SMF Mods are very important to every simple machine forum powered bulletin board as it lets you add features and customizations to your forum without losing them to core forum software updates and/or change of theme.
Simple Machines Forum (SMF) being an open source software has got thousands of Modifications (Mods) to meet the need of every discussion board owner or even developers.
Being a long time user of the SMF forum software, I have decided to list out 50 of the very best Simple Machines Forums Modifications (SMF mods) that really matters.
It should be useful to every forum owner. I also made my list so large to be able to serve tech, entertainment, community, gaming or even religious forum administrators that are on the look for best SMF Mods to install.
We separated our list of “top 50 best SMF mods that matters” in parts, navigate through the list by using the titles below.
Really Important Modifications (Mods)
Seriously, the needs of every forum differs depending on the targeted audience and users, this is my reason for separating this part from the entire list as I wouldn’t recommend as much as 50 SMF mods for a single forum.
This part is limited to mods for core SMF forum owners needs such as:-
- Search engine optimization (SEO).
- Preventing spam posts and spam registrations.
- Ads and payment system integration.
- Mobile friendliness and etc.
1. Misc Anti Spam
Combating bots registration in any forum to the webmaster is just as important as keeping the forum itself. A forum left to the mess of robots and spammers will hardly see the light of the day.
Some forums are already sent to oblivion by not implementing a measure to completely prevent spam bots registration. This is my reason for placing this mod at the very top of my list.
Misc Anti Spam smf Mod prevents machines and automated bots from gaining access to your forum. It uses the most modern techniques to fight spam bots registration in any SMF forum.
2. Anti-Spam Links
After fighting spam bots registration, it is important to fight human spammers, they can be as messy as these bots at times; hence the need to implement an automated police to use the sledgehammer on them.
Anti-Spam Links Mod for SMF gives you control over who post links in your forum space. Having this mod active will turn out to be the best thing to happen to your boards as forum link spamming will be reduced to zero.
In my opinion, it is a must have smf mod for busy forums.
3. Optimus Brave
Now that the bad guys are taken care of, it is time to really face Search Engine Optimization (SEO); a factor that will determine how far your forum will go in the long run.
Optimus Brave Mod for SMF takes care of every options needed to give your forum a good shape in the eyes of google and other tops search engines around.
Opimus brave mod for SMF is one of the most used modification for SMF SEO and works flawlessly for modern-day search engine optimization. It is one of the only few SMF mods with access to sitemap and robots.txt editor.
4. Custom Action
Custom Action Mod for SMF makes it pretty easy to create custom HTML, BBC and PHP pages. It is also a great option for those not planning to use any portals mod.
It is light-weighted smf mod that works really well on busy websites and without adding much load to the server.
5. Tapatalk Integration
This is 2014, either you are implementing a responsive design or using apps for those accessing your forum via mobile devices.
Tapatalk Integration Mod for SMF makes it very easy for you to create mobile application for those browsing your forum with phone. There’s app for android, iPhone, blackberry and other top mobile operating system out there.
In my humble opinion, Tapatalk integration mod for smf is one of the best smf mods for large forums with lots of mobile users from the US and/or Canada.
6. Adverts Management Mods
Monetizing your forum is another important aspect you need consider, we couldn’t handpick any particular mod ‘cos the mod to use depends on your audience and the theme of your forum.
We have managed to select the best available options for you though, even those planning to monetize their forum via donation only isn’t left out here.
Important Modifications (Mods)
The first 9 mods listed above are definitely indispensable for any forum at all, only the advert mods can be ignored for forums choosing not to run adverts.
I separated this one from the core (Most Important) ones above ‘cos some forum can choose to ignore it.
10. Simple Portal
Simple Portal Mod for SMF makes adding widgets in sidebar, top area, bottom area and footer of the forum so easy. You can even use it as a replacement for any advert management mod.
With Simple Portal, you can create HTML block, PHP block, front page, article page, chat box and all those fancy stuff you ‘ll normally see in most forum’s sidebar. [download link]
11. Wireless/RSS amount displayed
The mod makes it very easy for those using SMF default mobile view and/or other similar Wap2 mods to take full control of the number of post shown to their mobile users.
