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Gary Tayman

Install problems

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Maybe somebody here can guide me in the right direction.  The solution might be simple, but I need guidance.

My server is Hostmonster.  I wrote most of my website using SharePoint, then uploaded it, but the e-commerce portion was made using Os-commerce.  Originally I installed this from Hostmonster's Control Panel, then set it up from there.  It ran well for awhile.

Then one day my site got hacked.  It was so bad that I was forced to erase everything and start over.  It took all of ten minutes to reload the website itself, but the Os-commerce was gone.  I didn't know I could back that up; I know now.

So now I'm trying to reinstall Os-commerce.  It hangs in the middle of installation.  Hostmonster told me to try Firefox or Chrome to do this; I've tried both.  I've also done the shut-down-reboot thing to no avail.  Hostmonster told me to call ";mojo."  I did, and was told that Os-commerce install isn't working.  They had me install something else, which I hate.  Looks like I'm stuck.

I guess Os-commerce can be installed manually.  Any directions on how to do this?  Any other tips or suggestions?  I've wasted two days on this so far; I'd really like to get this in place because I've got a LOT of work to do once it's installed.

 

Thanks!

 

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If you did install from HM's control panel, you probably ended up installing osC 2.3.4. That's what they'll presumably have you install again. DON'T. It's totally obsolete. The only production-ready up-to-date version you should use is available on GitHub and is osC 2.3.4BS "Edge". You will need to migrate your database to the new format. Once you're on "Edge", you will have a completely up-to-date store compatible with PHP 7.0 (maybe 7.1 by now) and is RESPONSIVE.

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@Gary Tayman

As @MrPhil recommended, use the latest Edge version of osC, available here:

https://github.com/gburton/Responsive-osCommerce/archive/master.zip

Do NOT use the 'One-Click' installs offered by your host. Not only is it obsolete, you should really learn how to manage your store manually. Start by:

1) Log into your host, and make a new, clean database for the new installation. You will still need your old database if you want to import your old data over. Make note of the new database name, user name, and password.

2) Download the Edge version of osC (see above) to your local computer.

3) On your local computer, extract all of the files from the ZIP file, keeping the directory structure intact.

4) Using a FTP program (such as FileZilla), log into your host's server. Create a sub-directory in which to install osC. The default sub-directory name is 'catalog'. If you use a different sub-directory, make a note.

5) Upload all of the extracted files from the /catalog/ directory in #3 above into your sub-directory, keeping all of the underlying sub-directory structure intact.

6) Using a browser, log into your server using the URL <YourDomainName>/<YourSubDirectoryName>. This should initiate the installation process. If not, go back and examine everything again.

7) During the installation, you will be asked for the database name, user name, and password. Refer to #1 above.

8) Follow the rest of the installation instructions. You will be asked for a sub-directory for the Admin side of your store. The default is 'admin'. For security reasons, it is recommended that you change this. You will also be asked for an Administrator name and password. Make a note all of these, as these will be needed for you to manage your store.

You should now have a working store at <YourDomainName>/<YourSubDirectoryName>. Common problems include not paying attention to the directory structures. For example, you may end up with a structure such as:

<YourDomainName>/<YourSubDirectoryName>/catalog/

To administer your store, point your browser to: <YourDomainName>/<YourSubDirectoryName>/<YourAdminSubDirectoryName>

At this point, start exploring your new store, both on the store side, and on the Admin side. Many feature of your store are turned off by default, and you will have to experiment with them to find out what they all do.

Come back after you've done all of this, and have any more questions.

HTH

Malcolm

Edited by ArtcoInc

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Thanks for your information; I'll print it and set it aside.  However I'm already stuck at step 1.  Remember, all my files were lost, so there is no existing database of any kind.  So I'm starting fresh.  If I need to install a database, what do I get and how do I install it?

Skimming through your instructions, it appears I extract all the files then copy them to a directory on my website?  That part sounds easy enough, but what about this database?

 

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@Gary Tayman

On your host's server, you need a mySQL database for your store. Your old store had one. You say that the old files were lost. The database may still be available, as it is not a 'file' per se.

But, even if the old database is lost, it's no big deal. You're going to have to create a new one anyone. Use your host's tools (they should have some tool available, such as phpMyAdmin) to create the new database. Just give it a name, and user name, and a password. You do not have to put anything in the database, the installation process does that for you.

HTH

Malcolm

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If you don't even know what a "database" is, you'd better not try doing this yourself. You'll need to hire someone who knows what they're doing. There are listings in the commercial support section of this forum. By the way, it's rare that a hacker would destroy your database, too. Even if they did (and it's possible), your host may have a backup they can restore for you, although they usually don't keep them around for more than a week or so. That would at least preserve your existing data. Hopefully you've learned a lesson about keeping regular backups of your site files and your database!

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Okay, as far as learning the lesson, I keep backups of everything.  I had my website restored in about ten minutes, aside from the CS=Commerce.  As for that, I would have made a backup if I had known it could be done.

It's the database that has me confused though.  I actually have another program, DJ related, that requires MySQL to be installed first.  I've done it, it works fine, in fact I've installed this on my desktop as well as three laptops, and had to read the step-by-step instructions each time,.

 

In this case it's a bit more confusing -- as I indeed installed MySQL on my host this morning.  Looks like it does not reside on my website itself, but on the server someplace else.  Whatever.  But this brings up yet another question:  if, after putting something substantial onto OS-Commerce, I decide to back it up, am I still able to do this simply by copying the directories from my site to a local hard drive, or do I need some other function to find and copy MySQL as well?

I'm currently tied up with some work to do -- so I'm following this a little at a time.  Maybe this weekend I'll spend more time with this.  Anyway, thanks for your help.

 

 

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@Gary Tayman

Your online store consists of two components: The store files, and the database. You should have a complete backup of both.

The store files should be backed up as often as you change the store itself. The database, well, let's put it this way ... how much data are you willing to loose if everything crashes? A month? A week? A day? An hour?

There is a feature in the Admin side of the osCommerce store where you can backup the database manually, any time you want. You can back it up either to a separate directory on your host's server, or you can back it up to your local computer.

Your host should also keep backup copies of your database, but it's always better to keep your own (say, if you need to quickly more your store to another host).

There are also utilities available to automatically back up your database.

One last thing ... most hosts have mySQL installed and available as part of their hosting package. Once you have access to mySQL, you can install as many independent databases as you want (within the limits of your host's plan, of course). This means you can have several instances of osCommerce installed, as well as one (or more) instances of WordPress, etc ... all in the same mySQL installation. Each, though, will require its own backup.

Malcolm

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If you have the typical entry-level shared hosting, as Malcolm said, MySQL should already be installed for you. It likely resides on another server, or some systems still have it share space on your server (address = "localhost"). Your host will tell you. You (or your application installer) will not be installing MySQL, but rather, will be creating a database on it and then filling it with tables and data. Any host should back it up for you, but it's still a good idea to run some utility (such as "Export" on phpMyAdmin) once in a while to back it up onto your PC. Needless to say, you should get some practice in restoring files and database from your personal backups, before there's an emergency and you need to figure it out for real. By the way, if you've been around the business long enough, you've heard more than a few horror stories about host daily backups that were defective for one reason or another, and if you didn't have your own personal backup, you're screwed.

Now, if instead of a shared hosting server, you bought a bare-metal dedicated server or co-location deal, you might very well be responsible for installing MySQL yourself. However, it sounds like you are nowhere near the experience level needed, and would have no business trying to do that yourself.

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Okay, I hope this isn't a stupid question.

When I upload the files to my website, all directories intact, should the result be /catalog/all the files, or catalog/responsive-osCommerce-master/all the files?  When extracting, it makes this directory.

 

 

 

 

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If it has a "responsive-osCommerce-master" directory, then you didn't unzip it quite correctly. It should just be "catalog" (or change it to "shop" if you prefer). On your PC, you should be able to drag and drop the directories from under responsive-osCommerce-master to be under catalog. You might even be able to do that in your hosting control panel (some sort of "Move" operation for directories). In any case, it should be easy enough to shuffle stuff around to the right place.

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Okay, I left out the responsive-oscommerce-master and uploaded all the files to the directory "catalog."

I went in, and it's giving me installation instructions, and this is yet another roadblock.

I'm not asking these questions to sound green; I'm asking these questions because I'm trying NOT to make a mistake that I'll be stuck with forever.  My cell phone service, started many years ago, used my wife's name and misspelled it.  After buying several new phones over the years and changing providers 4 times, it's STILL in there misspelled!  Installing OS-Commerce, I'd really like to get it right, and not make some irreversible error that will embarrass me for the next decade.

First page of installation.  It asks for my database server, username, password, and database name.  Just what are they looking for with database server?  My provider is Hostmonster.  Is that what they're looking for, or do they want the name of the database itself, MySQL?  For user name and password, it sounds like they might want the name of my website?  Would this be my login?  Password, I guess it's my login password for Hostmonster?  And then the database name.  It's been a week.  I think I named it os-commerce.

