New to Installatron need some help

For urgent and private issues, open a support ticket instead of posting: https://secure.installatron.com/tickets
nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:35 pm

I purchased Installatron without even testing it first. I did it just because some people say its better then Fantastico. I dont plan to kill Fantastico right away but let users choose and if Installatron gets better then I could finally make the switch.

The strong points I liked about Installatron are:
Fast updates. Fantastico takes to long to patch things.
Language settings, I really like it that it can be fully translated and not only parcially. I also liked the translation tool from the account where we can suggest translations.

I like they focus on their script only, not like netenberg which tries to sell there other scripts and let fantastico die slowly because of not being updated.

The big point of using Installatron was the features, client side and admin side. I liked it that it can be themed or branded, something which cannot be done with Fantastico. I want to replace the Fantastico brand with my own and that is something that cannot be done with Fantastico.

Now what I dont like so much about Installatron is:
Its says it integrates with RvSkin. It doesnt for the client side. When you click on Installatron it opens the installer on a new window, not inside the RvSkin theme like Fantastico does.

I dont like to take users out of the control panel, i like it to be opened inside the theme.

The branding feature doesnt help to much, I have put my own logo and its horrible since there is a text under it that says "Script installer", there is also millons of links back to Installatron which doesnt make sense in the purpose of branding. Not sure what they mean about branding but beside changing the name and logo and support url there isnt much of branding.

Finally the scripts are not so good. Some are really junk, still its good to have them if people like them they are ok, but missing scripts is something clients dont forgive. Fantastico has more robust scripts, they also have some paid junk, which i think its bad, since if I want to put a paid script im suppose to sell licenses for it as well, so that i dont like about Fantastico they even put their own paid scripts on there but their script list has the most popular scripts being used.

What I do miss allot of are this scripts, I dont care about the junk scripst but it shocked me to see this ones are not in Installatron. This are very good scripts, very professional and they are very requested by users and this are included in Fantastico. They are for example, Nucleus, SiteFrame, Typo, phpWiki, TikiWiki, Webcalendar, etc. Now this impressed me even more that its missing Zen Cart. How can Zen Cart be missing?. Its like what Wordpress is for blogs, is Zen Cart for stores. There are really good scripts that are missing and are in Fantastico. One of the reasons I dont want to shut down Fantastico. The only better script i saw in Installatron is MediaWiki which was very requested and is not Fantastico.

Now this are some that are also missing in Fantastico which are on the Plesk scripts which i also miss and are very good scripts: OpenBiblio, Egroupware, Serendipity, xrms, tutos, mantis.

If Installatron wants to take over Fantastico, the way it works and the feautures it has is a big point. A big negative point, is that is has to offer much more then Fantastico, currently it offers less in scripts. If someone wants to replace Fantastico they should at least the same scripts. If there are more,its ok, but the basics very popular scripts should be there. If it really wants to punch Fantastico in the face then it has to put robust scripts like Egroupware that arent in Fantastico neither. It doesnt give a very good impression just to see scripts like phpLinks in these stuff that are years old. Specially because on the Internet they are millons of better scripts which are updated since years, scripts that arent going to disappear in 1 day.

Rowan
Staff
Posts: 235
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 7:39 am

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by Rowan » Sun Dec 21, 2008 7:07 pm

Hi,

Thanks for the feedback.

Re rvskin:

By "integrates" we mean that the Installatron links automatically appear in rvSkin, you don't need to add them manually. As for embedding, unfortunately cPanel themes use an encoding that is not compatible with UTF-8, which is why there's no embedded option on cPanel. It's on our todo list, and we would like to make it work at some point, but as most users (in our experience) prefer to use Installatron unembedded (because it un-complicates the interface) it's down the list a bit.

Re branding:

It's possible to change just about every aspect of Installatron's appearance. The logo can be changed, the name "Installatron" can be changed to anything else for all the user-level pages, all the locale entries can be changed (that's how you change that "Script Installer" text), and all the CSS can be modified.

Where are you seeing links to Installatron, even after you changed the support URL? I guess the scripts that are hosted on our website would still link to here, but I can't think of any others offhand. If you can name them, we should be able to fix them.

Re the script list:

This is always contentious; everyone has their personal favorites. I'm not joking when I say that our list of "recommended and requested scripts" is in the order of 200-300 pieces of software. Almost all of them would be legitimate additions. And you've named six more that we've never had a single request for.

