Groups bbPress

Groups bbPress integrates Groups and bbPress so that all topics and replies related to protected forums are also protected automatically.

This additional plugin is necessary if you want to run member-only forums with bbPress and Groups. As the topics and replies in bbPress are custom post types, it is not sufficient to protect a forum using Groups. The topics and replies in a protected forum would still be accessible unless they are also protected. This plugin extends the access restrictions on a forum to its related topics. This also applies to replies posted on topics: replies posted on a topic will be accessible to users who can access the topic and the forum only. If additional access restrictions are set on a topic, its replies are protected by both the forum’s and the topic’s access restrictions.

How it works

Once a forum is protected by Groups, its related topics and replies are also protected automatically. You don’t need to set any additional access restrictions on those replies or topics. You can set additional access restrictions on topics and replies if desired. If you set an additional access restriction on a topic, the related replies will also be protected based on that. Restrictions are not extended to sub-forums automatically, if desired, any restrictions from a parent forum that should extend to sub-forums, must be set on those, too.


Groups Forums is an alternative to using bbPress as your forum system with Groups.


Download the plugin, go to Plugins > Add New and upload the plugin zip file (don’t extract its contents). Once uploaded, activate the Groups bbPress plugin to have topics and replies automatically protected based on forum access restrictions.


On your WordPress Dashboard, go to Plugins > Add New and search for “groups bbpress“. Click “Install Now” on the entry named “Groups bbPress” by itthinx. Alternatively, you can download and install groups-bbpress-1.0.0 or get the latest version from the plugin page on Groups bbPress.


It’s obvious, you need to have these installed and running to make use of this plugin:


24 Responses to Groups bbPress

  1. Ben February 22, 2021 at 1:37 pm #

    Hello, is it possible with groups to only show users their own profile? Thanks in advance. Ben

    • Kento February 23, 2021 at 12:26 pm #

      Hi Ben, this wouldn’t be possible to do with Groups or this extension, I would say this is rather in the realm of templates or some specific extension for bbPress that would allow you to do it.

      • Ben Abbink February 24, 2021 at 7:01 pm #


  2. Jay April 12, 2017 at 1:26 pm #

    I,m trying to set up groups so that
    – Group 1 can post in Forum A
    – Group 2 can post in Forums A and B
    – Group 3 can post in Forums A, B and C
    – all three groups can read all three forums

    I cannot figure out how to set the right capabilities. No matter what, all groups seem to be able to post. Is this possible?

    Thanks for your help,

    • antonio June 2, 2017 at 8:45 am #

      Hi Jay,
      Sorry for the delay. With Groups BBPress you can restrict the visibility of forums and topics, but not restrict the posibility of add a new topic. Really I don’t if you can do it with BBPress, but you could create a page where you can submit a new topic, and restrict this new page to groups.
      Groups Forums, as alternative to BBPress, It works in this way, being able to create a separate page to create topics, giving as an option only the forums to which the user has access.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  3. Jay April 11, 2017 at 4:11 pm #


    I need to set up paid group membership based on forum access. I’d like to use either your PayPal or Woocommerce add-on, but right now I’m still struggling with the Groups bbpress basics:

    Let’s say I have three forums: A, B and C. Forum A is independent, Forums B and C are subforums of a category forum. The forums are private.

    All three groups should be able to view all three forums.
    Bronze can post in Forum A only. Silver can post in Forums A and B. Gold can post in all three forums, A, B, and C.

    So far, I have tried setting these up as independent groups (no hierarchy), but no matter how I set the capabilities (I used read and publish_topics), either all groups can post in all forums or none of them can.

    Can I achieve what I want with the Groups bbpress plugin? I’m stumped and would be very thankful for some help 🙂


  4. Kevin March 25, 2017 at 1:56 pm #


    Since upgrading to Groups 2.x (and I’m still using legacy capabilities mode), topics within a subforum are no longer properly protected like they used to be. The forums themselves are still protected like they should be, but not the topics within the subforums (they are publicly accessible). I am guessing that this is a bug related to the legacy mode; is it possible for it to be fixed until I have time to migrate everything over to the new Groups structure?

    Thank you!


    • antonio March 29, 2017 at 8:16 am #

      Hi Kevin,
      I have created a topic within a subforum, and I can not access to it if I’m not in the correct group.
      If you send me dashboard admin access to antonio[at]itthinx[dot]com indicating this conversation, I’ll have a look at your settings.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  5. Keenan Flogerzi January 10, 2017 at 8:06 pm #

    Hi there!
    This is working great so far! One question: when a Topic is restricted to a group, but that Topic is also “sticky” – it is still showing up in the list of topics in the Forum. But if a user isn’t in that assigned group, once they click it, it gives a “Not Found” error. Is there any way to either not show the Topic at all, or redirect users when they click on a Topic they don’t have access to?

    • Kento January 23, 2017 at 2:55 pm #


      You could use the Groups 404 Redirect plugin. I wonder why the topic even shows up though … maybe the access restrictions are bypassed for sticky topics, I’ll have a look when I get a chance to check that.


