Contus Groupon Clone: How to install Contus’ GroupClone Magento-Based software

Contus Groupon Clone: How to install Contus’ GroupClone Magento-Based software

150 150 rhecht

Note: Due to the age of this post as well as the evolution of the Groupon clone/aggregator system, RJH Solutions will no longer offer support for these systems. The “writing on the wall” was seen when Groupon’s CEO was fired early 2013. In the meantime, please continue browsing the rest of the site. -Rafi

We are all aware about how hot the Groupon industry is today, and how everyone is trying to get in on it. In looking for certain scripts I have found that GroupClone by Contus is, while one of the most difficult to install out of the box, one of the most powerful in my opinion since it’s based on Magento’s shopping cart.

That said, installing it again is, in short, difficult. The following install post unfortunately doesn’t do a very good job of explaining all the steps. This post will post all the correct steps in detail so that, like a recipe, albeit a complicated one, all you will need to do is follow it and presto! A Groupon Clone built on Magento!

Here are the modified installation instructions (for GoDaddy’s Shared hosting):


  1. PHP 5.2 AND OVER (if you have a virtual machine running an earlier version of Linux LAMP, like “Grandma’s LAMP,” then it won’t work since Grandma’s LAMP for example only runs PHP 5.1.)
  2. MySQL 5+
  3. PHPMyAdmin or HeidiSQL for the database import.
  4. Strongly Recommended: Linux Hosting – NOT Windows Hosting. If you have Windows hosting that’s okay, but Linux makes it go a LOT smoother!

Download and Unzip

  1. Download the groupclone package.
  2. Unzip the files in the folder you want to install it on (root folder is misleading, you can do a subfolder if the domain name points to that subfolder in your hosting, or if you want to test the site out prior to launch).

Database Installation

  1. In the groupclone.sql file under, open it up, CTRL+F the phrase “config_data,” and change the variables in “web/unsecure/base_url” and “web/secure/base_url” from “http://localhost/groupclone” to “”
  2. Install the database using PHPMyAdmin or HeidiSQL with your updated SQL file.
  3. If you didn’t change the secure base URL and unsecure base URL, do it now! Go to the table “magentocore_config_data” and it should be config ID’s 2 and 3.

Connecting the website to the database

Once that’s done, you need to connect the website to the database. For that go to the following:

” /app/etc/local.xml” and give your database details

Server hostname
user name
database name

in the below place of local .xml file


  1. You need to install ioncube now.
  2. Open php.ini (or php5.ini if on GoDaddy) file in the root directory.
  3. Find this line “ zend.ze1_compatibility_mode = off ”.
  4. [Zend]
  5. zend_extension = /httpdocs/ioncube/
  6. paste these lines below “zend.ze1_compatibility_mode = off “
  7. If you’re on a dedicated host, you may need to consult a Linux Server professional to install ionCube, as this saves a lot of headache.

Finding Absolute Path

  1. To find the absolute path, run phpinfo.php like this, http://www.domain.comphpinfo.php. You can find an absolute path in the list.
  2. Open_basedir | /var/www/vhosts/
  3. Here “/var/www/vhosts/” is an absolute path. (sometimes it reads “empty”)

If the Absolute Path Doesn’t Appear,

  1. What you need to do then, if you set up the database configuration completely, is to go onto the site and get the following error message: “Site error: the file /app/code/core/Mage/Page/Block/Html/Head.php requires the ionCube PHP Loader to be installed by the site administrator.”
  2. That absolute path is what you need.

Placing the absolute path in php.ini (or php5.ini)

  1. In php.ini (or php5.ini), find the absolute path in this screen. And replace the path as given below,
  2. [Zend]
  3. zend_extension = /httpdocs/ioncube/
  4. To check if the ioncube installed properly use this link, http://www.domain.comioncubeioncube-loader-helper.php
  5. *****SUPER IMPORTANT***** With hosting services like GoDaddy, with their PHP 5 hosting they include a php.ini file instead of a php5.ini file. Why that is the case is beyond me. You need to RENAME (not even keeping a copy of php.ini) php.ini to php5.ini. The same applies with Contus’ software. Rename php.ini there to php5.ini. Otherwise the ionCube installation won’t work and you will be stuck!

Gaining Entry into the Admin System

  1. For some reason here there is no way to instantly set the admin username/password. What you need to do is as follows:
  2. At the table “magentoadmin_user,” you need to change the password in order to get in. Do the following:
  3. Enter the query “UPDATE magentoadmin_user SET password=CONCAT(MD5(‘qXpassword’), ‘:qX’) WHERE username=’admin'” where “password” is your password.
  4. Once that’s done, you can enter the admin system under and modify other information, including adding/removing admins.

Provide License Key

  1. Then you need provide the license key, which is very important.
  2. Without License Key, site will not load the deals, Goto: Admin -> System -> Configuration ->LicenseKey(Configuration) -> License Config, Where you can enter the valid License Key for that particular domain.

What if you’re running Contus’ GroupClone on a local Windows machine for testing?

If you are going to test the file locally, you need to use this License key for

To change localhost to,

Look in your hosts file (usually located under C:WindowsSystem32driversetc).
Look for the line: localhost

Change this to:

Obtaining a License Key

  1. License Key will work only for that particular domain.
  2. You can get the License Key for the domain you are going to install from us , after the successfull payment.
  3. And you have done it now.

(Contact their ticket support team and get the license key. You have to confirm your domain and the license key will not be changed once you confirm your domain & get from their team)



We now build PInterest clones! Click Here for my PInterest Script Clone Reviews.