SocialEngine PHP FAQs

General Questions

Is SE PHP Better Than SE CLOUD?

The answer depends on two considerations: How you intend to use the software, and what resources you have to support it. Since SocialEngine PHP was first developed five years prior to the Cloud product, it currently has a greater range of features, customization and third-party developer support (plugins and expert services you can separately purchase).

Like other software you can completely customize, greater freedom frequently comes with greater responsibility. This may include server/security administration, trouble-shooting related to third party hosting providers (shared or dedicated), plugin integrations, code updates, etc. If this sounds daunting in terms of your own technical skills or desire to work with others who have them, consider SocialEngine Cloud as your first option.

Will I own my site?

Yes. You own all of your content, member data, and any customizations you make to the SocialEngine PHP source code. It's yours!

Can I Try Before I Buy?

Yes! You can try the SocialEngine PHP free trial for 14 days at BryZar hosting before buying a license. BryZar has offered free hosting for 14 days during your trial.

What if I want to switch to SocialEngine Cloud?

You can add a new SocialEngine Cloud site or purchase a new SocialEngine PHP license at any time. However, note that migration features for transferring your site content and members from one site to another are currently unavailable.

Is the source code encrypted?

No, our source code is 100% unencrypted so you can make absolutely any changes you need. Additionally, the source code is very heavily commented with notes about what is happening throughout the code.

How easily can I customize SocialEngine PHP?

We've gone to great lengths to make SocialEngine PHP incredibly easy to work with and customize. The entire source code is unencrypted and very thoroughly commented with notes about what's happening throughout the PHP code. We also provide fully commented HTML templates for every single page of the social network, including global header/footer templates and an organized CSS stylesheet.

Do I have to pay extra to remove any mentions of SocialEngine PHP?

Absolutely not. Unlike other products, we do not display "SocialEngine PHP" on your social network in any place that is visible to the public. We would never let our product interfere with your brand.

Are future updates free?

Minor updates such as 4.1 to 4.2 are provided free of charge. These updates are small releases that contain bug fixes and small improvements. Major updates such as 4.x to 5.x can be purchased for a small fee and include a massive amount of new functionality and improvements. As an exception, version 4 was provided free of charge to all current clients.

What are the server requirements?

For complete server requirements, please click here.

Does the script come in any other languages?

SocialEngine PHP comes with English only by default. However, we include all of the language used on the system in a single language pack, which makes translation very simple.In addition, you can find third party language packs on our third party plugins page.

Can the script be translated into another language?

Yes, very easily! We include all of the languages used on the system in a single language pack, which makes translation very simple. For more information about how to translate SocialEngine PHP, refer to this documentation article.

How many users can SocialEngine PHP support?

We've worked hard to make SocialEngine PHP an optimized, lightweight platform. The performance of the platform however is primarily dependent on the capabilities of your server. As with any web-based application, you may need to upgrade your server if your social network attracts a large amount of traffic. It would also depend on the activities of your users; for example, if your users are uploading large amounts of media (photos, videos, etc.) you may need to upgrade the disk space on your server. On most shared-server plans, SocialEngine PHP should be able to support tens of thousands of users, while a single dedicated server can usually support upwards of one hundred thousand however we make no guarantee of performance due to the many variables involved.

Store Questions

Are store products supported by SocialEngine?

No, SocialEngine does not provide support for store products unless they are the official SocialEngine products. Each expert is responsible for providing support for their products.

What are the refund terms for products?

Please see our refund policy here.

Do you guarantee the products to work with my other third party products?

As we do not provide testing or assistance for third party products, we cannot make any guarantees. We suggest you contact the experts to ensure their product has no conflict with other products you use.

How are products delivered to me after purchase?

At this time, products are downloaded from your client dashboard. 

License Questions

Is the license a one-time purchase or an annual agreement?

The purchase of a SocialEngine PHP license is a one-time fee, and entitles you to the complete unencrypted source code for use on one domain.

How many licenses do I need?

Each license is valid for a single public installation of the software. You are of course welcome to create a private copy for development purposes in a "development" subdomain or subfolder of the main licensed domain.

