Forum Visitors - Bots or Humans?

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Postby squirrelhavoc » Fri May 05, 2006 5:32 am

I've seen forums with no spam, but they had to register, they had the enter the text from the blurry picture trick, AND you couldn't post new topics in the first 24 hours after activation, which required a valid email. Thats kinda strict, but it works.


I got it! Disable link posting for non-members, I bet that will help keep the spam down. I dont mean disable the links in the post automatically, I mean refuse the post. Or for guest posting, use that "text in a distorted picture" trick. It wont work for visually impaired true guests, but I doubt they would have interest in a CG forum.
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Postby sascha » Fri May 05, 2006 9:54 am

These are good ideas, unfortunately the pbpBB forum configuration isn't that flexible (at least I couldn't find such options).
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Postby squirrelhavoc » Fri May 05, 2006 2:37 pm

Well actually I was thinking you could modify the code itself to do those things.
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Postby sascha » Fri May 05, 2006 4:14 pm

Yes, the problem is that phpbb usually is full of security holes, so it's quite important to keep it at the most current version - so I'd have to change it everytime I update.

And I don't like php a lot :)
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Postby squirrelhavoc » Sat May 06, 2006 2:57 am

As far as I know, the main way for bots/spammers/hackers to tell which version you are running is all the version numbers displayed on the screen. So you could always take those out, unless if violates some kind of liscence agreement.


Anyway, If I come up with any other way of fooling them, I will post it. Although for a guestbook I am coding for my site, all I'm doing is having multiple submit buttons, with only one being the correct one, and the others disabling your computer from posting temporarily.
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Postby pndragon » Mon May 08, 2006 2:44 pm

I just deleted one from this topic...

It contained a bunch of senseless chatter and 5 links back to the same page.

--- Jim
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Postby pndragon » Tue May 09, 2006 3:40 am

No matter how distasteful it may be, you may be forced to turn off guest posting.

I just deleted 3 spam messages in 2 different forums.

--- Jim
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Postby sascha » Tue May 09, 2006 1:23 pm

...you may be forced to turn off guest posting.

I hoped that if they can keep something like Wikipedia free of spam, it should also work with a forum.
Seriously, some months ago guest posting already was disabled - but I know how reluctant I am at registering to web pages and publicizing my email address, so I'd like to keep access to this forum as simple as possible.

I usually read all new posts at least once a day, if I'm not on vacation or ill (like right now, the whole family's cought a cold once again).

So far I think we're quite fast and every spam is deleted within a few hours. If one of you (moderators) is tired of deleting spam just let me know, perhaps someone else can jump in?
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Postby pndragon » Tue May 09, 2006 2:46 pm

I didn't mean to sound like I was complaining.

--- Jim
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Postby sascha » Tue May 09, 2006 5:13 pm

You didn't sound like complaining. Did I? :D
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Postby Torf » Tue May 09, 2006 6:33 pm

I've deleted one spam post over the last week, although I'm checking the forum for new posts almost every day. So I guess we're doing ok.

But the idea to posts from guests which contain links sounds nice - anybody checked if such a feature is planned or has been suggested to the phpbb project?
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Postby squirrelhavoc » Tue May 09, 2006 8:46 pm

sascha wrote:So far I think we're quite fast and every spam is deleted within a few hours. If one of you (moderators) is tired of deleting spam just let me know, perhaps someone else can jump in?


I will be glad to help, as long as all you want me to do with my moderator "powers" is moderate the spam. I come to this forum about 2-3 times a day, and I see about 2-3 spam posts a week before anyone else gets a chance to delete them.
Squirrel Havoc

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Postby sascha » Wed May 10, 2006 7:42 am

Torf wrote:But the idea to posts from guests which contain links sounds nice - anybody checked if such a feature is planned or has been suggested to the phpbb project?

I don't have the time right now. I've also noticed that I'm not on running the latest release - but last time I upgraded I've lost all the attachements (which are provided by a phpbb "plugin" - it's worth to mention that a "plugin" is a patch to the sourcecode - but don't expect something like a patch file, it's more like an instruction: "go to line 234 of file xyz.php and replace xyz with abc... no joke! ok, there are pre-patched versions available, but this way you can only have one "plugin" installed :-( )
squirrelhavoc wrote:I will be glad to help, as long as all you want me to do with my moderator "powers" is moderate the spam.

No sooner said than done :wink:
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Postby squirrelhavoc » Wed May 10, 2006 5:41 pm

sascha wrote:
squirrelhavoc wrote:I will be glad to help, as long as all you want me to do with my moderator "powers" is moderate the spam.

No sooner said than done :wink:


Hey, thanks for the trust :) I will only just moderate spam, thats all. But now I have a question about the new buttons on the posts. If someone, like a spam bot, starts a whole new thread with no replies yet, and I want to remove the whole thread and not just that post, do I just delete the post, or is there a special button for deleting the whole thread?


Oh yeah, I come here about 2-3 times a day anyway, but I will try to make it 4-5 if I have time so I can help better. Don't worry about me using too much of my time though, I have really plenty of it
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Postby sascha » Wed May 10, 2006 6:35 pm

I don't know :)
I think if there is only one message in a thread and you delete that message, the whole thread will vanish.

Thanks for helping!
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