We are happy to announce the long awaited latest release of SOLO Server – Build 188.8.131.52.
The primary goal of this build was to extend the security improvements which were started in previous builds while also addressing concerns raised by our customers along the way. Before we discuss the security improvements in this build of SOLO Server, let’s first look at some other exciting new features.
FastSpring eCommerce Integration
Although many customers enjoy the benefits of an integrated eCommerce solution by using the SOLO Server shopping cart, we recognize that our primary focus has always been Electronic License Activation and Electronic License Management. We have always had several options for integrating SOLO Server with 3rd party shopping carts. Although we have had a partnership with FastSpring eCommerce for quite some time, we recently strengthened this relationship by further integrating the FastSpring shopping cart with SOLO Server for both one-time purchases as well as subscription purchases. To learn more about how to configure FastSpring to communicate with SOLO Server see this manual topic.
To better understand considerations when choosing an eCommerce option, see our new blog post Choosing an eCommerce System for selling your Licensed Applications.
Shopping Cart and Customer Portal Markup Templates Merged
It has always been possible to customize the templates used to display customer-facing areas of SOLO Server, including the Shopping Cart and Customer License Portal. Although both areas used a similar process, different administration menu options were used to configure the templates.
- We have now consolidated the process of customizing the look and feel templates for both areas under the Authors / Storefront & Files / Custom Markup Templates & Logo menu option.
- All changes to the templates are now audited, so it is possible to view the previous template configuration to see what was changed.
- All data from the shopping cart template has automatically been migrated to the Custom Markup Templates & Logo menu option, so any future changes need to be made there.
Prepaid SOLO Server Customer Enhancements
Some of our customers choose to prepay their SOLO Server monthly service fees. We have automated this process to make it easier for our bookkeeping staff to track prepaid customers as well as have allowed prepaid customers to easily see the credit they have left on their account. When logging into the administration interface and going to Authors / Author Home, prepaid customers will soon see a line like Credit Left: $99.99 under the Plan & Fee Details section.
Activation Password going UPPERCASE
In SOLO Server build 184.108.40.206, we introduced the concept of Activation Password. Although the Customer Password can still be used for software activation (for backwards compatibility), the Activation Password introduced a new way for customer service representatives to assist customers with software activation without the need to know the customer’s password (which is often a sensitive piece of information). One small change in this build of SOLO Server is that we are uppercasing the Activation Password to make it easier to identify the characters used for this field. The software activation process does not treat the Activation Password as a case sensitive value, so the user can enter it in either upper or lower case.
Password Source Tracking
We understand and appreciate that many of our customers have deployed solutions in unique ways using the License ID and Customer Password. While we have been making security improvements to the way customer passwords have been stored in SOLO Server, we have also received great customer feedback. We believe that this build of SOLO Server has a solution that improves security while maintaining compatibility for most software publishers using SOLO Server as the activation platform.
- A new Password Source column has been added to each Customer record. This will be populated with a flag that identifies if the Customer Password value was randomly generated by the system, entered by an Administrator, or entered by the customer.
- All passwords except those entered by a customer will continue to be visible to SOLO Server administrators.
- Once the customer creates or changes the password through either the SOLO Server shopping cart or customer license portal, the password will be hidden from all administrators.
This provides the customer password security necessary to protect all parties involved – SoftwareKey.com, our customers (you), and your customers.
Read the full release notes.
Feel free to contact us with any questions you have.