There are some simple things you can do to make sure that the Forum is a valuable and welcoming research tool.
1. Revisit the Hints & Tips page often. It can stop you from asking the right question at the wrong time.
2. Start new topics in the appropriate forum. For example, if your topic is about researching a soldier, go to "Soldiers". If it's about ships, go to "Ships and Navies".
3. Give your topic an appropriate title. Boxes for a title a and sub-title are available. This Forum is very busy and a title which has some significance, such as a name, place or unit will draw more responses. So "Please help" is not likely to get a response at all, whereas "Bill Smith, Coldstream Guards at Ypres" will.
4. Use the 'Today's active topics' or 'View new posts' links once you have logged in. The forum is very busy and replies can be missed, so when you've made a post and are waiting for a reply, refresh your page every so often.
5. Do not USE CAPITALS LIKE THIS. Type normally like this. This is not a mobile phone so u dont need to txt yr msgs.
6. If you want to add a picture, please make sure you keep it to a width of 600 pixels or less (the ideal image should be 100kb or less). If you do not know how to do this, there are some discussions about it in the "About This Website" area.
7. Please note that routine site maintenance produces periods of reduced performance between the hours of 2 to 4am GMT. This may result in slow response times when trying to post. We apologise in advance.
8. Make sure you stay within the Forum Rules.
9. Blogs: it is not wise to use the blogs as a place to post questions or information. Most members do not regularly view the blogs. Please use the main forum.
10. Please ensure you read this one!
Some aspects of the forum do not become fully functional until a member has achieved 5 posts on the forum. This is often known as the '5 post rule'.
Such functions include, for example:
i. the ability to fully interrogate the members list
ii. use of the Personal Message (PM) system
If these and / or other forum facilities do not seem to be available to you then the most likely reason is the '5 post rule'.
If, after 5 posts, certain features are still not available, then please contact the Admin team and explain your problem. We will endeavour to sort things out for you.