Sitecore’s recent announcement of Sitecore Commerce kindled plenty of discussions and excitement in its community. I was lucky enough to see a few slides about it during Sitecore’s presentation in Toronto and enjoyed a grandiose speech by Rob Neilly. Ecommerce is a peculiarly striking topic to me due to my daily struggles with its solutions for Sitecore over the last 2 years. With the two well-known players in this area, Active Commerce and uCommerce, I am proud to say that our team had successfully developed and launched a few solutions using these e-commerce frameworks. Although the aforementioned platforms are powerful, I believe that Sitecore Commerce will operate on an entirely different level.
A lot of folks around the community are already producing some abstract architecture overviews with a lot of fancy pics, Nonetheless I’d prefer to determine whether the product is indeed good or not based on practice rather than just theory. I need to explore all of the pros and cons in action by sniffing around all the dark corners, shooting myself in the foot with bugs and errors, and flirting with the decompiler.
So, I decided to write series of articles about the Sitecore Commerce and what it features under the hood. Are you ready? Let’s start from the installation.
Sitecore already has an installation guide, but there are a lot of tips and tricks that you should know about. In order to properly install Sitecore Commerce please keep in mind that you should strictly follow the official installation guide. Issues during the installation process can vary from one environment to another; I described those which I had the opportunity to struggle with. In order to avoid repeating the already provided steps from Sitecore’s guide, I will only explain the steps which can potentially cause issues or confusions.
Preparation for Installation
System requirements are pretty general for the Sitecore installation and indicate that 500GB are needed. I don’t know whether it’s mistake or not because my installation occupied about 6GB.
It is essential to emphasize that you should have installed PowerShell version 4 or higher, otherwise further steps in the guide won’t be completed successfully. To make sure you have the correct version, you can execute this command in PowerShell command line:
Install ASP.NET and related software
At the end of March 2017, a mistake in the installation guide was found according to the version of ASP.NET Core. As written in the guide “ASP.NET Core 1.0.x SDK – Installer”, which means that the minor version of the SDK can vary. Nonetheless, you won’t be able to compile the Sitecore Commerce SDK until you have exact the same ASP.NET Core version installed. At this moment you should already have SitecoreCommerce8.2.1_1.0.20.zip file, so to determine what version you need please open /SitecoreCommerce8.2.1_1.0.20/Sitecore.Commerce.SDK.1.0.2301/global.json file.
You can find history of ASP.NET Core SDK releases here.
Multiple versions of ASP.NET Core SDK can be installed side by side, but you need at least one that matches the version from the global.json file. If you already have installed ASP.NET Core SDK you can navigate to “c:\Program Files\dotnet\sdk\” to determine what versions you have.
Set up Commerce Server
Before running CommerceServer-11.4.xxx.exe installer, please open “Server2012_FeaturesRequired.txt”, which can be found in the same folder as installer and make sure your system has the appropriate features installed or activated. This file provides structure for the windows server 2012 and hierarchy can vary according the windows edition and version. For those who are running at windows 10 pro there are at least two windows features you need to check:
Windows Identity Foundation 3.5
IIS Metabase and IIS 6 configuration compatibility
You may experience this kind of error on further steps if those features are not enabled:
OK, now we are ready to run Commerce Server installer. Nothing special on the wizard steps just follow the official guide. Just in case here are how my steps were look like:
At the end of this step you should have Sitecore 8.2 installed and Commerce Server 11.4 installed and running. In the next part we are going to install Sitecore Commerce modules and do some configuration to make Sitecore speak with the Commerce Server.