What about a manual?


If that is your priority, there is no need to look further. Because maintaining a manual in the same system where support discussions take place is arguably the easiest. And as regards formatting, discourse is very flexible as it supports Markdown, BBCode, and simple HTML.

But I understand your urge to compate products. I am also a comparer (though I have less and less time for that). So if you want to compare products, I’d suggest that you include discourse in your list of products. I have so far based my recommendation on the criteria that you mentioned (plus two of my own). It is entirely possible that discourse will not do as good if you add other criteria. So once you have those criteria, I’ll be happy to revise my recommendation.

If you’re wondering about whether discourse can do something, let me know.


Hi, I just want to throw my two cents worth in here.
I helped with documentation for another open source project in the past and the things I found were helpful was that:

  • that documentation was built around a wiki. This meant that any member of the community could update it, and honestly, that is how I got started with it. One day I was just frustrated with the lack of documentation on a point and so I documented it, then I got to documenting more and more because I realised how easy it was to do so.
  • being a wiki, it could be translated by google translate, so it was accessible to a wider audience. PDFs can’t easily do that.
  • being a wiki, I could also download it and use a static offline copy as well (granted a PDF is prettier)
  • being a wiki rather than a PDF meant that when people asked questions about things in the forums we could link to exact pages in the documentation that had the answers.
    I like some of the tool suggestions that people have been making here - anything that creates web content that has static urls is a good thing for me as it addresses all the things above that I thought were beneficial from my previous experience. I do like discourse (very impressed with this forum which is my first experience of it) but I am not a fan of cluttering the forum with documentation. I see forums a source of information that can be used to build the documentation, but not documentation itself. My approach, having only entered this community recently, has been to go through the forum answering questions for myself and then print those out as PDFs using my browser so that I have an offline reference to different topics of information. But if that content was then added to a manual, even better!
    I hope this helps. Well done on the start that has been made on the documentation so far! Could it be linked somewhere that is easier to find though? I’m at week 2 of duplicati but I’ve only just discovered it. It would have been a nice place to start in week 1.