Billia 4.0 - In time for the Fall

Billia 4.0 - In time for the Fall

After many months of hard work and written lines of code, we are proud to finally present the new and improved Billia 4.0! New features, new architecture, a better software.

Officially introducing AppCell

We are more than happy to finally introduce Billia with its newest integration - AppCell!

AppCell

AppCell is an integrative software that incorporates a plugin architecture. It allows one software to communicate with multiple other such without coupling, modifying the main software source, or hard-coding plugins.

AppCell is designed to be integrated into a centralized system, such as Billia, in order to act as a service standardizing application. It is a unique software from which businesses can benefit in multiple ways, including financially, process-wise, in terms of customer satisfaction, and more. AppCell is language-agnostic and doesn’t require any hardcoding into the system, in order to properly work. With its unique hybrid plugins functionality, it is currently one-of-a-kind software on the market.

Nevertheless, AppCell is still new and as a first major accomplishment, has now been successfully and completely integrated to Billia! This means that the two software now work together and communicate with each other, where Billia can send requests to AppCell for it to complete.

Moreover, it is the entire communication towards AppCell that goes through Billia first. This includes all API communication, due to the fact that AppCell is an integrative software, doesn’t have its own security and cannot differentiate which user has permissions over a specific product or action, and which one doesn’t. So in these situations Billia provides the necessary data, while AppCell is kept behind a firewall, as Billia is in the role of the centralized software that can check and validate user permissions. Whenever a required permission is missing, Billia will display an “Unauthorized error”.


Example:

When a customer requests the transfer code of a certain domain, Billia sends that request to Appcell, if the user has the necessary permissions. Then AppCell processes it and fetches the requested information to the main software.

The configuration is also set so that Billia always keeps track of AppCell’s output. Whenever it is needed, Billia can store that information.

To see more information on AppCell, check out our blog article on the topic, or the Q&A on AppCell.

AppCell Vendors

AppCell is starting with an even bigger BANG! A pool of over 50 domain vendors will be available for use with AppCell! An incredible mix of great industry leaders and successful service providers from all over the globe are among the names.

The list includes:

  • Enom - a domain name registrar and Web hosting company. Enom also offers domain-related products, such as SSL certificates, email services, Website building software, etc.
  • EURid - the non-profit organization appointed by the European Commission as the domain name registry tо operate the .eu top-level domain and its variations in other scripts - .ею (.eu in Cyrillic).
  • Dot.tk - a joint venture of the Government of Tokelau, a country in the South Pacific, the countries communication company Teletok and BV Dot TK, a privately held company. The Government of Tokelau has appointed BV Dot TK as the exclusive registration entity.
  • NASK - a national research institute and the Polish national registry which maintains the registry of .pl domain names and numerous functional and regional domains.
  • InterNetX - offers flexible IT resources for companies, resellers and agencies. They provide tailored services in the areas of domains, servers, data centers, etc.
  • ResellerClub - a domain name registrar and hosting company, with a focus on large variety of hosting plans, domain services and web building tools.
  • Traficom - supervises the operation of Internet service providers and manages the .fi TLD, for Finland. Is previously known as Ficora.
  • GoDaddy - one of the largest UK hosting and domain companies and also the world's largest ICANN-accredited domain registrar.
  • NameCheap - one of the fastest-growing domain registrars, that offers domain name registrations with various TLDs, hosting and web plans, site building tools, DNS management, SSL certificates, and more.
  • OpenSRS - a go-to platform for Resellers of domain names, that provides various services, such as domain-based services, integration options, certificates, hosting plans, and more.
  • HEXONET - a domain hosting company that offers hundreds of TLD options, transfers, backorders, web apps, products, etc.
  • Name.com - an ICANN-accredited domain name registrar, with an offered large variety of other related domain and hosting services.
  • DNS.pt - a private Portugal non-profit association that manages the registration of domains under the TLD .pt.
  • RRPproxy.net - an international hosting company that provides domain names, hosting, DNS services, and is ICANN accredited.
  • ResellerID - an Indonesia-based domain name registrar, that offers domains with various TLDs on low prices.
  • NameSilo - a domain registrar that offers low price domain-related services and registration, including free API access, customizable parking options, DNS management, domain forwarding, and more.
  • IIS.se - an independent Swedish private foundation, which manages the registration of the TLD .se and the operation of the TLD .nu, while also working on and promoting a positive Internet development in Sweden.

And even more vendors: **Resell.biz, ZACR, NIC.it, Instra, NIC.at, OnlineNIC, dotPH, Realtime Register, DomainPeople, Nominet, OpenProvider, SynergyWholesale, OVH, nameISP, Papaki, and much more :)

In the near future we expect to be able to provide even more AppCell vendors, ready for integration with AppCell.

