View Full Version : Fed Up with it! Why should I continue?

03-19-2006, 01:36 PM
Give me one reason to keep spending day after day building a shopping cart in OSCMAX when....

1. 20% of the functions are so crippled that it would have been quicker to build a clean, efficient and capable custom cart for my site than reverse engineering hundreds of POORLY documented php scripts that are full of bugs.... Does ANYONE have a USPS shipping module that returns all the USPS Rate Quotes in a list and lets the user click one that he wants to use and then proceed to checkout? NO...because the data to send to the USPS API's isn't in the database as far as I can tell, and the PHP code simply doesn't exist to support showing the quotes, only the options that were selected ONLY if you somehow get the package sizes into the database...and that's not a mean feat. Besides, you only get flat rate for USPS, and it's TWICE the cost of the normal Priority and Express if you use their free boxes and use Click and Ship online.

2. The only 'support' is this site, and most of the folks here are screaming for help that they're rarely getting, not to pick on the moderators, but most of us don't dedicate or lives to becoming masters of OSCMAX, we came to it because it was supposed to be usable and stable. IMHO, neither has been met.

3,4,5, and 6...you get the drift. I've spent three weeks, 18 or so hours a day, and while the cart is close to being useful, I don't think there's any chance it will ever be usable, much less elegant and servicable.

Someone, please prove me wrong on this. Show me a site with a functional shipping page using USPS and all the options...and then share your secrets.


03-19-2006, 08:50 PM
In response to your item (1)

1) I'm not a moderator

2) oscMAX works, you want to have fun, try CRELoaded. After 2 months of work I finally had to toss it. Then, this month, a version that was up in a testbed was hacked into becuase security is so bad on it and my server was crashed and wiped out. So PLEASE, go try CRELoaded before you ***** about oscMAX

3) if you really need support pay for it. I'll be happy to provide support for you. My rates are published at BIASolutions. Do you really want to pay me $250/hr? If so, then let me know. If not, be VERY happy that I choose to answer questions for free here and at the OSCommerce forums.

4) USPS does work. How do I know, I have it fully operational on my site. If the order is in Alaska, Hawaii, APO/FPO, PR or International I quote USPS. In addition, if this version of USPS isn't working for you try replacing it with:

there is nothing stating that you have to use the UPS that comes with oscMAX.

In response to your item (2)

There are a number of people here that help one another. The moderators job is NOT to be a free support person for you. When you pick up an open source product, you are agreeing to take some ownership to learning how it functions. Now you can either do that, or you can choose not to. If you choose not to you can hire inexpensive help at rentacoder (an advertiser on this site) and getafreelancer.com where there are any number of people that claim to have experience modifying PHP (including osc experience) to meet your needs.

As a user of this board I GIVE a hell of a lot more than I get. That is MY choice. This is how I give back to the community. I have the expertise to do that, so I do that instead of giving donations. I noticed since you have joined you have a number of posts all in one topic, the area where you are seeking help. Do you mean to say in all that time you didn't read one post where you could have posted help or a suggestion? Ah, I see, you're a taker, not a giver. Fine. But then don't ***** that people aren't providing you with free support.

Amazingly enough, the USPS module actually has a thread over at OSCommerce. If you aren't getting the feedback on what you need here, you could try there (all of the code here was from there originally, so all the forum information there is applicable). Rather than whine and pout about how much we suck over here, you can get off your ass and look up the support thread for the USPS module you are running over there. Then, when you find the "fix" if there is one, you can cross post that information here and help the next person who has a question about the module.

You're items 3,4,5 and 6

I spent three months of 8-12 hours a day working on the release we will be making to our clients at BIASolutions. We started with oscMAX as the base and then enhanced the crap out of it. Considering that the last time I played with OSC was with Loaded V 2.5 years ago, there was a steep learning curve to get it to the point where it worked the way I wanted. Just learning all the ins and outs of the BTS system took me about a week. But then again, I have modified such huge chunks of the code that most people wouldn't even to be able to tell that the store is oscMAX on steriods.

When I put up my first osc it was right out of the box. But my latest is so heavily modified that no one who was involved with the original would recognize it. All of this was built on open source, but it has been changed. That's what most people do, they start with the base and then modify it to meet their needs, extending the product. Then some of us even take those extensions and give them away for free (the next time you use Recover Carts Sales, you can e-mail me a thank you).

Sorry about the rant, but you really did ask for it. If the USPS that came with the cart isn't working for you, and you can't fix it and don't want to hire someone to fix it, well then take the time to check out and see if there is another USPS module that will meet your needs, add that and turn off the module that isn't working for you!

In the meantime, I'm sorry you have't gotten the "support" you want here, feel free to toss out the cart you have almost working and get a copy of CRELoaded and then try to get support at their forums (when you get it, have some fun by running the contact_us page, it's rather "buggy", and that's just the start of playing "patch" with the release). Bottom line, as stability of loaded versions of OSC go, this is heads above the others. Sure, there isn't a great level of support here, since you can generally get module support over at OSCommerce's forums where the module authors discuss the modules that were added to the base OSC to make oscMAX. Most of the questions that should be asked here should deal with oscMAX specific issues, and really, there aren't too many of those.

