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PayPal does not reach out and touch someone?


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#1 Alan@Sunwave

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Posted 21 November 2002 - 02:27 PM

Hello!

I am one of the admins for a hosting company. We provide services to a large number of customers, many of whom wish to use PayPal for instant subscription services.

This would be fine except that none of them can get it to work. When they can't get it to work, they contact us. This is a bad thing.

In an effort to try and help support these people I felt I needed a better grasp of how IPN works so I dusted off our PayPal account and began to set up subscription product to sell.

First, I enabled IPN and filled in a URL for PayPal to reach out and touch when someone signs up for a subscription. I installed the "paypal.pl" (version 1.2) script that PayPal distributes. I then set up a new trial product for '0.00' on my PayPal account.

I made a little web page, clicked on my 'purchase trial subscription' button and bought myself a brand new subscription to /dev/null for $0.00. PayPal's site assigned me (a rather strange, but secure) user name and password and I felt that everything just might be working.

Then, I went to my server access logs for the site where my "paypal.pl" script lives. There had been no access attempts by PayPal that I could see. There was _nothing_ in the error logs either, not a single line refering to paypal.pl. It seems that I was getting the same behavior as our customers get.

I'm not sure where to go from this point. I called PayPal support and had a chat whith them and apparently PayPal does not maintain _any_ logs about their attempts to contact IPN scripts? Bad move, in my opinion. He did a few test posts from over the phone from some magic software and poof, I saw him appear in the error log with various 'main::error_notify' messages.

To be clear, (if my concept of how IPN works is correct) this isn't a script issue, a server issue, a response code issue, or any of the other common things people report on this forum. It appears PayPal is just not making any attempt (when I sign up for my trial subscription) to talk to my "paypal.pl" script. Its a few hours later and I still don't see any attempt.

The ONLY conclusion I can come to is that PayPal is making an https post to my "paypal.pl" script when I specifically asked them to do an "http" post or that we have the IP they come from in our firewall for some reason (which leads me to ask what IP blocks do PayPal posts come from anyway?).

Anyhow, I appreciate any help anyone can give me.

#2 PayPalStephen

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Posted 21 November 2002 - 03:37 PM

If you are having difficulty with the PayPal Subscription Password Management feature, please check the following:

Ensure that Password Management is activated successfully within the seller's Business or Premier account. Click on the "Profile" tab and click on Instant Payment Notification (IPN) Preferences link and select the checkbox to activate IPN.
Please note that unless you have renamed any of the files, be sure to enter the exact URL of the paypal.pl script you installed on your web server. For example: http://www.yourwebsi...i-bin/paypal.pl

Ensure that the terms contained within your Subscription button code match the terms within your script exactly. For example, if you created a Subscription button and specified that the first month was $20.00, and then $5 for each month thereafter the period and amount constants would look like:

my $PERIOD1 = '1 M';
my $PERIOD3 = '1 M';
my $AMOUNT1 = '20.00';
my $AMOUNT3 = '5.00';
my $PERIOD1 = '1 M';
We also recommend that the Password Management manual be reviewed closely at https://www.paypal.c...stallation.pdf; taking special note of pages 11 through 18.

Access the server's error log (the web host may need to be contacted) and look for any clues to why the script is failing.

Ensure that all the directories the script requires are available and that they have the correct permissions. (UNIX directories and file names are case sensitive.) .pl files must be uploaded to the host server in ASCII format and have 7-5-5 permissions.

Check your paths:
The paypal.pl file should contain the exact paths to your ".htpassword" and "processed_txns" files.
Your .htaccess file should contain the exact path to your ".htpassword" file.
If you have performed all of the steps above, accessed your server's error log, and are still having difficulty, please respond with the exact error message that you are receiving, if any.

Stephen Ivaskevicius
PayPal/eBay, Inc.

#3 Alan@Sunwave

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Posted 21 November 2002 - 05:39 PM

Hi Stephen,

The Password Management feature is indeed is activated on the account I'm working with and the full URL (http://www.mysite.co...i-bin/paypal.pl) is correctly listed.

Remember, I'm telling you that I don't see paypal trying to launch my script. Even if the script was entirely invalid, with the wrong permissions and using #!/dev/null as it's interpreter, I would still see an _attempt_ to access it from PayPals server in the raw apache error log (and most likely the access logs as well). I see no such attempt EVER coming from PayPal.

Regardless of that, I think the script is properly set up to work anyhow. The fact remains that I do not see PayPal attempting to access it.

How do I proceed now? Do you guys honestly maintain no logs over there of IPN attempts from your server?

#4 PayPalStephen

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 07:57 AM

What is the URL to your paypal.pl file?

Stephen Ivaskevicius
PayPal/eBay, Inc.

#5 Alan@Sunwave

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 04:43 PM

http://www.doctornau...i-bin/paypal.pl

#6 Alan@Sunwave

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 04:44 PM

Also,

can you tell the address blocks that paypal posts ipn acks from?

#7 ayersoft

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 04:58 PM

The ip address used to post IPN variables back to our notify scripts is 65.206.229.140. However, PayPal has a NetRange allocation of 65.206.228.0 - 65.206.231.255, but maybe soome from PayPal would like
to verify the ip addresses they use for IPN.

Sim

#8 ayersoft

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 04:59 PM

The ip address used to post IPN variables back to our notify scripts is 65.206.229.140. However, PayPal has a NetRange allocation of 65.206.228.0 - 65.206.231.255, but maybe someone from PayPal would like to verify the ip addresses they use for IPN.

Sim

#9 ayersoft

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Posted 22 November 2002 - 05:31 PM

At one time I thought PayPal's IPN didn't work with the PayPal shopping cart because we never received any confirmation from our notify script that PayPal had sent a response to our notify script. It had always worked with the PayPal single item purchases. To get IPN working with the PayPal shopping cart we had to change the form method of our shopping cart link to PayPal, from a 'Get' to the 'Post method. We also had to reset the IPN profile URL at PayPal several of times (3). In short, if your notify script is not being passed any variables from PayPal IPN, then reset your IPN profile URL several times and make sure that you use a form method of POST to send your purchase info to PayPal.

Sim

#10 paypal_pb

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Posted 25 November 2002 - 10:44 AM

Our server always POSTs and IPN if IPN is properly activated (Notification URL registered in Profile or "notify_url" included in Single Item Purchase or Subscriptions FORMs).

We do keep logs of all IPN activity but they are not readily available to all Customer Service Representatives.

I forwarded more information about your transactions in a private email.

Patrick Breitenbach
PayPal, Inc.
Dev Net: https://www.paypal.com/pdn

#11 nuander

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Posted 27 November 2002 - 08:32 AM

"notify_url"??? Is that an undocumented feature? Can I use that in my SIP post to cause an IPN w/o having an IPN url in the PayPal profile?

(NOTE: I know it sounds like a small thing but as a developer, ANYTHING I can program w/o having to explain to the client is a bonus!)

#12 nuander

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Posted 28 November 2002 - 03:22 AM

found the answer to this in the IPN Manual on page 8




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