T but am confused how a guest gets in, if it is required to sign up now?
A guest is allowed to view the forum, but he/she cannot post. If you want to post, you would have to log in, or else you wouldn't be listed as "michael" and the post wouldn't count in your post count.
To add to Tim's comment, when you click the "keep me logged in" box, there is an option for how long; forever being one of them. If you don't want to log in every time, click the drop down menu found when you click the box Tim speaks of and you should no longer have to log in every time.