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Big announcement!

[German version]

[French version]

[spanish version]

Hold on to your seats. It is not every week I can make an announcement of this magnitude.

In a few weeks time Ultimaker will migrate its forum to a new forum software, provided by IPboard. For some it may be a surprise, for others it may be a decision overdue. Nonetheless we are happy and confident that this is the best decision we could make to provide a healthy environment for our community and ensure a bright future.

We are aiming to migrate mid-December and do the complete the migration in ~3 days. Some parts of the preparation are still in progress, so the exact date may change (if it would get too close to the holidays, we might decide to do it early January instead). In any case, we wanted to share this prospect with you ahead of time. Make sure to like or follow this topic, so you will be kept up to date about possible changes and there will be no unpleasant surprises. Migrating means there will be a period of time that the forum will unavailable for contributions. In order to migrate all content, we have to close it down, bundle everything and deploy it in our new environment. We are looking into keeping the forum available for searching but no new posts can be made. Or perhaps have a designated chatroom available to bridge this period.  

Obviously we try to mimic the existing forum as much as possible for a smooth transition, however it is inevitable some things will work and look a little bit different. We’ll do our best to make the introduction as easy as possible.

Why IPboard?

A little while back I invited some of the most active members of our community and Ultimaker to help test different types of forum software. Among others we tested vBulletin, phpBB, IPboard and we looked into Vanilla and Discourse. After some thorough testing it was pretty clear that IPboard won the comparison with a landslide.

Why migrate to a new forum?

There are a few different reasons why we think it is a good move to migrate to a new forum. For starters, there have been some bugs haunting the forums which have proven difficult to fix. Some of these bugs have been more intense than others, regardless, they boiled to a point where they (could) harm the user experience significantly. Obviously, that is the last thing anyone would ever want.

Secondly, when we moved to our existing forum we had big ambitions to build a collaborative forum where users would gather and ignite projects together. For example, in the user tab you could look for users with certain skill set, to potentially invite to your project and many interesting projects would surface from our community. And indeed some have, the Mark 2 project being one of my favorite community projects.

But we don’t feel that vision still matches with our community, with knowledge increasingly becoming more important. The Ultimaker 3D printers becoming more advanced, a better ‘out of the box’ experience will take over a lot of the questions originally asked in our community. At the same time, that is where it gets interesting!

After the ‘out of the box’ experience and your first handful of prints, you want to go and explore what you can really do with 3D printing and the Ultimaker ecosystem. And that is where the community shines. We have so many product experts in our community, it is unbelievable. That is also where we want to focus on in the upcoming era, educating our community further. Of course, we need a healthy, cooperative and supporting software environment to do this in, so the migration is step 1.  If there is anything you want to learn from us, make sure to let me know! Can be about CAD modeling, post-processing, materials. But more about this, in our new forum :)

As always I’m curious to hear what you think. Make sure to follow this thread so you will be kept up to date when things get more clear further down the road.

Edited by Guest
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Thanks @Titus for the offer. I'll reach out when this window presents itself, let's see if you are available around that time!

@Mastory, but they were restored right? Anyway, we are definitely planning on including all images/attachments with the migration and we'll do heavy testing before we go live to make sure everything survived the migration.

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Most of the pictures survived the previous migration.  For example this ancient topic from the old forum:

https://ultimaker.com/en/community/2872-some-calibration-photographs

The first few photos are hosted externally but the first black and white photo with cubes taken from "above" (not the first bw photo - the second bw photo) was hosted by Ultimaker with the normal upload method.

There were definitely some pictures that got lost but I forget which type.  Certainly photos that are to temporary image hosting sites such as imgur are not safe but that's not Ultimaker's fault.  Or do you think they should copy the photos and host the pictures themselves?

Edited by Guest

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Sounds good!

Are you only referring to the forum itself or will other sections also change? Things like the dashboard, people, ... will change as well I guess? Reason for asking is that I wonder what will happen with 3D prints and YouMagine. I must say I found that, when starting, quite confusing and I'm still somehow wondering why having 2 different (but quite similar) sections make sense. So if that's going to be more streamlined as well, I'm all for it! :)

Good luck with all the prep work!

