Visibility of Discourse features?

(Biscuit) #1

How does someone without Admin rights (eg: a moderator) get visibility of the Discourse features / functionality available?

I’m making strategic forum recommendations, but they would be strengthened if I had a greater understanding of available Discourse functionality. I haven’t seen a manual and the Discourse demo site doesn’t seem to provide admin level rights. How can I review the available functionality to determine which features could be useful / relevant?

(Mittineague) #2

I guess to get a feel for the system side (CDN, emails, etc) an online staging install would be best.

I have two localhost installs. One is a development install and the other is a production install. These let me experiment and experience the forum in all kinds of ways. As an Admin, a Moderator, a TL0 New member, a Silenced member, a non-English member etc. etc.

I don’t know if a comprehensive documentation covering all the nuances of various combinations of settings is even possible, but at best it would be a massive undertaking. IMHO nothing beats hands on experience, and searching / asking here when necessary. If you have a question there’s a good chance it has been asked here before, and if not, there’s a good chance it will be asked here later.

I think looking at the various Admin pages will for the most part be self explanatory, i.e. things are named well and are descriptive of what they represent.

If you can read code fairly well, the Core files can be a big help

(Joshua Rosenfeld) #3

You can also sign up for a risk free 14 day trial at to get your own site to play with.

(Jay Pfaffman) #4

Both major hosting sites offer free trials. You can freely install the software yourself on a cloud server for $5/month.

(Biscuit) #5

Thanks for the feedback.

Is it possible for the admins of a Discourse site to grant someone read-only admin rights, so they have visibility of the admin features, but can’t change them?

(Matt Palmer) #6

No, there is no feature like that. It would be nearly impossible to implement such a feature securely – a lot of things behind admin privileges are sensitive even for reading. If you want to experience what it is like to be a Discourse admin, you should setup a Discourse site (either your own installation, or a free trial), and try it out.

(Biscuit) #7

Thanks Matt. I thought I should ask, just in case it’s possible.

Will investigate what’s involved with a trial install eg: if I need a domain name etc.
Update: Domain name isn’t required. Looks like they offer a temporary domain name.