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: Is there a free, open-source question and answer (Q&A) application similar to StackExchange? I'm launching a Q&A site similar to StackExchange. Does anyone have any recommendations for free


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I'm launching a Q&A site similar to StackExchange.

Does anyone have any recommendations for free self-hosted Q&A software that is easy to customize?

I've seen this wordpress theme but it isn't free and, therefore, isn't what I'm looking for.

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There are some pretty nice options available to you when it comes to Open Source, I've listed the best 3 that I'm aware of below for you:

OSQA is an open source Q&A platform similar to StackExchange, definitely worth looking at if you're considering open source.
Askbot is also a Python Django platform modeled on StackExchange, so should be considered as well
Django Brainstorm is again, a Python Django based platform developed by Sunlight Labs and can do the job also

You may also want to consider a SaaS solution if you're considering open source, as these solutions are automatically updated/updated/supported and require much less maintenance...but of course you have to pay for those perks:) Here is a list of powerful SaaS solutions that are also available for consideration. is a good service supporting some brand-name customers, serving a few different markets when it comes to Q&A interaction, worth looking at. provides a nice Q&A community platform, very user-friendly and a nice Web 2.0 look/feel. offers a clean Q&A experiece for either a community or for enterprises looking for internal collaboration.

Good luck with your Q&A community/platform:)

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MSO has a huge list.

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Since you are using PHP/MySQL, I'd recommend Question2Answer. I've used it and I really like it. Although the default interface isn't as polished as Stack Overflow, it's still better than the other PHP Q&A apps I've seen.

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OSQA is also a nice implementation and is relatively easy to get up and running. What I don't like about it is how close it is to SE sites as far as design. Granted, its hard to come up with a better interface, but hopefully you make your's a little more unique :)

This is also GPL, so it's free as in freedom and free as in free beer.

Its written in Python/Django and should work even on the most basic shared web hosting.

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Check out Stacked, an open source implementation of a Q&A site like Stack Overflow.

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