Welcome to Overclock.net, the best technology forum on the internet. This guide will cover most of the main forum features as well as tips, advice, and instructions for getting the most out of your experience here. This intends to be a solid resource for new and old members alike. If you have any additions or questions, by all means feel free to post in this thread of send me a private message directly. It is always a work in progress.
(Click on a specific section to jump to it)
- Must Read Threads
- Huddler Content Advantages
- Reputation (REP)
- How to Post
- Site Customizations
- Overclocked Accounts
- Site Icons
- Dealing with Other Members
- How to Use Search
- Mobile Browsing
- Staff and Member Structure
- Reporting Issues / Finding a Moderator
- How to Improve the Site
- External OCN Services
- Miscellaneous Features, Tricks, and Tips
Must Read Threads
Overclock.net is a community. As such, we have guidelines for membership. By following these guidelines, you will not only help the community but will also find it to be a better place with the highest quality content on the internet.
Terms of Service - Perhaps the least read but most important thread on the forum. This is a great forum with a very neutral set of rules. This helps all types of people be able to come together in civility and common interest. If you have any questions about the rules, it is best to ask a staff member first to be sure rather than post and receive an infraction.
Overclock.net Professionalism Initiative - This site has a wonderful reputation of being mature and clean. Please read this 'Mission Goal' type of thread. Very similar to Terms of Service with more practical rules and guidelines as well as member expectations. This thread is also very important, especially to non-native English speakers and is along the same lines.
An Emphasis on Quality of Content - This describes our revived commitment to using quality content and drama-free discussion to keep Overclock.net among the best computing performance discussion boards on the web. Included is information about stricter moderation policy and the best ways as members to assist in maintaining high standards. - Chipp (Forum Manager)
How the Infraction System Works - Since there are rules, obviously there are consequences to misbehavior. This thread sums it all up for you. Play nice and you won't get infracted. A bit outdated, it covers the mentality behind our discipline system. To summarize, we issue infractions to show members we are serious about our rules without an immediate ban. We want to offer members time to change and improve and the infraction system allows us to do that.
Huddler Content Advantages
The new Huddler platform offers us some great advantages in how we use our content. For example, we can now add tags to posts that tie directly to actual products. Those products can be reviewed by our own members. From the product page in the review section you can also see other members on the forum who own that product. Rather than being separate and modular pieces that do not interface with one another, the whole site can now connect and tie content. To make the most of this system, there are a few things you can do.
- Write reviews. Once you have tied your system to actual products using Rigbuilder, take some time to write detailed and helpful reviews of the components. When you buy something new, put a review for it. This will help other members to make better choices in their purchases and let manufacturers see real world reviews. You will also be able to take advantage of the reviews others have posted.
- Use Tags. A tagging system is only as good as how much it is used. The more we tag things, the more content can be linked and relevant content can be accrued for you. Viewing a thread on a new SSD? You will see other threads on the SSD, member reviews, and prices all pulled just for that.
- Subscribe and follow topics, forums, and tags that interest you.
Rigbuilder is one of the unique features of Overclock.net. It allows you to put together a system you own or want to own. You can link all the components to actual products and keep track of purchase dates, benchmark scores, and where you purchased it. Existing rigs can be cloned and searched and even receive comments. Even being such a comprehensive section of the site, a user does not need to use all these features.
All new members should spend some time inputting at least the basics of their system. When a thread is posted asking for help with an issue, the first place users will look is at the system in question. What graphics card are they using? How much RAM do they have? With this information easily available, you will find questions get answered much quicker.
To edit a system you have already put together, either click the My Rigs link on the left of the main Rigbuilder page or scroll down to the 'Your Rigs' section at the bottom of My Profile. Hover over the system you would like to change and click 'Edit'.
Rigbuilder Tutorial - a guide to adding a new system using Rigbuilder
To make a new rig, you can go about it a few ways. First, you can clone an existing rig. Just navigate to a rig you like and click the Clone Rig button in the bottom right: This allows you to make a copy of a system someone else has already created. Perhaps you have a family member who has already created the rig or you like the setup of someone else's system.. You don't need to make it all over again, just clone it.
