Orca PHP Scripts
It's been a few years now since I started the Orca Script line, and much has happened since then. The series began with the Forum, built to replace a remotely-hosted service (coded in Perl) which began serving pop-up advertisements. The Forum spawned the blog, and because of an internal need for an employer, the Knowledgebase was also born.
However, my two favorite scripts have been, and still are, the Ringmaker and Search. Because I wish to focus my attention on these scripts, I have formally discontinued support for the other three. If you need the final patched versions of the Forum, Blog or Knowledgebase scripts, please send me a message using my contact form.
Orca scripts are free, GPL, PHP/MySQL scripts which I like to call "layout-transparent". That is, they should embed seamlessly into an already existing webpage layout. That and the fact that they are very easy to install and configure are probably their most popular features.
If you are having issues with either the Ringmaker or Search scripts, please see the FAQ before emailing a support request.
Current Version - 3.0 FinalDownload
The Orca Ringmaker allows you to host a full-featured webring on your site using PHP and MySQL. Many intuitive options and controls allow you to easily setup your ring just the way you want. Features include:
- One user login can be the "owner" of multiple sites in the ring
- Interchangeable CSS themes!
- Updated GUI
- Faster and more reliable
- Fast and painless install and setup
- Stores eight weeks of detailed statistics, reported hourly
- Promote other ring members to ring moderators
- Integrated admin GUI for all setup details
- Instantly randomize or reorder ring site order
- LookAhead linking to skip ring sites which are down
Current Version - 2.3aDownload
The Orca Search is a self-spidering site search engine script written in PHP and using MySQL to index data. The data indexed can be quickly searched through by visitors via an intuitive interface.
Note: The Orca Search is a full-text search, rather than an index-word search; this provides a few key benefits such as: complete language independence, fast spidering and highly accurate searching. However, as a result of this design, the script will only usefully scale to sites with 1,000 ~ 2,000 pages. Decent spider crawl and search return times have been reported for indexes with up to 10,000 pages, but such results are not typical.
- Easy setup: Run your control panel in seconds, your first spider in minutes
- Automatic site spidering - self updating database
- Better searching algorithm - search for phrases, important and negative matches, even by indexed filetype
- Searches in: Page text, Title, Keywords, and URIs
- Full UTF-8 searching support
- Optional Latin accent matching (eg. "a" will match "ä" and "â")
- Search text captured from PDFs, JPEGs and more with an extensible plugin interface
- Keeps a log of search queries made
- Search caching to decrease processor load
- Easy to use control panel GUI (screenshots below)
- Multiple output formats: (X)HTML, RSS 2.0, or make your own!
- Can use the search database to generate a Google Sitemap
GUI Screenshots (Version 2.2)
Changelog: 2.3 to 2.3a
- Added support for ID's and Classes containing hyphens (-) and colons (:) as per HTML 4.01
- Added File Size Limit option to prevent out-of-memory errors (Spider Panel)
- URI storage is now case sensitive, prevents overwriting of case-fixing redirects
- Improved handling of complex robots.txt files
- Fixed division by zero bug when no pages complete scanning
- Control Panel
- Fixed display of Match Weighting values if submitted without any change
- Added "Not OK" selection to Entry List drop down filter
- Option to email the Query Log before a reset (Statistics Panel)
- Category lists in drop downs are alphabetically ordered
- Search Interface
- Fixed hard-coded stylesheet directory, now uses directory specified in config.ini.php
- Fixed error message on terms containing a slash (/)
- Fixed error message from RSS2.0 feed results when database is locked
- Orca Search now uses PHPMailer for emailing
- Made language file loading algorithm more resilient
- Added Arabic language files for body.xhtml.php (Safaa Roumani)
- Added Swedish language files for body.xhtml.php (Sofi)
- Added Polish language files for control.php and body.xhtml.php (Paweł Fadrowski)
- Full Changelog
- I've added a site but the ring skips over it/never visits it, even though I know it exists.
- The Ringmaker uses an HTTP HEAD request to verify that a site exists before forwarding the user there; this is called the LookAhead ability. See the section below to see how to verify if these HEAD requests might be blocked. If so, you can bypass the LookAhead capability for this individual site in the Ringmaker control panel, but note that the script will then forward users to the site without checking if it will work first, so users may then be presented with links to a broken site.
- I get the message "Unable to load language file".
- Currently the Ringmaker is designed to sit in the root directory of a website. This means that the ring hub page should be at www.example.com/ringmaker.php and the rest of the files should be just one level down in a directory. Version 3.0 has problems if you try placing the script in deeper directories such as www.example.com/myring/ringmaker.php. These problems should be solved in the next Ringmaker release.
- The Control Panel reports "Spider not found at this URI!" even though when I visit that URI in my web browser, it shows up fine.
- The Search script uses a HEAD request to verify that the spider.php file exists and is accessible via HTTP. See the section below to see how to verify if these HEAD requests might be blocked.
How can I verify that HEAD requests are being blocked?
A site's webserver may be blocking HEAD requests, while allowing GET requests; you can verify this by using Rex Swain's useful tool. Paste in the offending site address, set the tool to use a HEAD request and submit the form. If you get a 403 response or the connection times out then the target server is misconfigured, and is blocking HEAD requests. If you can, ask the site hosts to allow HEAD requests.
The Orca Scripts are available in many translations already, but they can always use more! Thanks for your interest in making the Orca Scripts truly international!
- Submit your translated language files
- Help keep existing language files up to date if new versions add new text
- Suggest improvements to existing language files
The following language files still contain some untranslated (English) text: