Encoding/Obfuscating PHP Code

I’ve been told by a number of people that I should encode or obfuscate the source code for Tasks Pro™. I’d like to believe that I don’t need to – that people will be honest, etc. but I’m not sure that’s realiztic.

I’ve looked into a number of options. Here are some of them:

I read a bunch of forum posts and reviews.

After all this, it seems that the only really secure encoding is a system that requires a loader like Zend or ionCube. Installing and configuring the loader is a burden I really don’t want to place on my users. I’ve worked hard on the installer for Tasks Pro™ so the only steps you need to do to install are:

  1. Install PHP & MySQL
  2. Create a database (or you can use an existing database)
  3. Put your database settings into the database.inc.php file
  4. Run the installer

Basically, I’m trying to do everything I can to make it possible to install Tasks Pro™ even if you aren’t familiar with PHP and MySQL. Requiring my customer to configure and add a loader (or worse, edit the php.ini file) doesn’t jive with what I’ve been trying to accomplish. Also, it would make it harder for me to allow people that buy Tasks Pro™ to customize their installation, which is something I’d like to allow.

Has anyone else had experience with this sort of thing? I’m interested in hearing how your decision panned out.

If you are a potential customer, how would this affect your decision to purchase?

This post is part of the project: Tasks Pro™. View the project timeline for more context on this post.