PayPal IPN – Creating Listener Code to Process IPN Messages

You have finally decided IPN is the solution to your website application. You do not want to pay someone else to do it. It can not be that hard, can it? Where can you get some practical advice from people who have been there, done that. This article will answer these questions and help you decide if you are able to write that code. If you find it too complicated there are a few commercial products out there that will handle everything for you so do not lose heart if you find yourself stuck.

PayPal IPN

Instant Payment Notification is better known as PayPal IPN and is PayPal's interface for handling real time confirmation of purchases. A typical use for IPN is where you want to use the software to download.

PayPal provide 3 different types of account. Personal, Premier and Business. You will need Premier or Business to use IPN.

Listener

PayPal IPN messages are not synchronized with actions on your website. You detect IPN messages from PayPal with a piece of code known as a listener.

You specify the URL of your listener in your PayPal account's profile but you can override this for specific transactions when you setup a button or API operation. You can also temporarily turn off the sending of IPN messages, useful if your site is down for maintenance. They are still generated and stored until you switch sending back on again.

You must perform a number of checks on the IPN message received from PayPal.

  • Check the email address to make sure it is yours
  • Check that you have not already processed the transaction identified by the transaction ID
  • Make sure that the transaction's payment status is "completed"
  • Verify that the payment amount actually matches what you intend to charge

PayPal Sandbox

When you are developing your website you really do not want to be trying to get it working by experimenting on a real money system. Any early bugs in the system could leave security holes but even if you write perfect code it is best not to do your testing using real money.

PayPal provides what they call a sandbox, almost identical to the live PayPal system. You can setup fake customers with fake money and make as many test purchases as you want. The perfect system to fully test your web application.

There is a Sandbox Forum on the developer network. It's a great place for advice.

Testing your Listener

The Sandbox has an excellent IPN Simulator (under Test Tools) which lets you choose the transaction type, fill in all the parameter values ​​and send a test IPN to a specified address.

IPN History

PayPal provides an IPN history page under the My Account tab. Click on History to see it. It includes everything you want to know about each IPN message including the following Status values.

  • Sent: indicates that PayPal sent the message to your IPN listener
  • Failed: indicates that PayPal did not receive an acknowledgment to the message
  • Queued: indicates that PayPal is ready to send the message
  • Retrying: indicates that message was resent between 1 and 15 times and PayPal continues to be resend the message
  • Disabled: indicating that the message will not be resent because the merchant's account has been disabled

Conclusion

The best place to search for information is the PayPal Integration Center which has guides, code and links for everything to do with integrating your website with PayPal.

The one place you MUST visit is the PayPal IPN Forum on the developer website. As well as a constantly changing list of discussion topics about IPN, there are some good sticky posts about troubleshooting tips, IPN variables, template code etc.

PayPal IPN is a difficult subject but the combination of an excellent testing environment in the form of the sandbox and the good quality advice provided through the forums should make it possible for you to get your website application up and running.

Russia Number One In Weapons Export

The report "Weapons supplies to developing countries 1998-2005" published by the research service of the USA Congress contains data claiming that last year Russia became number one in weapons export to developing countries with the total sum of contracts contracts adjusted to 7.1 billion dollars. According to this document, excerpts from which were published with comments in The New York Times, Moscow beat Washington, which took the third position with its 6.2 billion dollars contracts. The second position belongs to France: it sold weapons on 6.3 billion dollars, according to the US Congress.

However, several facts of the "sensational" document cause serious doubts. First of all, data provided by the US Congress do not gee with the information spread in the beginning of the year by the federal commission of military-technical cooperation of Russia where the volume of Russian weapons export in 2005 was estimated 6.126 billion dollars. The sum can be considered record as in recent years Russian exporters could hardly reach the verge of 5 billion dollars. It seems logical to be interested in clarification of the 1 billion difference in the Congress and the Federal commission data.

Washington did not beat about the bush to find an explanation of the difference mentioned above: their comments indicated the fact that they also included Russian export of several land anti-aircraft defense systems (zenith-missile complex TOR-M1) to Iran. At the same time the report did not emphasize the fact whether Moscow had already supplied the systems to Teheran or not. It only informed that the affair cost 700 thousand dollars and that apart from zenith-missile complex Russia had also sold 8 air tankers to Iran. Ides, Washington included Russian help concerning Teheran's military equipment modernization into the volume of Russian supplies to Iran. In two words, Russia became "champion in weapons export" through not only India and China, but also Iran.

