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Localhost Downloading of marketplace apps/plugins (manually)


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21 minutes ago, Lindy said:

You're welcome and again - it's no problem. That's what I'm here for. 🙂 

To answer your question, it would not prevent you from installing. That aspect is on the honor system (and who wants to risk losing their license from breaking the rules??), however, we would like to provide authors with the ability to determine how this works for their individual resources. 

That's brilliant thank you. I've just removed some old files from my other licence as they were not used (hence my question), and wished to transfer them and use on my second licence. So I still only have one instanced of the file installed (as agreed upon purchasing).

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As recommended, I'm creating this topic to reinstate the option to download files manually from the Marketplace. It's bad enough you don't allow the download of apps we purchased when our licenc

Absolutely a necessity to support multiple localhost development environments and to support the download of application/plugins directly from the IPS marketplace as existed in 4.4 and earlier. The in

To be honest, apps and plugins that get abandoned are one prime reason we need a way to sensibly obtain the files to fix issues ourselves if we want. I know many wont have the skills to do that but as

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41 minutes ago, Lindy said:

First and foremost, we want to really promote more harmony within third party applications. 4.4, because of its looser standards that did not require authors to use versioning/update notifications, ultimately allowed a hodge podge of current and outdated resources that would collide with one another (and the core) leading to unnecessary issues, customer frustration and support overhead. With everything managed within the AdminCP, you have easy access to updates - the same as the core software.

Lindy. I appreciate you taking the time to respond as well. I agree that this change is useful as it will help novice and less technical users with preventing breakages. However, I do hope that the team will find time to offer the alternative of manual downloads that we have been very much used to, especially for us who like to set up third-party applications before launching our communities or those of us who run intranet-only sites. To me, it seems that with every major release, there are always about three features removed or new restrictions put in place that limit the control of our own communities. From what I've seen from all my years here, it is very rare that a feature is brought back or a restriction is lifted. And, I'm not sure if this is true, but I heard there was even a rule forbidding mod developers from reintroducing removed features. Furthermore, changes like this make me miss the days of third-party marketplaces such as Invisionize where I could select the version of applications I wanted all without having to worry about keeping my license current or the application being delisted simply because it wasn't updated for the latest version. There are apps that I've even paid for here that are just removed at the staff's discretion. It just seems that IPS is becoming a controlling monopoly in regards to marketplace applications.

2 minutes ago, Lindy said:

To answer your question, it would not prevent you from installing. That aspect is on the honor system (and who wants to risk losing their license from breaking the rules??), however, we would like to provide authors with the ability to determine how this works for their individual resources. 

I like that there's at least this positive aspect. I was also a bit worried that there would be alot of hassle in this situation. Although, I do find it a bit overreaching to revoke someone's license because they broke a third-party software's license terms.

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I have not played with 4.5 with all that was going on here locally (just looking now its gone final) but what is the procedure for addons we plan to use exclusively on our site and not available for others?

Sorry I have not been able to keep up with all the changes for 4.5, its been a hectic year so far.

EDIT: Derp I see the manual upload option.

We have customised some marketplace addons to meet our needs with our server but I suspect we wont easily be able to do this in future?

Edited by sudo
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1 hour ago, sudo said:

We have customised some marketplace addons to meet our needs with our server but I suspect we wont easily be able to do this in future?

Correct; it would seem this way. 😞

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6 hours ago, sudo said:

I have not played with 4.5 with all that was going on here locally (just looking now its gone final) but what is the procedure for addons we plan to use exclusively on our site and not available for others?

Sorry I have not been able to keep up with all the changes for 4.5, its been a hectic year so far.

EDIT: Derp I see the manual upload option.

We have customised some marketplace addons to meet our needs with our server but I suspect we wont easily be able to do this in future?

In terms of downloading the resource archive, modifying and reinstalling - no, that is not possible, unless you purchase it directly through the author and install it as a custom app/plugin. 

5 hours ago, ibaker said:

Interesting seeing that XF has had one for over 8 years with over 5,000 mods, addons etc from developers for either sale or for free:

Respectfully, that is a resource directory. As far as I know, they do not facilitate transactions like an app store (I'm told they instead direct to an author's site for payment) and I'm reasonably confident there is no official code or QA review as it has come up numerous times in sales inquiries from folks coming from XF, wanting to ensure that we do. That's not to take away from the value of the directory - it works for them (and you) and that's great. The majority of our customers have a reasonable expectation to trust that what they install from our Marketplace has been reviewed by IPS. If the Android approach works better for you - we don't take it personally. You have to decide what is important to you but you're not going to get the taste of Coke Zero in a Pepsi Max can (I prefer Coke Zero, if you were curious, but you may prefer Pepsi 😉) -- there's no point in choosing Brand A, if you just want it to mimic Brand B. 