The second way is to create a new rig from scratch. Navigate to Rigbuilder in the top right of the forum. Once there, click the Create Rig button on the right side: This will take you through a 5 step process of creating a new system. Before you begin, it can be helpful to have any invoices from buying your computer as well as any payment methods. This is because Rigbuilder lets you track the exact parts and your purchase history for them if you wish to input that information. Each step saves your process as you add your system.
- Basic Info - The first screen you will see is Basic Info. Here you can name your system, specify the type, specify whether you own it or are making it for another purpose, and leave a description. When you are finished, click 'Save and Continue'.
- Components - This page is where you put in your components. The fields here are what actually appears in your signature or rig page when it is viewed. Give a detailed description but there is no need for product numbers or redundant info. For example, let's use my favorite video card purchase I have made, an Asus 5850. I would put a descriptive name such as Asus Radeon HD5850 in the GPU field.
We have partnered with the makers of CPU-Z to make the System Interrogator. Using this tool, you can grab most of the information about your CPU, Motherboard, RAM, and GPU automatically. Once you upload the information, please review it to make sure it is correct. You may want to consolidate your RAM information.
You are able to add multiple components to most types as well as specify duplicates of the same product such as hard drives (by using the field 'count'). Add in as much as you feel is particular to your system. Don't worry if you can't fill in all the info, you can always edit and tweak your rig later. If you need extra help in finding components, you may want to try a system information software such as PC Wizard (my favorite) or the built in Device Manager in Windows.
When you are finished entering your components, click 'Save and Continue'. At this point, you can exit Rigbuilder if you are happy with the information. You can always return later to edit or add more information.
- Product Match - When you arrive to this page, Rigbuilder will automatically attempt to match your components with ones that exist in our product database. Anything that is correct you can click Match to link them together. This not only helps to link your components to actual products but also allows members reading reviews to see members who already own that particular component.
You may notice that some items don't have matches or have multiple matches that look correct. You can edit the information in the text field to narrow down your search. This does not change the item description you gave in Step 2. Adding a model number, more of the product title, or specific information about the product can improve the accuracy of the product match. For example, that graphics card I named could bring up 2 or more cards made by Asus. By specifying the model in the text field as 'EAH5850/G/2DIS/1GD5', I would then be matched with the correct item.
*Not every product made is in our database* There will be some components that do not get matched. That is okay. You can either leave them unlinked OR (preferably) you will take a bit of time to add it yourself. See the section on Reviews for instructions. Once you put in a new product, give it a day or so to propagate through the database before trying to link it again.
After matching as many products as you are able, click 'Save and Continue'.
- Purchase Info - This screen allows you to keep track of your items by where you purchased them, the dates, and prices. I really like this feature as it allows me to keep track of the amount of money I have spent on my PC as well helps me find the order information for items down the road. I often can't remember exactly where I purchased a component and so tracking down order information can be a big hassle.
When you are finished entering any product purchase information, click 'Save and Continue'.
- Performance - The last screen allows you to keep track of any benchmark scores you wish to link to your PC. From these, other members looking for specific performance can see what you have achieved with your system and know what to expect from a similar setup. Add in as many benchmarks as you wish. You can edit them at any time.
When you are finished with this step, you can select Save and Finish.
Rigbuilder is a great tool for discovering, creating, and planning systems.
A signature is the are beneath your post content. It includes an area to display up to three major content pieces (reviews, systems, etc.), a text area for custom information, and any forum badges you may have. To edit your signature, click My Profile at the top of the page. Scroll down until you reach 'Your Forum Signature'. You can view your signature as it appear currently and also click 'Edit Signature Text' to make any changes.
There are some restrictions on what sort of content can be included in your signature. Any internal links are permitted. Most external links, especially any advertising or self-promotion, are prohibited. Exceptions exist for relevant information that cannot exist on OCN. For example, BOINC stats or Flickr albums.
To change how you view signatures of other members, please see this section.
