SMF stands for simple machines forums. It is free professional software that helps you to create the online community that you’ve envisioned. This is what is considered open source software that it is updated based upon the requests by users. They depend upon gifts or donations by users to continue to operate. Is this the best type out there? Only you can decide that after you’ve visited their website for yourself.
Its powerful custom made template engine puts you in full control of the lay-out of your message board and with their unique SSI function that you can let your forum and your website interact with each other. Just because something is free doesn’t necessarily mean that it isn’t any good. And just as well spending a lot of money doesn’t mean that it is the best either. What features are included with it? Are custom templates available? Can this be integrated into an existing site or would you have to start from scratch? Can you prevent a lot of people spamming your forum? Once this happens any actual users won’t come back if this starts becoming a problem.