Version Checker in osCommerce 2.3 (aka rc3)

Not quite sure why this feature made it into the osCommerce 2.3, as I thought that 2.3 was to be the last in the 2.x series of osCommerce. With 3 being impossible to upgrade to, and 2.2rc2a with contributions being hard to upgrade to 2.3, it seems a redundant feature. But it’s worth explaining;

In your admin summary page, you’ll see a box like this:

If you click it, your version will be checked to show you whether you have the latest osCommerce installed. If you have the latest version it’ll look like this;

And if you do not have the latest, it’ll look a bit like this;

How does it work?

A file in your osCommerce install gives the version of osCommerce that you are running – /includes/version.php – when you press the link to check, a signal is sent to the osCommerce site, which compares your version against the version stored at osCommerce. If the version you have is older than the version osCommerce has, then a message is given, and equally a different message if the versions match.

It’s a fairly simplistic approach for Site Owners to check what they have, but it appears impossible to actually act on that information (as I explained above, the system is a bit redundant). Hmmmm.

So, how to remove this (apparently!) useless box. Easy!

Go to your admin, click on modules > Admin Dashboard and click on “Version Check” in that list;

And simply click the “- Remove Module” button;

osCommerce buttons in 2.3 (aka rc3)

You might have noticed the cool new buttons that are pre-installed in the new version of osCommerce. These are powered by javascript (using jquery) – the default theme looks like this:

You can see that some buttons are plain (add to cart button in the image), and some are bold (write a review). With javascript turned off, they degrade nicely and look like this:

How to change the look of the buttons?

These LOOK of these buttons is controlled by .css – the css file for the default buttons is: /ext/jquery/ui/redmond/jquery-ui-1.8.4.css – you can change this file to suit your design.

For example, let’s say I want buttons with square corners…I’d open that .css file and find this line of code: /* Corner radius */ and remove the 9 or so lines of code underneath it. Save the file and upload. Now the buttons are square:

How about if I want them with a black border?…open up the css file again and find this lines of code:

[php].ui-state-default, .ui-widget-content .ui-state-default, .ui-widget-header .ui-state-default { border: 1px solid #c5dbec; background: #dfeffc url(images/ui-bg_glass_85_dfeffc_1x400.png) 50% 50% repeat-x; font-weight: bold; color: #2e6e9e; }[/php]

Change it to:

[php].ui-state-default, .ui-widget-content .ui-state-default, .ui-widget-header .ui-state-default { border: 1px solid #000; background: #dfeffc url(images/ui-bg_glass_85_dfeffc_1x400.png) 50% 50% repeat-x; font-weight: bold; color: #2e6e9e; }[/php]

And we end up with this:

So, you can go off and play with the .css file to get the look you need.

OR…

You can shortcut this! At the top of the .css file is a link to enable you to play with an online generator…here is a tinyurl link to the generator. Have a play with it.

I also found that it is ultra simple to entirely change the theme of your buttons, go to the jquery themeroller site and press the gallery tab button. You’ll see this;

You can see pre-made themes ready for download. I like the green “le-frog” theme, so I downloaded it and unzipped it. I then found the /le-frog/ folder (in the /css/ folder) and copied that to the same location as the /redmond/ folder (/ext/jquery/ui/).

And I made a note of this themes .css filename:

In this case, jquery-ui-1.8.5.custom.css

Then I opened up /includes/template_top.php and found this line of code:

[php][/php]

and changed it to:

[php][/php]

Saved the file and refreshed my osCommerce site. Now the buttons are green!

How simple is that? Well, fairly. Enjoy the new osCommerce!

osCommerce rc3 – installation is super simple

The installation is very similar to rc2 and 2a. Just follow the steps provided.

The first screen also gives a summary of whether osCommerce will work on your server:

If any of the items here has a red cross (unless they are optional), then osCommerce will not work. Contact your hosting provider!

If all looks good, then continue the install procedure. At step 3, there is now a change to allow you the shop owner to change the name of your admin section – please PLEASE change the name to something completely random.

Once the install is complete, please go to your admin area and insert your username and password, to enter. The first page that you will see after logging in is the overall summary page, which includes this message:

You must now correct these errors – do as the message says! Once properly done, the message looks like this:

Next, go to configuration > administrators. Here you will see your admin username, along with a large pink message like this:

Click the [edit] button and type in a new password, and tick (check) the checkbox to enable .htaccess protection.

