When comparing XenForo vs Flarum, the Slant community recommends Flarum for most people. In the question“What are the best web forum software packages?” Flarum is ranked 1st while XenForo is ranked 6th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Good stability and functionality.
Pro Stable, well written, developed by the guys who once made VBulletin 3.x the best commercial forum software at the time
Price is only $140, one of the "cons" claims it runs up to $610 if you by all t he bells & whistles, but scarcely anyone pays more than $140
Works really fast.
Pro Lots of styles and extensions avaible
XenForo is built to be the most extensible and flexible community software ever.
Pro Very fast loading time
Pro Open source
Pro Modern UI
Pro Great community
The community building flarum is fantastic and very helpful!
Pro Easily expandable
Pro Lots of features
The developers do a great job adding new bells and whistles.
Pro Based on (but not built with) Laravel
Flarum was originally based on Laravel and uses the Eloquent ORM. But it is not a traditional Laravel software.
Pro Mobile Friendly UI
140$ for simple use, price can reach 610$ for complete system and service.
Con Closed source
Con Unique SQL system
Only MySQL system.
Con Still in Beta
Wonderful software with great future, but on current build status still lack of some must have features like nice search engine, installation/update script or proper user management.
Con Extremely complicated to install
It's extremely hard to install Flarum, especially using anything that is hosted by Amazon. Good luck with a simple install for amazon.
Con Simple things (eg email authentication) still broken
Simple things that should be automatically included in any forum software - are still obtuse at best and completely broken otherwise; such as email support/authentication.
Con Complicated installation process on shared hosts
PHP Composer is used as a dependency manager. Because of that SSH access is needed which makes Flarum harder to install than, for instance, Vanilla or phpBB. Especially on shared hosts where no SSH access is available or where shell access is severely limited.