Where do I find archived topics?

For the past four months, a small group of friends and I have been using a forum set up through discourse, owned by one of my friends. But we have now moved to a larger forum and have no need for our old forum. The payment for it is due to run out tomorrow, so I decided to go through and archive a heap of posts for good ol’ memories, but being as inexperienced with discourse I have no idea where the archived threads go to, or if I need to do something so that the threads are sent to a certain site? Please help.


You could backup the site database, restore it locally and take it from there.

I think there may be some confusion here about “Archive Topic”, the admin action from the topic actions menu (wrench icon), and the more general idea of archiving conversations for offline access.

The “Archive Topic” action is basically just a way to freeze a topic and indicate that it’s put in something like cold storage, but doesn’t actually save it anywhere externally. Detail about what this means here: What is the difference between Closed, Unlisted and Archived topics?

To actually save the forum content for posterity (what you’re intending by “archive”) there are a couple options:

  1. Downloading a backup of the forum from Admin > Backups is the most complete way, and will give you a way to restore the forum later. But it’s basically a snapshot of the whole database, not a human readable way to save conversations for later reading.

  2. For saving individual topics, one easy way would be to print to a PDF — hitting CMD + P brings up a print dialogue with the page formatted in a special print view, so you can then save it as a PDF from there. Probably the best way to save certain topics offline in readable form.

There are probably other ways to download topics in bulk programmatically with custom code, but not aware of anything out of the box to do something like that.


I’m admit that I am a data hoarder, but I recommend that you download a backup of the database in case you end up wanting it for something. It’s not that hard to spin up a new instance and restore. I recently restored a backup from a years old forum and it worked just fine.