New Core Architecture

We, at ApiHawk, always strive to develop the best and most needed features in Billia, so that it can well-deserved become the go-to software for hosters and telecoms. We want to make sure that whatever our clients need out of the engine, they will receive it.

In this line of thought, Billia 4.0’s core architecture has been completely reworked, in order to provide the most demanded functionalities and meet the criteria of the ever-evolving hosting industry. The entire core structure of Billia and its APIs are now further optimized which makes them easier for deployment and management by the Operations department.

Consul services

Billia’s service stack is now also equipped with a Service Discovery software - Consul by HashiCorp.

Consul provides the opportunity for Billia to have one centralized configuration storage. This means that from now on, the API container is not obliged to process and work with the environment variables - these can be all stored in Consul’s storage. Each environment variable would have its own mapping to that storage, which would make it available both through Consul and the environment.

This way there is no longer the need for maintaining so many variables, as all of those now become configurable within Consul. Whenever a certain software/API is missing a configuration, the system will display a notification.


Consul key-value

Example:

Consul possesses a certain key value titled database_Billia. Still, additional software such as Gear, Document Manager, Help Center, etc., that are not a part of the Billia core API, have an outbridge to Billia’s database, in order to be able to be authenticated.

With Consul, they no longer need to request and receive information from that database directly, in order to be authenticated and work properly. They can now locate the database_Billia key value in Consul and their outbridge to Billia, which makes it easier in terms of managing the software.

Payment Gateway refactored

Our Multi Payment Gateway software is now completely refactored to support dynamic gateway configurations, software agnostic architectures, and faster purchase preparations.

Till now, Billia’s Payment Gateway module supported dynamic payment methods, each of which needed to operate through a specific gateway. This meant that every single gateway operated as a separate and unique payment method. Now, refactored gateway configurations are available that don’t require all payment gateways to be used as specific payment methods.

Moreover, the communication between Billia and the Payment Gateway module has been improved in a way that leads to faster data processing and better API structure.

In general, Payment Gateway is a standalone software. It was designed to compile and process its own data for its own operations. That meant that whenever Payment Gateway was needed to perform an action, it had to be authenticated before the central system (Billia) in order to gain access to its database, and from there to gather all the information it needed for the specific process (purchase). This was proven to be not optimum for the software architecture and unsafe, as well, due to the fact that Payment Gateway was constantly generating authentication access tokens.

Payment Gateway is now independent from Billia in terms of information processing. Per the new configuration, the central system is responsible for gathering and processing the necessary data for the processes of Payment Gateway software, which in the end ensures less overhead and processing time of the payment API.

Resellers Support

Billia 4.0 now officially supports Resellers. This is the first version of this new functionality, and we expect its further development in Billia 5.0 to be even bigger and better!

Currently, we support basic Resellers. Each one has their own data, such as respective purchases and users, their ordered products and services, etc. Moreover, each Reseller can rebrand their own panels the way they want to, with their own logo and brand colors, depending on the requested by the system reseller domain.

For the next update of Billia, we have prepared more functionalities for Resellers, including better visibility for each Reseller of their respective data, per reseller products and services, commissions, centralized reseller statistics, etc.

Access keys

If you are a developer, now it’s no longer mandatory to use the OAuth 2 standard for access. The Billia engine now incorporates an Access keys system.

access keys

Access keys can be used in the cases when external software need to be connected with Billia, or when developers are programming additional services for Billia. When the Access key is generated, the system provides full access (depending on your permissions) to your account through the Billia API.

Access keys have a few specific features:

  • Once generated, they need to be saved elsewhere, as the system is programmed to “forget” them, for security purposes;
  • Already generated access keys cannot be fetched or seen by anyone else, not even the Administrator;
  • Only entries of the already generated access keys can be fetched, not the actual access key, by the account who generated it;
  • Access keys expire after a certain amount of time;
  • Access keys can be currently generated through the Billia Management Panel.

Additional features

More additional features are now a part of Billia. These include:

  • The ability to search by label in the Billia Management Panel - the Billia labeling functionality provides an easy way for categorization and tagging in the system. Now a search option is available for them in order for Administrators to be able to find items tagged with specific labels.
  • Powerful DNS Manager - developed on the base of AppCell, the new Billia DNS Manager is standardized which leads to the easy integration of any and new DNS providers, while keeping the same UI.

...and many more! Stay tuned to our Blog, Facebook and LinkedIn, to find out the latest news around Billia. Are you interested in purchasing Billia? Simply contact us and we would love to discuss how we can help you become a leader in your industry!