Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
zefeena

New install - WHILE Still running a live website

Recommended Posts

I have a very old website, and I need to start afresh! I was hoping to put a fresh install (link to the best current one would be appreciated) onto my cpanel, so I could edit it, put add-ons and test it etc, but so no-one else is going to end up on it until I'm ready to swap over, and hopefully upload my current database  to it for seamless changeover!!

My website is still live and I can't switch it off for any period of time, as its my only income.

Currently it appears my install is simply in 'public_html',  would I create a new folder in there , and then upload to it? and would I then need to download it once complete and re-load where my current one is?  

Any guidance on this initial step would be appreciated so I can 'have a play' with the latest download

Thanks


Running a botched up version of  osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4 bootstrap with the dresscode theme installed, numerous add-ons, terrible coding, terrible website, but will have to make do until I have made up for my losses and can risk shutting down for a couple of weeks while I start all over again. - I did not install my program but am endeavouring to fix it with your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would do it totally away from live site, eg on "localhost", while just having a play... 

Google "uniform server" for a very easy to set up and easy to use localhost server.

 


This is a signature that appears on all my posts.  
IF YOU MAKE A POST REQUESTING HELP...please state the exact version
of osCommerce that you are using. THANKS

 
Get the latest Responsive osCommerce CE (community edition) here

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i would build in a test folder on the live site, to replicate conditions. as for which version you should use ...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, zefeena said:

Any guidance on this initial step would be appreciated so I can 'have a play' with the latest download 

using a local server is fine if you are happy with setting it up and doing some configuration! if you are use this,

https://www.trythenbuy.co.uk/xampp-apache-mariadb-php-perl-p-61.html

If you have no clue how to set up and configuer a local server don't waste your time, as @Hotclutch said put it in a sub foulder on your server or to be totaly safe talk to your host, many are able and willing to give you a test domin to do your testing on.

However which ever way you decide to do it, do not risk making the move without geting some good advice on how to do it.  Get help paid or not to make sure you do not lose any links or existing urls when moving as this will damage your sites rankings. A poorly transferd site can kill your business for months if not more.


 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If the prospect of installing an *AMPP server fills you with fear (as it should... it's a major undertaking which does require a fair amount of computer science skills), I second the suggestion to just make a test or development folder on your live site, and install "Frozen" there (with patches). Make a second database and work with a copy of your live site, so you don't risk messing it up. When you're happy with it and ready to go live, back up your old store and database (and know how to restore the backup!!!!!), then shut down your old store and allow enough time for everyone to get off it, copy your new files over the old ones (production store directory), and go through the database conversion again to bring your old database up to snuff with the new osC's schema.

If you had installed your store in public_html/, it's probably too late now, but that was a bad thing to do. You want to keep your site root clear of applications, so that each application is safely isolated in its own directory tree (such as catalog/) and nobody is stepping on anyone else's toes. There are .htaccess tricks you can do to avoid having customers having to type in "catalog/" in the URL, and later you can add a landing page in the root to direct visitors to the appropriate application. If you have Search Engine rankings already built up, it's probably too late to change the URL structure without losing everything and having to start over with SEO.

*AMPP servers are almost always "bleeding edge" with their PHP and MySQL versions, and it's likely that you will have trouble getting Frozen to work on a PHP 7.2 system. After doing all sorts of extra work to get osC to work on this server, it is likely to break when you move it back to an older production server (older PHP and MySQL versions). I don't find it worth the extra effort -- just use a separate directory on your live server. If you wish to keep others out, password protect it from your control panel. By the way, your control panel (cPanel is a specific brand of control panel) should have a way to bulk move files over from one directory to another, without having to FTP them to your PC and back up, although that may be just as easy for you.

Finally, keep in mind that software "rots" over time... you have to keep a server reasonably up to date, with supported PHP levels, etc., and the applications you run on your site (such as osC) fall behind newer PHP levels and stop working after a while, unless you make a constant effort to keep up to date. Keeping good records of all changes (add-ons and custom work) you do on your site make it much easier to get your new store back to where you want it, and less painful to keep up to date.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that has just scared me to death! 

I am used to OSC now so I don't really want to change and have to learn something new.  On the other hand, having had my current site built by someone else (and hating it) I feel like I need to be able to know something of the site so I can make changes and 'mend' things when they go wrong.

I would prefer to have an easier set up, as programming language hurts my head! but I have thousands of products and customers, and I think changing to 'something new' may mess up my business.  currently I am not sure I'm really getting that much traffic because of google rankings or seo.  I do not understand or involve myself in either, and at least 50% of my business comes from repeat custom.  And I think the majority of new customers are driven to me, via my own promotion and word of mouth.

I am far from stupid, but computer work does not interest me, hence I find it difficult to learn, and easy to forget! I always have to rely on the clever people on here to advise me, and I usually get sorted in the end, but it can sometimes take me a ludicrous amount of time, and I'm sure it could be better spent.  

Thee seems to be so many 'versions' of OSC, and I never seem to know which one anyone is talking about - ie. which version is 'frozen' because the downloads all have numbers, not names.  Its very confusing!

Do I stick with OSC or would moving to a ready made provider be more suitable to someone like me?


Running a botched up version of  osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4 bootstrap with the dresscode theme installed, numerous add-ons, terrible coding, terrible website, but will have to make do until I have made up for my losses and can risk shutting down for a couple of weeks while I start all over again. - I did not install my program but am endeavouring to fix it with your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you're going to survive with osCommerce, you have to be willing to learn and do things for yourself. People here will help, but i doubt anyone will, if they think you're not making an effort.

