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Plimus has an IE9 problem that affected my BuyNow page. - Sun, 1 May 2011

Sheesh! The things that take me away from Behold development sometimes get out of hand. But at least this one I’ve figured out and got a temporary workaround for it.

The problem. I had a few people complain to me that they had a problem when they tried to purchase Behold from its BuyNow page.. That is a secure page hosted by Plimus, the company that handles the purchases for me.

The problem was after they entered their information on that page and clicked the “Next” button, the same page would return with a message embedded in it saying: “Password does not match”. Then they were stuck. There was no place on that page where you were even allowed to enter a password.

The first time someone told me about this, I couldn’t reproduce the problem. I sent the problem to Plimus, and they sent me back this response:

Dear Vendor,

Please advise the customer to try the following troubleshooting measures.

Use a different internet browser (or download a different browser and test it if you must)

- Check your internet security / firewall settings. Make sure no 3rd party programs are possibly blocking Plimus.

- Make sure you are not using a proxy internet connection (use a direct connection)

- If all that fails, try using a different computer. You want to know if this is a problem that is specific to your current computer.

Tony-Plimus Vendor Support

Well, that was less than adequate, but I had nothing else to go on. You definitely don’t want to put the onus on the user to change what they are doing to try to get around a problem that is not theirs. But I had no choice. I sent that out and, as expected, didn’t hear back from them.

Now just a couple of days ago, this happened again. Another person trying to purchase complained that they were getting a “Password does not match” error. Once is an anomaly. Twice is a severe problem that must be fixed.

I searched the web to find this problem. Nothing. So I went to the support chat with Plimus. They said it was an IE9 problem. They said to get the user to change browsers.

Well that’s still not an adequate solution. I needed something better. Again I want to make the purchase process as simple as possible. Any friction and the person won’t bother. I know that. I’m exactly that way when I purchase software online. The purchase process has to be smooth and fast with no glitches, or I’ll leave and blame it on, not the purchase process supplier, but the software developer. It reflects on him or her for not adequately testing the purchase process.

So I did some testing. It worked fine for me in IE9. I pressed F12 to get into IE9’s Developer Tools (bet you didn’t know it was there), and started playing with the display mode. On the menu there’s a Browser Mode and a Documents Mode. I found that when I went to Document Mode: IE9 standards, that then the Password not matching error would happen. Yay! Got the problem. Now to fix it.

What I found is that IE7 or IE8 mode works without the problem. I just have to get the document to tell the user’s browser to use IE8 mode when a person uses an IE9 browser. I found a Microsoft page on how to specify document compatibiltiy modes. So in the header of the BuyNow page, I’ve now put the following, and it seems to at least get around the problem for my page:

<meta http-equiv=”X-UA-Compatible” content=”IE=EmulateIE8″>

However and really, it is Plimus who must fix this. They have a problem with IE9 compatibility on their Purchase Page template. Vendors are losing sales whenever someone with IE9 tries to buy a product from a Plimus purchasing page. This could be happening hundreds or thousands of times each day. Both vendors and Plimus are losing money from this. I’ve sent Plimus enough messages, and support tickets, tweets - and now this blog entry. Hopefully they’ll get the message and make finding what’s wrong with that silly password test a top priority, and fix it ASAP.

So I’ve got my workaround for now. It’s possible that my workaround doesn’t fix everything and it is possible it may cause other problems - e.g. for IE7 users. But it’s better than it was.

If anyone still encounters the above problem when trying to purchase Behold, or find any other troubles with the purchase process, please let me know.


Update: 03 May 2011

Received this from Plimus:

Dear Louis ,

Thank you for the fix notification.

Of course this IE9 issue is being handled and should be fixed soon,

Again we apologize for the inconvenience it caused you and your customers. Please follow our newsletters to get the fix update.

If there will be any earlier fix you shall be informed of course.

Best Regards,
Ron-Plimus Vendor Support

1 Comment           comments Leave a Comment

1. dearmyrtle (dearmyrtle)
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Joined: Sun, 6 Mar 2011
2 blog comments, 0 forum posts
Posted: Sun, 1 May 2011  Permalink

Thanks for a fair assessment of the problem, and your work-around.

Isn’t it amazing that Plimus feels everyone else should make the adjustments to get around their compatibility issues?

Myrt :)

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