Taking control over module upgrade process


Every Magento developer has at least once encountered situation where long lasting module upgrade script caused issue for end customers. Or even worse, fail over and over, due to being executed multiple times.

Of course, there is a very simple solution for this. And since we have encountered many sites which do not use this approach, I have decided to share it with you.

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How to put Magento in maintenance mode with IP filters (the easy way)?

How to put Magento in maintenance mode with IP filters © eqphotolog@sxc.hu

This is probably the most useful quick tip I can think of that I use all the time. Putting Magento in maintenance mode is an essential part of every site launch and it is used in lots of other situations. Although there are many different ways to do this I found that using a few simple lines of code in the root htaccess file is, by far, the easiest solution I could think of. On top of that, this solution enables you to put all the files needed for the maintenance page (html, images, etc.) into one folder. One more advantage of this method is that if you forget to add your IP address to the filter (whitelist) you can do that at any time through FTP so you will not be locked out of your own site 😉

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Magento automatic gender recognition plugin


Today we’re going to create an extension for automatic gender recognition for customers. Extension is based on Rapleaf personalization API. Rapleaf provides demographic and lifestyle data (age, gender, marital status, income, etc.) on personal consumer email addresses (but not for business emails). They partner with dozens of large (and small) data companies to aggregate data and tie it to email addresses.

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