I have had a look at your URL, no serious attention has been given to SEO, so you can't expect anything there until you do something about that.

You are also running a template or theme, so what is your expectation wrt now?

30 minutes ago, zefeena said:

Do I stick with OSC or would moving to a ready made provider be more suitable to someone like me?

Ready made provider? Like what? I can't imagine things would be easier if you switch to something else, unless its a managed platform which would imply a fee based system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would have to assume that "ready made provider" would be a fee-based service to host, install, configure, load inventory, etc. The shop owner simply runs the business side, not having to think about the software. Depending on their software skills (or lack thereof), this might in the long run be more profitable for them if they can spend their time managing their business and not losing sales due to poor SEO, obsolete versions, etc.

This could be quite a business opportunity for someone, and there's no reason it couldn't use osCommerce.

P.S. Yes, the whole named version thing is ridiculous, but I've never been able to talk Gary out of it. He just doesn't see how hard it is for business people to keep track of which version they're using.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why not build a complete new shop on a second domain?

I did that (had it done) and linked the old domain to the new domain when the moment was there....

If you have loyal customers, they will understand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Hotclutch said:

I think people hop onto Ebay for this reason.

Seriously!!! NO!  shame on you for suggesting it!

I do not do ebay, complete waste of time, only ebay makes any money from ebay!

My 'listings' on my website, cost me next to nothing per annum (just hosting ), if I switched to ebay, I'd be looking at bills for £1000's every year, and very few sales.  I've survived 20 years without it, and I don't plan to use it now.  Its fine if you sell your unwanted tack, but if you actually need to make a living, then its a non-starter.

6 hours ago, MrPhil said:

"ready made provider" would be a fee-based service to host, install, configure, load inventory, etc

I think I might have to go this way.  Theres just not enough hours in the day to try to wear every hat, which is what I have done since setting up.  at the start it was necessary, now I guess I need to try to let go of the reins again - I did so a couple of years ago, and now have a crap website, and started to do my own accounts again too, so currently the 'hat wardrobe' is very full!


Running a botched up version of  osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4 bootstrap with the dresscode theme installed, numerous add-ons, terrible coding, terrible website, but will have to make do until I have made up for my losses and can risk shutting down for a couple of weeks while I start all over again. - I did not install my program but am endeavouring to fix it with your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Hotclutch said:

If you're going to survive with osCommerce, you have to be willing to learn and do things for yourself. People here will help, but i doubt anyone will, if they think you're not making an effort.

I have had a look at your URL, no serious attention has been given to SEO, so you can't expect anything there until you do something about that.

Programming might come very easy for you, but it is very unnatural to me.  To suggest someone is not making an effort is rather unkind.  I am far from lazy, but if I make programming/learning computer stuff etc the main stay of my day, how on earth do I fit in listing products, buying stock, packing orders etc? I would have added, fitting in a social life, but I never managed to find the time for that!  Rant over - more important stuff to do!


Running a botched up version of  osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4 bootstrap with the dresscode theme installed, numerous add-ons, terrible coding, terrible website, but will have to make do until I have made up for my losses and can risk shutting down for a couple of weeks while I start all over again. - I did not install my program but am endeavouring to fix it with your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@zefeena Love your rant. Most of us small businesses are in the same position. I certainly am.

Here's what I did to get a development / test sore.

First I created a new database and remembered the details that I used from within my hosting cpanel

I then created a new folder in my root folder on my current live server. I installed the latest oscommerce version in to this folder which is possible using the standard oscommerce install files and the database details that were just created. I then password protected that complete folder using cpanel from my hosting. That stops the likes of google and other people accessing that folder.

I have a host where its possible to setup different php versions on different files so I used php7.2 on this whole folder.

I can now sit and play with the  latest code. I can add and remove modules and code as I please and not affect my main site. I assume that eventually I wil lhave to update the database with all the products, customers and what ever when the store goes live, but that should be done quickly.

If you feel unable to create the folder, database and install oscommerce try asking one of the better coders in this forum. It wont cost you as much as you think and will remove all the possible problems and stress. When the time comes I am sure for a small cost the database details can be transferred also. I did that last time and it was relatively cheap.


REMEMBER BACKUP, BACKUP AND BACKUP

Get the latest Responsive osCommerce CE (community edition) here

It's very easy to over complicate what are simple things in life

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, 14steve14 said:

Here's what I did to get a development test site

Thanks.  I feel reasonable confident I could add the site to a new folder/secure it etc. I think I will probably even be able to make the database compatible.  The most difficult things for me, will be all the add-ons, and ensuring the likes of Paypal and Worldpay still work okay.  These have always caused me the most trouble and really vital.  I'm going to have a look at shopify and decide if the time spent on oscommece would be better spent improving my business to pick up the shopify bill!   For the moment I'm going to leave my site as it is and de-register for vat tomorrow, to save a few thousand a year! 


Running a botched up version of  osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4 bootstrap with the dresscode theme installed, numerous add-ons, terrible coding, terrible website, but will have to make do until I have made up for my losses and can risk shutting down for a couple of weeks while I start all over again. - I did not install my program but am endeavouring to fix it with your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never change a running system

Change a running system only if:

1. you are sure changed system will run much better

2. running systems does not run anymore as wanted

3. you are sure not want to change it only for fun

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×