CCBill Integration?

Discussion in 'Pre-Sales Questions' started by websissy, Apr 11, 2005.

  1. websissy

    websissy New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    16
    Hi... I'm very interested in your product. I'm using a competitive commercial product now but very unhappy with it. But I'm not sure what you mean when you say you support CCBill. Can anyone explain exactly what level of CCBill integration support is available and in general how it works?

    I also note that you did not mention integration with authroize.net. Did I overlook it somewhere? Or is it really NOT supported?

    Finally, when you say you offer integration with vBulletin, Hivemail, IndexU and PHPPost, etc, what does that mean? Again, can anyone tell me? I use three of those products on my site and am considering the fourth.

    I'd like to have a full description of each of those integrations and the cost, please.

    Thanks!
  2. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Messages:
    6,020
    ccBill is supported. User will be redirected to ccBill payment page from aMember signup page and following processing is instant. Recurring billing, chargebacks, cancels are 100% automated as well.

    Authorize.Net is also supported.

    Integration works like described here:
    https://www.cgi-central.net/support/faq.php?do=article&articleid=4
    It is not full integration, but often (not always!) is quite enough.
    Every plugin costs $40.
  3. websissy

    websissy New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    16
    Dear Alex:

    Thank you! That was a very clear and understandable answer! I learned almost everything I wanted to know from your reply.

    I am a computer professional with 35 years of experience and 10 years as a webmaster. So, I believe I am capable of installing your product myself if you have instructions available.

    I am now running vBulletin 3.0, Indexu 3.1 and Hivemail 1.3 on my site together with Sigmachat, ImageFolio (a CGI script) and Hagan Classifieds. All these apps (except Hagan Classifieds) were installed and custom-integrated by me so that they all use the vBulletin Member Database to control & limit member access.

    Unregistered users can see and access only a few things on my site. Registered users can see much more but still cannot see everything. Subscribers DO see everything.

    I have created a large subscribers area and access to that is controlled by htaccess/CCBill together with a commercial password product called Password Manager. But those solutions are only minimally integrated and so I must manage them manually at the moment. I probably don't need to tell you how LARGE a pain in the neck that is! :)

    I'm now considering adding both PhotoPost and PhotoPost Classifieds as well as vBPortal for CMS and then eliminating Hagan Classifieds completely.

    As with your site, I do not presently charge my visitors to register and be validated in vBulletin. However, I definitely WANT to begin charging a small annual vBulletin registration fee of $2 per month ($24 a year) to be validated. This money would need to be paid when the user registers -- before their account will be activated. Paying that fee will activate the user's password and grant them access to everything our vBulletin registered users can now see for a period of 1 year.

    Later, if they also want to access our MUCH larger subscribers area (where there are thousands more images, stories and movies), they would need to buy a separate subscription/membership for that area.

    Our subscriptions give users full access to almost everythig we have to offer. But subscriptions would be an extra charge.

    If a user subscribes at the same time they register in vBulletin, their vBulletin access will be free for one year. At that point they would either need to pay an annual registration fee or be defaulted back to a "registered but unverified" status.

    In other words, when a subscription is canceled or lapses, the member's subscription would stop but their vBulletin registration would remain active until 1 year after they subscribed and then it too would become inactive until they pay the $24/year registration fee.

    Would it be difficult to offer memberships in two tiers as I have described? One that would grant the user access to vBulletin's "registered user area" and another that would grant them access to our subscribers area? The issue here of course is that the two memberships MIGHT expire at different times. I would prefer to avoid that if possible. Obviously, if the user is a paid subscriber, their vBulletin access rights should NOT expire until their subscription is canceled or expires. I am thinking now that any subscription of three months or more would automatically include a full 1 year of access to all areas available to those (vBulletin registered users) who paid the $24 annual access fee but are NOT also subscribers.

    I am VERY interested in using your product on my website to help manage member access with vBulletin, Hivemail, Indexu, Photopost, PhotoClassifieds, SigmaChat and ImageFolio. I would also want the CCBill and Authorize.net integration features included. Can you tell me how much this would cost? If I calculated right, I believe the license fee would be approximately $250 - $300? Am I correct about that?

    Also, I assume that at least some of the membership control features I have described here might require custom modifications. Is this work you can and are willing to do? Would you CONSIDER doing it? I could pay a modest amount for that service. But of course, I would need to have some idea how much you might charge for such work.

