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Microsoft Commerce Server is a Microsoft product for building e-commerce systems. It uses Microsoft .NET technology.

The latest release of the product is Commerce Server 2009. It was launched at the National Retail Federation (NRF) in New York in January 2009, with its official launch at the MIX09 event in Las Vegas in March 2009.

With its inaugural release in 2000, Commerce Server replaced Microsoft Site Server, expanding on the functionality of it and establishing a focus on e-commerce functionality (rather than concerning itself with document management or content metadata). It helps create e-commerce solutions and Web sites with high-performance, familiar tools that simplify setup, management, and administration tasks.

Microsoft Commerce Server 2009 provides a comprehensive solution for many business scenarios, including:

  • Business-to-consumer (B2C) sales of tangible or digital goods or online service delivery.
  • Business-to-business (B2B) scenarios, such as e-procurement and trading communities.
  • B2X scenarios, combining Business to Consumer (B2C) and Business to Business (B2B).
  • Self service portals using catalogs, profiles, or content targeting for personalized information delivery.

Contents

System Components

Commerce Server 2009, which became available on Microsoft's price list on April 1, 2009, introduced multi-channel awareness into the product, a new default site (running in Microsoft's SharePoint product) - including 30 new web parts and controls, and WYSIWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) editing experiences for business people and site designers.

These features were introduced through the new Commerce Foundation - a new abstraction layer which unifies calling patterns of the core systems (see below) and allows for different presentation and business logic to be easily added and represented as 'selling channels'; and SharePoint Commerce Services which includes integration with Microsoft SharePoint - a new default site with 30 new web parts and controls pre-assembled. The default site can be skinned through the new page templating technology, allowing for individual pages to be easily changed by selecting a different template.

The product still retains its core systems of Catalog, Inventory, Orders, Profiles, and Marketing (discussed below).

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Orders & Inventory

The Orders & Inventory system is responsible for tracking orders made by customers. The server can link with external systems that track inventory for a business so that inventory information is kept up-to-date and communicate with the appropriate parties when inventory runs low to indicate that it's time for new stock to be ordered. Business users are able to determine what "low" is through a management tool which lets them set inventory thresholds and get reports on product sales according to whatever metrics are desired, using Microsoft SQL Server Analytics.

Catalog

A company's products are intended to be described in the Catalog system. The products, the categories they belong to ,and relationships with other products are tracked by Commerce Server . A configurable metadata system enable the server to address any kind of merchant scenario.

Marketing

Managing promotions on a website can become a task unto itself, but the server addresses this web-trend by distilling the index operations associated with online advertising into a finite collection of functions. These let the business user manage ads and set rules that determine the conditions under which specific ads appear.

Profile

Almost every commercial website today makes an effort to personalize the content for an individual shopper. Its Profile system can do everything from tracking a shopper's product preferences, to tailoring the website presentation for the individual user.

Other Components

The server comes bundled with Data Warehouse Analytics, which offer sophisticated reporting functionality, dependent on the availability of Microsoft SQL Server Analytics module, in addition to the Commerce Server Staging (CSS) system. The Staging functionality automates the deployment of both dynamic and active content across a network infrastructure and can accommodate a wide variety of network configurations. (Some have remarked that the speed of CSS deployments is perhaps the most note-worthy aspect of this component.)[citation needed]. Commerce Server also comes with BizTalk adaptors, which allow for integration with Microsoft BizTalk for enterprise data manipulation.

Related Technologies

The product requires the presence of Microsoft SQL Server 2005 or later. Commerce Server also can leverage a number of other Microsoft server products, including BizTalk Server 2006, R2 or 2009 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS).

The product relies on components that are themselves dependent on the presence of the .NET Framework 3.5 and Microsoft's Component Object Model (COM). Recommended deployments are confined to Windows Server 2003 or higher.

Future Development

The Commerce Server Product Unit has planned to have periodic releases of the product over the next 5 years. The next planned release of Commerce Server is targeted for the 2010 time frame.[citation needed]

Versions for Windows

  • 2000 - Commerce Server 2000
  • 2002 - Commerce Server 2002
    • Service Pack 2 (2003)
    • Service Pack 3 (2004)
  • 2004 - Commerce Server 2002 FP1
    • Service Pack 4 (2006)
  • 2007 - Commerce Server 2007
    • Service Pack 1 (2008)
    • Service Pack 2 (2008)
  • 2009 - Commerce Server 2009

See also

External links


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