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Considering SE PHP 4 as the base for a large livecams site

    • 75 posts
    January 16, 2018 6:07 AM EST

    Hi All,

    we are a group of developers (both PHP and JavaScript) and we are considering SE PHP 4 as the base for a large livecams project.

    Customization is not a problem for us (it wouldn't be the first livecam site nor the first CMS we write) as long as the system supports it and as long as it won't take more resources and more time than starting from scratch.

    Main pro with SE is the number of social tools / plugins that we would get nearly out of the box. We have however some technical concerns. We have been talking to their support but we'd like to hear from the community as well.


    In the Tips and Tutorials you say that SE PHP 4 is based on Zend Framework 1.12

    Zend framework is presently at version 3 which is already a couple of years old.... 1.12 is more than a bit outdated. Can anybody elaborate on this point?

    Also:
    What do you use for talking to SQL? I assume you don't just run the standard PHP commands from within SE... there must be a class / tool / library of sort to object-represent the database records... Which one? Is it your own? Could you show us an example query?

    And finally:
    Both 2Checkout, Paypal, and subscriptions are pointless to us.

    We need to integrate CCBill, Epoch and integrate credits accounting and per-minute monetization

    Are we allowed to integrate gateways?
    How is the transactions table structured in the DB?

    Thanks
    David

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 6:13 AM EST

    Hi David,

    Welcome aboard! I use SE for my author site but don't use any chats so I can't help much for that.

    Regarding Zend, I have a note for Kyle in your ticket to help answer that.

    Regarding the coding example, a note is also in your ticket for Kyle when he gets in but basically, I mentioned to check the "Hello world" example plugin in our technical overview. https://support.socialengine.com/php/customer/en/portal/articles/1638402-technical-overview?b_id=14386 . It has database example code there. 

    Regarding CCBill, please see the thread for that as other clients already posted and we would prefer not to duplicate answers. :) https://community.socialengine.com/forums/topic/445/ccbill-gateway

    I moved your duplicated post out of the live community in order to avoid duplicated posts. 

    If you have more questions, please let feel free to ask. I do use the script for my own site so have a good feel for most things and I have several free plugins in the certified marketplace via my ScriptTechs company (very small plugins).

     

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 6:15 AM EST

    Yes, you are allowed to integrate gateways. There are already some third party plugins that have gateway integrations if you need something already built. (missed answering that question in your post)

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 6:17 AM EST

    Sorry for yet another notification to you but one of the clients in that CCbill thread has a very active community with chat/cam. He may provide more feedback if he sees this thread. 

    • 75 posts
    January 16, 2018 7:36 AM EST

    Thanks for the hints, Donna, I will definitely check the CCBill thread

    As to the DB, however, all I found inside the Model folder of Hello World was:

    class HelloWorld_Model_DbTable_HelloWorlds extends Engine_Db_Table { protected$_rowClass = 'HelloWorld_Model_HelloWorld'; }
     
    plus a couple of SQL queries inside the my.sql file
     
     
    Just in case of misunderstanding (I'm not a native english speaker): we don't care about examples of SQL queries in SQL - we are trying to understand how we can run/customize complex SQL manipulations from within PHP and how SQL records are usually represented as objects inside PHP in your CMS
     
    Thanks also for moving the post - I posted it once than i thought I had put it in the wrong place, hence the duplication
     
     
     

    This post was edited by Donna at January 16, 2018 8:01 AM EST
    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 8:04 AM EST

    I edited your post to conform to our posted rules. Please remember the code tag if posting code. It's the one next to the smiley.

    The best recommendation I can make is to check the various code to see how it's done in current modules. Perhaps a third party expert will answer as our support doesn't cover customizations and your questions are on the customization end of things. Our core developers atm are tied up with this 4.10 release we are trying to get out in beta2 hopefully this week. 

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 8:05 AM EST

    I will post this question to them just in case one of them has a moment

    • 75 posts
    January 16, 2018 9:20 AM EST

    Ah! Thanks for your patience and for the code tag!

    We know you guys don't take care of customizations - we are just trying to form an informed opinion regarding what tools we would have to work with before committing ourselves to such a large customization process :-)

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 16, 2018 11:03 AM EST

    You're welcome :)

    If they have time to respond to me, I'll post but I can't promise they will have time right now due to the crunch to get beta2 done. I know it's highly customizable as there are a ton of third party plugins that customize just about anything. Perhaps a third party expert would consult with you, for a fee. Such as SocialEngineAddOns, SocialEngineSolutions, Eugene (Webhive) etc. 

    • 75 posts
    January 16, 2018 2:28 PM EST

    I got the email from Kyle but it wasn't very reassuring to be honest....