Click the [save] button. As you enabled .htaccess protection, a grey box will popup asking you for your username and password.

Insert them and press the [Log In] button. If done correctly, you will see this message:

The installation is now complete.

If you are unable to install osCommerce, please get in touch as I will be happy to help for a beer fee.

Been updating RC3 osCommerce

Over the past couple of days, I’ve taken the basic RC3 that’s available on github and added some contributions and other code to it. So far, so good.

My own code (in other words, avoiding pre-made contributions);

1. Coupons v6 – blogged about a couple of days ago. Found 1 small incompatibility, but this was soon fixed.

2. Banned Customers – enable the Store Owner to easily ban customers. No bugs.

3. Featured Products – Store Owner can select products to feature in a new feastured product for month box in the category and front page.

4. Four extra product images – extra images are always good. I linked this to jQuery Fancybox. Bug found as RC3 uses incorrect doctype. Fixed easily by using correct Doctype! HPDL aware.

I then added some pre-made contributions;

A. FWR Medias KissMT Header Tags. Adds meta tags and a few other meta bits and pieces. RC3 comes with it’s own solution to this, but KissMT is better. Easy install, no bugs. I particularly wanted to avoid Jack_MC’s Header Tags SEO as it is not as nicely coded as KissMT.

B. osCThumb. Makes thumbnail images using GD library. No bugs.

I will next be adding some of the security stuff that is found in the osCommerce forum and Contributions.

Anyone else have ideas for MUST HAVE contributions to roll into this? Also, if you want to keep a closer eye on my progress, hit me up on twitter @osc_pro

Update iPayment Credit Card; Introduce iPayment ELV and Prepaid modules

+ catalog/ext/modules/payment/ipayment/callback_cc.php
+ catalog/ext/modules/payment/ipayment/callback_elv.php
+ catalog/ext/modules/payment/ipayment/callback_pp.php
m catalog/includes/languages/english/modules/payment/ipayment_cc.php
+ catalog/includes/languages/english/modules/payment/ipayment_elv.php
+ catalog/includes/languages/english/modules/payment/ipayment_pp.php
m catalog/includes/modules/payment/ipayment_cc.php
+ catalog/includes/modules/payment/ipayment_elv.php
+ catalog/includes/modules/payment/ipayment_pp.php

Update iPayment Credit Card; Introduce iPayment ELV and Prepaid modules

osCommerce rc3 – more new features!

Just sparked up the latest rc3 and notice some more new features;

This shows the latest osCommerce Addons. You can subscribe to the RSS feed by clicking on the orange button. I don’t know if this is much use, as the addons area is a complete mess with all sorts of rubbish being added (such as updates that do nothing, support requests and so on).

Latest osCommerce News box. Kind of interesting to have so long as it will be regularly updated by ALL of the team! By regular, I mean at least a couple of times a week.

Version and Update checker. Again, an interesting possibility to allow people to easily see if an update is available. The only real problem is that it’s impossible to update an osC store at this moment unless it is completely standard and unchanged – and who runs an unmodified osC store? Anyone?? Well yes, but not many! However, with future updates in mind (hooks á la WordPress maybe?) this will be a good addition.

osCommerce is moving forward!

Sage Pay in RC3 osCommerce

Looks like Sage Pay is finally been added to the core code of osCommerce for RC3.  Sage Pay was formerly known as Protx, and it is (and has been) the best 3rd party providers of Card services for the small merchant.

You can read more about Sage Pay at their page on the osCommerce website;
http://addons.oscommerce.com/service/sage_pay

Probably the most popular is the “form” version, but if you are looking at going with Sage Pay, I highly recommend using Server or Direct. Both these are more professional, but only you can know what is right for your shop (and your pocket!).

Anywy, it’s good to see these added to RC3.

Action Recorder in RC3 osCommerce

Just looking at what is 99% of RC3 osCommerce, and found an interesting new feature called “Action Recorder”. What this does is record the actions of people using your store.

For starters, the “Tell A Friend” and “Contact Us” forms are integrated…

This shows the admin area for setting the number of minutes by which the form can be used. In the example, it can be used just once in 15 minutes.

If a user sends an email via Contact Us, then tries to send again within 15 minutes, they get this message;

And in the Admin section, this is recorded along with IP address etc;

Sweet little function that should help to deter spammers and the like. I’m wondering what else can be plugged into the Action Recorder – there’s lots of possibilities for this.