Do I need more than one license if I'm installing SocialEngine PHP on several subdomains/directories?

Yes, every installation of SocialEngine PHP requires a license. However, you are entitled to create a second private installation for development purposes provided it's not publicly accessible.

Do you offer an unlimited license?

We do not currently offer a license which entitles you to use SocialEngine PHP an unlimited number of times. Each installation requires its own license.

I found a third party selling SocialEngine PHP licenses. Is that legal?

SocialEngine PHP licenses are non-transferable. Our website, SocialEngine.com, is the only legal source of SocialEngine PHP licenses. By purchasing from third parties, you also risk missing out on the great support and software updates from the SocialEngine PHP team. If in doubt, please don't hesitate to contact us regarding the legitimacy of a license or to report a reseller.

Can I sell my website in the future?

Yes, you're free to sell your website but not your SocialEngine PHP license since the licenses are non-transferable. In other words, if you choose to sell your website which contains a SocialEngine PHP license on it, the new owner would need to purchase their own license. What many clients do is simply incorporate the cost of the new license in to the sale price of the website and purchase a new license on behalf of the new owner.

Installation Questions

How do I install SocialEngine PHP?

To install SocialEngine PHP on your server, follow the instructions provided in this Documentation article: Installing SocialEngine

If I upgrade to a new version, will I lose my customizations or admin panel settings?

This depends on what type of customizations you've made. If you've simply created new files and linked to them from SocialEngine PHP, it's unlikely that you will lose any customizations you've made. If you've edited the core SocialEngine PHP code and you overwrite it with the new files from the upgrade package, you may lose your customizations. To avoid this, you can choose to skip the overwrite process when you install your packages. If you want to ensure that you don't lose any changes you've made, you can use a file comparison program to compare your files with the newly updated ones. Regardless of the changes you've made to your source code, it's unlikely that you will lose any of your admin panel settings when you upgrade. Never-the-less, always take a full site backup before you begin.

Can SocialEngine PHP be installed in a subdirectory or subdomain?

Absolutely! You can install SocialEngine PHP on any location on your server.

How do I move my installation to a new server?

First, check to see if your new host provides a migration service. If they do not, you can move the installation yourself by exporting your MySQL database using cPanel or PHPMyAdmin, downloading all your SocialEngine PHP files to your computer desktop, importing your MySQL database on your new server, and uploading your SocialEngine PHP files to the new server. Remember to set the proper permissions on the new server.

How long does professional installation take?

If you've decided to add our professional installation service to your purchase, please login to your client area and click the Support link at the left of the screen to submit an "Installation Request" ticket. Please review our Support Policy to review the login details we need. After we receive your login credentials, your installation will generally be completed within 1 business day, however it is often completed within hours.

Sales Questions

Is the purchase price a one-time fee or annual?

The purchase of SocialEngine PHP and all plugins are one-time fees and the license is valid indefinitely. We do not charge any annual fees.

How soon will I receive my download information after purchasing?

You will receive your license information very shortly after purchase, after a brief validation to prevent fraudulent orders.

Is my billing information kept private when I purchase?

Absolutely. In fact, we never see or store your billing information on our servers. Your information is processed via Recurly's secure payment gateway.

I don't have a domain yet. Can I still purchase SocialEngine PHP?

Yes! You can purchase SocialEngine PHP now and update your registered domain name later.

What is your refund policy?

Because we provide a 14 day trial which is identical to the full version, we can only provide refunds for any SocialEngine products in the case that they cannot be properly installed on your server. This means that both you and the SocialEngine staff are unable to install SocialEngine PHP properly. We must have received the login requirements listed in our Support Policy.

I want to purchase more than five licenses. Is there a discount?

Yes. We offer substantial discounts for purchases that include more than five licenses. Please contact us and let us know how many licenses you need.

Can I get a custom quote on bulk license purchasing?

Yes, we can provide substantial discounts for multiple license purchasing. Please contact us using the contact form with information on how many licenses you're interested in purchasing and whether you are purchasing on behalf of a web development firm. We will respond promptly with a price quote.

Support Questions

Do I get support with my purchase?