Reputation is a system that OCN employs to gain 'prestige' of sorts and to allow you to thank others. Someone with high REP doesn't automatically make them an expert but it does show that they contribute to the community and are an active member. Also, some site features are only available to people with certain REP levels. This includes starting threads in the Marketplace (35 REP) and some member run freebie entrance requirements.
When a post is helpful, you can both thank the person and acknowledge them by giving them REP. To do this, just click the REP button at the bottom right of a post. From there, you can leave a short message and your username if you wish. Leaving your name in the comment is a nice courtesy (unless you wish to remain anonymous) as it is not automatically displayed when the person receives it. Site staff cannot be given REP.
You can give REP to the same person multiple times in a thread if you feel the information warrants it. However, only one REP point is able to be given per post. Hopefully you are helping people for the fun and NOT for the REP but it does feel nice to be acknowledged so remember that when you are given some good advice or your questions get answered. Also, don't forget that you can give REP in threads that you didn't start. Say, for instance, that you were reading a thread and read a post linking to a great website for downloading wallpapers that you fall in love with. Even if you don't decide to post in the thread, you can give that person REP. If it helps you, let them know.
Each REP is worth one 'point'. The Unique Rep statistic could be rewritten as 'Unique Members who have given REP to this person'. For example, if I have 5 REP from 5 different people, both of those stats would be 5. However, if one of those 5 members REPs a different post of mine, I would move to 6 REP and stay at 5 Unique Rep.
One common question on this forum is "How can I gain more REP?". You shouldn't be here if you only want REP but it is a valid question. Many people do not use the REP button and hours of your help may go unrewarded by a REP point. Here are some good ways to gain REP that won't be REP begging. Remember, if you don't get REP, don't worry. Hopefully you learned something in the process and are here to help people. It isn't a contest.
- Use the Unanswered Threads - See Section 16. Being the first to answer a question is the best way to get REP.
- Be helpful and coherent - Writing an intelligent post is extremely beneficial to the person and the forum. By stating your answer/opinion in a sophisticated way people can understand, you will be able to help more.
- Find a hole and make a guide - Being sure to search thoroughly first, find something that needs explaining and explain it. Things that come to mind recently are Linux Equivalents of Windows programs and How to Enter Your System Specs.
- Post a relevant News Thread - The News section is a viscous battle of who can post first but a poignant article that hasn't been posted before can be a great help to many people and can net you some REP points. See here for Repost info.
- Posting pictures - OCN members love seeing pictures of stuff. Worklogs, new hardware, etc. are great and we all like to look at them. People will appreciate pictures.
- Mod Worklogs - Modding cases, keyboards, desks, and just about anything else draws people in. Even a simple mod such as adding a case fan can interest many people. Doing something unique really gets people's attention.
- Appraisals - Giving people (valid) appraisals is an easy way to help and potentially receive rep.
- Give REP - It may seem counter-intuitive but the more you give out REP to people who deserve it, the more other members become aware of the system and will use it. It also encourages better content on OCN and makes it a better place for all of us.
25 REP = 1 FLAME
100 REP = 2 FLAMES
250 REP = 3 FLAMES
500 REP = 4 FLAMES
750 REP = 5 FLAMES
Please see this thread for more general reputation information.
How to Post
So you're ready to get involved in the community and add some content of your own? There are a few different ways to get involved and the simplest is starting a new thread or replying to one that already exists.
- New Threads - Starting a new thread is a great way to ask a question or discuss a new topic. First, you should have searched the site to make sure you couldn't find the answer posted elsewhere. If you find a thread that is on the same topic, you can post in that thread. Assuming you can't find your answer elsewhere, first locate the correct forum for your topic. You can find the forum list by scrolling down on the home page, using this link, or using one of the forum navigation features around the site (most predominant is the Forums drop down on the main title bar). If you can't find a sub-forum that fits your topic, please PM a staff member for more guidance.
From that forum, you can click this button at the top and bottom of the thread list:
When making a new thread, give it a descriptive title and explain any issue or topic with good grammar, proper punctuation, and as much information as you can. Do not bump a thread until it has over 24 hours of inactivity.
