CasperVend 2/DropBoxes

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About the DropBox

Current Version


Current version information may be seen here. It's always a good idea to keep your dropbox(es) up to date, since version changes are quite often working around new bugs in sim communications that can cause failed deliveries.

Limits


We recommend keeping the number of items in a dropbox below 400, with 200 being the approximate number most people are comfortable with while waiting for the contents to load. There have been issues reported with Second Life object inventories when people go substantially over these numbers.

Moving / Returning DropBox


If your DropBox is accidentally returned to your inventory, simply rez it back out from your "Lost & Found" folder. No additional action needs to be taken once the DropBox is rezzed out once more; the site will pick up the contents automatically.

If you need to move, simply follow these steps:

  1. Right-click DropBox
  2. Select "Take a copy"
  3. Click DropBox again
  4. Select "Delete" from popup menu
  5. Confirm delete (This will flush contents from website cache)
  6. Go to new location
  7. Rez copy of DropBox
  8. All set!

Must Stay Rezzed


Your dropbox must be rezzed out - inworld - AT ALL TIMES or it cannot deliver your products, notecards, etc. to your customers.

Remember: All Scripted delivery objects will not function if you do not rez them under the proper land group (when it is group land). DropBoxes are no exception.

Placement


It doesn't matter where you put your DropBox. However, there are certain caveats you should be aware of:

  1. The land must let YOU run scripts - either enabled for all, or you are in the land group.
  2. You must have continual access, in order to add/remove products.

Public or Private Land?


Other people cannot edit your dropboxes (unless you've given them "mod rights" on your stuff), so public locations are perfectly safe.

However, please read the rental agreement / land covenant FOR that location so make sure dropboxes in general are allowed - because land managers/owners can still return objects, even if they can't do anything else to them.

Renaming Your DropBoxes


By default, the "physical" name of your dropbox is something like:

 CasperVend DropBox v((version #))

It's not only ok to rename your DropBox, it is strongly recommended - at least to include YOUR store name. The name of the DropBox your product comes from is seen in the delivery message that the customer receives - so be aware of that when renaming the box.

Renaming is also recommended because if someone mutes "CasperVend DropBox v((version #))" from someone else, and YOUR DropBox name matches that, yours will get caught in that muting as well.

Seeing your DropBoxes


DropBoxes are now listed on the CasperVend website, on the DropBoxes page.

This page shows you:

  1. Name of the DropBox
  2. Version number
  3. Sim location (clickable link to location inworld)
  4. Last contacted
  5. # of items in the DropBox
  6. Option to manage that specific DropBox and see the contents"

At the top of that page you can also list "10, 20, 50, 100 or All" of your DropBoxes at once. The default is 10 per page.

DropBox Address Message


The DropBox that responds to a request to deliver an object will send its physical location with the delivery message.

This is a grid limitation by the Lindens and cannot be changed via scripting. This was instituted several years ago by the Lindens as an anti-griefing measure, to make it easier to report the location of a griefing object, and it applies to ALL objects across the grid that send messages.

While you don't have to keep your DropBox in your store or rental headquarters, keep in mind that the occasional customer may unexpectedly drop in where the DropBox is located if they click the address link. You can set up a security orb (or banlines) if you wish on a private location, or just relocate the box(es) to a location where you don't mind customers occasionally dropping in.

Using Your DropBox

The DropBox only seems no-modify in your inventory. This is due to the DropBox script being no-modify. Once you rez it out, the prim WILL be modifiable and allow you to add contents.

Organising Your Items

How you organize your DropBox contents is ENTIRELY up to you.

  • It doesn't matter which items are in which box
  • It doesn't matter where your box is in Second Life (caveats: see Placement).
  • Duplicate sets are always recommended

There is one organisational limitation that you must always remember:

  • Be careful to give all items a unique name. For example, don't name a texture the same as one of your items - If you have two different items with the exact same name (in different DropBoxes), the system may assume it is a second copy of the first item and may deliver either one!

And yes, capitalisation and typos count!

CasperLet Specific Information

The bulk of this page is written with CasperVend and CasperUpdate in mind.