 

wHiTeHaT likes this

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The wonderful thing about computers and websites is that you can tear it all down and start over. It's not like your parents gave you a stupid name and you have to decide whether to live with it for the rest of your life or cause a major disruption to your records and offend your parents by going to court and changing it. Don't sweat it over your store installation -- if you screw up, you can always redo it.

Regarding the database, the server is usually the machine where the DB lives. If it's on the same machine as your website, it is usually "localhost" or "127.0.0.1". If it's on a separate machine, it will be a name such as "db0351L.myhost.com" or an IP address. Ask your host. There will be a database name that allows you to tell apart multiple databases you may own, such as "osCshopDB". On shared servers, where many accounts will be naming databases, hosts often have you prepend your account name to the DB name: myacctname_osCshopDB when referring to it, such as in config.php. Finally, you create a user and the associated password who is the one who authorized to actually perform operations on the DB, including everything to do with running the store. Again, the name will often have the account name prepended to it for use in the configuration file, etc. There should be full instructions with the files.

You're overthinking it all. Relax... you're not doing anything permanent and irreversible. You can always start over with no penalty.

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Okay, I'm sorry but this is getting WAY beyond ridiculous.

I have spent an entire evening trying to install this mess, and I can't get past square one.  I have called Hostmonster 8 times and can't get a straight answer.

For database server, I've tried localhost, and I've tried a numeric address.  Nothing either way.  Username, I've gone back to the database and installed new users, the Hostmonster rep has installed new users, good grief I have no idea how many new users are in the dadblame thing now, but NONE of them work!

Tried probably 100 times, each time it kicks it back to me.

The last rep told me he knows the answer -- I put all the files in the directory "catalog."  ISN'T THAT WHAT YOU TOLD ME TO DO???  I'm supposed to put all the files in the main menu -- all trillion of them.

Is there anyone out there who in the Sam Hill can get me set up, or do I give up on os-commerce completely?  Good God, whatever happened to one-click install?

 

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So I called back one more time.  This time the rep told me the problem is with the PHP, which is 5.2 and should be 5.6.

 

He was able to fix it in the root directory, but tried over and over to fix it in the catalog directory and it refuses to change.  So I'm stuck.

 

comments?

 

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Instead of messing aound with this yourself, and getting stressed, why not have someone that knows what they are doing to set your oscommerce store up for you. If you cant set up oscommerce you will struggle with most other ecommerce stores as they are all similar. You will just need who ever you choose to be able to access your server so create a working admin user and password for them, and when they are finished remove it. Put a post in the paid for help section and see what you get. Wont cost that much. It will certainly be easier than spending days on a simple hour long job, and save lots of stress. It will also work when they finish.

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11 hours ago, Gary Tayman said:

The last rep told me he knows the answer -- I put all the files in the directory "catalog."  ISN'T THAT WHAT YOU TOLD ME TO DO???  I'm supposed to put all the files in the main menu -- all trillion of them.

The guy is an idiot who doesn't know what he's doing. You never install a major application into the site root (/). It goes in its own subdirectory (e.g., /catalog) so that it's completely isolated from the rest of the site, won't step on other applications you choose to install, and in turn won't be stepped on by them. The root .htaccess should only have sitewide common settings (like forcing www. and https, and IP blocking), with all the application-specific stuff (like SEO) in the application's own /catalog/.htaccess. If you currently have no other applications, you can put a rewrite into /.htaccess to jump a visitor to root over to your store. When you install other applications (like a blog or gallery), you replace that rewrite with a custom-written "landing page" in root.

As for getting the root to PHP 5.6, if /catalog won't go to 5.6 too, it means you have something in /catalog/.htaccess that is resetting to a back level of PHP. Again, your "support" guy is an idiot. By the way, If you're at PHP 5.6 for your site (which is the minimum you should be at), you should be installing osC 2.3.4BS Edge, and not osC 2.3.4. 2.3.4 won't even install on 5.6; I'm not sure about 2.3.4.1.

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Okay, what's the next step here?

I can go to any section and "pay" more than i'll make off this thing in 10 years.

I can give it up os-commerce entirely.  Gee, it used to be an easy install but I guess they fixed that!

I can go to another web server.  I have web.com, for whatever reason, it's still out there, empty.  BUT -- I now have Sitelock on my site, spending $$$ to keep it safe, and the part that needs the most help will be elsewhere.

I can shut down the business entirely, and try to collect welfare.

Sorry, but there's literally nothing about this computer that's making life easier.  Over 90% of my time is spent trying to configure the computer!

I have other work to do; i'll try again the next time I have 10 more hours to kill.