03-20-2006, 02:37 PM
Dude, chill out! I said I wasn't picking on anyone. I have gotten some help and also posted several things I've learned as well, even tho I've only been here a few times. OSCMAX was touted as among the best, but it's really no better or worse than the average toolkit and as I said, and you confirmed, it takes a LOT of work to build a respectable site. I don't code for fun and profit, I make products, and even tho I'm willing to spend a lot of money on a cart, I can't even find a full featured shipping module that provides the simple little $4.05 USPS Priority Mail option because USPS only gives you the flat rate box via the API. SO, even for 10K, I can't buy that, hence my frustration with all the carts out there. I know a lot of folks are happy with OSCMAX and osCommerce in general, but they may also have different expectations and needs and desires than I do.

I appreciate your input, the links you provided and I share your frustration. I think you may be a little more bent than I am, tho, I sure didn't mean to annoy anyone. Just venting a little and asking the rhetorical question, which you answered eloquently.

03-20-2006, 10:09 PM
didn't mean to be testy, but the fact is that there are a number of osc derivitives out (as well as good old osc) and as far as the derivitives go (or what we used to call loaded versions), oscMAX is the best.

As for why I was testy, the server that my partners store is on, and my store and about 22 other clients of mine (only 5 are stores, we limit the number of stores to each server to 5, but we also sell SiteControl(tm) which is our website development system and we load up to 30 of those on a server as the load value per site is rather low) was hacked badly over the last weekend due to a CRELoaded hole. I'm really rather pissed at the CRELoaded folks (as you can tell from the love I threw their way) and rather pleased that the holes I found and fixed there (we have one client on a CRELoaded) aren't in oscMAX.

PS: if you are running a server with PHP, please see and install the code from http://www.fight-spam.org/

anyway, I'm much better now... ;-)

03-20-2006, 11:42 PM
1) I AM the MODERATOR. The scripts are NOT crippled. Much of the scripts are supported else where from the orgial contributors.

2) I AM the MODERATOR. If your willing to pay to have the USPS module to work your way - go to some of the sites mentioned above. It would be cheaper than "out of the box" commercial version which had half of the options and 1/4 of the felxablity. I have tried some VERY high end ecommerce solutions - not very good for modifing it your way unless you want to pay. One project (not my choise) they paid for modifying the "closed" source for a "MULTI - locations" and only costed 1800.00...... 18 hours @ $100.00/hour..... A rip if you ask me. I could have done OSC for less. Anything we wanted we had to pony up $$$.

Untill I see some money coming in I have to go to paid work first. Hey I got to eat and pay bills.... WHEN I HAVE TIME I DONATE IT HERE. DONATE. Feal FREE to help us - DONATE SOMETHING...Code, beta testing, bugfixes, or even cash. All of this site hosting cost.

I can't clone my self and can't fix eveyones problems or fix all the code that 100's of OTHER people have contributed over the years to OSC and MAX. We fix what we have repair what we have time for and support the changes we have done to the best we can.

3,4 and 5 and so on.... I AM the MODERATOR. Problems or "feature" request like you want require programing as NONE of the modules support what your looking for (UPS or USPS or anyhting). CUBIC weight or dimentions however can be figured in however.....MOST ARE BASED on a MIN weight per CUBIC FOOT - figure out the CUBIC WEIGHT - height x lenght x depth in inches / 1728 (which is 12x12x12) TIMES by min weight as specified by USPS - which might be 10lbs per cubic foot. As for the Price - make sure you have USPS setup and using the correct weight in your items...AND REMEMBER it an ESTMATED amount. When you actually ship you can adjust the price down if needed. This is specailly true with combined items and volume (bulk) shipments and HOW you pack can DRAMATICALLY change the cost to ship (UP AND DOWN).

OSCMAX is not a fit all for all people - but we strive to fit many people and most people that have the nack or willing to invest a small amount.

Some people are more suit with PLAIN OSC MS2 and may be adding one or two thing - that is fine. Maybe soe people need more than MAX provides - that is fine also. MILEAGE MAY VARY.

However OSCMAX being perfect or suited for everyone - Sorry no. But feal free to help on both fronts.

03-22-2006, 02:57 AM
gee JPF, you forgot to warn him not to fold, bend, spindle or mutilate the forum. ;-)

JPF has a day job, I have multiple "day jobs". In fact most of the people who are GIVING in these forums have "day jobs" that run the gambit from operating a store to building and maintaining stores for others, to hosting, to... etc. In fact some of us wear multiple hats.

Heck it's 3AM and "just before I call it a night" after 3 hours of creating a massive extension to the Loyalty discount" module (and I still have another 4 hours to go at least) and processing 20 orders from my store (we are out of season right now) I still come here to give 30 minutes or so...

03-23-2006, 02:26 AM
edsets, are you sure you havent 'customised' your OSC installation yourself and stopped a lot of features from working?

I used the out of the box OSCommerce for quite a while for customers sites, found OSCmax, and never looked back. Sure, installing additional contribs was at first difficult, but i know know my way round and can install pretty much anything onto an already massively feature packed and fully working oscmax.

