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Hosting Magento in New Zealand

I received an email from a fellow Magento developer asking about hosting Magento in New Zealand – this post is about that email and my response because I think it will be useful to others asking the same questions. All of the Magento stores I’ve built to date have been overseas (read: not in New Zealand) – my experience so far has only been with building low latency sites for American customers and UK/Europe customers. The reason for this is that at World Wide Access we recognize the importance of an in-country webstore presence to customer experience (bandwidth and latency).

It was a little ironic then, that an American developer, Justin from Unify Digital contacted me for advice about building a Magento store for New Zealand customers – for the same reasons that we build our stores offshore. Here’s what Justin had to say:
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Magento contact form error: Unable to submit your request

Just a quick one, a number of users have contacted me reporting email problems with the error on the contact form Unable to submit your request, often this error is actually caused because between versions 1.3 and 1.4, an invisible form field called hideit was added to Magento, which if absent, will cause the form submission to fail. That means if your template has a custom contact form, it will break. That’s a bit of a bummer if you’re upgrading Magento versions.

There are a few fixes floating around, so I won’t reproduce one here.

Take your pick:

There’s a lesson there, be very careful about copy the entire default Magento template tree and making changes, try only copying the ones you need to change – it’ll make your template far more resilient to changes when upgrading.

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Installing a Magento Extension manually via FTP or SSH

A number of people have been having some difficulty installing my extension manually, and so they should, they are not designed to be installed manually but rather through Magento Connect. This will be a short and sweet guide to installing my Magento extension through FTP or SSH. This could probably be applied to installing any extension manually, so if you just need help knowing where to put extension files, read on.

Those that follow this blog (all 3 of you) will know that I’ve been unable to upload my latest release to Magento Connect and have been offering it for download through my site directly in the meantime. Quite a number of you have been able to install it without a hitch, but the confusing nature of the extension layout is blocking some people from being able to use the extension. Let’s hope this guide helps.
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