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PayPal app v4.039 not sending email following order payment


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I have just made a client's shop live.  (osCommerce Online Merchant v2.3.4)


The only payment method available is PayPal standard, using the App (4.039)


So far two orders have been placed (and paid for), but neither of these have triggered an email to notify my client of the order.  One customer has waited 4 hours and then paid for his order again.


The only evidence of the orders is: the PayPal balance is going up; administration > orders is listing three orders with a status of "Preparing [PayPal Standard]"; and administration > PayPal > Log is displaying some red "PS" entries.



How do I get OSc to detect the payment and trigger an email?  (and change the stock level, empty the customer's cart?)


For the two manually detected orders, can I manually update OSc to trigger the email and empty the cart?


Where can I find advice on changing the order status to show that the items have been dispatched?


Times and sequence of events... 

2015-12-07  00:22   order 8003 checked out by customer

2015-12-07  00:33   red PS _notify-validate in PayPal log   (request data all good, response is empty)

2015-12-07  00:33   red PS _notify-validate [iPN]    (request good, response empty)

2015-12-08  14:01   order 8004 checked out by customer

2015-12-08  18:00   order 8005 checked out by customer

2015-12-08  18:06   red PS _notify-validate [iPN]   (request good, response empty)





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I have subsequently realised that the middle order (8004) has not been paid for.  However I am now checking the php error log


The webserver is set up to write a separate error_log in each folder - where would I find errors for the PayPal Standard logging?  I will have to get some sleep (02:00 here now) and do some searching when I wake up.  Where is the standard location of the URL that PayPal sends its notification to?  Thanks



Edited by derekUK
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Ok, have just made a test order (with PayPal module in Sandbox mode).
I waited the 10s for the automatic redirect back to my store.
This has slightly different behaviour...
In the PayPal log there are two entries associated with the order.
A red PS : _notify-synch
A green PS : _notify-validate [iPN]
The customer sees the message "Could not verify the PayPal transaction.  Please try again."
and the item bought remains in the cart.  If the customer signed out, and then logs in... the cart is 
correct (empty)
The detail behind the (red PS : _notify-synch) is simple.
Request: cmd _notify-synch
GET tx ... GET st ... GET amt...  GET cc...  GET cm ...  GET item_number
Response: (not empty)
Error    4020




I have not been able to find any errors in the logs for the timing of the orders (and PayPal traffic)


Edited by derekUK
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Comparing a PayPal (LIVE) transaction to a PayPal (sandbox) transaction reveals that the only difference is...

For (sandbox), the PayPal log entry is green.   PS _notify-validate [iPN]
and the response is VERIFIED
For (live), the PayPal log entry is red.   PS _notify-validate [iPN]
and the response is empty / truncated.





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It is possibly relevant that in my sandbox (test user) seller PayPal account history,  three IPN messages show up - one for each test order the customer paid for.


In the (LIVE) seller PayPal account history, there are no IPN messages logged (definitely none in the time period where the problems occurred).



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Hi Derek..


Can you confirm that the PDT Identity Token has been setup on the PayPal Seller Profile and that the value is entered in the PayPal App -> Configure -> Payments Standard -> PDT Identity Token field?


It needs to match the same value as on the live or sandbox account.


PDT can be found on the following page at PayPal:


Activating PDT


To use PDT, you must activate PDT and Auto Return in your PayPal account profile. You must also acquire a PDT identity token, which is used in all PDT communication you send to PayPal.


Follow these steps to configure your account for PDT:

1.Log in to your PayPal account.

2.Click the Profile subtab.

3.Click Website Payment Preferences in the Seller Preferences column.

4.Under Auto Return for Website Payments, click the On radio button.

5.For the Return URL, enter the URL on your site that will receive the transaction ID posted by PayPal after a customer payment.

6.Under Payment Data Transfer, click the On radio button.

7.Click Save.

8.Click Website Payment Preferences in the Seller Preferences column.

9.Scroll down to the Payment Data Transfer section of the page to view your PDT identity token.

:heart:, osCommerce

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Hi Harald,


Thank you so much.  I had missed the step to update the PDT Token ID when I swapped over from PayPal Sanbox to PayPal LIVE.


Steps 2 and 3 for me in paypal.co.uk are


2. Click the profile subtab, and select the "my selling preferences" menu option

3. click the "update" link to the right of "website preferences"


One more question: what should I set the Auto Return, Return URL to be ?  at the moment this is not set to a valid url.



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what should I set the Auto Return, Return URL to be ?  at the moment this is not set to a valid url.


Anything really, as the right url is passed as a parameter to PayPal which overrides what is set in the PayPal profile.


If the seller account is only used on the osCommerce store, then setting it to something like the following would not hurt:



:heart:, osCommerce

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  • 10 months later...

Just installed "PayPal App 4.039" a couple weeks ago, at the recommendation of Dan Cole on alternate forum Return URL for Paypal Express.  I'd posted there with the same problem as the original poster there.  I note that v4.039 updates the original "PayPal Express" module that is part of osCommerce v2.3.4 download, and that there's not the "API test" in the update.  But no longer have that problem after this update (as far as I know).


However, I don't think my PayPal Express is working even after this update.  I've received periodic XML errors, which is some indication people have tried to enter orders (received only one actual new customer account created during all of this) but not receiving orders or payments.  And one actual customer (has prior orders, has store account with me, has own PayPal account) reported that his cart is blank when he tries to pay with PayPal -- no order or payment generated.  I tried to pursue this line of inquiry on the alternative forum but only received suggestions to use different versions of osC (probably not practical for me at this time, due to lack of required add-ons, etc.).


I've not tried "sandbox" testing yet, as that looks to be a bit involved to set up (I'm sure that I could do it by taking time with PayPal support on the phone).  PayPal doesn't see to accept my own credit card, as it has same name as my PayPal account.  Just wondering if my problem description here suggests any quick flaws that I can check.


I have my PayPal "return" page set to checkout_process.php.

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