The modern web landscape has changed significantly. There are a decreasing number of platforms that have "downloadable content." We are a point. click. install. done. society now and we've found that represents the mindset of the majority of our customer base, from personal all the way to enterprise. We've organically aligned ourselves with those who prefer and expect a more Apple-esque experience and thus, that's the direction we've been taken since the inception of Invision Community 4. We're comfortable and happy with that. We still provide the power of developing or installing applications independently of the marketplace (but there is a warning it's untested, use at your own risk, etc.) If you're using the Marketplace, we want to keep tighter control on that in the interest of security, stability and customer confidence and support. It also helps the authors which allows them to develop new and exciting things for you instead of spending that time providing additional support for installation, upgrades, issues surrounding out of date resources, etc. Poking holes back in the framework and slapping up downloads to essentially go backwards is not something we are considering at the present time, however, as I said, if the demand changes in the future, we will of course re-evaluate and if a change is warranted, we will do so in a sensible way. 

 

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7 hours ago, day_ said:

Imagine there will be a few tears from those that like to run Null communities with plugins

Bill Hader Popcorn GIF

Actually, I would expect quite the opposite. Just as with the movie industry who imposed non-skippable scenes on retail DVDs, or the gaming industry whose certain games impose constant Internet-based license validation for single-player mode under the guise of an "enhanced experience," the nulled/cracked/ripped version provides the best experience. It's only the paying, honest customers who get hurt and punished by these types of imposed restrictions.

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@Lindy It's completely understood that you guys have been working so hard to get things in prefect way, and we the customers thank and appreciate you for that. We have seen IPS wanted to protect more the third-party developers which completely very lovely, and we the customers are more than happy to support them more by buying their products.

My question is all what we see that IPS and the developer "Terms and Conditions", so what's left for customers to be protected and feel safe. The answer is nothing. Haven't IPS seen how many developers have left the Market Place after just a few months of releasing their products? What about some applications/themes are overpriced even some require renewals more expansive than the renewal of an IPS license itself. Haven't IPS seen how many customers have felt ripped off because of the developer has left, and they have just purchased that theme or application? 

Repeating again we do love to support all developers especially whom stick around, but all what we need is to feel safe whenever we buy their products. We need a consumer protection form overpricing and developers who release their products then leave in just a few months.

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34 minutes ago, Afrodude said:

What about some applications/themes are overpriced even some require renewals more expansive than the renewal of an IPS license itself. Haven't IPS seen how many customers have felt ripped off because of the developer has left, and they have just purchased that theme or application? 

Repeating again we do love to support all developers especially whom stick around, but all what we need is to feel safe whenever we buy their products. We need a consumer protection form overpricing and developers who release their products then leave in just a few months.

It’s an open market. I can sell a plugin that shows a Hello World to you for $500. In the other hand, you have the power to NOT purchase it if you feel is overpriced. It’s ttat simple and magical!

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24 minutes ago, Afrodude said:

We need a consumer protection form overpricing and developers who release their products then leave in just a few months.

Such is the risk we run relying on resources sold by others, and why it's important to be able to pick up maintenance of critical functionality for your community that you've come to rely on should others drop the ball (or simply be unable to) continue maintaining what you've come to depend on. Helpful to that effort is the ability to download and maintain code repositories of purchased plugins, applications, themes, etc. @Lindy welcomes your letting him know that this niche feature is something you'd appreciate to help guide potential future restoration of that ability.

It would be very nice to see things in the marketplace marked as abandoned or no longer maintained. Xenforo's market for modifications seems to do that at a cursory glance, yet I'm not a customer of theirs. It would be very very nice to have built in provisos that encourage developers to setup mechanisms that take effect when their resources are no longer able to be maintained by them. Suppose @Adriano Faria decides to go off the grid and move to a private island... or the private island swallows him whole in a tragic turn of events. What happens to the things so many have come to depend on?

You purchase things right now at your own risk, with no guarantee that anything will work or that it won't break your community, or that it will be maintained in any future capacity. When thinking about third party things, it's important to consider those inherent risks vs. the benefits of the addon/modification. It's a good idea to have plans in place for contingencies if those are things that are important to you. And, for goodness sake, test things in your test install before installing them on your live site. Hopefully those in the cloud have test installs included.

To borrow an analogy, "Apple," (IPS) in this instance, would suggest you download another similar app or hire someone to take on recreating your abandoned resource and let the "marketplace" of developers here sort that out for you. Things will sell at the rates people are willing to pay for them--you need to consider if it's worth the listed price to you along with the risks of depending on someone else when it comes to things like upgrading to new versions, fixing vulnerabilities, and very real risks of developers falling into quicksand. Before purchasing, realize that short of getting a download at that moment, all bets are off going forward.