While the DropBox within the CasperLet crate is the same thing (with the same script) that's in the CasperVend and CasperUpdate crate, CasperLet itself only uses notecards and landmarks.

If you only use CasperLet, understand that you will only be loading notecards and landmarks in your DropBox, despite references in most of this page to "products".

Loading Your Dropbox

  1. Rez the DropBox out
  2. Right-click on the DropBox
  3. Select "Edit", then go to "Contents" tab.
  4. Drag your packaged items, textures and any notecards you have ready into the dropbox.
  5. Make sure that your notecards / landmarks / textures / packaged items are all named differently - if you name a texture the same as your object, for example, the vendor system will deliver - or redeliver - one of either of them. This means that if your customer pays for a packaged product, and your texture has the exact same name as your packaged product, the customer may get the texture instead of the packaged product.

Cannot Share DropBoxes


The DropBox only recognizes the owner that unpacked it from the shipping crate.

You cannot "share with group", it will not load other people's products. You cannot deed to a group, because the DropBox is no transfer. (And even if you could, it wouldn't work - the group would then be the owner, and the group isn't the one that purchased the copy of CasperVend that the DropBox came from...)

No Folders


DropBoxes CANNOT accept a folder AS a folder - it will always assume the contents of the folders are separate products. If you have multiple items for one product, they need to go in THEIR OWN box / bag / shipping crate / package before going in the dropbox. Do not put an object named NYAN into the DropBox or strange things may happen...

Your DropBox won't let you add things?


The grid is known for occasionally not letting things work as well as they should. Here are some troubleshooting points if it doesn't seem like the DropBox is letting you put stuff in it:

# Did you "lock" the dropbox (maybe to prevent accidently deleting it)?
# Has everything in the dropbox fully loaded in the edit / contents window? (SL usually won't let you add things until everything is loaded)
# Is SL not letting you do other things either? (may need to relog...)
# Try CTL + dragging the item from your inventory to the DropBox.
# Is it round or a box? If it's round, you've grabbed the "UpgradeBee DROPBOXES ONLY" by mistake, and that will ALWAYS be no-mod. Search for "CasperTech DropBox" instead.

"How do I connect the DropBox to...."


You don't. All the dropboxes work as inworld "cloud/pool storage" for deliveries - this is why duplicate sets are such a good idea. There's no need to even try to "pin" a dropbox to a specific vendor, the system will automatically pull a product for delivery from the first dropbox that (1) responds, and (2) HAS the item being requested.

Updating Your DropBox

Updating With New Products


The SL grid does not allow one object to load inventory into another object in a different sim/region. You must manually add each of your new packaged products to EACH DropBox you want them to be in. "Cloud/pool" only applies to deliveries for customer purchases.

Updating DropBox Version


See this section

Products Not Showing On Site?

There are four common principles behind why product packages may not show up on the website to be added to a new listing. They are:

1) DropBox cannot be contacted
2) Duplicated name of notecard/texture/etc.
3) Product is "(no transfer)" to YOU, the merchant-owner
4) Product is not in the dropbox

There is also one big reason why product packages don't show on the PRODUCTS page itself, OR in the list of products to add to a profile:

5) Products have not had a product listing created yet

Can't be contacted


Common error points when the DropBox(es) can't be contacted are:

  1. DropBox(es) not rezzed out (Like all scripted inworld delivery systems, they cannot deliver if not rezzed out...)
  2. DropBox(es) has no script (need "CasperTech Dropbox" script to stay in the box)
  3. The sim the DropBox(es) is(are) on is having a snit and not talking to the outside world (the "gone dark" issue mentioned in the backup section below)

Duplicated Names


Common error is that the product name exactly matches the name of a texture or notecard.

The popup for product selection is set to filter out duplicates - so this results in new products not showing because the texture or notecard is showing instead.

  1. Rename your product package, corresponding notecard, and corresponding texture so that the names are ALL different from each other.

Product is "no transfer"


Products MAY end up being effectively "(no transfer)" to you for different reasons:

  1. Putting a holo demo in the DropBox instead of the holovendor
  2. An errant script, texture, or other "(no transfer)" item included with the product by accident. (Might be accidentally linked to a build, or accidentally dropped in the contents of a prim.)

