S3Media LinkSafe Lite FAQ

Frequently asked questions regarding the free S3Media LinkSafe Lite plugin for WordPress 3.x. The plugin can embed protected links to any file type directly from within a post or page.

Blank screen pops up when clicking on the Download link wizard
The wp-config.php file cannot be found. It usually happens when the wp-config.php file is placed behind the root. Although this is a good safety measure, you may find that quite a few plugins won't work properly. If you want to keep it that way, you can type shortcodes directly in the post or page. Here is the tutorial on using shortcodes: http://wp21century.footprintaddons.com/how-to-use-s3media-linkafe-lite/ , otherwise move the wp-config.php to the root in the domain. Click the Shortcode tab to find the procedure, it is quite straightforward: S3Media LinkSafe shortcode tab  
Are the protected download links encrypted/obfuscated?
No, they are not and the reason is simple: Browser cannot read obfuscated links, they have no idea what to do with it. Since the links expire and your bucket/download distribution is private, there is no need for encryption because the only way to get to the file(s) is via your pages using this plugin. When a page is reloaded, a new expiring URL is created. If you still feel uncomfortable about that, you add an extra layer of protection to restrict access to your bucket only via the IP address of your server. See also: Does the plugin allow to restrict downloads from a fixed IP address only? Note: signed URL's for video and audio can be set to obfuscated.
What kind of support do you offer?
Apart from the tutorials, you can write a comment on the S3Media LinkSafe Lite page or send us an e-mail. We typically respond within 24 hours although we give priority to customers of S3Media Stream. You can contact us via support [ad] wordpress21century.com should you run into trouble. We ask you not to post questions on Wordpress.org as we won't be able to follow it up there. There is also Premium support available. See "Can you help us configure the S3 account?" in this FAQ.
Can I sell this plugin or give it away?
Since S3Media LinkSafe Lite is a free plugin downloadable from this site, it makes no sense to sell it on. But you can charge money to install and configure the plugin for your web clients, for instance. This is in fact the corner stone of Open Source Software: "Live and let live". Although we cannot forbid you to post the plugin on your site for download, it is better to link to our download page instead since we always have the latest version available. Keep in mind that all tutorialson this site are copyright protected, you can only place links to the documentation. This ensures that corrections and additions are up to date.
Does the plugin allow to restrict downloads from a fixed IP address only?
This is not regulated by the plugin but rather in your S3 account. You can set a bucket policy for this purpose using CloudBerry Explorer or any other AWs client application or write your own, like this:
    "Version": "2008-10-17",
    "Id": "S3PolicyId1",
    "Statement": [
            "Sid": "IPAllow",
            "Effect": "Allow",
            "Principal": {
                "AWS": "*" 
            "Action": "s3:*",
            "Resource": "arn:aws:s3:::mybucket/*",
            "Condition" : {
                "IpAddress" : {
                    "aws:SourceIp": "" 
More info can be found here: http://docs.aws.amazon.com/AmazonS3/latest/dev/AccessPolicyLanguage_UseCases_s3_a.html If the plugin requesting a file is not accessed via that IP address, an access denied error will show up. You can also set a range of IP addresses. With HLS and MPEG-DASH, you can restrict playback to your own domains.
Can you help us configure the S3 account?
Certainly, we charge 25 euros to configure your bucket and download distribution. We can also teach you how to do it yourself via Skype Screen sharing. For this we charge 40 euros. Pricing is exclusive 21% VAT (sales tax) which is required if you are located in the EU. All other nations are excempt from this tax.
Can we hire you to make custom changes?
Yes, you can. Contact us for a quote.
Should I use a S3 bucket or a download distribution?
Through testing, we found that a CloudFront distribution each time performance better than linking via a bucket. In theory, if your audience is primarily located in your own country, a s3 bucket should be sufficient, bu in practice it turns out differently.. There is an additional cost involved using CloudFront, but this is very reasonable. With S3Media Stream Enterprise, you are obliged to use a web distributions for links, HLS and 360 VR video.
System requirements
WordPress 3.4 or higher with older versions, 4.7 or higher from version 7.8.2 onward. PHP 7 recommended for S3Media Stream 8 Enterprise. S3 Amazon account with CloudFront service enabled for private streaming and web distribution links.
Most membership systems offer download links, why should I use this plugin?
Convenience. S3Media Lite allows you to insert protected links directly into the posts and pages using a wizard. No need to copy shortcodes via a membership configuration page, (which are often not that user friendly), then opening your post and paste it. If the link does not work right of the bat, this can be a time consuming process. But it depends what you need.
  1. If you want to share protected links to files on public pages, then this is a light weight solution without the need to install a whole membership sytem.
  2. If you sell products, you obviously need a membership setup. S3Media LinkSafe Lite works with all membership plugins which protect core pages and posts, so you would have the added advantage that you can use the wizard directly into the text editor. But if you find that your system is providing you an adequate solution already, our plugin is probably useless to you.
For protected download links, which files types are supported?

All file types can be downloaded: PDF, doc, xls, exe, mov, zip, txt, etc...
Executables may generate a warning in some browsers, depending on the antivirus settings of the customer's browser. Mobiles have restrictions on file types also.

How do I sign up for S3/CloudFront account?

It is really simple to sign up. The only thing you need is an email address and a valid credit card. You won't be charged any money upfront, you pay as you go along. The pricing is very low. Go here http://aws.amazon.com/s3/ to sign up and click on the Create Free Account link. From there, follow the instructions. We had a tutorial for this with screenshots but the interface of AWS changes so frequently that we could not keep up with it.

Is the source code encrypted?

No, it is not encrypted because that would be a childish act. You should have the option to adapt the plugin yourself to suit your needs and any WordPress plugin that encrypts its source code is in violation of the WordPress GPL license agreement.  Encryption also enlarges the code considerably and may slow down performance.

7 Comments on “S3Media LinkSafe Lite FAQ

  1. Hi

    I’m trying to use S3Media LinkSafe Lite and it works fine while i have “Restrict Viewer Access (Use Signed URLs or Signed Cookies)” set to NO in CloudFront Distribution Settings.

    When I set it to “yes” i get this:

    Access denied

    I’d accept any sugestions.

    Thank you

      • Is the issue resolved, Carlos? Otherwise let me know if I can help.

    • Hi Prashant Prakash,
      Can you show a page with an example please?

  2. Rudolf –

    I’m sure this is a stupid question, but an entire day of web searching has yielded no answers… I’ve been using S3Media LinkSafe Lite for a year or so to stream .m4a audio files in WordPress. It works well. The issue is that I’d like to use a “nicer” audio player (right now, the raw audio stream shows up in a bare-bones default player). I have been unable to figure out how to embed the S3 shortcode “inside” an audio player. I’ve tried to figure out how “nested” shortcodes work, but have had no success. Could you point me to an audio player that might accept an S3 shortcode for playback? Thank you.

    • Hi Hans,
      Sorry for my late reply, there’s aproblem with the e-mails.
      It doesn’t work that way, I’m afraid. Each player has its own shortcode procedure. If you know about an audio player you like, I can have a look into it and see if I can adapt it for you.

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