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VirtueMart ForumVirtueMart 1.1.xGeneral Questions (Moderators: jolmeda, BanquetTables.pro)Selling BIG downloadable files ~ How to?
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Author Topic: Selling BIG downloadable files ~ How to?  (Read 8763 times)
cyphyr
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« on: October 20, 2008, 02:43:01 am »

Hi there
I am part way through putting together an online shop to sell "3d graphic digital assets", very high resolution models for use in architectural renders, animations etc. These files can be anything up to 100mb each. I'm using Joomla 1.5 and VirtueMart and the two seem to be able to do what I want, ... I think.

Ok heres the problem. Virtumarts download module (Components > VirtueMart > Configuration > Admin > Downloads )requires a local path (not a url) in DOWNLOADROOT. I had hopped to use Payloads and let them have their 15% for free file hosting but I can see now that is not going to work (I'd need to use their "Buy Now" code/module, not VirtueMarts). I cant afford the cost of hosting the files myself, it could easily run to 10GB so ...

Where can I host the files remotely in a manner that they can only be retrieved by an authorised user? ie one who's paid!

And how do I write a URL as a physical path?

Or is there another solution?

Thanks in advance

cyphyr

ps sorry if this is in the wrong place, Mod please move as appropriate, thanks
« Last Edit: October 20, 2008, 02:45:46 am by cyphyr » Logged
deschnell
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« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2008, 00:43:46 am »

you can look into hostmonster...unlimited hosting, and you can link unlimited domains to the same hosting plan.  I use it and recommend it.  sometimes I've found their database to be a little slow, but actual connection speed is good.

[caveat - the link is an affiliate link - if you sign up with them via that link, I get a little chunk of change...no different in price/anything to you; just a little extra for me...like a finders/referral fee]
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deadlydave
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« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2008, 01:31:47 am »

i don't think hostmonster support file distribution...  if you start putting massive files on their servers for download your likely to get the site shut down for going aginst T&C

If you don't mind doing things manually I would recommend www.yousendit.com to send out your files.  Either that or upload the files to rapid share with password protection.  and then you can email out links with the passwords when the files get sold.

To limit fraudulent reuse of the files you can re upload the docs once a month or so.  Alternativly buy an FTP server, these can get costly running for about £50 per month, but I'm sue you could find one somewhere cheaper.
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deschnell
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« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2008, 01:42:19 am »

I was thinking of transferring the site to hostmonster. For $6/month, I'd say it's worth it.
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Prova99
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Posts: 4


« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2008, 03:44:08 am »

cyphyr,

Did you find a solution to this?  I too need to host my files on a remote server.  I'm hosting the downloadable files with amazon s3 (amazon.com/s3) or nirvanix.com (and you pay roughly .20 cents/gb/mo).  These companies are a large online storage co.  You can access your files with a direct url (and several other ways), but I need to figure out how to get VM to accept these offsite directories.

Have you figured it out?
Thanks,
-David
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nu2vmart
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« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2009, 01:29:50 am »

you send it is a great solution to the orignal post's issue.  Another option might be to buy a NAS external hard drive (most of these NAS drives have FTP features built in), put the files on it in different folders that have passwords and when the customer pays you, you send them the FTP information, and password.  you could change the password or folder directories on occasion to prevent non-paid access.
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jestermgee
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« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2011, 10:49:30 am »

To revive an old chestnut...

I have been doing research on this specific "issue" for months and am surprised that it should be this difficult. I have read every related post on this forum and have only come across these solutions:

- Host the files on the website server (the normal default method):
This is not desirable by many as the host provider either doesn't supply enough storage for really large files or you pay through the nose to deliver files


- Create an account with Amazon S3 (or similar), set as a sub domain and set the direct links to the files:
Sounds promising except for the fact that it is possible to access the direct file links AND the download count doesn't function. Also, I have heard that this is still hit and miss with large files.

- Manually distribute the links to purchasers when they place an order and change the link paths on occasion:
All very well if you plan to sell to your friends and family only but if you get 200 orders in a day then who wants to send out those emails and manage all that.

VM itself is pretty damn good and the developers probably don't get paid enough. I have hacked and modded my way through my new store that is planned to sell audio files for producers and film makers and these need to be 44-48KHz, 16-24Bit files up to 5 minutes in length (60MB a piece or so). Not massive files BUT you want a store with about 300 of these and it's a blow out.

I have FREE storage in a number of places online that can handle the requirements, just not the hosting. My sites are hosted on a private server and I cannot tie up the BW or server space with the files.

I need a solution and none have worked so far. It's a real shame for an almost great product.

Remository (Joomla download manager) has the ability to offer external linked files securely without obtaining the original file location so I know it's possible. If this option was added to V2 of VM and sold, i'd pay for it no problem.
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zorkhh
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« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2011, 12:33:26 pm »

Hi,

we often solve this using a document manager that allows hiding the direct link and access rights - like DocMan.

It's not too difficult to add a user to a docman group after checkout / payment to give him the right to download the file.
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jestermgee
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« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2011, 07:52:24 am »

Hi,

we often solve this using a document manager that allows hiding the direct link and access rights - like DocMan.

It's not too difficult to add a user to a docman group after checkout / payment to give him the right to download the file.

That's basically what I have now done. The system works great except it requires a manual intervention once a user has made payment and in this day and age, people simply don't like to wait. No big deal, it would just be great if the feature "Docman" has for external files could be added to Virtuemart (or even an automated way of adding a user to a group in something like docman). If I knew a little more about PHP I would look at that myself
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zorkhh
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2011, 22:15:38 pm »

Here you can find an example how to integrate code after payment: http://forum.virtuemart.net/index.php?topic=80001.msg264579#msg264579

You can add some code here to add the user to a docman group.

Thomas
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stephenroberts
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« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2011, 08:52:09 am »

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but as I understand it, VM uses php file delivery code to send the file to the user instead of sending the user the direct link to the original file. In this way, the location of the original file is "secure". The problem comes when planning to serve files remotely, e.g. Amazon S3.

VM still tries to deliver the files "securely" through php which means that the entire file is downloaded to the web server from the remote server before being delivered to the user. As far as I know, there is no other way to "securely" link the user to the remote file without the user being able to discover the remote file's location (and thus share the link with others). One solution I thought of would be to write custom file delivery code on the remote server (e.g. Amazon S3), but unfortunately, I haven't found any cloud storage servers that can run php code. I'm currently looking into having the VM download code create a temp copy of the remote file on the remote server and link to the temp file. This would require working with the Amazon S3 api directly in VM which will get complicated.
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erk123er11
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« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2011, 06:38:25 am »

thank you guys
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