Oxwall Store: important improvements

Hello there Oxwallers,

Our community grows. It’s exciting to see this growth since it assures that our work is important, and warrants that Oxwall is here to stay. With user growth some aspects of the community work also need to evolve, and today it’s the Oxwall Store that is affected.

We just released some small and big improvements that I want to introduce. They are based on developers’, designers’ and users’ feedback, and also on our own careful examination of the usage patterns. Let’s look in detail:

My purchases:

  • Item list is now divided into Plugins and Themes;
  • Search by item name (new);
  • Add review for purchased items right there (new).

My items:

  • Item list is now divided into Plugins and Themes;
  • Search by license key and buyer’s username.

Item listing improvements:

  • Oxwall Store now supports version compatibility between items and the platform. From now on every item should state platform versions that it supports, and users will see it;
  • Mandatory “Terms of Use” field for items (new);
  • Optional “ReadMe” field for items (new).

Suspended items:

  • Suspended items are now shown to license holders in “My Items”;
  • “Item suspended” page is shown to all but license holders;
  • Suspended items can’t be deleted by owners but will be deleted in 4 months unless activated by Store moderators.


  • Now authors can not only modify but also delete their reviews.

Apart from these changes there are many tiny things changed to help developers better manage their items.

Policy updates

Last but not least, we have updated Oxwall Store Terms of Use, and added Store Item Policy and Item Review Policy. Everybody is encouraged to actually read this document, it’s written by humans for humans in the most comprehensive way possible.

Enjoy the updated Oxwall Store and leave your feedback! We are always listening. Also, there’s a special Store-related forum, so developers can find additional technical info and questions.

Five New Free Themes For Oxwall

Remember the Darklets social networking template released a couple of weeks ago? It proved quite popular with the Oxwall crowd due to it’s universal appeal and accessibility. But that was only a teaser, since we are ready to roll out another batch of five brand-new free professional themes! What a great way to start the week, don’t you think? Take a look at these samples:


Crayon Theme for Oxwall


City Theme for Oxwall


Stars Theme for Oxwall


Silent Theme for Oxwall


Pastel Theme for Oxwall

This line of themes can be applied to a variety of niches, representing a particular mood of a given online community. All five templates are already available through Oxwall Store; enjoy them and let us know what you think in the comments bellow. In the meantime, we are happy to tell you that more regular updates for our collection are planned, and we are already hard at work creating new themes for future releases.

Paid items in the Oxwall Store: price vs quality

We have a forum user who touched the topic that we are very sensitive about, so in the process of writing the reply I understood we should make our position clear to everyone.

Here’s the original topic: http://www.oxwall.org/forum/topic/6787

Here’s my reply:


You are right. Oxwall needs more free plugins and themes. The long-term project success is based on building enough of a product of superior quality that will enable users run their projects on Oxwall.

The project needs exactly this type of developers and designers — those working for the idea of giving away people excellent software and seeing what happens. That’s how an open source project works before gaining critical mass. Only then people will use software for viable community projects and more people will learn about Oxwall and the demand in software will increase.


All of this is only possible if the resulting product quality is good. Meanwhile, the best developers and designers know the price of their time and only spend it accordingly.

We think the best scenario for Oxwall is to have A LOT of free items and some excellent paid items. So, solving the problem here is not to make bad plugins cheaper but to develop very good plugins and charge what’s reasonable. As for bad plugins, we are on a mission to not let them in and to push them out. If you buy an unsatisftory plugin on the Oxwall Store, give it low rating. Enough low rates will remove the item from the listings.

Too bad, not many of current developers understand that there’s no point in creating a heap of cheap items. Impulse purchases do not create trust and long-term value. Developers and designers should create less items and focus on their quality. It’s just a better business model.

In the end of the day, if there’s excellent free software with necessary third party items of high quality, the end user will not care that much about their price. If price is their only factor of choice, they are not really Oxwall’s target audience. I’ve never seen viable online community projects from people who value the price of software plugins more than their time and their users’ experience. Open source is not about the $0 price tag. It’s about accessibility, options, and trust.

Our position regarding the third party items in the Oxwall Store:

  • We will encourage more free items;
  • No matter free or paid, they will have to be of good quality;
  • We choose “less but better” strategy for the Oxwall Store;
  • We do not plan to drive the item prices down. Open market will decide.

Increasingly, it will be possible to find more plugins outside the Oxwall Store. This is fine, it’s open source after all. It’s just that we plan to maintain the high standard on the official resource for the mainstream users.


Oxwall 1.1 + new plugins

Boy look what we’ve got here! Oxwall 1.1 + plugin updates + new plugins + new themes — it’s like Christmas came early!

What’s new:

– Jquery 1.5
– Cron run check and notification
– Authorization mechanism enhancements (affects all plugins!)
– Avatar display change, requires new decorator use (affects all plugins!)
– User console refactored for adding elements by plugins
– Language handling refactored to enable plugins to add global language keys
– User and config tables cache enabled for better performance
– Platform version in admin dashboard
– URL highlighting for all user content for easy clicking (finally!)
– SEO-oriented meta page information in all plugins to allow better and deeper indexing of your site by search engines. If you have incoming links to your site that should do great job for its promotion.
– Avatar labels for particular user roles. You can have specific user roles like “admin”, “staff”, or even “pro” or “gold”, so users can show them off on avatars. Configure user roles and color-code avatar labels on your community!
– Display type disabled for index page comment wall
– Comment form now has posting user’s avatar
– User list selection for plugins’ needs optimized
– Suspended users can now edit their profiles
– Multiple ‘untranslatable’ spots eliminated
– Custom pages access issues solved

… and more small enhancements including killing pet peeves constantly reported on support boards. Too much to list here so we let you discover and enjoy those one by one. 🙂


Virtual gifts:

– User can send each other public and private virtual gifts with optional personal messages in them.
– Gifts can be customized and divided into categories.

User credits:
– User credits can be purchased through payment gateways (such as PayPal), earned by activity on site, and spent on things like virtual gifts.
– Complete customization;


Club‘ and ‘Rainy‘ themes. Enjoy.


– ‘View more’ without page refresh
– Feed context highlight: groups, profiles
– Unlike;
– Comments and Likes expand/collapse
– Optional status update on Index page
– Profile comment wall support

– Voting interface enhancement

– On-site event invitation notifications
– Past events list
– An event is now still ongoing until the end time
– Chronology problems in event widgets corrected
– Event authorship problem substitution when edited by moderator is solved
– Event icon is now optional
– Inactive ‘invite’ button problem solved


– Multiple friend requests problem solved
– Suspended users no longer show up in friends lists


‘Last Activity’ and ‘Status Updates’ plugins are now discontinued and no longer will be updated. They are replaced by Newsfeed.


Those impatient can download the new release, new plugins, new themes, and updates manually for now. Tomorrow we are unleashing auto-update upon you so you will be able to update right from the admin panel.

PLEASE UPDATE PLATFORM CORE FIRST. Only after that you can update everything else and install new plugins. PLEASE UPDATE THEMES MANUALLY AS WELL – they contain important additions and corrections.

Thanks for creating with us!