  6. steve August 27, 2016 at 9:57 pm #

    a little clarification:
    i wanted to use groups bbpress but the nag will not go away unless i disable groups bbpress and turn off group-owned forums

    • antonio September 3, 2016 at 5:25 pm #

      Hi Steve,
      sorry for the delay. You need to install the Groups plugin if you want to use this integration with bbPress.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  7. steve August 27, 2016 at 9:53 pm #

    how do i get rid of this nag?
    Please install Groups to protect bbPress forums, topics and replies with Groups bbPress.

  8. Mike August 14, 2016 at 10:25 pm #

    In my testing of this plugin, it doesn’t seem to offer protection for sub-forums and sub-topics when there are multiple layers of forum inheritance.

    To reproduce:
    – create Forum A (type: category), and Forum B (type: forum)
    – set Forum A as the parent of Forum B
    – add some Groups access restriction to Forum A, say “private_forum”
    – create Topic1 in Forum B and get its link
    – load Topic1 by a user that lacks “private_forum” permission

    Expected: Topic1 should be inaccessible.
    Actual: Topic1 is accessible.

    This seems like a bug to me, given the intent of the plugin: “Once a forum is protected by Groups, its related topics and replies are also protected automatically.”

    In the above case, Topic1 is (in my view) a “related topic” of Forum A, yet it is not protected.

    • Kento August 15, 2016 at 1:44 pm #

      Hi Mike,

      If you want the subforums to be protected, you should apply the same access restrictions as in the parent forum. Although I understand that there are pros and cons to this approach, this is held so by design.

      Regarding the functionality of the Groups bbPress plugin, it extends the access restriction to topics and replies related to a forum. This does not imply the protection of subforums etc.

      Anyhow, thanks for your feedback on that. Maybe we could consider offering this as an option.


      • Mike August 15, 2016 at 6:27 pm #

        Thank you for clarifying the intended design of your plugin. I would recommend that you also clarify it in your sales description of the product. When I read “related topics and replies”, it seems very natural to interpret that as including the whole hierarchy—after all, bbPress allows you to “relate” topics to forums through intermediate sub-forums. Perhaps something like: “Once a forum is protected by Groups, its child topics and replies, but not its sub-forums, are also protected automatically.”

        I am still a satisfied customer, as I don’t mind applying those restrictions to the sub-forums. I feel fortunate, though, to have caught this issue while testing before assuring customers that their posts in sub-forums were private.

        • Kento December 22, 2016 at 8:33 am #

          Hi Mike,

          Sorry this reply comes with a huge delay … yes it wouldn’t hurt to add that as a clarification. Many thanks for your feedback and the suggestion, I’ve updated the description here.


  9. Mike August 5, 2016 at 9:10 pm #

    I’ve found that the protection afforded by this plugin is bypassed when the W3 Total Cache plugin is also in use and caching forum pages.

    To reproduce this:

    (1) Activate W3TC and Groups bbPress
    (2) Create a new forum and add access restrictions
    (3) Load the forum in a browser by a user with sufficient access restrictions (this will cache the forum page)
    (4) In a different browser, or using Chrome’s Incognito or Firefox private window (to avoid browser cache and potential cookie issues), load the forum URL. It may show a 404 error.
    (5) Hold the Shift key and click the browsers refresh button (tested mostly with Firefox on Mac)
    Boom: you’re now looking at the “protected” forum as an anonymous/public user

    A possible solution: Change the W3TC page cache settings to “Never cache the following pages:” and add something like “forums/*” (a pattern that will match the URL structure of your forums URLs.

    • Kento August 15, 2016 at 1:34 pm #

      Hi Mike,

      You most probably have caching enabled for users who are logged in. You should turn that option off, as serving cached pages to authenticated users where access restrictions are in place is in straight conflict. Unless caching were done on a per-user basis (performance considerations apart), you simply can’t have cached pages served to users logged in when the content shown is potentially different for each user. I hope that helps to clarify.


      • Mike August 15, 2016 at 6:29 pm #

        Thank you, that’s helpful. Yes, admittedly, I’m still trying to understand how to make the best use of caching. Your analysis helps me a lot.

  10. Ike May 19, 2016 at 6:39 pm #

    Thanks for the plugin.

    Having seen your bbpress-groups integration (which I use), is there any way to do same for buddypress? Or this requires custom functions?

    One issue is how to lock down and restrict buddypress pages with groups capabilities. Is it possible to use groups to restrict all buddypress pages to members only?

    Thank you again for the plugin

    • antonio May 20, 2016 at 5:27 am #

      Hi Ike,
      Sorry there isn’t integration with BuddyPress. You can restrict pages where you have buddypress shortcodes, but not directly access to buddypress elements.
      Kind Regards,
      Antonio B.

  11. Denis March 3, 2016 at 12:09 pm #

    You are the best!!! Thanks!

    • antonio March 4, 2016 at 8:30 am #

      On behalf of the entire team, thanks !!

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