The new Payment Support, Subscriptions and Item Bundle modules have just been uploaded to the Jamroom 6.1 Beta channel!
We have been working on these modules extensively for the last 8 weeks, and it is time to take the "wraps off" and get them into everyone's hands.
New Payment Support Module
The new Payment Support module is designed as a replacement for the existing FoxyCart eCommerce module and features 3 Gateway Plugins: Stripe, PayPal and FoxyCart:
- If you are a NEW site and are looking to get setup with eCommerce capabilities, you should use Stripe or FoxyCart. PayPal is more limited in it's support of advanced features. If you are using FoxyCart you get a bonus and can accept BOTH Stripe and PayPal.
- If you are an existing site that wants to upgrade from the FoxyCart eCommerce module, note that at this time the modules are in BETA so do not upgrade quite yet. We do have an upgrade tool to "import" existing FoxyCart data into the new Payment Support module, so make sure you test that on your development site before running on your live site.
New Subscriptions Module
The other half of the eCommerce upgrade is the new Subscriptions module. The Subscriptions module changes how subscriptions work in Jamroom, and provides a much more flexible system for creating and selling subscription in your Jamroom. You can now create multiple subscriptions to the same quota, which gives you the flexibility to offer varying subscription lengths without having clones of multiple quotas.
Like the Payment Support module, the Subscriptions module has an "import" tool to import your existing subscribers from the FoxyCart eCommerce module into the new Subscriptions module, so make sure and check that out on your development site.
New Item Bundles Module
The new Item Bundles module is a replacement for the FoxyCart Bundles module, and provides some improvements in how Bundles are handled, processed and downloaded. Note that if you are running the FoxyCart Bundle module and update to the Payment Support module, you must also update to the Item Bundles module and THEN run the "Import Bundles" tool from the Item Bundles tool menu.
Note that the Item Bundles module is also in BETA - do not run on your live site!
New Products Module - Coming Soon!
We are also hard at work on an upgrade for the Merchandise module - at this time the Merchandise module does NOT work with the new Payment Support module, so be on the watch for our new "Products" module coming soon that is a replacement for the Merchandise module, and features new Product Categories and custom fields.
We hope you really like the new module - please let us know any feedback you have on what you would like to see in these new modules. The new modules will become the foundation for all eCommerce in Jamroom going forward, so we want everyone to love how they work
If you have any questions or feedback, please join us in the Jamroom User Support Forum:
Question came up in the forums recently "What is the Timeline 'Quick Share' Feature" and it seemed like it could do with a decent explanation.
When the Follow Me skin was created
its main purpose was to create a skin where the central focus was the timeline.
When you login to this skin, you are taken to the top page of the site where there is a communal timeline that everyone can use.
Since the focus of the skin is the timeline a new feature was added to improve the flow of the timeline for this skin. That feature is the Timeline Quick Share Feature.
Enable the Quick Share feature from the settings in the ACP.
ACP -> MODULES -> PROFILES -> TIMELINE -> GLOBAL CONFIG -> QUICK SHARE -> Enable Quick Share
Once that has been enabled, there will be some new buttons on the timeline section. This will be the same for any skin, its not just limited to Follow Me.
Now in the Timeline status update area you will also see some extra buttons. Click on these buttons to share either Photos, Audio or Video directly to the timeline while at the same time adding them to your profile.
Without the quickshare buttons, the flow to share something to the communal timeline on the FollowMe skin would be:
Now that flow becomes
and the rest is taken care of for you.
We think this feature will be really handy for sites that use their Timeline a lot.
Those of you that are Jamroom regulars may have noticed over the past 6 weeks or so that I've not been online as much as normal. While I'd love to say I've been relaxing and enjoying some time off, I have to admit instead that I have been holed up in the Jamroom Development Cave, and am just now getting out to some fresh air and brighter skies (although up here in Seattle we seem to be stuck in an extended winter). The result of the last 6 weeks is that Jamroom 6.1 is now in BETA.
Jamroom 6.1 is an incremental upgrade over Jamroom 6.0, and while there's not a lot of new "visual" cues that it is different than Jamroom 6.0, there are a number of important under the hood upgrades that have been needed. Some of these were planned during the JR 6.0 development cycle and didn't make it in time, while others have been continuing work that started with Jamroom Core 6.0:
- New System Tools module - We've moved all the different binary tools used by Jamroom modules into a new "System Tools" module. Since these binaries change very little, having them be in a separate module that does not need to be upgraded very often results in much smaller "regular" module sizes, and will save on disk space.