Yes, we install some scripts that we'd love to drop, and put that time towards something new and better. But every script has its users, and the older the script the more existing installs there are that we need to maintain. It's why every auto-installer project adds scripts regularly early on, but slows down over time -- the weight of the old scripts weighs you down.

Though we have bitten the bullet and cut some loose on occasion. Curiously, one of them is in your request list: phpWiki. It was getting almost no installs, was a pain to keep supported (couldn't comment on whether it has improved, if it's still around), and MediaWiki was ruling all, so we dropped it from the list.

Typo3 is another one from your list that we once installed but have since dropped. We approached the TYPO3 developers with the hope of improving auto-installing and auto-upgrading, and they asked us to not install it at all.

Nucleus and SiteFrame and Webcalendar would all, in some way, duplicate what we already install. By that I mean we already have a lot of content management systems, including the three that 95% of people install (Joomla, Drupal, and Wordpress), so it seems hard to justify adding two more of the "same", and we already have two web calendars so we would look to add something different (eg. Moodle) or something massively popular (eg. Magento) before we'd start tripling-up on calendars.

But it's impossible to know which script would be the perfect addition to the list. Ideally we'd just support all of them.

It would be interesting to know whether, if there were 200 scripts in the list, users would use all of them, or whether we'd see them gravitating to the same few scripts. How many scripts is too much choice?

We're working on a new installer format that will make it easier to create and support installers, and we'll be adding some more installers when that is complete. Egroupware and TikiWiki are both on my radar, and have a good chance of being added (I'd like a "lite" wiki to compliment MediaWiki). We're also considering Discuz and e107, both of which have a lot of user-made installers, which hints at popularity.

Zen Cart keeps coming out second-best; first it lost to osCommerce, then Cubecart, then when CC went commercial, and we looked to add a new ecommerce script, it was second to Magento. It would likely be in there by now if it was better suited to our auto-installing system, but it wouldn't be a clean script to install or upgrade.

--

An open question to everyone: which three scripts do you think Installatron should add next? And why?

nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Sun Dec 21, 2008 10:54 pm

Well, Fantastico opens inside the control panel. One of the reasons to keep it inside the theme or control panel is because newbies fell lost if they suddenly open a new interface. They lose the back to the panel navigation and support link. I really think it should be opened inside the control panel just like most cPanel plugins do, and they have an option to open it blank if some users prefer too. I prefer to keep the theme the same, without the user even knowing that he is now on a plugin. Just like Fantastico and other plugins do. Said that, if its really going to be a plugin it should not be only the link from the theme, but open inside the theme. Im not sure how that works with cPanel but RvSkin is very flexible and lets you program internal pages, I dont see how it would be a problem to load it inside a rvskin page, specially because those tools can be used by all users. I made rvskin internal pages myself, so out of the box would be better. The inteface doesnt have to change, it just has to load inside the panel and not outside. Fantastico actually loads another interface as well, so its not theme adapted. It just loads it inside to make the effect that it is part of the panel.

As for scripts, most users will not use all scripts. Of course not. People will probably use only 1 or 2. For example Wordpress or Joomla. There is only 1 reason this users would use a tool like Fantastico or Installatron. To keep it updated. Thats why im looking at installatron with better eyes.

Lets talk seriously. Installing wordpress or other scripts is very easy. But most people dont upgrade, or just take to time for. Using such a tool they could keep it updated. And as an admin i want my users to be updated and not having security risks. So the webmasters that knows how to install this scripts will only use an automated tool because it gives him a special benefit. 1 would be it sends him an email when there is an update. So instead of checking each time someone is doing this for him. Second he can upgrade with several clicks and always be updated.

Now the other type of users are the ones that ask. Do you have Fantastico? Or they search in Google "fantastico hosting". Why do they do this? Because these are the users that actually buy a service probably only because it has the script he wants. And he doesnt even have a FTP software, he doesnt know anything at all about files, he cant install things. So he loves this kind of tools. Because it lets him install the software he uses without having to even know where is the official provider. Some people will install Wordpress and they dont even know that you can download wordpress for free on the official site. They think you can only get them as using Fantastico.

This kind of persons take decisions based on what scripts are on the list. And if they dont find the same as fantastico then they probably dont want it. And its really hard to convince this person to use Drupal instead of Joomla for example. He doesnt want to change. If he uses Zend Cart he will look at a host that offers an automated install of Zend Cart.

