Alternatives to Discourse for all platforms with any license


Web / Online

Show 17 less popular platforms
  • phpBB icon


    Since its creation in 2000, phpBB™ has become the most widely used Open Source forum solution. Like its predecessors, phpBB™ 3.2 “Rhea” has an easy to use administration...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux PHP

  • Simple Machines Forum icon

    Simple Machines Forum

    Simple Machines Forum — SMF in short — is a free, professional grade software package that allows you to set up your own online community within minutes. Its powerful...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux Self-Hosted

  • MyBB icon


    MyBB is the free and open source, intuitive, extensible, and incredibly powerful forum software you've been looking for. With everything from forums to threads...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux Web

  • FluxBB icon


    FluxBB is a fast, light, user-friendly forum application for your website. FluxBB was designed as a lighter, faster alternative to some of the traditional feature heavy...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux Web

  • NodeBB icon


    NodeBB is an open source forum software that's free and easy to use. A community forum allows you to engage and retain customers, keeping them interested and...

    Open Source Web Self-Hosted MongoDB Redis Cloudron

  • bbPress icon


    bbPress is forum software with a twist from the creators of WordPress. Its focused on web standards, ease of use, ease of integration, and speed. bbPress will try to...

    Open Source Web

  • vBulletin icon


    vBulletin (abbreviated as vB) is a commercial Internet forum software produced by Jelsoft Enterprises. It is written in PHP using a MySQL database server.

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux Android iPhone ... PHP

  • Get Satisfaction icon

    Get Satisfaction

    User or customer feedback system with voting facility about proposals done by users. Similar function as the UserVoice system.

    Commercial Web

  • Vanilla icon


    Vanilla provides a standards-compliant, multi-lingual, theme-able and pluggablecommunity forum software that powers discussion forums on 800,000 sites. It's...

    Freemium Web Self-Hosted

  • IP.Board icon


    Invision Power Board (abbreviated IPB, IP.Board or IP Board) is an Internet forum software produced by Invision Power Services, Inc. It is written in PHP and primarily...

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux Web

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  • YaBB icon


    YaBB is a free Perl forum (bulletin board) system that has rivaled professional message boards for years. YaBB provides chat for visitors where they can post any time...

    Open Source Mac Windows Linux Web Self-Hosted ... Perl

  • Spirit-Project icon


    Spirit is a modern discussion platform. Notifications Receive an automatic notification everytime someone mentions your @name, quotes you or answers to your...

    Open Source Self-Hosted

  • WoltLab Suite icon

    WoltLab Suite

    WoltLab Suite (formerly Burning Board) is an enterprise grade CMS built for communities and forums.

    Commercial Mac Windows Linux MySQL Community Edition Self-Hosted ... PHP

Discourse Comments

Cloud server required

about Discourse · · -3 Helpful

It's not free, the only thing free is downloading the code. You are still required to get a cloud server and they are not free.


Extremely fragile nesting of dependencies. Very poor support. Monolithic development oversight.

about Discourse · ·

Not ready for production. This product is high on promise, but needs another 3 to 5 years to mature (if it survives that long).
A great range of promised features, but not ready for prime time. Consider other products.
Discourse is not production worthy. It is extremely fragile, with a long list of inter-dependencies on other products, with any updates to any in the long chain easily breaking Discourse.
Despite being recommended to install inside of Docker, Discourse's very fragile dependencies also mean it does not do well outside of a very narrow set of platform configuration options (alternative Linux distros problematic).
Riddled with a vast array security issues, that do not appear to be taken into consideration.
Support is very poor, with a long list of backlogged issues still unresolved. The community is very active, and attempts to help but is very scattered in the support provided. Oversight of support and development is by a single developer that has a reputation for being very immature, very insecure, and often deletes any criticisms and many of the bug reports.
If the product matures, check in again in 3 to 5 years to see if improved, otherwise do not consider using this product in any production environment.

[Edited by rightsfight, November 20]


Awesome forum software

about Discourse · ·

Discourse is pretty awesome forum software - best I've tried!

If it could to voting and edit suggestion like Small Quora iconQuora it would be completely killer!