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  1. #1
    Dan
    Dan is offline
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    Your First osCommerce Website
    Dan Luria

    Note: This guide assumes you have a recent version of PHP, MySQL, and CPanel on your webserver.

    Part 1: Is osCommerce right for you?
    So you want to indulge yourself into the e-commerce world. osCommerce is an excellent choice, being a stable and powerful application. However, it may not be the ideal choice for you.

    Part 2: SSL
    Before we start the installation, we need to go over SSL, which can cause occasional problems. SSL stands for 'Secure Socket Layer,' which in short means that your connection is protected, and it is extremely challenging for hackers to break through.

    Part 3: The Installation
    Firstly, it is best off that you download a milestone release, as it will have the least 'bugs.' Now that you have it, unzip it into a folder and get ready for your first install.
    To begin, we need to upload the files to a server. To do this, you need a basic understanding of 'FTP.' FTP stands for 'File Transfer Protocol,' and is a popular method of trasferring files to a webserver. I humbly recommend 'SmartFTP,' a free application for Windows. To download it, just go to http://smartftp.com/download/ and select the appropriate package. I prefer downloading the full version, but the method is up to you. Once it is downloaded, run the installer, then execute the application. Inside, we want to open a window to view the files on our computer. Go to the FTP tab, then select 'Local Browser.' Once you have this selected, find the folder where you have your files. Now, in the 'Address' bar, we want to set the server info. Inside the first box, you put your site. It should look like 'mysite.com,' NOT 'http://www.mysite.com.' After this, we put in a username and password, ignore the other boxes, and click enter. To make the two windows viewable, we'll click the little icon with a box ontop of another box. Once this is done, you should have your website on top, and personal computer on the bottom. On the top, enter the public_html directory. Now, in the bottom browser, click ONCE on the folder that contains your osCommerce, and drag it into the top box. Once that is finished, you can close FTP. Having fun?
    Now, we get to create some databases. MySQL Databases are a part of the server which let you store data, and retrieve it in an advanced manner. Since osCommerce uses it, we need to create one for its disposal. The first step is to enter your CPanel. It is usually located at yoursite.com/cpanel, and lets you log in with your username and password. Supposing you're using the default skin, look for an icon called 'MySQL Database.' Click it. Once inside, you are there, go to the 'Users' area and create one with the same username and password as your site. Next, go to the 'Add Db' field and make a database called 'oscommerce.' Once that's done, select your user and database in the space above, and add the user to the database. You can logout of CPanel, as our second step is complete.
    Here's the fun part. We get to install the osCommerce! The forms are very straightforward, as long as you know that the hostname is 'localhost' and that your database has to be in the form of yourusername_databasename. If you go to your admin panel, you may notice two red lines at the top. You'll have to log back into SmartFTP, but this time only opening a browser for your site. Find the two files it asks for, right click, and select CHMOD. Enter the number '777' or check all of the first nine boxes and you're all set. Should you be prompted to delete a file, just right click on the file and select delete. Easy pie. Now, to access your osCommerce, go to yoursite.com/oscommerce/catalog/default.php, and yoursite.com/oscommerce/catalog/admin/. There's no security yet, but we'll get there. Part one is now over, and we can start customizing!

    Part 4: Making osCommerce Look Cool
    The hard part is over now, and the fun customizing ability awaits.
    First off, we'll have a rundown of what files are important. Everything herein is contained within /catalog/. The first, and one of the most important files -- default.php. This is the main file which you see when you first view the site. You won't actually edit it, yet, but its nice to know what it is. There is no index file, but if you create a file 'index.php,' and inside put
    '
    <?php
    header('Location: mysite.com/oscommerce/catalog/default.php');
    ?>
    '
    it will automatically go to your default.php file. Next off, is where we change the colors. Stylesheet.css is a very important file, and you'll use it alot. If you right click on default.php and view source, you'll notice alot of properties saying 'class="someclass".' This tells what class it is using, and where to look in stylesheet.css. Go back to your stylesheet and you can change colors and sizes and everything!
    Now, you may want to change the coding of the layout. Aside default.php, /includes/header.php and /includes/footer.php are major parts of the layout. Header contains the header graphics, and footer the copyright. Aside these, /includes/column_left.php and /includes/column_right.php let you manage the 'boxes.' Here, just remove a line such as require("boxname.php");, and that box won't show up. To change the actual boxes, go to /includes/boxes/boxname.php. The customization is done, and now it's time to make the final changes and go home for the night.

    Part 5: Closing up, and protecting the admin area.
    We're almost done! All we have to do is protect the admin area. To do this, go to 'http://www.oscommerce.com/community/contributions,687', download it, and follow the instructions. 'http://www.oscommerce.com/community/contributions' contains some other fun modifications you can try installing. Yes, you have to edit the files by hand.
    Congratulations! You have just successfully installed and customized your first osCommerce! From here on, you can explore the admin panel and make the final changes to this wonderful script. Good luck!

  2.  

  3. #2
    Senior Member
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    Great read.

  4. #3
    Junior Member
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    39046
    Thanks a lot for this info. Aside from OS Commerce, are there other E commerce site that is better than OS Commerce?

  5. #4
    WDF Staff AlphaMare's Avatar
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    darkcutter - since that post is 11 YEARS old, there are many open source platforms available for e-commerce that are better than OS commerce.

    I suggest you use Google to find some.
    Good design should never say "Look at me!"
    It should say "Look at this." ~ David Craib


    http://digitalinsite.ca ~ my current site . . info@digitalinsite.ca ~ my email

    If you feel that someone's post helped you fix your problem, answered your question, or just made you feel better, feel free to "Like" their post. The "Like" link is at the bottom right of each post, along side the "reply" link. And if you are being helped here, try to help someone else - pass it on!

  6. #5
    Junior Member
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    Pakistan
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    Well its seem to me very nice it will definitely work..


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