Site Administration FAQ

Here are the answers to questions that are frequently asked by OnlineGroups.Net Site Administrators.

How do I start a group?

You can start as many groups as you like on your site.

To start a group, log in using your Site Administrator account and visit the site home page. Then click "Start a Group", enter a group ID and Title, and click "Start".

How can I invite people to join my group?

If your group is public, then there are three ways to invite people to your group.

  1. Simply send them a link to the home page of your group. There is a link there that enables people to sign up and join the group.
  2. If you are a Site or Group Administrator, navigate from your group to "Group Admin", then "Add Members to…". There you will find three options for adding people to your group. Hint: this is a good time to think about the social aspects of launching a new group.
  3. If your group is public, on the "Add Members" page, you will also find code to add a Sign Up box to a website.

If your group is private or secret, use "Add Members" in Group Admin, as described above.

How do I change the title of my site?

You can change the site title to anything you like, as long as it complies with the OnlineGroups.Net Acceptable Use Policy.

  1. Log in to your site, using the account that you used to create the site.
  2. Navigate to the home page of your site.
  3. Click "Change the Site Name".
  4. Enter a new site name and click "change".

How do I set up a custom domain for my site?

With a Custom Domain, your OnlineGroups.Net site can use a domain that you own. With a Custom Domain of 'mydomain' your site will appear at http://mydomain and your online group email addresses will end with @mydomain.

A Custom Domain is available with a 20 Member or larger site.

To set up a Custom Domain for your online groups site, please carry out the following steps.

  1. Check that your domain meets our Acceptable Use Policy.
  2. Ask the ISP who manages the DNS for the domain you wish to use on your Online Groups site to make the following DNS settings for that domain.
    1. Set the A record to the following:
      50.97.204.243
    2. Set the MX record to the following:
      smtp.onlinegroups.net
    3. Add the following IP addresses to the SPF (Sender Policy Framework) record for your custom domain (eg example.com) or subdomain (eg groups.example.com):
                  ip4:50.97.204.243
                  ip6:2607:f0d0:2101:b9::2
                  
      If you do not have an existing SPF record, add a TXT record containing the following:
                  "v=spf1 ip4:50.97.204.243 ip6:2607:f0d0:2101:b9::2 ?all"
                  
  3. the custom domain and the current address of your site.

If you would also like to select a new theme for your site, please request that at the same time as requesting a custom domain.

How do I select a new theme for my site?

You can choose one of the following themes for your site.

To change the theme on your site, choose one of these themes email us the theme you choose and the url of your site.

If you would also like a custom domain on your site, please request that at the same time as selecting a new theme.

How can I find my site?

If you have started a site but can not find it, visit your profile. Your profile will show a list of the sites that you are a member of.

How can I delete a site that I don't want?

You can not delete an OnlineGroups.net site. If you leave a site unused, OnlineGroups.net will, in time, archive the site. To hide the content on an unused site, change the site title and close the groups on the site. This will hide links to profiles on the site.

See also:

How can I delete a group that I don't want?

You can not delete a group on your OnlineGroups.Net site. You can, however, close a group. To close a group, set the group privacy to secret so that only no-one except you (site administrator) is able to see it. Then, either remove all the members or set the group type to Closed so that members can access the archives but can not post.

See also:

How can I delete a profile that I don't want?

You can not delete your OnlineGroups.Net profile. If you have made posts to groups, a link to your profile will be shown on those posts. If you have not made any posts and you are not a member of any groups, only the Administrator of any groups you have joined and left will be able to see a link to your profile.

How can I delete a post that I don't want?

You can not delete a post but you can hide a post. Each user can hide their own posts. A Group Administrator can hide a post made by any user.

Hiding a post does not affect email copies of a post that have already been delivered, but it does hide files that were attached to those posts.

To hide a post:

  1. Log in to the site where the post was made.
  2. Visit the post.
  3. Click "Hide".
  4. Enter the reason for hiding the post.
  5. Click the Hide button.

When a post is hidden:

  1. The user who made the post and the group admin can still see the post, and the reason that was entered when the post was hidden.
  2. Everyone else can NOT see the post.
  3. Files attached to the post are hidden.
  4. If the post is the only post to its topic, the topic is hidden.

Can I export my data?

Yes! You can export your member information and all posts from your groups, any time you like.

To export your data, log in and visit your group. In the Group Admin area, you will see links to "Export members" and "Export messages".

How does OnlineGroups.Net handle bouncing email addresses?

A bouncing email address is one where there is currently either no email server, or no email box to match an email address that has been added, and verified, by a group member, or when the email server rejects the message for some reason. When OnlineGroups.Net sends email to a bouncing email address, a new message is sent back to OnlineGroups.Net stating that the original message could not be delivered.

The first time OnlineGroups.Net receives a message to say an email address has bounced, it sends a message to all other verified email addresses (if there are any) for the user in question, letting them know that an email to one of their email addresses has bounced.

If emails to an email address bounce more than five times, on different days, during a 60 day period, the email address is set to being unverified.

How can my group members get help with online groups?

Your users get help with your site from you, or the other support people you nominate. They can also use the Help resources on your site, or contact OnlineGroups.Net for support.