phpBB Smartfeed

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MarkDHamill
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3.0.6 and the future of Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

3.0.6 Atom Feeds vs. Smartfeed

I looked at the Atom features in phpBB 3.0.6 to see if it made Smartfeed sort of obsolete. A first look says no. 3.0.6 offers only Atom feeds, which Smartfeed also creates. But Smartfeed can create RSS 2.0 feeds (arguably more popular than Atom, although purists will say Atom is better). 3.0.6 appears to limit the items in the feed to a set amount, either on a forum or global basis, which will chafe those who like to see a full thread in a feed. And perhaps most importantly, 3.0.6 does not offer authenticated access to restricted forums.

So it doesn't look like Smartfeed will be obsolete, however 3.0.6 Atom feeds are fine if you have public forums and your needs are modest. It is sort of Smartfeed-Lite. I haven't looked at the plans for phpBB 3.2, but maybe that will make Smartfeed obsolete.

Smartfeed works with SSL/https

I also discovered another neat privacy feature. If your board supports https (SSL) and http, then Smartfeed will work transparently with https. So not only is authentication supported as always, but data can be encrypted as well, meaning private information cannot be sniffed during transmission.

If privacy on your board is important, check to see if https can be enabled. Users might have to set an exception to use the host's SSL certificate, but that's a one time issue and you can allow access via both http and https. Of course if you can afford to get your own certificate for your domain, that is better and more transparent. In Plesk you can enable SSL this way:

- Go to Domains, if you have multiple domains
- Hosting/Setup
- Check SSL Support and "Use a single directory for housing SSL and non-SSL content" and press okay

Features in Development

A couple new features I am working on for the next version based on feedback I've been receiving:

* I am going with czed's suggestion and will let the Administrator set a global limit to override any personal limit on the maximum number of words in a post/feed item.
* I am allowing for proxy access. The downside is you have to know the IP range of the proxy. I don't think there is any easy way to find this out. For Google Reader, for example, I would have to look at my web log and examine its IP. Google probably has lots of IPs working as proxies, so I probably can't count that the same range of IPs will be used all the time. There is a possibility you can infer the IP if you install a plug in like Firefox's ShowIP plug in that displays the IP on the status bar of the browser -- there is a chance this IP is also doing the proxy. In any event not everyone is using a client program as a newreader (in fact most are probably using web based readers) and most people will not prefer to use IE or Firefox's built in reader as it is pretty dumb. This is a step in the right direction, I hope.

If you have more feature requests this is a good time to holler.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

westy96 wrote:
MarkDHamill wrote:Try moving the garbage_collection() function inside this if like this and comment out the old garbage_colletion() line and let me know if it solves the situation.

Code: Select all

if ($kill_session)
{
	kill_session();
	garbage collection();
}
Thanks Mark. I think I may have solved the issue partially. I was using mail.app and safari to check the feeds. Finally tried a reader in firefox and a standalone reader and no more logouts. Must be something about the way that Apple programs access the databases or something. I'll try the above though to see if that takes care of the issue w/ Apple programs and let you know if that takes care of the issue fully.
Were you using Smartfeed 2.2.14? I added the garbage_collection() function in 2.2.13. If you downloaded 2.2.12 here that might have caused the problem be manifest.

I am trying to figure out if this is still an issue for some people.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by -=ET=- »

DavidIQ wrote:MOD Updated to version 2.2.14
See first post for Download Link
Hum... not sure the validation for phpBB 3.0.6 have been properly done :roll:
There are conflicts between Smartfeed 2.x and phpBB 3.0.6.

Indeed, at least, both use 'L_FEED' and 'U_FEED'.
Consequences, at least, L_FEED for phpBB links is "Smartfeed" and U_FEED for Smartfeed is http://www.fly-the-planet.com/community/feed.php. It's impossible to access Smartfeed :|

I suggest on Smartfeed side to switch 'L_FEED' for 'L_SMARTFEED' and 'U_FEED' for 'U_SMARTFEED' in includes/functions.php and styles/prosilver/template/overall_header.html :)
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MarkDHamill
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

I have not tested it yet with 3.0.6. I had it in the review queue as 3.0.5 compliant. I plan to get around to it and if I encounter your errors I will have to create a new version.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

I can see what you mean. There is a conflict in overall_header.html as you describe since phpBB 3.0.6 is using L_FEED. So I will have to create a patch version. I will change L_FEED to L_SMARTFEED and U_FEED to U_SMARTFEED as you did and make appropriate file changes.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by czed »

with regards to your request for wanted features.

i guess my comments re security are my main area of concern, everything works really well and it's an impressive and useful addon, but i would love to see more security features added. The one you've mentioned about restricting the number of words delivered via a feed is good.
Another option for super paranoid admins would be to simply send a feed item that says "a new post has been added to the thread" replacing the post altogether.

Also, i would like to be able to see who has active feeds and be able to manage/block them or force them to recreate the feed. Say for example user "bob" is the treasurer of a group running phpbb, bob has access to several private forums,. bob resigns and is replaced by Jane, it would be good to have an admin screen that lists feeds by user so i can disable bob's feed which would include access to the private forums. He would then have to recreate the feed once, which is a minor hassle.