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To be honest, apps and plugins that get abandoned are one prime reason we need a way to sensibly obtain the files to fix issues ourselves if we want. I know many wont have the skills to do that but as someone who has patched abandoned plugins for vbulletin for years I think we as customers of plugins should have some ability to get plugins manually.

We are customers, pirates will always find a way to do what they want and they arent all lost sales but causing issues for customers will lead to lost sales. Always think of those that are prepared to pay over the concerns of those that would never pay.

Edited by sudo
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to fix issues ourselves if we want … we as customers of plugins should have some ability to get plugins manually.

I don’t really support that reasoning. Legally, as customer you get a license to use software under certain conditions. You don’t own it. It’s not yours to change and fix as you see fit unless the licensor specifically allows that—which is usually not the case for commercial proprietary software. Of course in the past, such things were never enforced. Providers on the Marketplace couldn’t even define their own licensing terms and the marketplace is so small, that no one bothers to fight legal battles over a single product, let alone a single sale. But this doesn’t change the legal foundation. I much rather see the marketplace get more professional and add more legal and technical protection of the uploads. 

The discussion about abandoned resources is a little weird, since that has nothing to do with the IPS platform. It’s not just the same for every other software marketplace, it’s the same for every business which might suddenly fold. It’s up to every admin to weigh the risks of using third-party tools—or even the IPS apps for that matter, since apps and functionalities from IPS can also be removed at any time. 

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48 minutes ago, opentype said:

I don’t really support that reasoning. Legally, as customer you get a license to use software under certain conditions. You don’t own it. It’s not yours to change and fix as you see fit unless the licensor specifically allows that—which is usually not the case for commercial proprietary software. Of course in the past, such things were never enforced. Providers on the Marketplace couldn’t even define their own licensing terms and the marketplace is so small, that no one bothers to fight legal battles over a single product, let alone a single sale. But this doesn’t change the legal foundation. I much rather see the marketplace get more professional and add more legal and technical protection of the uploads. 

The discussion about abandoned resources is a little weird, since that has nothing to do with the IPS platform. It’s not just the same for every other software marketplace, it’s the same for every business which might suddenly fold. It’s up to every admin to weigh the risks of using third-party tools—or even the IPS apps for that matter, since apps and functionalities from IPS can also be removed at any time. 

License terms or not, I don't see why you wouldn't want to permit clients to modify the software if it continues to allow them to use the software as intended in the event of your irresponsibility or abandonment. It's the most minimal decency you can have or show to your clients.

As an example, if someone modified your application to work with the latest version of PHP or MySQL, would you really be upset by it?

Edited by Haku2
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12 minutes ago, Haku2 said:

I don't see why you wouldn't want to permit clients to modify the software

I do permit BUT I leave pretty well clear that I don't support ANY modification. User is allwed to do it but he's on your own... including current supported files. Funny because even having this in the Terms, people still review your file with 1 star because you don't support. 😆

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4 minutes ago, Adriano Faria said:

I do permit BUT I leave pretty well clear that I don't support ANY modification. User is allwed to do it but he's on your own... including current supported files. Funny because even having this in the Terms, people still review your file with 1 star because you don't support. 😆

This I find more than reasonable, @Adriano Faria. I would never expect a developer to go out of their way to help me with personal modifications that weren't explicitly supported by the software or official documentation. It's unfortunate some of your clients don't see it this way. I appreciate you continuing to develop modifications and allowing modifications despite this.

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On 8/18/2020 at 3:59 AM, ibaker said:

Interesting seeing that XF has had one for over 8 years with over 5,000 mods, addons etc from developers for either sale or for free:

There are some differences. XF-Staff reviews nothing and you can't buy addons there, you are always redirected to the devs website.

The result are funny things like THIS. User buys an addon, gives a bad rating and the dev doesn't give him access to the download anymore :biggrin:

Edited by V0RT3X666
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39 minutes ago, V0RT3X666 said:

The result are funny things like THIS. User buys an addon, gives a bad rating and the dev doesn't give him access to the download anymore :biggrin:

It's been awhile since I've released anything on the marketplace, but can't authors do that here as well if they really wanted to?

Edited by Haku2
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4 hours ago, Haku2 said:

It's been awhile since I've released anything on the marketplace, but can't authors do that here as well if they really wanted to?

Correct, it has happened to me here on IPS...before purchasing an addon I asked if the addon can do x, developer says yes, purchased addon and found it doesn't, asked developer for refund and developer says he can't give refunds.