Verify that all your items are transferable TO YOU by looking in the contents of (each) DropBox, waiting for the contents to load, and scrolling the list to the right to see the permissions. Scroll down to see everything in the DropBox and verify whether or not "(no transfer)" is next to any of the items.

Not in the dropbox


  1. Did you forget to put it in the dropbox?
  2. Did you perhaps put the product in the vendor instead of the DropBox?
  3. When you rezzed (or re-rezzed) the DropBox, did you rez an older version that's missing the new item(s)?

Products Not Showing On Products Page?

You won't see anything on the product page until a listing has been created for the product(s) in question.

CasperVend does not show product packages on the Products page, only completed product listings.

You must create your product listings - if all goes well (see previous section for common troubleshooting points) then you'll see your missing packages in the popup for selecting a package to deliver, once you start creating your product listing.

Start at #9 on this page to create your product listings.

Product Selector Popup Not Appearing On Website?


You may have a browser extension that's blocking the popup product picker window.

If you are using Chrome, you can start another Chrome window in 'Incognito" mode - use CTL + SHFT + N to start an Incognito window. This disables all the extensions before logging you in.

If you are using Firefox (or another browser) with a a "no javascript" type extension that allows a temporary override, you need to allow casperdns.com and ajax.googleapis.com to be able to see the product picker popup window.

Upgrading Your DropBoxes

  1. Verify version: Click the DropBox, and from the popup menu, select "Version".
  2. Compare with the list on the versions page.
  3. If your DropBox is out of date, redeliver the pack that your dropbox came from. (Old Bee only has old version.)
  4. Once you have a redelivered shipping crate, unpack that.
  5. Pull out the NEW UpgradeBee DROPBOXES ONLY.
  6. Rez one in each sim/region you have DropBox(es), and select RUN UPDATE.
  7. The UpgradeBee will fly around and update all of your DropBox(es).

If you get an error message for "Illegal Task" or "0 attempted / 0 upgraded / 0 no longer exist / 0 weren't upgraded because..." message, then click the dropbox, and from the popup menu, select "Reset".

"I Don't Have That Many Vendors Out!"


When you use the "check all" function, it will check everyone's vendors AND dropboxes on the sim.

This is normal!

It cannot actually upgrade anything that's not YOURS - but it will ping CasperVend things from everyone on the sim and see if the items are still rezzed out.

Verifying the update worked


  • Click the DropBox.
  • Select "Version" from the popup.
  • (If you don't have "version" as an option, they need to be upgraded...)
  • The DropBox will tell you its version in local chat.

The DropBox prim will not be renamed by the UpgradeBee - this is normal. If you want the object name to reflect the version, you must rename it manually.

Delivery Errors

See the delivery errors section on the transactions page.

E-Mail Self Test Yellow Text Message

WARNING: This dropbox failed its e-mail self-test. This means that the box may become uncontactable, which may affect your deliveries. Please pick up this box and re-rez it.

This is a test feature new with version 2.27 - it's designed to let you know when the sim has blacklisted the dropbox in question.

Make sure your DropBox is on the latest version. If it's not, then follow these instructions to get it up to date.

If it is, then simply pick up the DropBox with the yellow text, and re-rez. This is the ONLY way around the blacklist issue with a current-version DropBox.

This is NOT the same thing as the "gone dark" problem detailed elsewhere on this page.

This is hovertext over the rezzed dropbox, not a local chat notification. The self-test fail hovertext will ALWAYS appear, even if you normally have hovertext turned off.

Cleanly Deleting Old DropBoxes

Properly deleting an older (or unused) DropBox is essential for a cleaner database - following these steps means that the DropBox will flush its contents out of the database before deleting itself.

Remember to "take a copy" FIRST!

  1. Click the DropBox
  2. Select "Delete" from the popup menu
  3. The DropBox will give you a confirmation screen; if you really want to delete it, click the appropriate option
  4. The DropBox will clear its contents out of the website, before deleting itself inworld

Products Showing That No Longer Exist?