We provide complimentary support for 30 days in the form of an online ticketing system. Our excellent team of in-house support personnel are extremely knowledgeable and dedicated to providing the highest level of customer service.

What type of issues does support cover?

Our support team will assist with initial Software installation, general questions related to the script and technical errors encountered during the normal use of unmodified script. We cannot assist with customization of the script.

How long do I get support after purchase?

We offer 30 days of complimentary support with your purchase. You can extend the support in 1 month blocks for a nominal fee.

How long does it take to get a response from support?

Response times vary based on ticket volume but we do our best to respond to all tickets within several hours during business hours, or the next business day if submitted during off hours.

Can I purchase extended support?

Yes, once your support expires you can purchase extended support in blocks of 1 month for a nominal fee.

Do you offer an installation of upgrades?

We do offer an upgrade installation service, however we do NOT re-apply any customizations you've made after our installation. 

Do you offer phone support?

Our support is only offered through a ticket based system at this time. We've found this method to be the most efficient means to assist customers since it allows issues to be easily tracked and relevant information to be indexed.

How do I recover my account?

If you've forgotten the password to your client account, you should start by using the "Forgot Password" feature. This will email a reset link to the email address associated with your account. If you can no longer access the registered email address, you can contact support and provide information to verify ownership. Due to privacy and security policies, we will need specific identifying information to match with the original purchase.

Free Trial Questions

How do I upgrade from the trial? Will I need to re-install?

If you're still running the trial version and want to upgrade to the full version, follow the instructions provided at BryZar for updating your license.

How long does the trial last? What happens at the end of the trial?

The trial is set to work for 14 days from the time it's requested. After 314days the license will expire, but all your data is safely stored in the database. You'll be able to continue right where you left off by updating the full license key at BryZar.

Will I lose all my users if I upgrade?

Nope! When you purchase the full version, all user data and settings will be retained from the trial because they're stored in the database.

What versions of PHP does the trial support?

The SocialEngine PHP Trial will work on PHP version 7.x at BryZar.

Customization Questions

Can I hire SocialEngine PHP to write custom plugins/customizations?

We are not offering customization services at this time. However, you can find highly skilled experts that specialize in SocialEngine PHP development in our Experts page.

What tools do you recommend for site customization?

We recommend: 

File Comparison: WinMerge (for TortoiseSVN or standalone), TortoiseMerge (comes with TortoiseSVN), SourceGear DiffMerge (Mac OSX) 
FTP Client: Filezilla

Revision Control: Subversion (SVN), TortoiseSVN

Telnet/SSH Client: PuTTY

Text Editor: http://www.pnotepad.org

Some other programs and resources for finding other programs:

File Comparison: Wikipedia

Image Manipulation: Adobe Photoshop, GIMP

What should I know for customizing SocialEngine PHP? Where can I learn about it?

HTML (HyperText Markup Language): Provides a means to describe the structure of text-based information in a document. W3C, Wikipedia


CSS (Cascading Style Sheets): Describes the presentation of a document written in a markup language. W3C, Wikipedia


PHP (PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor): Computer scripting language designed for producing dynamic web pages. Used for server-side scripting. Site, Wikipedia


Javascript: Scripting language most often used for client-side web development. Wikipedia


AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML): Group of inter-related web development techniques used for creating interactive web applications. Wikipedia

Miscellaneous Questions

I love SocialEngine PHP! Where can I write a testimonial?

We are thrilled that you're enjoying SocialEngine PHP! If you would like to write a testimonial about how you've utilized SocialEngine PHP for your project, please feel free to send it through our contact form. With your permission, we will publish your name, website URL, and testimonial on the SocialEngine PHP website - unless you would prefer to keep any of these items private.

Can I resell your software in my country?

The resale and/or transfer of SocialEngine Licenses are not permitted under any circumstance. We do, however offer an affiliate account through Rakuten.

Can I translate SocialEngine PHP in to my native language for a free license?

Although we appreciate the offer, we are not bartering at this time.

What is the release date of the next version of (Insert package here)?

If there is an official release date, you can find it on our blog or our newsletter. If there is no announcement in one or both of these places, a release date has not been set.