I have been bitten by so many developers over many many years on vBulletin, on IPS and on Xenforo...it's all the same. BUT, the biggest point I was making here is that I prefer to test addons on my own PC before testing them online. There is so much involved in testing them that I can't be doing it online...to begin with I need to take a current snapshot of my site every time and doing it online with the way my hosting is, is an extreme pain in the but compared to just downloading a copy, which also serves as a local offsite backup, and setting it up in my local xampp environment. There I can test everything without impacting my site and especially my hosting setup. By not being able to do this increases the cost of ownership of IPS dramatically for me especially in time and risk...why do you think my main site is still using Xenforo, because my main site deserves my attention the most and XF allows me to do things so much easier, quicker and better. Already the decision of comparing Xenforo vs IPS is an extremely hard decision to make, IPS are now making the decision much easier and that is not to IPS's favour in my own opinion and solution needs. The thing is, I will always speak up...but what about all those that don't and thus IPS never hear about their wrong decisions. Develop to what your customers tell you and you will always only have those customers, develop to what your non customers also want, and you may increase your customer base two-fold. In other words, If I didn't say something and just said oh stuff it and drop IPS, then you would never know how you could have had another customer...and I have 2 licenses (I have 3 XF licenses) so how many more licenses has IPS not sold??? Cost of ownership (time and inconvenience) has dramatically increased for me with IPS but at least I will say something about it...will you at least listen???

Edited by ibaker
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On 8/11/2020 at 4:35 PM, Dean_ said:

As recommended, I'm creating this topic to reinstate the option to download files manually from the Marketplace.

It's bad enough you don't allow the download of apps we purchased when our licence has expired. But, to completely change the way file downloads are handle is a little much.

Please don't get me wrong, I love the idea that we can now do it all with ACP, but you shouldn't disable/change the way that a lot of us download files for localhost setups to test our sites before going live.

Please, please, please allow the option to download files manually like we've done for so many years!

 

(Edit: Happy 600 posts to me, woo!)

This!!!!!! 👍

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I sincerely, if i would be the invision staff, I would also block the download of translations from AdminCP coming from the marketplace.

I believe that this new marketplace management is a very useful thing for contributors, although, the market should be accessible as well at testinstall.

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6 hours ago, Askancy said:

I believe that this new marketplace management is a very useful thing for contributors, although, the market should be accessible as well at testinstall.

For clarity, the Marketplace integration in 4.5 is available and works in a test installation, using the -TESTINSTALL license, so long as your installation is reachable from the Internet. In other words, IPS needs to be able to initiate a connection to your install. If your test install is on your local machine or inside a corporate network and you haven't made provisions with your firewall or router so that it is reachable from the public internet, the integration does not work. Remember, if you do this, you need to secure your test install behind additional HTTP authentication (i.e.  htpasswd).

@Stuart Silvester goes into that here:

On 8/11/2020 at 12:31 PM, Stuart Silvester said:

There is nothing stopping you using the Marketplace locally, you just need to point a URL to your test install (that's registered as the -TESTINSTALL license key) for the authentication system to work. There are plenty of 'dynamic' DNS type services you can use for this if you don't have the ability to set up your own DNS.

What doesn't presently work is:

  • Adding plugins and applications from the IPS Marketplace to localhost installations (that don't have the -TESTLICENSE and aren't accessible to the Internet as above). These are typically used by developers to author themes, plugins, and applications and then redistribute them privately to test and production environments, or offer them from the IPS Marketplace to others for free or at a price. Prior to this unannounced change with 4.5, you could run multiple local virtualized installs for testing and development purposes and install third party applications and plugins from the Marketplace that live only on your local machine and are not accessible from the internet. You might want to test your own local changes against an install that has the various third-party integrations you've purchased from Marketplace present and ensure there aren't any compatibility issues or things that break due to conflicts, as an example, or to ensure a theme properly works with third-party integrations. Now, you cannot get these plugins and applications into a localhost install without obtaining the files from the developer directly.
  • The ability to download, inspect, audit, or commit to backup file repository any marketplace applications and plugins prior to installing it in any environment. This is typically done to ensure compatibility with other modifications, perform code audits and ensure that best practices have been implemented by the developer, identify any potential issues, make backups of critical functionality, retain version history in a source control system (such as git), identify bugs, etc.

If the things that aren't working in the two bullet points above are important to you, @Lindy and the IPS team welcome your feedback.

For us, we do local development on a local install that lives in virtual machines on our development computers. We commit our work into source control and then when we've reached a place that we're ready to do user acceptance testing, we promote those changes into our -TESTINSTALL license that our testers can access. Once we're confident things are working there, we promote to production.

This is probably not the sort of rigor most causal administrators would bother going through, and likely not done by IPS Cloud customers. I'm not even sure they have access to run a local environment without getting a self-hosted license.

Edited by Paul E.
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