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The ASP 101 Discussion Forum

by John Peterson

Last Update To "Classic ASP" Code: 12/10/99

Beta 2 is latest shipped version and is stable

Damn that was fast... first bug is found and fixed... Beta 2 is the new current version!

Okay so I finally got around to fixing some things. I'm releasing this as beta code so you guys can test it and give me some feedback on any problems you encounter (since someone always finds something!) so I can get them fixed and still have a nice 2.0 release! The code should work better overall and actually be quite a bit FASTER!!! New feature are basically internal things and no there's no online admin area yet.

Please give it a try and let me know how it goes. As you should always do before switching versions of any code make a backup copy of your existing code! This has no install routine and doesn't know anything about the previous version except the DB setup (and even that has changed a little but this code will work with either setup). Besides that don't count on anything else being the same!

Please send any questions or concerns about the forum, including any information you have concerning the following known issues, to

Note: Beta 2 is pretty well stable and is probably the last version we'll be releasing using classic ASP. New development will most likely be done in ASP.NET exclusively.

Known Issues

  • Well I'm trashing all previous known issues because so much has changed! So start sending me new ones to fix!


12/10/99 - v2.0 Beta 2
Email notification was working with SQL Server, but not with Access in Beta 1.
12/9/99 - v2.0 Beta 1
Yeah... finally shipping something. It's working, but not extensively tested.
11/15/99 - v???
Ok so I lied and I haven't been working on it, but now I am! I swear!
9/9/99 - v???
Damn... has it really been 6 months? I'm working on it... see the above paragraphs.
3/10/99 - v1.23
Added 10 at a time paging to search results. Includes monthly breakdown (It's still not optional. It this wanted or are people happy with monthly breakdown?)
3/1/99 - v1.22
Added monthly breakdown. It's required at the moment. No switching on or off. May fix to make optional in a subsequent version. Waited for test run... never posted code.
2/17/99 - v1.21
Fixed error when replying to posts whose subject was already at max length.
2/15/99 - v1.2
Attempted fix for corrupt thread info. Feedback requested!
2/9/99 - No Changes
This page was added to help users keep track of Forum code revisions.
2/1/99 - v1.1
Fixed the message count issue which caused message counts to display in the opposite order as their corresponding posts.
Before 2/1/99
There were many versions released with various and sundry bugs. Anyone still using forum code from this period really needs to update to the latest version!


The latest code has been stamped version number 2.0 Beta 2 and can be found here.

For those of you who have been suffering trying to deal with the fact that there is no adminstrative interface in our code base, a kind soul who had been suffering along with you has written and donated one. You can download it here. Please realize that there is no support for this code. (Not like that's any different from the forum code itself!) Use it at your own risk.

There were a few bugs in the admin code previously posted. Jeremy has since updated a couple of the files to make it work correctly. The above zip file now contains the updated version.

Alternate Version

Note: I haven't done much of anything with the forum code since I wrote v2Beta2 way back in 99. At this point, the thought of even looking at the code scares me, but amazingly enough it's still running quite well for a lot of people... including us! One of our visitors who is using the code went through and cleaned things up a bit. For those who are interested, here's his version. It might be a little less scary then ours.

I would like to thank you so much for the availability of your Forums Code. I was in need for this to prove to my boss that it was cheaper and better to write your own than it was to purchase and configure.

Our site uses ASP and SQL with VB Components in the middle tier. I was able to reorganize all of the code, including the admin features, to isolate the database code.

The attached zip file contains the structure that our site uses. It will also help make the forums port easier to other sites, and to be used multiple times with-in the site. you will notice that I added a DB field called message approved. The intent here is that the messages get saved but not approved until reviewed. This was not yet working. but will be shortly.

All of the general functions have been condensed into one file Forum_common.asp, some of these have an extra parameter if it will be called from admin or not. All of the Database Access in in the MTS_Forums.asp file with the Constants at top. All of the graphics are prefixed with Forum_ and in the graphics folder. The files have an easier to understand naming convention as to what they do admin_message_update.asp, admin_forum_update.asp. I removed the ValidateAdmin function for my testing.

I hope you enjoy and can re-post.

Damien A. McKeever

You can download Damien's code in zip file format from here.

User Contributed ASP.NET Version

While I haven't had a chance to even think about writing a new .NET version of our forum code, one of our visitors has not only thought about it... he's written it. Here's a BETA version of his code for you to play with.


I have been a long time visitor on your web site and have loved your articles and your work. I was in need for a discussion forum in (was told to write one by my boss on Tuesday morning) and started to look around. Well, needless to say there are only commercial products available, I had to come up with something in 3 days !!. So, I sat down and converted your discussion forum from the classic asp version to the version written in This is just the beta 1 version and I wanted to share it with you. I am pretty sure it is not all that optimized yet and numerous changes probably need to be made to optimize it, but I guess that's what beta versions are for !!!

Let me know what you think...


Do not play with this on a server running an existing version of our forum without using extreme care. The sql and cmd files included can and will drop any existing tables (of the same name) effectively killing all your existing posts!

To play with this simply download the zip file, read the included readme file and give it a whirl. If you have any feedback let me know and I'll relay it to Munish.

Beta 1.5

Hey John

I have updated to beta version 1.5

Here is what is new

  • Fixed BUG -- Messages were not honoring their parent id's, now it should be working.
  • Fixed BUG -- Thread Count on messages were incorrect under certain criteria.
  • (Both the above changes required a change at the data/business/presentation layer)

  • Added a link to the search page (minor)

I am including the latest zip file (in the format you had it). basically changes have been made to the SQL script (reflecting the SP change) and the search/display forum pages as well as the business layer. The new zip file is in the same format as you have it (for the code to be downloaded) except with the latest code in it :) So, you should be able to just replace the existing download file with the attached zip file.

Have you had a chance to try it on your DB? I would like to know what the performance is on a big database such as yours.


I actually haven't tried it on our DB... when I get a chance I'll try and post some basic performance comparisons.

Here's the link to the Beta 1.5 version.

Get notified of forum changes

You mean you're not on this yet! With all the changes expected throughout version 2... you should be! Especially if you're using the code! The messages will be sparce, I'll be the only one sending to it, and you're names won't be used for anything else.

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