Monday, March 8, 2010

Question2Answer is a free platform for Question and Answer sites.

In most cases, installing Question2Answer for your website should be dead easy. Please follow the steps below.

Before you install Question2Answer

Make sure you have:

And make sure your web server is running:

  • Web serving software such as Apache.
  • PHP 4.3 or later (PHP 5.x is fine too).
  • MySQL 4.1 or later (or MySQL 5.x).

If you are not sure about this, please check with your web hosting provider.

Installing Question2Answer for the first time (without single sign-on)

The instructions below are for installing Question2Answer where it manages user accounts and logins for you. If you would like Question2Answer to integrate with your existing user database and account system (single sign-on), see the advanced installation.

  1. Download the latest version of Question2Answer to your computer or web server.
  2. Unzip the download using a tool such as WinZip (or unzip in the Unix shell).
  3. Create a MySQL database, and a MySQL user with full permissions for that database.
    If you're interested, the privileges actually needed are: CREATE, ALTER, DELETE, INSERT, SELECT, UPDATE, LOCK TABLES
  4. Find qa-config-example.php in the unzipped question2answer folder, and rename it to qa-config.php.
  5. Open qa-config.php in your text editor, insert the MySQL details at the top, and save the file. Do not use a word processor such as Microsoft Word for this, but rather Notepad or another appropriate text editing program.
  6. Place all the Question2Answer files (including .htaccess) in the appropriate location on your web server:
    • To serve Question2Answer at the root of a domain (e.g. http://www.mysite.com/), move or upload all the contents of the unzipped question2answer folder into the root directory for that domain on your web server.
    • To serve Question2Answer in a subdirectory of a site (e.g. http://www.mysite.com/qa/), create the subdirectory inside the root directory for the site, then move or upload all the contents of the unzipped question2answer folder into this subdirectory.
  7. Open the appropriate web page for Question2Answer in your web browser, for example:
    • If you installed Question2Answer at the root of a domain, http://www.mysite.com/
    • If you installed Question2Answer in a subdirectory, http://www.mysite.com/qa/
  8. Follow the on-screen instructions to set up your database and administrator account. That's it!

Upgrading to the latest version of Question2Answer

The instructions below are for upgrading from a previous version of Question2Answer. Click for a full version history.

  1. Download the latest version of Question2Answer to your computer or web server.
  2. Unzip the download using a tool such as WinZip (or unzip in the Unix shell).
  3. Replace all the Question2Answer files and directories (including .htaccess) on your web server with the new ones.
    • Your custom qa-config.php file will not be affected, nor will your qa-external directory.
    • If you have made changes to other files, you may have to apply those again, so be sure to make a backup first.
  4. Open the web page for Question2Answer in your web browser. If appropriate, you will be prompted to upgrade the database, so follow the on-screen instructions. You've now successfully upgraded - take a look around!

Advanced Installation (optional)

To integrate with your existing user database or optimize Question2Answer further, please read the advanced installation page.

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