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 17, 2018 6:28 AM EST

    For using SQL as objects we have created our own DB structure in library `application/libraries/Engine/Db` which is internally using Zend's Db library so basically we are following Zend's query building rules. For running SQL queries there are mainly two ways:

    1. Example of running a raw SQL query:

    $db = Engine_Db_Table::getDefaultAdapter(); // Get database adapter $result = $db->query('Select * from `engine4_activity_attachments` where `action_id` = 100;');

    2. Example of using Database table's object:

    $table = Engine_Api::_()->getDbtable('attachments', 'activity'); // Get object of table `engine4_activity_attachments` $select = $table->select() ->where('action_id = ?', '100'); $result = $table->fetchAll($select);
    This post was edited by Donna at January 17, 2018 6:29 AM EST
    • 75 posts
    January 17, 2018 12:45 PM EST

    Thank you Donna - THIS was useful laughing

    When is the new beta expected to be released and what is the ETA for a stable non-beta new version based on Zend Framework 3 ?

    Are all modules and plugins supposed to keep working?

    MY concern here is that any heavy customization that we may start doing based on Zend Framework 1.12 (current version of SE) may get lost / not working once you update to Zend Framework 3

    David

    P.S. Our sites are not based on Zend so please understand that my knowledge of that framework is not deep

    • 375 posts
    January 17, 2018 1:29 PM EST

    Following as I am in a similar space. I think I am the user that Donna referred to with the active site. We are just migrating to SE from PHPFox and are waiting on SE4.10 before we do move. I use cams for member to member private chat and it is inclusive with the members monthly subscription so I am not up to speed on per minute billing you would want to use. I also use CCBill for my site and am in talks with a few developers to build the gateway that I need to make this happen with SE.

    • 75 posts
    January 17, 2018 7:51 PM EST
    ITLJames said:

    I use cams for member to member private chat and it is inclusive with the members monthly subscription so I am not up to speed on per minute billing you would want to use. I also use CCBill for my site and am in talks with a few developers to build the gateway that I need to make this happen with SE.

    Hello thanks for getting in touch. We have built integrations for both CCBill and Epoch as we have in house dev team and planning on adapting our own  integrations to the new platform (whichever that will be!). I'm not familiar with PHPfox - did you build your own cam/chat software? Or did it come with PHPfox?

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 18, 2018 4:59 AM EST
    David said:
    ITLJames said:

    I use cams for member to member private chat and it is inclusive with the members monthly subscription so I am not up to speed on per minute billing you would want to use. I also use CCBill for my site and am in talks with a few developers to build the gateway that I need to make this happen with SE.

    Hello thanks for getting in touch. We have built integrations for both CCBill and Epoch as we have in house dev team and planning on adapting our own  integrations to the new platform (whichever that will be!). I'm not familiar with PHPfox - did you build your own cam/chat software? Or did it come with PHPfox?

    This forum is for SocialEngine support. Please do not discuss our competition here. A note for you to know - I used to work at phpFox. I am data66/Donna there in their forum. Raymond, who founded phpFox also works at SocialEngine now. 

    Please keep this thread for SocialEngine. If you want to discuss phpFox, you can either go to my ScriptTechs forum or to the phpFox forum. 

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 18, 2018 5:02 AM EST
    David said:

    Thank you Donna - THIS was useful laughing

    When is the new beta expected to be released and what is the ETA for a stable non-beta new version based on Zend Framework 3 ?

    Are all modules and plugins supposed to keep working?

    MY concern here is that any heavy customization that we may start doing based on Zend Framework 1.12 (current version of SE) may get lost / not working once you update to Zend Framework 3

    David

    P.S. Our sites are not based on Zend so please understand that my knowledge of that framework is not deep

    You're welcome. No we don't have an ETA for a zend update as it's a major overhaul and third party experts would have a lot to do as well. Feel free to do your customizations and get your community stable on SE. :)

    • 75 posts
    January 18, 2018 10:05 AM EST
    Donna said:

    This forum is for SocialEngine support. Please do not discuss our competition here.  

    Fair enough, and sorry for the off-topic, I was just trying to form a clearer idea about the background of ITLJames and about his direct grasp of development issues

    As to the Zend Framework issue...

    From what I've gathered so far, if we pick SE as our platform, it seems clear to me that our customizations would be done BEFORE the passage of SE to Zend FW3 (as we have a 3-6 months ETA for the delivery of the basic customizations).

    Do you assume that all modules and plugins that have been designed by the book will remain compatible/usable?

    Being the Zend FW as popular as it is, other people (even outside of SE) must have experienced the passage from FW1 to FW2, from FW2 to FW3 and probably from FW1 to FW3 - how was their experience?

    Our sites haven't been developed on Zend, so I have no direct, practical work experience on it...

     

    • 375 posts
    January 18, 2018 12:51 PM EST

    Think of SE as being the core community base that allows you to bring people together and feel like they are part of a like minded group with like interests. Then you would bring your cam integration on top of this which gives that community the content they are looking for.

    If I was building your project I would use the pin board style of SE for the cam performers to showcase from and allow your members who come to watch them/interact with them a place to talk and explore together. Community is powerful and if your members feel they are part of one they will be life long customers. It really comes down to relationships.