OSCmax is possibly the most useful bit of opensource software i've come across.. Support can occasionally be a little thin for sure, but what do you expect on a forum with only a handful of technical experts on the subject.
If you cant get a feature working, or a contrib, or you dont install properly.. there is always the option of sorting it out yourself.

You really didnt think about what you wrote before you hit the 'post' button did you? I run a car owners club and forum, and its posts similar to yours that make me wonder why i bother doing something for other people for free... and nearly always prompt me to hit the 'switch site off' button.

A little forethought may have been a good thing here...

03-25-2006, 10:12 PM
Did not mean to bite - but my "day job" is a very long day job - typically 9 to 14 hour days. I get a bit testy at 5AM when I have been up for close to 24 hours. - of that 14 hours at my "DAY JOB" then spending a few hours workin on my own project, emails and then checking up here... Please forgive me if I tend to bite a bit at 3 and 4 am.....

03-26-2006, 08:01 AM
A lot of us have invested many hours helping others here, so it is understandable to get a little annoyed when someone very new to the community lodges general sweeping complaints that have no basis in our own experience with the same software. I think the original post shows frustration from trying to use/customize the software without having a working knowledge of the basics, without reading available documentation, and without first asking for some help.

Had Ed asked more specific questions about specific features, he would have been much better off. Also, being specific as to what features he thinks are 'Crippled' instead of making a sweeping general statement that gives us no opportunity to help is counterproductive.

There is no way I would waste the amount of time that Ed did. After 2 hours, if I did not have everything working, I would have assumed I installed the software incorrectly or made some other mistake in my setup. I mean, there is no way several thousand people would be using this software if it was so crippled... and how come nobody else has voiced these complaints?

At least that is my thought process. I tend to look inward first, and think I have made the mistake, before blaming a mature community of programmers/users or software that I have only used for a week. osCMax is not crippled, 99% of the features work exactly as they are supposed to, and there are about 1 % of the features that do not behave as intended.

Remember though, this software is still a Release Candidate in testing, so there are going to be bugs. If you are not interested in this type of situation, don't use the software.

I am by no means a very talented programmer, nor am I the most apt student, and it only took a few hours of focused study to learn the basics of osCommerce/osCMax. I spent about 2 hours going through all the features of the admin panel and about 4 hours digging through the code to see what was going on. After those 6 hours, I knew all I needed to start making some serious mods. Never once did I come across a 'crippled' feature (but I did find a few quirks that make life interesting).

To answer the original question, Why should he continue to use the software? The answer is very simple, if he wants to continue he should. If he doesn't, he shouldn't. It does not get any easier than that.

Ed, if you have any specific issues, why not post them? We are all more than happy to help.

05-10-2006, 10:30 AM
I'm very pleased with oscmax personally, I've installed the software for dozens of our hosting clients and I've gotten it down to a sweet science, I can get hosting set up and a basic out of the box store online in 5 minutes tops..

Usually an out of the box oscmax site including any and all customizations the client pays me to do is completed within a couple of hours, I wrote my own quantity price break system that works on a per item and per group basis as well as some other administration screens to maintain user membership status' in less than 8 hours...

YES there are many contributions in the oscmax bundle, but I've found that the code is generally well maintained, the beginning and end of the contributions used is clearly marked and it's easy to add on to.

The only bug I've really encountered so far that I wasn't able to quickly find info on this site about was an issue with the state drop down list when you go to add another ship to location, but that was a bug I was able to very quickly fix myself (code in a loop that shouldn't have been in a loop).

Give the maintainers some credit, oscmax is free software.. they don't get paid directly for providing this bundle to you, they don't get paid to support you, but often they do any way.

05-23-2006, 07:57 PM
In following this thread and being a "NOOB" with osCMax and osCommerce could you folks be kind enough to point out some steps/things us Noobs could do that would help us learn how to use these pieces of software. (I know you will say the obvious, like read the documentation, ect.) but anything and everything you can share with me and others like me will help.

Here's an example:

- Read documentation
- Experiment with all the controls before trying to go live with a site. Learn a litlle what each one does.
- Search the forums.
- ????

Can you please add to those above. I am sure I didn't cover much but the obvious things we should do. Your tips would be appreciated.

As far as problems most Noobs like me have, one of the top problems I have is how to modify the pages. Where to look for the code to modify/delete/add. What to add, how to program and all this is a starting point most of us new users start off with. We hope to progress to the next step of making it perform the way we intended.

Guess I can write a book here, but just looking for directions, from there I'll ride the osC highway until I get lost again, then pull over here (or other sites) and ask for directions again. Until then, still parked on the side of the road here.... :pacman:

ps - Be Gentle damn it :bash: I'm new.... :lol:

05-25-2006, 06:25 PM
Well - we all have been there at ONE time.

Maybe checking out the osCDoxWiki

http://oscdox.com/index.php?op=modload&name=phpWiki&file=index&pagen ame=

For the basics...

05-27-2006, 05:53 AM
I appreciate the reply...

05-11-2007, 02:22 PM
Yeah - you tell him