This issue is most often caused by simply using "Edit > Delete" on an existing DropBox, OR a DropBox is accidentally returned to your lost & found folder.

Here's the way to fix this:

  1. Log in to the CasperVend website
  2. Go to the DropBoxes page
  3. You will see a list of all the DropBoxes the system thinks are still rezzed inworld.
  4. Click the "contents" link next to each dropbox and look through the contents
  5. When you find the incorrect dropbox, click "Manage" on the same line
  6. You will be taken to another page
  7. To delete that dropbox, select "Delete Unit"
  8. You will get a confirmation popup - click "ok"
  9. The system will process, and then reload the main DropBoxes page

Accidentally Returned/Picked Up


Simply re-rez the DropBox. Your vendors will resume normal delivery operations without needing to touch anything on the website.

The "DropBox Cloud"

All DropBox(es) you have rezzed anywhere on the grid contribute to the "global product cloud" of your products. This is why it doesn't matter where you're dropboxes are, as long as they are rezzed inworld.

The website will deliver one copy of the configured item, from the first available DropBox that has that product, AND responds in a timely manner. Due to general grid crappiness, sometimes a sim/region doesn't respond as well as it should - and having duplicates on different sims/regions means that the website has the opportunity to use other dropboxes for the delivery of that item instead of completely failing.

So yes, multiple / duplicate / backup DropBox(es) are not only totally ok, they are actually encouraged!

Setting Up Duplicate DropBoxes

If you like, and you have multiple locations for your DropBoxes, you can work with ONE set as a "master set" of DropBoxes. Then, when you are done adding things in a particular session, simply do the following steps:

  1. Right-click, then "Take a copy" of your existing DropBox(es)
  2. Go to another sim/region where you have long-term rez rights. (If you're Premium and have a Linden Home, this would also be an ideal location)
  3. Rez out the DropBox(es)
  4. Wait for the DropBox(es) to talk to the website.
  5. All set! Remember to leave the DropBox(es) rezzed at all times.

You may organize your DropBoxes however you'd like, and you can rez however many you'd like (up to the maxmium prim/impact limits of the parcel, of course).

If you want to sync products between dropboxes, you will, unfortunately, need to do that manually.

(If you have a lot of DropBox(es), you can pick them up in a cluster, and rez them out in a cluster at the new location, HOWEVER, you can only click--delete the older ones, one at a time. Do NOT use "Edit / Delete" because that will not clear out the contents of the DropBox from the website properly.)

NOT On The Same Region


Having boxes containing the same item, on the same region is generally pointless. The goal behind having duplicate locations is to have reliability in case of sim/region-to-outside-world communication issues. Having all duplicate sets on the same sim/region means that they will all be affected when the sim/region goes out to lunch or runs out of URL's.

On Different Regions


Having one or more duplicate DropBox(es) (DropBoxes containing the same items) on another region is absolutely recommended.

Partly this is so that you have DropBoxes that work even when the simulator/region is down (especially if you have affiliate vendors out on the grid, or multiple locations) but also because simulators/regions occasionally "go dark" and refuse to talk to the outside world. The sim/region will still be up, inworld, and accessible to avatars even in this state, but because it's not talking to the outside world, DropBoxes on these affected sims/regions will be unable to deliver product to customers.

Having one or more backup sets on other sims/regions reduces the chance that YOUR products won't deliver when customers make a purchase. These backup locations can be linden homes, friend's homes, etc. There are also services on the grid that will allow you to rent a few prims just for DropBox purposes.

On Different Server Channels


For the best reliability, you should consider putting your backup DropBox on a region with a different server channel. There are five server channels in use, with the first four in this list (the names in bold) being the most common:

  • Second Life Server
  • RC BlueSteel
  • RC Magnum
  • RC LeTigre
  • RC Snack

If your main DropBox is on the main channel ("Second Life Server"), it's a good idea to put your backup DropBox on an RC region, and vice-versa. This is because Second Life Server regions are all restarted on Tuesdays, and RC regions are often restarted on Wednesdays. With a DropBox on both, your delivery network will be online 24/7 since the regions are restarted on different days of the week.