    As for the technology of it that is what it is; if you are serious about your project and you see the ROI in it then build it now and worry about Zend upgrades later. If you keep waiting for the perfect time to launch you will never launch.

    • 75 posts
    January 18, 2018 1:21 PM EST

    That is undoubtedly one way to look at it.

    Just, we are not so sure that the necessary infrastructure for a livecam site can be simply built "on top" of SE, as opposed to "side by side with" or even "underneath / inside" SE

    That is why we are taking our time and asking many questions.

    The team behind SE seems to be a very good one: so we are relatively at ease with the idea that they will find a way to make sure that what is normally built on top of SE (like third party plugins and such) will keep working without too much trouble

    What is build inside/underneath/side-by-side with the present SE, however, seem to be more at risk...

    • 375 posts
    January 18, 2018 1:31 PM EST

    Interesting - I look forward to seeing where your concept goes! 

    Cams from a user to user point of view on our site are untested with SE as of yet so I can not speak to them specifically. Once we do get there though I will post my experience for ya

  • gs
    • 861 posts
    January 18, 2018 2:12 PM EST

    @David

    Just thinking outside the box: You mentioned you're plan is to code the webcam functionality - is there a reason you aren't considering using something like CometChat?  I ask because I purchased CometChat with SE integration and will begin testing it soon and am curious about pitfalls others have seen that I may have missed.  Obviously I realize custom code can do some things an off-the-shelf app can't.

    Thanks.

    • Moderator
    • 5240 posts
    January 18, 2018 2:26 PM EST
    David said:
    Donna said:

    This forum is for SocialEngine support. Please do not discuss our competition here.  

    Fair enough, and sorry for the off-topic, I was just trying to form a clearer idea about the background of ITLJames and about his direct grasp of development issues

    No problem :)

    As to the Zend Framework issue...

    From what I've gathered so far, if we pick SE as our platform, it seems clear to me that our customizations would be done BEFORE the passage of SE to Zend FW3 (as we have a 3-6 months ETA for the delivery of the basic customizations).

    Do you assume that all modules and plugins that have been designed by the book will remain compatible/usable?

    I cannot assume anything in regards to zend 3 as I don't know the tech aspects of it. I can say that when we make improvements, it always has an upgrade path for current clients as we don't want to leave anyone in the dust. As we also use our platform here, we wouldn't want to do anything that would mess us up. As I use this script for my author site, I would be pretty miffed if we did something that would make my site unable to upgrade. I hope that helps to reassure you that we are not only here to stay, but we always have an eye on making sure our clients are not left in the cold.

    On another note, one thing one of our core experts had mentioned before was simply taking zend and doing our own custom updates to it. That was nixed but it is something a client with a dev team could certainly also do if they wanted to.

    IMO your customizations would be safe for 4.10 as it's not updating zend. As for when an update does come for that (zend), most clients wouldn't undertake that sort of upgrade right when it's released. They tend to wait and see how things work on their dev, how other clients are reacting to it, etc. :)

    No matter which platform you choose, us or another, you'll have the same considerations regarding upgrades with customizations.


    This post was edited by Donna at January 18, 2018 2:29 PM EST
    • 75 posts
    January 18, 2018 2:57 PM EST
    Donna said:
    I can say that when we make improvements, it always has an upgrade path for current clients as we don't want to leave anyone in the dust. No matter which platform you choose, us or another, you'll have the same considerations regarding upgrades with customizations.

    I both agree and disagree - based on the fact that the kind of infrastructure we have in mind is quite a bit more than the average plugin.

    I'm quite literally in love with the level of responsiveness that you guys are showing and I trust your good will totally: I'm positive you will all do your absolute best for not leaving anybody in the dust.

    My concern is related only to the fact that some of the infrastructure elements needed to run a large live site have to be placed pretty deep inside the system. Of course, we finally  decide to go with you guys will do our best to keep all our customizations inside the "borders" of what a normal plugin would be, i.e. as much as possible without touching the core.

    Is your system fully compatible with PHP 7 ? I found contradicting answers in regard to Zend Framework 1.12

    • 75 posts
    January 18, 2018 3:09 PM EST
    gs said:

    @David

    Just thinking outside the box: You mentioned you're plan is to code the webcam functionality - is there a reason you aren't considering using something like CometChat? Thanks.

    Thanks for the hint - we have our own API but the fact that somebody has already done a live cam integration is an interesting point

    Are you already using it? Or are you still in development? Do you have per minute monetization associated with your live streams?

  • gs
    • 861 posts
    January 18, 2018 5:50 PM EST

    ==> 'Are you already using it? Or are you still in development? Do you have per minute monetization associated with your live streams?'

     

    - no, not using it yet

    - still in development

    - don't plan on using per minute monetization (our use is as part of Subscriptions by Member Levels)

    - using CometChat servers instead of ours for the heavy lifting

     


    This post was edited by gs at January 18, 2018 5:50 PM EST