Apologies if i am missing something,as i said im not totally up with how the user id field is linked, but i dont think you are checking whether the user id that created the feed, has access to the private forums each time the feed is accessed. Is my assumption correct?

I'm guessing that beefing up the security will make it more likely that phpbb adopt your plugin rather than develop their own.

Thanks again for your help.
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Version 2.2.15 now available

Post by MarkDHamill »

Updated for phpBB 3.0.6 compliance. Minor file changes are required to overall_header.html and /includes/functions.php to not conflict with the new Atom feed features in phpBB 3.0.6.

Download here
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Jim Dominic
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by Jim Dominic »

It's probably something I did wrong, but I get this error after making the edits:

Code: Select all

Parse error: syntax error, unexpected T_DOUBLE_ARROW, expecting ')' in /home/username/public_html/includes/functions.php on line 4291 
Relevant portion.

Code: Select all

		// BEGIN Smartfeed 2.0 Modification
		'U_ATOM_PARAMETERS'			=> sprintf($config['sf_public_feed_url_suffix_atom'], 
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_LAST_DAY_VALUE),
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_STANDARD),
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_HTML)),
		'U_SMARTFEED'				=> append_sid("{$phpbb_root_path}smartfeed_url.$phpEx"),
		'U_RSS_PARAMETERS'			=> sprintf($config['sf_public_feed_url_suffix_rss'], 
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_LAST_DAY_VALUE),
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_STANDARD),
			rawurlencode(SMARTFEED_HTML)),
		'U_SMARTFEED_URL'					=> "{$phpbb_root_path}smartfeed.$phpEx",					=> "{$phpbb_root_path}smartfeed.$phpEx",
		// END Smartfeed 2.0 Modification
Line 4291 is this:

Code: Select all

		'U_SMARTFEED_URL'					=> "{$phpbb_root_path}smartfeed.$phpEx",
I can't find the problem in my code...will tackle it when I have more patience.

Oh...duh...there it is...code snippet is in there twice. I pasted it incorrectly.

Never mind...heading out to the brain store for a refill.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

czed wrote:Another option for super paranoid admins would be to simply send a feed item that says "a new post has been added to the thread" replacing the post altogether.
I implemented this tonight, but it needs more testing before packing it up with the other minor features I added. Basically I added an ACP switch which if you turn it on turns it on for EVERYONE. No one will see the actual post content in the feed, just a message pointing to the last read topic on the forum. Also, any private messages will similarly not show private message text, but will indicate there is a private message. Author name and subject lines are hidden, although the topic name is not.
czed wrote:Also, i would like to be able to see who has active feeds and be able to manage/block them or force them to recreate the feed. Say for example user "bob" is the treasurer of a group running phpbb, bob has access to several private forums,. bob resigns and is replaced by Jane, it would be good to have an admin screen that lists feeds by user so i can disable bob's feed which would include access to the private forums. He would then have to recreate the feed once, which is a minor hassle.
If you take away Bob's access to the forum, he can no longer see posts in that forum. I realize this is not quite what you want. An ACP interface to manipulate these settings will be in the development queue for a while. Meanwhile, if you set the user_smartfeed_key to NULL for the appropriate users (would have to be done outside the system) this would effectively require them to create a new key anyhow and the feed would stop working.

Right now there is no way to know when someone last accessed their feed because I don't track that information. It's not a hard thing to do, but would require a new column in the phpbb_users table and updating that table when smartfeed.php is successfully executed. But there is little point to adding that until there is an ACP interface. Right now that is a hard problem because manipulating the ACP beyond standard configuration variables is for me unexplored territory and would take a lot of study. It will probably come first for the Digest mod and then Smartfeed.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by valaraukar »

Wow! I have just actualized my smartfeed 2.2.12 to 2.2.14 and it's working like a charm ^^)! As I see, there will be a lot of new features in future releases...Good luck Mark with those features.

I have actualized the spanish translation to 2.2.14, and made some changes I think wew more properly with the Spanish Language...

I'll send you the new smartfeed.php in a PM.

thanks!
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by Jaifaime »

Updated my forums to 3.0.6, just updated SmartFeed to 2.2.15, did the couple file edits and SQL query required. Now whenever I click Generate, nothing happens, the URL does not appear in the box. This had been working before the updates. Any ideas?

Thanks
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

What style are you using?
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by Jaifaime »

MarkDHamill wrote:What style are you using?
Using proFormell
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by MarkDHamill »

I assume it is based on prosilver, but you may have to make some customizations to make it work for your template.

It is most likely a Javascript error that is due to features of your template. You can check your Javascript error log to see what's causing the problem. For example, in Firefox, Tools > Error Console. Once you know the error I am afraid you will have to get your hands dirty and fix the underlying HTML or Javascript. If you send me a URL I can take a look.
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Re: phpBB Smartfeed

Post by Jaifaime »

Prosilver based, yeah.

I cleared the Error Console and reloaded the SmartFeed page, I do get a few errors, but none relating to SmartFeed. Also this was working perfectly before the 3.0.6 update. I've double checked the file edits to functions.php and overall_header.html and they are correct.

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