Install & configure ionCube loaders for Bitnami

by Fred Osei
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The ionCube loader is a PHP module to load files that were protected with the ionCube Encoder software. ionCube is often used by commercial PHP software vendors to protect their software, so it is likely that you come across an ionCube encoded file sooner or later when you install extensions for CMS or Shop software written in PHP. In this tutorial, I show you how to install ionCube loaders on the Bitnami version of WordPress on Google Cloud. Though this tutorial may be based on google cloud, the same should work for Bitnami stack on Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure.

Before we kick off with this tutorial;

  • Make sure you have already installed the Bitnami stack.

Let’s get on with it…

1. Login to your Google Cloud Platform account and click on the Navigation Menu icon from your Google Cloud Dashboard as shown below.

2. From the sidebar menu, click or hover on the Compute Engine link and click on the VM instances link from the popped menu as shown in the screenshot below.

3. From your VM instances screen, click on the SSH link next to the instance you just deployed as shown in the screenshot below.

4. Copy & Paste the command below into your SSH terminal as shown in the screenshot below to check your PHP version. In the case of this tutorial, our PHP version is 7.3.14 so we install ionCube version 7.3

php -v

Download the pre-compiled version and copy the .so file to the PHP extensions directory. It is very important to install the right version of ionCube taking into account the PHP version included in your solution. For example, if you want to install ionCube on WordPress and it uses PHP 7.3.14, you need to install the version 7.3 of ionCube.

5. Copy & Paste the command below into your SSH terminal as shown in the screenshot below to download the pre-compiled version of ionCube loaders.

wget http://downloads3.ioncube.com/loader_downloads/ioncube_loaders_lin_x86-64.tar.gz

6. Copy & Paste the command line below into your SSH terminal as shown in the screenshot below to extract the downloaded pre-compiled ionCube loaders.

tar xvzf ioncube_loaders_lin_x86-64.tar.gz

7. Copy & Paste the command line below into your SSH terminal as shown in the screenshot below to move the extracted ionCube loaders to the extensions directory.

sudo cp ioncube/ioncube_loader_lin_Y.Z.so /opt/bitnami/php/lib/php/extensions/

NOTE: Y and Z in the command line right above are placeholders. Remember to replace them with the ionCube version number that matches your PHP version, e.g Y.Z should be 7.3 for PHP 7.3.14

8. Copy & Paste the command line below into your SSH terminal as shown in the screenshot below to open and edit the php.ini file.

sudo nano /opt/bitnami/php/etc/php.ini

9. Copy & Paste the line of code below into the opened php.ini file, right under “[PHP]” as in the screenshot below. Be sure to replace the ionCube version with the version that matches your PHP version.

zend_extension = /opt/bitnami/php/lib/php/extensions/ioncube_loader_lin_7.3.so

Save the updated changes using [Ctrl + X], respond with [Y] for yes to confirm and then hit [Enter] to continue.

Save the updated changes using [Ctrl + X], and then hit [Enter] to confirm.

10. In order for the updated changes to take effect Copy & Paste the command line below into your SSH terminal to restart the Apache and PHP-FPM server as in the screenshot below.

sudo /opt/bitnami/ctlscript.sh restart apache
sudo /opt/bitnami/ctlscript.sh restart php-fpm

11. Congratulations installing and enabling ionCube loaders, copy and paste the command line below into you SSH terminal to confirm the installation and configuration.

php -v

The return result should look just as in the screenshot below, this tells ionCube loaders were successfully installed and configured. Go ahead and install whatever app required it and it should work perfectly.

That’s it.

I hope you found this post useful and that you have been able to install and configure ionCube loaders for your Bitnami stack.

Drop any questions you may have in the comments section below and I will respond as soon as I can. Remember to like share and subscribe to our Social Media channels (links sidebar and footer). @KwikHacks