- Replying - Another option is to reply to an existing thread. Perhaps you have an answer, and opinion, or a question on the same topic. Inside the thread, you can simply click the Reply button in the bottom right of any post or the Post New Reply button at the top and bottom left of the thread:
- Quoting and Multi-Quoting - Often you may want to include the comment of a previous poster in your reply, especially if the conversation has moved on and you are referring to a previous point.
You can either quote a single person using this button: or by clicking this button on as many posts to which you wish to reply and then clicking Reply on any post:
- Embedding Media - In posts, you can add videos and images. The new image system is very robust and is a great system for avoiding hotlink issues. By hosting your images the post rather than on an external site, you never have to worry about it being removed. For instructions on how to add media, please see this article.
OCN also has the capability to embed Google Spreadsheets into your posts. This allows a bit of flexibility in the types of content that can be included. There is a wonderful guide here that gives you instructions on embedding them.
- Adding Attachments - You can also attach any files you may want to provide. This includes config files, image packs, or anything else you can think of. Use this button on the toolbar to add attachments:
As with any site, product, or other aspect of life, here on OCN we like to customize things to our liking. There are many settings that allow this. To access most display settings, navigate to My Profile > Edit Account Details and scroll down to Site and Forum Preferences. Here you can set the default editor (I prefer BBCode) and disable to tweak many other settings. You can also access these settings from inside any thread at the top of the page with this button: . When you access these settings through My Profile, you can click the question mark for a summary of each setting.
If you want to customize your profile and edit the settings there, see this article.
Advertisements can also be removed by purchasing an overclocked account.
Subscriptions and Following Content
One integral part of forum participation comes in the form of subscriptions. This allows you to follow certain threads, forums, and tags automatically. When you are subscribed to whole forums (Intel CPUs for example) you also will get a third feed on the front page with threads from those subscribed forums. Subscriptions settings can be set in your profile and more specifically by using the Subscriptions link in the top right corner of the site.
You can see subscribed content in a few places: top right link, My Profile, and the subscribed pane on the home page. By subscribing to different things, you will be able to check for new replies and receive emails if you wish, either instantly, daily, or weekly.
If you would rather only see threads with unread posts in your Subscriptions page, click the Edit My Subscriptions tab and scroll down to the bottom. There will be an option to "Only show the forums/threads that have new unread posts".
To learn how to make subscriptions and the plethora of options that exist, please see here.
There is an opportunity to have an 'overclocked' account. This perk brings with it an overclock.net email address, custom member title (i.e. under your username where it says PC Gamer, Overclocker, etc.), and the ability to remove advertisements. You can obtain these in one of two ways. You can pay for it or you can be an 'established' member (250 rep, member for 1 year).
For more information about obtaining an account, see here.
The difference between our tagging infrastructure and others you may be familiar with is that we restrict tagging to tags that exist in our system. By enforcing more rigidity in the tagging system, the hope is that we are much more effective at aggregating ALL content relevant to a given product or topic.
Tags allow information from around the community to be aggregated together. They are labels that can be added to forum posts or articles to tie pieces of content together to make relevant information easier to find. This relies, obviously, on users actually using tags. One of the big advantages to the new tagging system is you can subscribe to tags so whenever content gets tagged with them, you get notified.
- Postbits - Postbits are little icons underneath a user's avatar and stats. Here is a breakdown of the ones you may see:
- User is offline (has been inactive for 15 minutes)
- User is online (has activity in the last 15 minutes)
- OCN HWBot Member. Clicking this will take you to their HWBot profile.
- Has an Overclocked OCN account
- Links to the user's gallery
- Folding for the OCN Folding Team. You can click this to see stats for the member.
