Meteotemplate Pro?

Meteotemplate Pro?

Hi guys,

I just want to follow up on the Meteotemplate Pro idea. First of all I would like to thank all of you who filled in the questionnaire, where one of the questions dealt with this. I have taken into account several factors when deciding how to proceed:

  • The questionnaire
  • Technical issues
  • Administrative issues
  • Protection issues

Based on that I have made up my mind about this. I came to the conclusion that a Pro version would not be worth it. I would now like to explain a bit more why. Feel free not to read this, only do so if you are interested to know the reasons.

Let´s just go through the pros and cons of creating a paid Pro version:


  • More features/support for those who pay
  • Regular income for me to cover costs and time


  • Much more administrative work – having to keep track on who is Pro and who is not, keep track of the payments, different taxes
  • Technical issues – time necessary to actually implement these changes and then continue developing two versions of certain things

Now I would like to comment on those. Basically, the major issue I found was in that it would be relatively complicated to implement. It would be easy to say “priority support”, however, it becomes much trickier with actual extra features. One major issue is that PHP code is not compiled and the template is not running on my server. This means that each user has full access to the code and can make any changes they like. Some of you for example suggested limiting the number of blocks for standard users to a certain number. This of course seems like a good idea, however, if I included some function that would prevent more blocks, it would be a matter of 1-2 seconds for a more skilled user to delete it and use any number they want. I guess in terms of protection, there is no way I can 100% prevent someone from anything. Normally, if you have a desktop software, you compile it and changes to the code are not possible. Or if you have a web service, such as for example Spotify, it runs on Spotify servers and so you cannot make changes to the code. However Meteotemplate is on your server, therefore you have full control over it. People could resend Pro scripts to each other, delete any protection mechanism etc etc.

There is no doubt about the fact it would take quite some time to actually create the scripts that would allow you to register for Pro, create some documentation, description etc. Also, it would be a lot of administrative work – keeping track of the payments, taxation… and one thing I also couldn´t figure out was whether it would have been better to use annual or monthly fees. One is easier because it is less work (annual), but many people would prefer monthly and I myself, as much as I want to, cannot 100% say what will be in a year´s time. It would work, but again, lot of extra time from my side.

It would also be relatively complicated to come up with features which would be attractive enough to make people join the Pro version. I could include for example priority support, but the truth is that given I prioritize support over development, you might get an answer maybe an hour earlier, but I would then deal with standard users anyway before starting to develop something new so priority would not make such difference.

Some of you suggested extra features, but those are problematic given what I said about protecting things (impossible) and given that everything that is already available would have to be part of standard because everyone already has it anyway.

One other suggestion was possibility of personal customizations. This I guess would be possible, but again it is a bit of a risk because I would somehow have to make sure someone does not ask every other day for some major changes.

Last but not least, probably the most important problem was the actual price. Based on the about 50 questionnaire answers I received (and assuming those who did not answer are passive users who would not be interested anyway and don´t read the Blog), the amount each one of you would find reasonable is extremely variable, ranging from 2EUR/year to 60EUR/month. And again, the problem is that if I set the price too high, I might get very few users, in case of setting it too low, I would have more users, but overall I came to the conclusion that it would not be worth the time. If I used the average amount, which people found reasonable, and multiply that by the number of people interested, it really definitely wont be worth it given all the technical difficulties, administration issues and other potential problems. It would also then be likely that people paying for Pro would (understandably) not see it as sensible to donate for the actual scripts (i.e. pay extra for the actual blocks, plugins, not included in the Pro version) and in the end I could end up with even less money than now, more administrative work, more technical issues and that’s definitely something I want to avoid. Pro would only work if I was in control of all the scripts and if I hosted your page. Not like this, feel free to comment, but overall I will not change my mind, I have given a lot of thought to it, did various calculations and time estimates and this is what I found to be the best way to continue.

In conclusion, it means I will simply leave it up to everyone to decide how much they value the stuff and help whenever they feel like it would be reasonable. I am not afraid of the future of Meteotemplate as such. I can also already tell you that some of the features you suggested in the questionnaire for Pro version, will be available in v16 for everyone and I am sure some of it you will love…


19 thoughts on “Meteotemplate Pro?

  1. HI, you can encrypt pages that has data you do not want copied/edited etc, take a look at Kayako or WHMCS for instance, their code is encrypted and i believe they use Zend and IonCube, so it can be done.

  2. Thanks for your explanation, Jachym.
    Now the problem for me is (and may be for others too) that I probably will forget to pay you on a regular base. What would help me is a block where I can put a start date, a frequency (month, 6 months or year for instance) and a donation amount. Then this block would remind me when the time is there to do the next payment. In the config I then could set the ‘paid’ flag which would stop the message for this period.

    • Hi Luc,
      technically… easy…. whether I want to do it? Not so sure, Im a bit worried about how people would receive it. If you are interested I can make such block for you, but I probably wont make it publicly available

  3. Hi,
    Incredibly reasonnable outcome after all. It’s without a doubt the best solution you could come up with.
    Thanks for not altering the original philosophy of your project. You can count on my regular donation (20euros/y). I am very happy that each and every one will be treated the same way, without any distinction between paid and free users.

  4. Ahoj Jáchyme, jen chci říct, že si vážím Tvé práce a budu tě i nadále podporovat ať už se rozhodneš jakkoliv, taky se omlouvám, že jsem se nezapojil do diskuzí ohledně verze PRO a dotazníku, měl jsem na starosti jiné věci, držím palce a těším se na verzi 16 a následující 🙂

  5. I am good with the Pro version too. I am sure there is a way to make it so people can only get Pro items vise non-pro items but not a software guys so I would have to google it. I am on board with paying for Pro.

    • Hi Greg,
      no there is not. Why? Simply because PHP, Javascript etc. are not compiled languages, meaning you can always see the code. And because your pages are in no way connected to my page, you have control over everything in your template. Any limitations in the code can be deleted/modified.
      But as I mentioned above, this is just one of the reasons, there is many other problems (or rather things that would take a lot of time and work, administrative etc.) and given the interest and feedback I received I calculated it wont be worth it. I will simply let people do what they feel is right.

  6. I came to the conclusion that it simply could end up even worse than now, given the amount of time invested and the resulting income. I will simply leave it up to everyone, hoping people will not misuse it (at least most of them).

  7. salut Jackym
    De toute façon j’étais parti pour une version pro au tarif annuel de 60euros et je ferais cela et si je peux un peux plus aussi.

  8. Maybe this is silly, but what about in the footer a small graphic for the paid supporters of this your efforts that we could show on our page.

  9. Hi Jachym,

    I Understand you’re point A suggestion can be to implement a crypted token with the web site link. Then if someone want to install the template, he will need to ask you this token and then the local script is unlock only for this web site link. You can include a security on the token that way. Then the process still running on our local server but can’t run a other web server.

    Following that, if you want later to implement a PRO version, it will be more simple to control it.

    It’s just a suggestion.

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