And this is the second point that causes hesitations about objectivity and relativity of the analysis held by the research service of the Congress. Warlike equipment and arms export has always been quite a politically loaded issue. While marking Russian success in weapons trade the US report distinctly observations upon their backsliding from leading positions in this chart. Interestingly, this happens straight ahead to the Congress elections. The report claims that the States have lost a significant share of the weapons market since 2004. That year the US did 9.4 billion dollars on weapons trade while Russia did only 5.4, and now Russia is one billion dollars ahead. The conclusion which is likely to get into many people of electional age minds is quite predictable: to vote for democrats who can bring back our leadership in weapons trade which means new jobs, new earnings …

It is necessary to mention that weapons export matters in the States are not on the decline. In 2005 the US income from weapons trade was inconsiderably smaller than in 2004, coupled, Russian achievements in this sphere do not look that impressive in comparison with just one of the US contracts – 7 billion dollars contract with Turkey. Moreover, the US also provides NATO countries with weapons as well, while the mentioned market zone is deadly closed for Russian weapons suppliers.

The General assembly of NATO has recently made a decision to organize a special group to work out new international regulations concerning weapons trade and export. Experts hope that after the regulations come into force data on the achievements in this sphere will be more truthful and reliable.

Source:

http://www.rian.ru

Translation: Lavrentyeva Natalya

How to Make Your Wedding Stand Out With Wedding Favors

Why do you want your wedding to be unique? It is obvious almost every one who is getting married desires every one to have a great time and remember that special day. What is going to make your wedding day any different from your sisters or cousins ​​wedding. I will tell you what will make a guest remember your wedding. It is the guests, food and the decor you have at your reception.

Wedding Favors can add a special touch to your wedding day decor. They make very memorable keepsakes of your special day and are great for memories. Here is a list of some really nice party favors that you can have at your wedding.

Bride and Groom Favors Boxes

Whimsical but still proudly displaying a dash of formality, these bride and groom favor boxes double as place card holders and are a charming little touch to any place setting.

Love Glass Coaster Favors

Love spells sophistication. These frosted glass coasters make elegant and useful guest favors, ones that your guests will truly appreciate and use for years to come. Most retailers will offer you free personalized tags if you order 24 or more. Show your guests some love.

Photo Frosted Glass Coasters

These gorgeous frosted glass frame coasters will protect your memories forever. Crafted of heavy high quality frosted glass, each coaster features four padded "feet" to protect surfaces. Present your guests with these lovely gifts in any number of ways: framing a photo of the happy couple, used as a place card holder, inserted with a personalized tag of your name and wedding date, or simply displaying it with the beautiful Thank You tag that comes with the favor. Just add a your best picture and it makes an instant keepsake.

Something Blue Gift Boxed Candle Favor

Here is a new take on a time-honored custom. If you already have something old, something new, and something borrowed, but you are missing something blue, then this is the party favor for you. This miniature blue candle gives off a heavenly scent and is detailed with striking white flooring, ending in a bow atop the candle. This party favor makes a great addition to any wedding.

Well these are just a few of the many different types of party favors that you can use to make your wedding more unique. So just browse around the many retailers and we are sure that you will find the perfect favors for your wedding.

Home Improvement Tips For Smart Homeowners

When making improvements to your home, often times small things can make a big difference. Below are six little tips that you may not have thought about, but could be quite helpful in your next home project.

1. Pick out a suitable height for wall outlets. Though most electricians place outlets 12 inches up the wall from the floor, many people find that height is not high enough to be convenient. As an alternative, consider whether 16 inches might be a better height for less bending, and to get the most out of power cord length for tabletop electric items such as lamps.

2. Use a stainless steel taping knife. Use a tool made out of this material for your sheetrock taping to minimize the amount of cleanup time that is needed after the project is done, and to limit any possibility of having rust forming on the knife, which will make it useless for future projects.

3. Recycle old electronics and appliances. Many electronics recycling establishments are popping up all over the nation and will take your out of date electric products for free disposal that is a lot more eco friendly than putting them in the trash to be put into the landfill. If they’re in working condition, see if a charitable organization will take them so that they can be used again for extended life before they’re recycled.

4. Be organized. Know about every major element, each step of the way through the remodeling process. This will help you to ensure that your contractors will all arrive on the right days for tasks to continue progressing. When your electrician arrives at the correct point, for example, it means that the building team won’t need to wait to put up the walls or ceiling.

5. Put in a dormer to turn your attic into livable space. By building a dormer or two into the attic space, a properly constructed attic will receive natural light and added height to make it a much more appealing room. This can give your home a whole new space like a home office, play room for the children, or even a guest bedroom.

6. Measure everything. There is no such thing as guessing or “eyeballing” a measurement when it comes to the perfect home renovation. More often than not, you’ll find that the way that something looked inside a huge store is quite different than the way that it will appear in your residence. You don’t want to end up getting a kitchen island that will consume every square inch of floor space, and returns are costly and time consuming.