Chapter 23. Adding User Forums with bbPress


  • Installing bbPress

  • Finding bbPress plugins

  • Understanding the bbPress theme system

On December 28, 2004, Matt Mullenweg, the founder of WordPress, announced on a new blog that he had spent a weekend over the holidays hacking together a lightweight forum software that he dubbed bbPress.

He wrote it because all of the forum software that existed at the time had restrictive licensing and too many features. He wanted to develop forum software that could be used in a similar fashion as WordPress.

Five years later, bbPress has come a long way. In fact, as of BuddyPress 1.1 (a suite of WordPress plugins and themes), bbPress is included as a one-click install add-on.


BuddyPress and bbPress integration are discussed in Chapter 24.

Installing bbPress

bbPress is a lightweight forum software. Most notably, it serves as the official support forum software for the WordPress support forums (, as shown in Figure 23.1. It is also often used by bloggers who have released popular software and wish to offer support venues.

The WordPress support forums are powered by bbPress.

Figure 23.1. The WordPress support forums are powered by bbPress.

bbPress is extremely easy to install. Just like WordPress, it can be set up in mere minutes. To get started, grab the latest version of bbPress at and then follow these steps:

  1. Connect to your server using FTP ...

Get WordPress® Bible now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.