It also gives you [the admin] full control over the number of RSS feed displayed; with it you can easily change your displayed RSS feed from 5 to something more convenient. [download link]
12. Related Topics
Related Topics Mod for SMF can greatly improve the number of time guest (referred by search) and users spend on your forum by suggesting related topics to them.
It is also great for reducing bounces. The only down side of this mod is being heavy for forums running on a very weak shared server hosting environment. [download link]
13. SA Facebook Integration
Facebook is now used by almost 30% of the entire world population above 13 years. Providing an option to sign up to your forum using Facebook makes it even easier for more people to join.
SA Facebook Mod for SMF do not only make it easy to create a Facebook registration option for your forum but also adds Facebook comments, Facebook likes and other Facebook related features. [download link]
14. Pretty Url
Almost every other CMS out there has an option for this, using SMF doesn’t mean you should piss of your users by forcing them bookmark a topic they would like to visit again.
Pretty Url Mod for SMF makes your url easy for both human and search engines to relate fine with. [download link]
15. Social Media Sharing
We couldn’t handpick the best here as there are two awesome choice to add pretty looking social media sharing buttons to every of your individual forum post.
There is the;
17. SMF Likes Lite
This is a great mod for modern forum owners, adds an ajax powered like button to your forum post. Great for entertainment forum owners that might just prefer to give a thumb up instead of replying to post.
It is very similar to the official Facebook like button. It also integrates well with SMF by allowing the admin to set necessary permissions. [download link]
Very Useful Mods
Another part of our top 50 SMF Mods that matters will have to do with mods that aren’t extremely needed like the first two parts above but are really essential to the growth and overall development of your forum.
You can as well fix this list up together with the second part of our list ‘cos they are just that important too. It provides some enhancement that can really make your forum to stand out from the rest.
18. Remove Index From Title
Adds a bit of awesomeness to your forum by removing the “- index” part from your forum title. [download link]
19. Registered Links
Registered Links Mod for SMF encourages guest to join your forum by masking every link on your forum with a “register or sign” warning. [download link]
20. NoFollow All Links
Best for forums that has little or no moderation, automatically adds the rel=”nofollow tag to all links contained within the forum post. Use with caution as could be bad SEO-wise for any regular forum. [download link]
21. SEO and XML Sitemap
If you aren’t already comfortable with the SEO backup provided by Optimus Brave Mod, SEO and XML Sitemap Mod for SMF can further improve the performance of your forum in google and other search engines. [download link]
Makes the forum a lot more fun by rewarding users with coin money each time they make valuable contribution in the forum. The money can be used to purchase stuff from the forum. [download link]
23. Contact Page
Makes it very easy to add a professional contact form to any SMF powered forum. [download link]
24. SMF Gallery
Adds a beautiful gallery system to smf without tweaking any theme or core files. [download link]
25. Tagging System For Topics
Gives your forum a complete tagging system just like we have in vbulletin, makes it very easy for your users to add individual tags when creating new post on the forum. [download link]
26. Cumulus Congestus
Adds a little extra feature to your forum by creating a tag cloud of popular topics on your forum. [download link]
27. Download System
Great for tech, gaming, music, video and apps forum. It adds a complete download system to your SMF powered forum. [download link]
28. Activity In Profile
Tells you what a user is doing either from the profile page or who is online list. [download link]
Mods for Layout Features and Customization
This part of our list includes awesome modification that will normally add amazing features, look, layout and glimmering touch to the appearance of your forum.
From brilliant colours, awesome CSS styling to Ajax and Facebook related features; we did our best to handpick this part of SMF mods that are great for customizing the layout and overall appearance of your forum.
29. Ultimate Profile
Makes your forum look a bit lively and real by adding social features like you have on Facebook and other top social networking platforms.
