Well I can not speak for all.
In my case I needed for the heart of my site to be a messageboard and all other Add-ons integrate to 1 user DB with 1 login . At the time, I used EZBoard untill the popups and Ads were so bad It was better to do it yourself. There was vBulletin 2.0, UBB?? (cgi only), phpBB 1.2. I did the free phpBB thing for a year and it sucked for my needs @ the time.
- I seen sites w/ vBulletin and have 2-3 million posts with 200k members w/ 1k online.
That was good enough for me.
- It will take a load. EX:
(I wish was my site - lol) http://forums.winamp.com/
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