to run it in safe mode by disabling all the plugins-themes etc.
But even safe mode page won’t open quickly and reload quickly after disabling all 3.

Then some supportive Team member (may be) checked my forum logs or sidekiq.
And he went only as far as suggesting to me that something was eating up all my server resources and that I should learn comprehending at least the basic logs and sidekiq etc. (he did use the word ‘etc’).

Now, since its been only 3 months since I started my own forum (my groups have been running for local audience over whatsapp and facebook for 8 years). I thought, that its just beginning and I can’t diagnosis even small faults. (As the team member suggested,) I really must learn basic troubleshooting.
Or I’ll have to/should host my community on Discourse servers (which I don’t want for 2-3 reasons told here around somewhere).

So that was the reason I was looking for some training website/resources.

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I was wondering what did put you off off this topic. Why you quit this conversation?
What would make you run such a technical training website, focusing on (at least initially) Discourse forum technicalities.

Even if it was the ‘not enough remuneration for the work and your time involved’, you could indicate something. Or does it conflict with some other plans?

Or may be, not a permanent website, but a course kit covering all the above points, would cost?

Or each topic may cost separately? May be you can prepare small courses and sell them separately.

May be you think that the cost would be prohibited. But what is prohibitive for me, may not be prohibited for someone else. So, pls indicate your expectations.

I have more ideas than I have time for. As I said early on, I don’t think that there is an audience for this. So far, we have one person who might pay as much as a couple hundred dollars for what is probably a hundred hours work.


Thank you for taking time to reply.
At least now I know the reason behind it.
Really. Thanks.


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