- A member of the Overclock.net BOINC Team
- Badges - Forum badges appear below a member's signature and are used to denote accomplishments or participation in events. For example, as members reach Folding milestones, they will earn badges such as this one for 2 million folding points:
- In Threads - You will see other icons and text in threads that help you follow conversations. For example, when a member starts a thread, they are the Thread Starter. You will see this icon at the top of each of their posts in the thread:
Dealing with Other Members
After spending time on OCN, chances are you will make friends. Whether it is by helping in threads, meeting on game servers, or getting involved in some of the competitions there are many great people. There are times where you will want a bit more connection to others. There may also be some members you wish to hide. That is also possible. There are a few ways to do these things depending on what you intend to do.
- Private Messages - The private messaging system on OCN is very nice. You can make group conversations or send individual messages. To send a PM to a specific member, you can either use the drop down by their name or start a new message from the messaging page. For more information and instruction, refer to this article.
- Following - You can follow members as well. This is similar to subscribing to threads. Here is a great article on it.
- Blocking - Occasionally you may wish to block a member's posts from appearing. Using the drop down menu by their name, just select Block Member. You can still see where their posts were, but they won't be expanded. Clicking on them will temporarily show the post.
Reviews are an awesome feature that allows members to review products they own and see other members who own the same products. You can also add any products that aren't already in the database. Reviewing products will appear in the right pane on threads that have been tagged with that product. The advantage is that members can be reading a thread about an i7 2500k and then immediately find fellow users' reviews of the product. You can also comment on reviews and subscribe to individual products.
For a rundown of the review process, see here.
Articles are similar to threads but are for content that doesn't necessitate a discussion. This includes How-To threads and explanations. You can revert to old articles and do many other things that aren't possible with regular threads. See this thread for Article information.
Galleries are getting a major overhaul in the near future. This section will be expanded when that occurs.
The OCN marketplace is a great place to buy and sell items that have been used by other people with the same skills and needs as you. You can view feedback and discuss the member's use of the product easily. The marketplace differs from regular threads to make listing products much easier.
To use the OCN marketplace to sell or have items appraised you must have 35 REP. This is because the marketplace is not just for making money and it deters scammers. After putting in enough community activity to gain 35 REP, it is assumed you are an asset and will be an honest seller. Anyone can buy from the OCN marketplace. When you make a For Sale thread, you can add a price. this allows members to sort and filter by different fields like price, location, etc. You are also linked to other items for sale by the same member in each thread and provided a direct PM button to contact the seller.
There is also a 'bump' timer that lets you bump the thread without replying every 24 hours. This is very useful and saves the listing from becoming cluttered with bump posts.
Here are the Marketplace Rules.
How to Use Search
The new search is located at the top of every page to make finding content easy. One advantage to the search is there is no need to pre filter results for members or threads. Searching for ieatfish, for example, will bring up threads articles, and another content with my name. From there, you can also filter users and find users named ieatfish (I'm the only one
Some awesome features that this search supports are operators (AND, OR, etc.), saving searches for later, and searching multiple content types at once. For a comprehensive guide on using the search feature, read this.
Overclock has a mobile version of the site that can be toggled at the very bottom on any page of the site. The main difference (besides the layout) is the context menu button in the top left of the screen in mobile view. From here, you can access your subscribed threads, private messages, etc.
Overclock.net also supports the popular forum tool Tapatalk.. Current functionality is almost full in most aspects of the site but as this is not vBulletin, it doesn't work completely. Some notable features that do not work in Tapatalk are the new PM system and the marketplace. Functionality is continuing to improve so features may be added as time goes on. Feel free to bug Tapatalk for full Huddler support. You can download the different versions of Tapatalk here.
Staff and Member Structure
Overclock.net is predominantly made up of regular members who come and submit content. At the heart, we are all just regular members though some have more responsibilities or capabilities. Below you will find a run down of the staff structure and generic responsibilities.
- Site Admins and General Manager - The people who are at the head of the site. They either own or run the site. Generally you shouldn't need to contact them directly unless another staff member cannot help you.
- Managers - Managers are the head staff member over the different branches of staff on OCN.
- Headed by the Managing Moderator, moderators deal with posts and issues that arise against the Terms of Service. They issue warnings and infractions. There are Senior Moderators and regular Moderators. Seniors Moderators have permissions site-wide whereas Moderators are assigned certain sections.