To find out your server channel, use Help -> About in your viewer. For example, in firestorm:

Serverchannel.jpg

DropBox Page on Website

Your DropBoxes are now listed on the website, on the DropBoxes page!

The list is "colour coded" according to how long it's been since the site last contacted the dropbox. It does NOT mean that it's broken - deliveries will still happen. If you're concerned that it's shown with a colour background other than white, you may click the dropbox inworld and select "reset" - that'll make it contact the website and turn it white. It is NOT required that you do that - not being contacted doesn't mean it's not working.

The Columns

Last Seen: This is how long it's been since the website last talked to the dropbox.
Version: This is the script-reported version of the dropbox. An easy way to tell when you need to check your versions.
Location: This is the listing of the sim, with a SLURL to the exact location where the DropBox is inworld.
Actions: You can "Manage" or view the "Contents" of the dropbox from this column. "Manage" gives you a page where you can ping, update, or delete the dropbox. "Contents" just shows you what's in it.

Colour Coding

Yellow is for not being contacted for a short time. Pink is for not being contacted for a longer time.

The variations in yellow and pink do not represent any specific timeframe, they alternate lighter and darker to make it easier for your eyes to follow a specific line.

FAQ / Troubleshooting

Q. Why'd my vendors suddenly stop delivering notecards / demos / products?
A. Things cannot be delivered if the system cannot find the dropbox, and/or cannot find the product items it's been told to send. Therefore, the first points to check are:
* Is the item IN the dropbox?
* Is the site pointing to the correct item(s)
* Have you recently change name on the product / notecard / demo, without updating the website?
* Has the sim/region "gone dark"? (If so, the only solution is restart the sim and/or have backup copies on at least one other sim/region.)
* How many items are in your dropbox? (Remember if there are too many things in the dropbox, the SL servers seem to make stuff "go missing" - which would also prevent delivery of items.)
* Also compare YOUR transaction log with the information in the Transactions & Deliveries page.
Q. My customers aren't getting the product after purchase, and the redelivery terminal keeps giving them a "Failed: Couldn't find delivery box for item on SLIFE. This merchant may no longer be using CasperVend." message, when it is, and I am.
A1. Reset the DropBox(es). Use the touch menu first - if that doesn't work, then manually Edit > Reset scripts in selection to get them to actually reset.
A2. If you have DropBox(es) on only one sim/region, then we strongly recommend having a backup set (see above) on at least one other sim/region location to reduce the risk of this happening again.
Q. I have a DropBox which shows as 'live' and as having __ items listed. However, when I open the drop box there are maybe half that amount of items showing inside the box.
A. Casper Warden writes: "basically, if items have disappeared from the box, there's two possible reasons...
1) they were no copy and were delivered
2) your sim suffered an inventory failure or rollback
in both circumstances the system isn't notified about the change :/ "
When items that are no-copy to the merchant (such as breedable things) get sold, the # in the floaty text above the dropbox does NOT get updated.
Q. I got this message: "CasperVend DropBox: Items in the database seem to be out of sync! Re-uploading."
A. Nothing to worry about - the system's self-check has determined that there is lag, either on the sim/region or in the grid itself. Once or twice per DropBox is normal (if you have multiple DropBoxes, you'll get several messages, but should just be one or two from each.)
The only time to worry is when you get the message several times a day - that would indicate a sim/region communication problem, or that Casper is working on the backend servers.
Q. My last shop location is no more, I don't have access to it, and it keeps trying to send the OLD landmark. How can I fix this?
A1. You'll need to edit *everywhere* you have it marked - usually this is in each and every single product listing - and set them up with the new landmark.
A2. It is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED that you use a landmark name like "(your shop) - Main location" - rather than the default LL format that includes the sim/region name. Renaming your landmarks to something simple and WITHOUT the sim/region name means that when you have to move in the future, you can just outright swap the landmarks, without having to go through the hassle of updating every single product every time you change landmarks.
Q. I keep getting messages of "That item is no longer available or doesn't belong to you." when it is, and it does.
A. Pick up and re-rez the DropBox, that should get rid of the spurious errors.