Users can receive comments, customize their profile page with HTML & CSS and all that. [download link]
Makes your forum beautiful and consistent in look by adding a default profile image to every of your users. [download link]
31. Smart Pagination
Adds a custom styling to the default SMF pagination with nice CSS tweak. [download link]
32. Vbulletin Style Board Index
Makes your forum index appear a bit different by styling the post / topic area to look similar to that of vbulletin powered discussion boards. [download link]
33. cbi v0.5 (Custom Board Icons)
Helps you customize the default icons on your forum theme. [download link]
You can also make use of it’s alternative “Board Icons” (34).
35. Add & Create Social Media Icons To Profiles
This Mod makes it easy for all your forum users to add popular Social Media sites to their Profile, it comes with the icons too. [download link]
36. Add Avatar To Who Is Online
Best for entertainment forums that believes so much in pictures. Shows you the pictures of users online when viewing the “who is online” list. [ download link]
37. Simple Colorizer
Helps you add color to all usernames with color of membergroup on the forum. [download link]
38. Customize ‘Child board’
Tired of seeing “Child Board” on your sub-boards? Use this mod to rename that part to what pleases your eyes. We considered the usefulness and popularity of this tool before including it in this ultimate list of best 50 SMF mods.
39. Search Focus Dropdown
A fantastic mod that allows you to view incoming pms or new replies without refreshing your page. It looks like Facebook notifications and uses JGrowl for the user interface. [download link]
41. Send Locked Topics to Bottom
Adds some decency to your individual boards by moving locked topics to the bottom. [download link]
Other SMF MOds Worthy of Notice
We will like to finalize our list of top 50 SMF mods that rocks with under-listed ones. They aren’t bottom of our list ‘cos they are worthless but to differentiate it from other really top modifications in our list.
41. Board Viewers
Simply an ideal mod for large forums and entertainment related fora with much activities. You can easily see how many users and guest are in a particular board from the homepage. [download link]
42. Hide Images from Guests
Reduces bandwidth as well as encourages guest to join the forum by hiding images from them till they either register or log in to the forum. [download link]
43. Google Tagged
Strengthens the keyword of your forum by logging incoming google searches and listing them as tags. [download link]
44. Invitation Message In Your Face [IMIYF]
Encourages guest to register on your forum by reminding them they aren’t members yet. [download link]
45. Reason For Editing Mod
Adds a reason for editing a post that will be inputted when you edit a post. [download link]
46. PM Auto Responder
This important mod allows users to automatically send an Auto Response that will be sent to sender. Moderators can also use it to automatically warn users to stop asking for help privately. [download link]
47. Fake Topic Views
Can’t tell why most entertainment forum owners loves this mod; maybe it actually makes their forum look popular by faking the number of views upward. [download link]
48. Advance Fake Users and Guests Online for SMF
Indirectly increases the number of new registrations on forum, simply making it look busy through increasing numbers of Guests, Hidden Members as well Fake Registered Members. [download link]
49. reCAPTCHA for SMF
Used to be a great option for fighting spam bots registration in the past but has lost much of its potency over the years. Still yet, it is one of the better SMF mods for combating spam and bots registeration on simple machine forums.
50. bXk WapMod
Another awesome option for making a better Mobile View or Wap2 Forum. It perfectly complements our SMF mods list as it tends to bring a better option to those that prefers a stand-alone mobile site to responsive designs.
How to Install SMF Mods
Installing smf mods is as easy as installing the SMF software itself. All you need do is walk through the following steps carefully or watch the video attached below for a more visual approach to installing smf mods.
- Download the SMF mod you wish to install: You can download it directly from the SMF mods site by saving the zip archive mod package to a known folder on your computer’s active desktop.
- Log in to your SMF forum’s dashboard using the admin details.
- Click on the admin button from the navigation tabs.
- Locate and click on the link named Main from the left side of the window and select Packages.
- Pick the download packages option and scroll down to where you have browse and the other options.
- Click on browse next to package to upload and find the smf mods zip package already downloaded in the step1 above.
- Click on apply mod and use the install now button to complete the smf mods installation.
Over to you
I have taken my time to list out the top 50 SMF Mods that rocks, I have been doing a lot with SMF recently and can assure you that the mods (the first part mostly) will be very valuable to your forum.
Do not forget to share and also feel free to drop your questions, difficulty with SMF modifications and other tips that could help with understanding and working with SMF mods .