    Thank you very much!

    Best Professional Regards,
    Tom Platt
  4. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Messages:
    6,020
    Tom,

    In your case, task is even easier - you will only need aMember Pro and vBulletin plugin. Everything else will be integrated automatically.

    It is easy (with the plugin) to allow only paid and not-expired members to be registered in vBulletin. One important thing is that new signups must be handled only via aMember in this case (vBulletin signup form must be disabled or make redirect to aMember's signup page). aMember will then automatically create vBulletin user record when payment completed and assign vB user to desired usergroup (configurable).

    Unfortunately, this is a problem. I see no easy ways to implement it transparently for members. I can only suggest to simplify subscription terms if your business allows this and make vB subscription expiring along with main subscription (when paid period expires).

    License will cost $139.95 + $40 = $179.95 for you. It includes : free installation (if you ever need this), 6 months of guaranteed support and free updates.

    I cannot promise that customization is possible, but you are welcome to contact us at https://www.cgi-central.net/support/ and describe everything. I would like to understand business reasons to make it working as you described. Then I may be will get good idea to get this resolved. In your ticket, please refer to this forum thread.
  5. websissy

    websissy New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    16
    I am not sure I understand exactly what you are suggesting here but I am concerned about the larger implications of eliminating vBulletin's registration process because other vBulletin hacks are likely to expect that process to be available and working correctly. For example, at the moment, my integration of Indexu relies on three patches to vbulletin's registration, login and logout processes. The registration patch simultaneously adds the user to Indexu's member database as he registers in vBulletin. The patches to vBulletin's login and logout processes set (or reset) the log-in cookies for Indexu. Indexu was also patched to call vBulletin's login and logout processes rather than its own. For safety, we also modified vBulletin's registered user delete process to remove the user from Indexu's member database if he is ever removed from vBulletin's member database.

    Under the circumstances, since vBulletin's registration process never runs, does that mean my new users would never be added to Indexu's member database? Are you possibly telling me you have another way around this or are your changes to Indexu perhaps more extensive than mine?

    As I recall, the vBulletin integration patches provided by Hivemail also use changes to vBulletin's registration process to simultaneously register the user in Hivemail as he registers in vBulletin. Again, if the vBulletin registration process never runs, I wonder how you handle Hivemail's registration? Are those patches included in your aMember/vBulletin registration patches, or is another approach used?

    Similar issues occurred with ImageFolio except it included a built-in interface designed to let it check another program's member file for user verification. What it did NOT include was an easy way to set the log-in cookies from another program. So at the moment, my users must login in ImageFolio (using their vBulletin username and password) in a separate log-in step.

    Sigmachat's chat software uses the PHP session-id to check vBulletin's user database and see if the user is logged in. If not, then it requests a username and password and validates them against the vBulletin registered user list. So, this should still work fine.

    I'm not trying to get you to reveal your programming secrets to me. I'm just trying demonstrate that I do understand the issues involved and verify that your vBulletin integration patches do handle all these issues in one way or another. I would also like to know your thoughts about the integration of other hacks that rely on changes to vBulletin's registration process.

    The basic business problem here is that many users may start by buying a 1 year vbulletin registered user membership (the $24 one) and later decide they wish to buy a 1, 3, 6 or 12 month subscription to our full site as well. In such a case, I would not want to see the 1 year registered user membership the customer bought in August disappear when the 3 month subscription he buys in September expires. I would expect ONLY the 3 month subscription to stop but the vBulletin registered user membership to continue until the year that began in August ends. If aMember can handle this requirement, that should be enough. The other stuff I described was the saleman in me talking! You can ignore it.

    Thank you very much for your assistance. I am quite prepared to pay for custom changes if necessary. But I would like to know your hourly rate for such changes. I have certainly paid for changes in the past. What I really need to understand how many changes may be necessary.

    Thanks again.

    Best Professional Regards,
    Tom
  6. alex

    alex Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Messages:
    6,020
    1. Unforunately, aMember plugin works as it works - there is no magic. aMember directly manipulates vB users database to add/update/remove records. If your vBulletin PHP code is customized for some integration, it will not work and there is no luck to make it working by changing aMember Pro plugins code.

    2. It will work very easy and don't need any changes. User is able to add unlimited number of subscriptions to account, and these records are independent. No customizations needed to make this working.

Share This Page