Forums can be great for personal or professional purposes. One of the great things about forums is that you don't have to be very technological to be able to navigate a forum. You can probably figure out how to read and post on your own. However, the settings and tools available with forums are worth checking out.
Now, upon registering you will need to create a user name. If you are going to be discussing business in your forums, you may want to keep the name simple. Using some combination of your name or business name may be the best option. If you are using the forums for fun you can feel free to be creative.
You also have the option of giving your instant message account information. If you want to allow people an easy way to contact you, this may be a great idea. If you want to remain anonymous, you might want to leave it blank or choose the option of keeping your information private. These instant message accounts may include yahoo, ICQ, msn, and AOL instant message accounts.
Forums may also give you a place to add buddies to your list. This can be used to allow buddies to view your information and leave you personal messages, or to block out unwanted messages. Personal message inboxes are often a part of many forums. They allow others to give you a private message not read by other users.
Signature lines are a very important tool in forums. They allow you to place a link to your site, graphics that display your personality, and other creative additions. Links can be added by using the coding designated by your forum.
[URL=http://www.myWeb.com]My Link[/URL] - This is an example of what you would type on some forums to create a link that said My Link. Most forums will have a list of codes available for that site. They may be different and they may also include codes for bolding, underlining, and increasing the font size of your messages or signature lines.