Try Commerce Server 2009 Evaluation VPC

To promote Microsoft Commerce Server 2009 Solution for Ecommerce platform, Microsoft is providing the Commerce Server 2009 Virtual PC (VPC) which is equipped with full Installation of all required software’s. This helps the users to quickly evaluate the sowftware. Nothing to configure, just use it to evaluate the Software.

You can download the VPC on Microsoft connect site, you need to do special registration for downloading the VPC. Once you register the download is available only after two to three days in the same site. Important thing to remember is there will be no communication on the download and its availability from Microsoft. You can download with MSDN Software downloader. This VPC is recently updated (June 2010) with extended Expiry time.

Please follow the link to register. Register

CS2009 VPC Setup:
  • This VPC is a multi file (4) download zipped with WINRAR tool. Please download all the items to a Folder.  
  • Extract the VPC by clicking the file CS2009VPC-1004.part01.exe. to the folder. 
  • Download the Microsoft Virtual PC software from the Microsoft downloads: Download
  • Create the Virtual machine by selecting the existing Cs2009 VHD settings file extracted above.  
  • Start the Virtual PC. 
  • Login to the server using credentials provided in the extracted VPC readme file.  
  • Explore & Discover CS2009. 

CS2009 is not a straight installation. It’s an update on CS2007 installation. So Installation is scattered in to two different program file folders.

Pre Installed Softwares:

  • Windows server 2008 which expire in limited time.  
  • SharePoint server 2007 
  • SQL Server 2008 
  • Commerce Server 2009
  • Silverlight 3 & its SDK 
  • Microsoft Enterprise Single Sign-on  

Readily configured with:
  • A Sample catalog with categories & products. 
  • A fully functional e-commerce website on SharePoint server, which works with above default catalog. 

Things to evaluate:

Videos on the Commerce server 2009 to get the feel of the various concepts. This works for starters 
  • Few Demo Scripts which are lab manuals to learn & practice few scenarios as per manuals 
  • Documentation for understanding commerce server Business user tools and the domain of the CS2009
    • Catalog manager 
    • Customer & Order Manager 
    • Marketing manager
    • Catalog & Inventory manager
  • Go thru fully configured SharePoint ready to use ecommerce website. This site is made of many Web parts specially designed for CS2009. This is a good starting point to see the changes done on the business user tools
  • Complete Documentation on commerce server covering architecture, Features, configurations & different Programming API for developers to extend CS2009
  • Documentation for Migration of 2002 & 2007 to 2009 version.
  • Pipeline tool to customize various pipelines available in CS2009

Sample Source Code for Extensibility:

 Various components source code is provided with VPC for deeper understanding the extensibility of various systems and components of CS2009. This really helps the developers to quickly jump in to programming and customization. 
  • CS2009 Partner SDK which contains the source code & documentation for Business user tools, we can customize and redistribute the tools as per license agreement.
  • CS2009 SDK which contains samples for customizing various extensibility features of CS2009
  • CS2009 SharePoint Extensibility Kit which contains the source code for webparts, Site Code, Site features, Silverlight code for Inline Product editor
  • CS2007 SDK which contains the source code for adapters, Pipeline registration tool.  


I wrote this article to ease the new audience in understanding the VPC, since I have spent much time in knowing the above information.  To know more on CS2009 functionality please read the article below
Disclaimer: The VPC is to be used only for demonstration and evaluation purposes. Please follow the License agreements of VPC and CS2009 software.

E-Commerce solution using Microsoft Commerce Server 2009

With the increase of trust towards online transactions, online shopping has becoming the best choice of selling & buying products these days. Not every product needs to sell in an outlet. Enterprises started to sell their products through web as one medium.

To start any E-commerce business, at high level everyone needs to concentrate on two things
1. Product offering:
  • This is the most important for the enterprises to provide wide
    variety of products for their customers.
  • Quickly reach out to the dynamically changing markets.
  • Dynamically change their business model to increase the sales
    of the products
  • Concentrate on coming out with new products.
  • Compete with the competitors.
  • Establish the brand value.
2. IT tools to host website and Process the orderes
  • E-Commerce website for selling products
  • Catalog management system for managing products and its information.
  • Order Management System for processing orders placed on websites.
  • Campaign Management System for discounts, coupons, Ads.
  • Customer Management System for customer reach.
  • Integration with other apps
To reach the market quickly, every big and medium sized E-commerce business needs the above mentioned necessary tools to host the solution and concentrate on the growth of the business.

To develop all these systems it takes more in time and cost. They don’t
want to wait until IT tools are being developed. Enterprises have to hit the markets soon and get successful in their branding, sales and revenues. Instead of reinvent the whole wheel everyone need a ready to use Ecommerce Solution for hosting their business.

Microsoft is providing a solution Commerce Server 2009 as a server product, which contains all necessary & extensible tools, infrastructure for hosting solutions. Microsoft is developing & improving product since 2002. The current version is more matured and flexible in terms of making customizations to it. It’s built over .NET. Every internal system is provided with a managed API for accessing the data and displaying the data.

Basic Management Features

Catalog management
  • Maintaining product Hierarchy, categorizing products in
  • Creating temporary catalogs with Virtual catalogs.
  • Catalog & Products creation along with Globalization.
  • Maintaining the data to ease for retrieval and searching.
  • Product Inventory management is part of it.
  • Ability Customizing the information stored on the products, categories by modifying the schema as per the needs.

Campaign Management
  • Easily creation of marketing campaign for marketing team.
  • Creating various types of Discounts.
  • Creation of coupon codes associated with the discounts.
  • Creation of various types ads for external & internal users
  • Collecting & Maintaining of information about Impressions and Clicks
  • Generating standard reports for the marketing teams
  • Publishing of created ads with an approval workflow.
  • CSF(Content Selection framework)
Order management
  • Inbuilt Shopping cart for ecommerce web sites.
  • Applying the discounts on shopping cart items with discounts
  • Collection of credit card details.
  • Creation of orders with prober billing & shipping details.
• Profile management
  • Maintaining customer information including logging credentials.
  • Storing addresses and credit card details.
  • Shipping information.
 New Features
  • SharePoint integration :
    • Ready to use ecommerce Site template for hosting the on to the web.
    • More than 30 inbuilt web parts were given to communicate with information available in Commerce server.
  • New Multi Channel Foundation API
    • Alternate API for the existing API. This is designed for better retrieval with performance.
    • Channel aware API, so that the same API is used for sending data to different sources like mobile, gaming consoles.
  • Better UI Tools
  • Information and navigation is improved.
  • We can install the tools anywhere in your network.
  • Integration to Live ID(optional)
  • Integration with LOB made easy with BizTalk and its Adapters.
  • Report Analytics with Microsoft BI Platform.
  • Better Migration features.
  • Improve Security management with Azmen.
  • Many more.
Many of the successful Ecommerce websites are hosted with Commerce Server platform. It has been designed for better extensibility, so that you can integrate CS2009 to your line of business application.

Microsoft has been encouraging the use of Commerce Server product by providing the Virtual PC with complete installation of all the required software. Please download and evaluate. There are many third party software which offers Ecommerce solutions, But Microsoft as a platform has all the required tools & technologies to support your Ecommerce Solution.