Why Offer Online Encoding?
We realised that for some users, the cost of purchasing an Encoder
product was prohibitive, or just didn't make sense. If you want to protect
a 5 line file containing passwords, which would cost just $0.50 with our online
Encoder, or encode a product or minor product updates just occasionally, spending $$$ or even $$$$ to
purchase an Encoder may not be justifiable.
With software piracy an ever increasing problem, and with PHP becoming
more popular, we felt that the online Encoder was a much needed solution. Having now encoded thousands of PHP uploads via our service, we were clearly right. Security
ionCube encoding uses Compiled-Code-Translation that turns scripts into
bytecode, similar to the form that PHP normally compiles scripts into before execution, but modified for extra security.
This is preferable to source encoding and obfuscation, which in reality simply isn't secure at
Our Encoder also optimises code
to reduce size and gain some performance (our paper on
PHP Accelerator Internals gives an example of the optimiser in action).
To protect scripts being uploaded to and downloaded from the Encoder we use SSL encryption on a secure server.
Source files and archives are contained inside a secure
jail that prevents access in or out, and
when encoding is complete, typically just a few seconds after
uploading, the jail is removed and the source files
The Portal also offers an interface that's as easy to use
for encoding a
single script as encoding an archive of 100's of scripts,
and handles jobs of any size with ease, including compressed
archives in a variety of popular formats.
The ionCube Loader loads and executes encoded files at runtime. The Loader is compatible with Zend Optimiser, and usually
easily installed if not already. If a host has installed the Loader already
then no action is required to use encoded files. On servers without the Loader,
many will be able to install the Loader from the user's own web area or with
a custom php.ini file. If this is not possible, hosts are usually helpful to
install the Loader.