 

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51 minutes ago, MrPhil said:

2.3.4 won't even install on 5.6

Sure it will

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Okay, I've finally got some good news.  I called my server support again, and immediately asked for a supervisor.  The young lady tried to contact someone, and in the meantime tried to fix the PHP situation.  She fixed it!  It installed.  I got into the Admin section.  Didn't have much time as customers were calling, but I have the yellow screen saying it's been 30 days since a check was made, etc., -- but the good news is I'm in.

 

I'll poke around more later.  I'll ask for help if I need it, but I'll try first to remember . . .it's been awhile but I'm sure it'll come back to me.  Unless there's some other new surprise . . .

Thanks for your help, everyone.

 

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@Gary Tayman

 

2 hours ago, Gary Tayman said:

Okay, I've finally got some good news.  I called my server support again, and immediately asked for a supervisor.  The young lady tried to contact someone, and in the meantime tried to fix the PHP situation.  She fixed it!  It installed.  I got into the Admin section.  Didn't have much time as customers were calling, but I have the yellow screen saying it's been 30 days since a check was made, etc., -- but the good news is I'm in.

That's normal. When a shop is first installed, you have to run your security check in order to set the flag so it knows that it has been run. Then, osC will want you to run it every so often (like, every 30 days) just to be safe. But, it won't shut down your shop if you don't run it.

To run it, log into your Admin. Click on 'Tools' in the right column (the last choice in the list). Then, click on 'Security Checks'.

The Security Check will probably identify several things that don't pass the test:

* The first one, "Admin HTTP Authentication" is used to add a special .htaccess file to the Admin directory. This helps to protect your Admin side of the shop, but be careful, it does come with some risks. Search this forum for how to get into your site if you have this set, and loose your Administrator user name and/or password.

* config_file_catalog says that your /catalog/includes/configure.php file has permissions that allow you to write to the file (644). Security Checks wants this changed so the file can not be written to (something like 444). Do note that if you do change the file's permissions, you will have to remember to change it back when/if you ever need to make changes to parts of your store.

* ext/ Directory Listing says that the /catalog/ext directory is publicly accessible, and wants you to change the permissions on that directory.

* Version Check will want you to check to see if you have the latest version of osCommerce. It's looking for version number 2.3.4.1  If you are using the latest version of Edge, this will pass. When the powers-that-be do update osC, this check will let you know that an update is available. Do note that you do not HAVE to upgrade if a new version comes out.

None of these will break your store if they don't pass. If anything else doesn't pass, though, let us know here.

HTH

Malcolm

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7 hours ago, multimixer said:

Sure it will

Really? You're talking about the 3 or 4 year old official version (until a few months ago), not 2.3.4.1 or 2.3.4BS Edge? Did Harald update 2.3.4 and not change the version number? I remember hearing constant complaints that 2.3.4 wouldn't install or run on PHP 5.6 systems.

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I've got one more question before closing out this thread.

Once I get the page looking the way I want it, and at least a few products in place, what's the best way to back it up?

Is all the software, all the product descriptions, and everything related in that catalog directory?  In other words, if I copy "Catalog" to my local hard drive, is it saving everything, or is the data itself stored elsewhere?

Once I get things configured, and a few products in place, I want to start backing it up.

 

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You need to keep a known good working copy of everything in the catalogue folder. Every ime you make any chanes to the code, or add anything new you need to keep another copy. Update the backups before you make any code changes.

You also need to get into your hosting account to get a copy of the database you created. This will change when there is a new order or new customer. Depending on how much information you want to loose will depend on how often you back this up. I back mine up to my computer once a week. My hosts do daily backups which is why I dont.

Get into a routine and backup regularly. I do it every Monday. I save mine into dated folders and only keep the last 3 or 4.

It's also then easy to upload a 2nd copy of your site where you do all testing and updates first. Do any alterations to the files on your computer and upload then to your site using ftp. I never use my hosting panel to update the site.

Hope this gives you an insight into developing your own backup routine.

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The bottom line, as Steve said, is to regularly back up both your server files and your server database, which are separate operations. Both should be close to "one button" affairs (some FTP client like FileZilla: drag and drop your public_html/ or catalog/ folder to a place on the PC side. Done. phpMyAdmin: export "SQL" backup to PC directory. Done. And those are the most laborious ways of doing it!).

After learning how to back up your site, or at least, the important stuff, learn how to restore backups (both files and database). This can save you $$ by not having to ask your host to restore a file or two from their backup (most charge a fairly stiff fee for this). Host backups are done on a high-speed assembly-line process, and it's not terribly uncommon to find out that a host backup tape is no good! So, it's good to have your own backup to back up the host's backup. Also learn how to spot check your backups (such as doing a restore to a test directory and database) to make sure they're good.

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