Sugar is a free, open-source forum optimized for performance and usability, written in Ruby on Rails.
Sugar aims for simplicity, and is first and foremost built for performance, especially with a high volume of posts. There's a few interesting bullet points, though:
Publically browseable, signup required or invite-only
Realtime discussions (via AJAX)
Unread posts tracking
Following and favoriting discussions
Mouse drawing using Napkin
Google Reader/GMail style keyboard navigation
Syntax highlighting of code
Google Maps support
Xbox Live integration
Loads data from Twitter, Flickr, Last.fm
Things you *WON'T* find in Sugar:
User groups and access control lists
Emoticons and signatures
Requirements, and how to install them
Sugar is written for Ruby on Rails 3.1, and is Ruby 1.9 ready.
First, make sure you have Sphinx (www.sphinxsearch.com) installed.
You'll also need to have a database set up. Sugar was developed against MySQL. PostgreSQL and SQLite hasn't been tested, but should work. Edit the Gemfile to reflect your DBM of choise.
Finally, install Bundler (if you haven't) and use it to install the rest of the required gems:
gem install bundler bundle install
Copy database.yml.init to database.yml in the config directory, then edit it and fill in your database name, username and password. Next, create and migrate the database:
sudo rake db:create sudo rake db:migrate
You're now ready to start the development server:
Although it's written from scratch, the look and feel of Sugar was inspired by Vanilla, an open-source forum by Lussumo. Thanks to the members of the B3S community for feedback, ideas and encouragement, names far too many to be mentioned. Napkin was written by Branden Hall of Automata Studios (automatastudios.com).
The name? It's what Butterscotch is made of, and it's totally sweet.
Copyright © 2008 Inge Jørgensen
Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the “Software”), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:
The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.
THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED “AS IS”, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.