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I have officially been working with oscommerce for 2 years now, and I started by learning the good old fashioned way – that is MAKING MISTAKES!! Thank god that I have the good frame of mind to backup my work before i even START thinking about making changes to my site.. But here’s the thing, there are a few tips that can make doing things in oscommerce a tad bit easier.

First is ALWAYS MAKE A BACKUP!!! because you WILL mess up, and you WILL cry long hours if you dont
second, USE A MERGE PROGRAM! Its so obvious, but yet people still forget that they exist. When you install contributions, dont go through the code piece by piece, just open the contribution file and your file side by side and merge them. You can use WinMerge(for PC) or DiffMerge(for mac) BOTH are free, and both will save you a LOT of time.

and FINALLY. GOOGLE YOUR ISSUES!! There is nothing more annoying than going to a user forum and seeing the same issue posted over and over again. And the thing is, these people THINK they will get instant gratification because they THINK people will just come by and give them an answer. Well, that’s rare true. If you simply go head over to google and type in the following:
site:forums.oscommerce.com then paste your error here
You will get ALL of the threads on that site that reference your particular error.

Now there is one bit of info that I have to give you that might be common sense to one person, but not to the others.. When you copy your error, DONT include your file path. No one else in the world is going to have the same file path as you. So JUST include the error. PLEASE.

So that’s it for now. It know its been a while since I updated, but i promise, i will be back more often. I will try to update at minumum once a week. In the meantime, if you have questions about oscommerce, please post them here. I will be happy to answer them.

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Hah, i was in a forum today, trying to figure out this debocle with my shared SSL (secure socket layer). What i realized was, my website NEEDS to have a cookie in the users browser, but when you visit a SHARED ssl page, the domain changes, and since the cookie is only valid on the original domain, every time the person goes to a secure page, they loose their shopping cart contents!!! What a MESS!!

Anways, I was just learning all of that stuff above by trial and error. THEN, someone came of the forum and said to me “I will try to put this in the most simple terms possible since you are not really Tech-y”

HAH!! for an average person, I feel that I am rather “tech-y” I mean, when I explain to other people how I built my website and the stuff that I have done, they look at me like I have three heads. That makes me pretty “tech-y” i would think. I guess there are levels of “tech-y” and when you are in a support forum for a complicated script, people like us probably are the least “tech-y” people there. Ok, well not the LEAST, the people who are the least “tech-y” people there are the ones who don’t know what php is. People like me one year ago.

SO anyways, I still feel rather proud of myself for being able to completely confuse people with my mumbojumbo “tech-y” talk, even if it is the average folk.

So today’s lesson is:
A shared SSL is always going to change the domain name in the user’s url because the secure pages reside on that secure server, which is being shared.
That means that if your domain name (mydomain.com) puts a cookie in the persons’ browser to be used, when the user goes to a secure page (secure.host.com/mydomain) then the cookie is not valid and will not be used resulting in the loss of infomation that was stored on that cookie.

You can get around this by using session ids, which we will cover later. But that is only good for some scripts which can use session ids. My particular one can not.

Anways, I love my host for sitting on the phone with me last night a midnite helping me with things (even with CODING which they arent supposed to do) and for now officially getting me a nice, cheap private SSL and static IP

I ❤ Hostmonster.com

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