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nickys says

Hey, I’m building my next product for CC right now and I have a situation going. It’s going to be a pure CSS item with JS fallback, but setting it up requires too much modification of the css, js and html code, so I figured that I should make a web app that would do that for you.

So there are two options – JS or PHP app.

The JS app will output the html, css and js code in 3 textarea boxes for the user to copy and paste in each file.

The second option is a php app, that will package the whole thing for you – it will make all files necessary and the user just needs to copy them. It’s a far better option I think, but there’s a downside – it requires a web server in order to run the PHP web app. One possible solution is to upload that app in my own server so customers can easily access it. They would go to the app, customize the item and download a zip with the html, js and css files.

Which leads to the next problem – there’s an obvious security risk involved with this because anyone that knows the link would just go and download the product. And it also violates the exclusive author rules, because technically I will be distributing the product for free, which is not my intend.

So in the end, I could protect that setup page that I hosted with a password and ship the password in the zip that clients download when they buy the product.

My question to you all is, how would you approach this problem? Should I go with the JS version, the local PHP version, or should I host the PHP app myself? What do you think would be best for the customers? All three perhaps? :)

Cheers

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iamthwee says

Sounds to me like you made a great argument for going the js route don’t you think. ;)

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iamthwee says

Well… That being said… I can understand the need for a ‘One click install.’

Assuming your end user’s know how to copy and paste stuff from text boxes into plain text files, rename those text files with the relevant extensions then put them in the correct directory it shouldn’t be an issue.

But then we aren’t end users. Other than go the PHP route on your server, which in my opinion is good, you could ship it with an exe… The reason I say that, is because I don’t personally like buying a file which relies on external factors… Your hosting could go down in the future, or you might decide to not support your item anymore. Now what do I do? An exe, would solve this problem to an extent.

Of course, you would have to ship it with an install for Mac users and possibly linux users? But then that opens another can of worms…

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nickys says

Assuming your end user’s know how to copy and paste stuff from text boxes into plain text files, rename those text files with the relevant extensions then put them in the correct directory it shouldn’t be an issue. But then we aren’t end users.

What did you mean by “we aren’t end users”? You are saying that most people that buy here can run a local web server?

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iamthwee says


Assuming your end user’s know how to copy and paste stuff from text boxes into plain text files, rename those text files with the relevant extensions then put them in the correct directory it shouldn’t be an issue. But then we aren’t end users.
What did you mean by “we aren’t end users”? You are saying that most people that buy here can run a local web server?

No what I meant is, SOME end users would find copying text out of a text box putting it into a text file, renaming it an issue. It’s easy for me and you because we’re developers. To be honest it super easy but… everyone wants a one click install these days don’t they?

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nickys says

I think I’ll go with the hosted and password-protected php app. And also ship it with the product, so the solution isn’t 100% external.

Don’t see any other good option…

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iamthwee says

I’m slightly unsure with the password protect mechanism…

Can you explain it in more detail please.

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nickys says

Well, the web app must not be accessible to everyone, that way I will be distributing the product for free (because it generates html css and js files) and I don’t wan’t that of course :)

So when a user buys the product he will get the password from the downloaded zip file. He will then go to the link, enter the password and use the app. That’s the general idea anyway.

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iamthwee says

So essentially when the customer buys your file, all they get in their download folder is a text file, containing the url to your website and a password?

But you said you was going to ship a php app with the product so it wasn’t 100% external. Does that then not mean the customer, if they have a web server could run that php file by itself to create the necessary html css and js files?

And if so is this OK?

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nickys says

Customers will get a working example in the zip file as well. The trouble comes if they decide to customize the example (to start using it essentially), things get really complicated and that’s why an app is needed to modify the code for them.

I didn’t understand what you meant with that:

But you said you was going to ship a php app with the product so it wasn’t 100% external. Does that then not mean the customer, if they have a web server could run that php file by itself to create the necessary html css and js files? And if so is this OK?

I will just ship the app in the zip as well, so they can run it with a local web server if they want to.

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