- Upgraded Queue Support - This is a continuation of the work started in Core 6.0 and now the queue system is even more robust. We've also added better support for when Jamroom is running in a cluster and when the queue is under heavy load.
- Upgraded Template Compare - The Template Compare section has been upgraded and should do a better job of showing differences across different skins and modules.
- New "Full Page" Caching option - There is a new "Full Page Caching" Core Global Config option that enables a full page cache for logged out users. Jamroom has always used a partial page cache, where sections/widgets are cached individually, but this new option for logged out users allows entire pages to be cached and speeds things up for visitors, while reducing the load on your JR server.
- New Image Caching - The resized image cache in the Image Support module has been rebuilt from the ground up to be much faster, and for cached images requires ZERO database queries.
I've also been working on a complete overhaul of the Jamroom Cluster modules, and in the next 1-2 months we will be rolling out Jamroom Cluster 2.0 which makes running Jamroom on a cluster of servers as easy as running on a single server, so stay tuned. If you are running a large Jamroom site, and are interested in upgrading to Jamroom's cluster solution for High Availability, contact us and we can work with you to ensure we have something that fits your needs.
To upgrade and get involved with the Jamroom 6.1 beta, you can do so by:
1) Log in to your Jamroom site as the master admin
2) Go to ACP -> Core -> Marketplace -> Tools and click on the Marketplace Channels button.
3) Enter "JAMROOM61BETA" into the "Channel Invite Code" field and then click "add channel"
You can now go to the "System Updates" tab and upgrade to Jamroom Core 6.1 + modules. After upgrading don't forget to install the new System Tools module as well.
Like usual, Jamroom 6.1 is a BETA RELEASE - do not upgrade your "live" site to Jamroom 6.1 at this time. We anticipate a short beta cycle for Jamroom 6.1, so you won't have to wait long to get updated, but for now hold off from upgrading your production sites to Jamroom 6.1 until we get feedback from the community on how things are going.
We hope you enjoy the Jamroom 6.1 beta and new updates. Please post any feedback or questions or concerns to the User Support Forum and we can help.
One of the best things about running Jamroom Hosted is that it gives us insights into the overall performance of Jamroom across hundreds of domains - pointing out areas where we can improve the Jamroom code to make things "fly". For example - some of the recent updates to the Core queue and caching systems have come from being able to see what types of operations are having the biggest impact on the performance of a site.
Nucleos - the eyes on your server
To help us maintain a high level of service and performance we have built our own custom monitoring system for your Jamroom Hosted servers - "Nucleos". Nucleos is a custom Jamroom module (of course!) that on regular intervals queries the Jamroom Hosted servers for a variety of information:
- What is the current CPU load on the Server?
- How much memory and disk space is the server using?
- Is the web server up and handling user requests?
- Are there any "slow" SQL queries to report?
- Are any SSL certificates going to expire and did they renew correctly?
And more. All of this comes in to an easy to use interface that alerts us to any issues that may be cropping up on a server. For many of these checks we can be alerted well before there is any issue, which gives us time to fix the issue before it becomes a real issue.
Whenever a check is run on a server, the results are stored in a plugin archive - this allows us to create graphs for many of the data points we collect, which in turn lets us see if our actions to improve performance for a specific sub system actually works. We can view the BEFORE and AFTER graph and see the difference - there’s no guessing involved.
As Jamroom Hosted has evolved and grown, so too has Nucleos. We’re constantly trying to improve the reliability and performance of our systems by tweaking and adding new checks to ensure we have a solid view of the performance of the Jamroom Hosted servers. We're excited about what we've built and wanted to share HOW we monitor your servers for those that are interested.
Bringing Back the Jamroom Hosted 12G Plan
As many of you know a few months back we discontinued the Jamroom Hosted 4G, 8G and 12G Hosted plans - mainly due to operating costs on the backend related to our custom backup solution. I'm excited to announce that after reworking our backup solution we've been able to lower our backend costs, and that has allowed us to re-introduce the Jamroom Hosted 12G plan!
For only $39 a month you get access to the same great features found in all Jamroom Hosted Plans:
View Jamroom Hosted SSD Plans
If you’re NOT using Jamroom Hosted and are currently hosting Jamroom 5+ elsewhere, we can import your existing Jamroom site for FREE and get you up and running on the fastest and most reliable Jamroom Hosting you can get - Jamroom Hosted.
Contact Us and let us know how we can help take your site to the next level.
Thanks for reading!
- The Jamroom Team