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Casey Ydenberg
Casey Ydenberg
15,622 Points

Chat within a Wordpress site

Hi all,

I am working on a website for a firm which processes financial transactions and would like to add chat functionality to help potential payers find their way around. The site will be based on Wordpress.

Now, I realize there are a multitude of plugins available that implement chat. The requirements in this case are a little unique:

  • we (and they) are based in Canada, and under no circumstances can we use a third party server in the US. This has to do with protecting financial information and the Patriot Act.
  • minimizing downtime is a big deal for them.
  • they self-host and have multiple servers available which are used for internal business etc.

As I understand it, and chat to and from a Wordpress site will either need to use a 3rd party that uses Sockets or will hammer the Wordpress server with Ajax requests. Neither of these really fit the requirements. Ideally, we'd deploy our own chat server that uses sockets, and acts as the "back-end" for chat conversations, and render a chat client using Javascript overtop of wordpress. I have some experience with Node and there are some projects on Github that could be used as a starting point.

On the other hand, using a plugin would likely be 1000x faster and time is money ...

So - is my assessment of this situation accurate? Anything I'm missing? Any plugins we should try in production before deciding a DIY solution is the only way to do it?