I know its really hard to maintain a list of scripts, but the ones I have mentioned are very, very popular. They are on the tops list of best open source scripts. Sure, everybody has their own choice and each users are different. But this script is targeted at webhosts. That means that the ones that are going to buy Installatron are people that offer this to their clients. And lets be serious, most people dont even run cPanel without Fantastico. Fantastico is not better, its the oldest, people use scripts because there are inside Fantastico. So there are probably millons of persons that are using some of the scripts that are included inside Fantastico and they would never move to another system that doesnt have his script. I dont use those scripts, but my client base does. So I cannot decide to shut down Fantastico and tell them, now please use Installatron, because I will get allof of inquires that Installatron doesnt have the script they have installed in Fantastico. So I must leave Fantastico on. I will run then both, Fantastico and Installatron, and that just leaves a big hole because they will keep using Fantastico just because they know it already.
In my case there is an advantage, Fantastico is not very popular in other Non English languages. And Fastastico is also only very popular on people that already had a hosting and knew it before. But I also have allot of new users, that dont know at all these automated scripts. That means that Installatron can take a big advantage there. Still it will be very hard to convert people to another system if the scripts they use arent there. And other people will make a Fantastico Vs Installatron research. I have dont it. And there are missing important scripts. You could say there arent important but they are just because Fantastico has them. And what I want is to take people away from Fantastico. I want them to start using Installatron, because its more updated, more secure, and has more client side features. I will do this by branding it with my company name, something my clients already use and know and trust. So they will also trust installatron. If I decide to offer it as Installatron they will not use it, because then Fantastico has more weight.

nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Sun Dec 21, 2008 10:58 pm

Oh and for example Magento was a very good choice. This are the scripts that i talk about. These are very good scripts which Fantastico is missing. Im sure they will put them as well soon but on the Internet first is always best. Its like a race, who is faster always wins.

Rowan
Staff
Posts: 235
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 7:39 am

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by Rowan » Mon Dec 22, 2008 2:20 am

We're looking at adding some new installers, perhaps before the end of the year.

Cheers,
Rowan.

nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Mon Dec 22, 2008 5:48 am

If its next year it will ok too. I will try to read more on how to create custom installers and see how I can help. Im sure if the forum is a bit more open there would be tons of people that would make installers as well. If there is enough testing they could be then officially added. Installatron would then check for updates, and thats what people pay, a service in which you check each day the latest bug or security holes like gotroot.com makes with their modsecurity rules suscription. The software itself is actually just an addon, but people pay for the service, for updates, new functions, etc. Thats what keeps people paying and renewing each year. I see it like a total solution for scripts.

Rowan
Staff
Posts: 235
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 7:39 am

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by Rowan » Mon Dec 22, 2008 8:43 am

Yes, it's the "upgraders" that is the real work. Creating an installer is actually quite easy to do, but for each installer you start you need to keep in mind that you'll be maintaining that installer -- adding new versions, determining how best to do each upgrader, tracking requirement changes, and testing those things, handling the resulting support when a buggy version of the script is released -- for years to come. You don't lightly decide to start a new installer.

Regarding the sharing of installers, it's something we're working towards with the installer format changes we're working on.

Rowan.

nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Mon Dec 22, 2008 2:28 pm

Rowan wrote:Yes, it's the "upgraders" that is the real work. Creating an installer is actually quite easy to do, but for each installer you start you need to keep in mind that you'll be maintaining that installer -- adding new versions, determining how best to do each upgrader, tracking requirement changes, and testing those things, handling the resulting support when a buggy version of the script is released -- for years to come. You don't lightly decide to start a new installer.

Regarding the sharing of installers, it's something we're working towards with the installer format changes we're working on.

Rowan.


Yes our right, I must decide then really which im going to use. But if I want people to pay me for using Installatron so I can pay it off as well I need to make is special. Special or different then others. That can be only made if i have my own installers, yes its allot of work, but without work there isnt actually any earnings. Hard work is what brings food into my table. Im going to try to add only 2 or 3 at start, keep them updated, documented,etc. I actually go even further with scripts and I support them. That means any problems with it I help my clients, since If i provide the scripts I have to support that priece of software, support is not for customization or programming but just if they are having a problem with it.

Phil
Staff
Posts: 490
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:06 am

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by Phil » Sat Jan 03, 2009 2:27 am

Hi,

An update:

As of Installatron 5.2, we've added support for embedding Installatron into any cPanel theme (including RVskin).

Cheers,
Phil.
Phillip Stier
Installatron Co-Founder

nibb
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:14 pm

Re: New to Installatron need some help

Post by nibb » Mon Jan 05, 2009 2:27 am

Great, will update it and test it. It will be for sure look more professional.

Post Reply