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Reasons understood, you are in the business of manufacturing printers and slicing software, not forum software! Hopefully the new hosting will support Internet Explorer :p

I am sure I speak for most people when I say that bugless transfers of personal notification queue and posting history is really important.

Good luck

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@Gr5, we are still in the process of optimizing the algorithm for migration. Making sure all photos are included is important part of it. Like you say, photo's hosted on different servers are out of our control though.

@Peetersm, luckily you won't lose all your content or levels. And the bugs will be a thing of the past. Not so sure about the font though ;)

@Yvest, everything following en/community/.... So also the peoples page and 3D prints. The people page will  be migrated to IPboards standard profiles, which is kinda similar. The 3D prints will be migrated to a file management system. It has version control and we should also be able to specify similar information fields upon uploading. It should even allow for STL upload, except we will have to set a file size limit for it to not get out of control.

@Yellowshark, let me double check on the internet explorer thing :p Posting history will certainly be migrated. Personal notifications up onto a certain extent. We will notify you about it when the new forum is live. IPboard supports a few notifications that we did not have, but also the other way around we enabled certain notification frequencies IPboard does not support. So in some cases, we'll have to find a solution.

Edited by Guest
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How much will this take out of commission? Forums, yes, but what about 3D Prints, YouMagine, etc?

Like not available during the migration, or out of commission like cut out and never coming back? During the migration we are aiming to keep everything accessible, but without login functionality, so you can not post or anything like that. Same goes for the rest. Afterwards, everything should be available again to interact with. YouMagine is currently just a quick link, and that link will be gone, but the site YouMagine will continue to exist as normal :)
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How much will this take out of commission? Forums, yes, but what about 3D Prints, YouMagine, etc?

Like not available during the migration, or out of commission like cut out and never coming back? During the migration we are aiming to keep everything accessible, but without login functionality, so you can not post or anything like that. Same goes for the rest. Afterwards, everything should be available again to interact with. YouMagine is currently just a quick link, and that link will be gone, but the site YouMagine will continue to exist as normal :)

Thanks for the thoughtful reply (filling in all the possible scenarios of my rather truncated question ) :) I meant while the transfer was going on. Sorry about the badly worded question.

Sounded ok in my head though :p

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How much will this take out of commission? Forums, yes, but what about 3D Prints, YouMagine, etc?

Like not available during the migration, or out of commission like cut out and never coming back? During the migration we are aiming to keep everything accessible, but without login functionality, so you can not post or anything like that. Same goes for the rest. Afterwards, everything should be available again to interact with. YouMagine is currently just a quick link, and that link will be gone, but the site YouMagine will continue to exist as normal :)

Thanks for the thoughtful reply (filling in all the possible scenarios of my rather truncated question ) :)I meant while the transfer was going on. Sorry about the badly worded question.

Sounded ok in my head though :p

It's all good, we got there eventually ;)
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Hi Everyone,

I wanted to share an update about the migration. There is still hope we can migrate mid-December, although preparations are not fully completed yet. So it is still too soon to tell right now. Technical preparations are mostly finalized by our development team and by IPboard's, but as we speak we are still optimizing the algorithm that will actually move all content, attachments and user settings to the new software. It looks pretty good already, but it is not fully ready yet.

We also tested today that the forum can stay available during lock down / migration, which I like because all content can still be read and this might be handy for people in need. (but no new replies can be added.)

We don't want to avoid migrating too close to the holidays when support might not be available post-migration, so when we are ready and there is time, we might decide to move fast if it means we can still make it before holidays. But only when fully prepared. In any case, I'll try to post here at least 2 days in advance before the migration.

Let me know if you have any further questions, thoughts or opinions :)

Edited by Guest
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@stu_le_brew, thanks. I can remember it as well. A lot of lessons are learned, and we are migrating towards and with the professional help of IPboard. Who also do their best to prepare as thorough as possible.

@NZO, thanks! I certainly am, not at the very least so we have a pleasant environment in which we can interact with each other without unwanted hassles, workarounds and bugs. Let the light be bright!

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