- The Managing Editor is over the Editors on the site. Editors are responsible for managing the content in their sections, running events, and improving their general sections.
- The Game Server Manager is over the individual Server Administrators and their staff, the Gameserver Moderators. These Moderators run the game servers. They do not have moderation duties on the site.
- Retired Staff - When a staff member no longer is on active duty and chooses to recieve one, they will get a Retired badge.
- Vendor Reps have paid for the opportunity to advertise on OCN and have a dedicated subforum.
- Member with Overclocked account - Members who have purchased or earned an Overclock.net overclocked account.
- Regular Members
25 REP = 1 FLAME
100 REP = 2 FLAMES
250 REP = 3 FLAMES
500 REP = 4 FLAMES
750 REP = 5 FLAMES
You can see a full listing of Staff Members here.
Reporting Issues / Finding a Moderator
As you spend time on OCN, you will inevitably need to contact a staff member. You may come upon content that does not fit within the Terms of Service, make a mistake in posting that you cannot fix yourself, or have a question. Depending on the situation, there are different methods for contacting a Staff Member.
To report a post, simply click the red flag in the bottom left of the post: When you report a post, be sure to specify the reason you are reporting. A staff member from that section will take care of the reported post according to the rules of the site. Please do not reply to posts you expect to be removed as it just makes more cleaning for the moderator.
If you just need to contact a moderator from a specific section, scroll to the bottom of the section. Below the Post a New Thread button there is a list of staff for that section as well as a link to All Staff.
If you have any questions about anything, the staff members will be glad to help you.
How to Improve the Site
As with any software, the users make the site. By using the site, you can make the best suggestions and find the 'best' bugs. There are a few things you can do as a member that will help the site help you.
- Reporting Bugs - Bugs happen in every bit of software so when you find one, please report it here.
- Suggesting Features - We have a Suggestions Forum for the sole purpose of letting members make suggestions. When you make a suggestion, it is most helpful if you explain what is wrong or could use an improvement and some possible solutions. Don't be hurt if your suggestion is rejected or postponed but I can promise that every suggestion is read and considered. Be sure to search before posting. It is also highly recommended to use the site for a while (months, preferably) before making any suggestions. Many things exist how they are for a reason and new members suggesting large site changes aren't usually taken too seriously, if that makes sense.
- Using current features - By using the features that exist in the site currently, it will help you to help others. You will make the site better and expand content much more than would be possible if everything were coming from staff. See section for more info on the site.
External OCN Services
Overclock.net is a large group of people who all congregate due to common interests. Many of these interests extend outside of OCN and as such, you will find an active gaming community as well as some social ways to interact with OCN users outside the site. The ones listed below are all officially run by OCN and follow the rules and standards.
Ventrilo VOIP Server
Bad Company 2
Team Fortress 2
Miscellaneous Features, Tricks, and Tips
This section includes all the miscellaneous tips and tricks that don't really fit in any other big category but still may be useful to you.
- Page Number Slider - By clicking the ellipsis (...) in between listed thread page numbers, you can use the slider or directly input the page to which you would like to jump:
- Anchor Tags - You can use these in a thread to add 'anchors', or links within a post. For example, that is how the index is made in this thread. To make an anchor in a post, you must use HTML but it will parse in the BBCode editor or RTE. Here is how you do it:
The anchor itself (the place you want the link to jump to):
[URL=#user_heading1]Click here to go there[/URL]
- Spoiler Tags - Occasionally you may find the need to hide information. This may be to conserve space or hide spoilers. To input a spoiler tag, simply use this syntax:
[spoiler=Title] Text, images, or other content to hide. [/spoiler]
Text, images, or other content to hide.
This guide is not meant to be comprehensive of all aspects of the site. Rather, it is more of a quick-start overview of what you are capable of doing with Overclock.net. If you feel something needs adding or simply more explanation, please let me know. Also, if you wish to make a more comprehensive guide on any of these topics I will gladly link to it. See you around!