Setting Up osCommerce

To set up osCommerce online shop, do the following:

  1. Select Domain info in the Domain Settings menu.
  2. Click the Edit icon in the Web Service field.
  3. On the page that shows enable osCommerce for the online store domain.
  4. Agree with charges, if any.
  5. Create a database and a user. osCommerce uses MySQL databases to store your commercial data, such as products, catalogues, etc.

    WARNING: Assigning a previously created MySQL database for use by osCommerce will clear contents of all its tables.

    The databases used by osCommerce will show among your MySQL databases marked "(Locked By osCommerce)".

    You can manage osCommerce databases with any MySQL GUI client or the built-in phpMyAdmin control panel.
    * For more information on MySQL please refer to MySQL Support chapter of this manual.

  6. Set permissions to the "admin" directory using the htProtect utility. This is done to restrict public access to osCommerce configuration.

To Web Protect your Admin directory follow these steps:

Now let's take a look at the osCommerce controls:

A few key points about osCommerce


Setting up osCommerce:

Click the oscommerce icon in the "quick access" menu. You should see this menu:

: This operation restores corrupted osCommerce templates and updates the osCommerce config file to use the current hosting settings.
: Upgrades osCommerce to the latest version.
: A direct link to your online store.
: A direct link to your password-protected Admin section to setup and configure your cart.


Click on . The initial thing you'll notice is the warning message at the top of the screen:

"Warning: Installation directory exists at: /hsphere/local/home/user/ Please remove this directory for security reasons."

To get rid of this warning message you must delete the entire "install" folder inside your "catalog" directory. You can delete this using any FTP client or the file manager in either H-Sphere or the osCommerce admin section.


Basic Configuration of your Store:

Click on or go to Login with the user name and password you created using Web Protect earlier. If logged in you should see:

A good place to get started here is in "My Store". This setup is pretty much like most other carts. Basically highlight a title, click on it and either hit the "Edit" button on the right to change its value or type it in the text box and hit "Update". The entire backend of osCommerce follows this basic procedure and is fairly easy for anyone with basic knowledge of a PC, website administration or the internet in general.


If you already are familiar with the PHP scripting language skip the rest of this tutorial. The following is for beginners or those who have never edited code before.

Basic Configuration of your main Storefront page:

Assuming your cart is in english:
There are basically 2 PHP documents you must edit in order to customize your storefront.

Login via FTP to your site and Download these 2 documents..

Path: /
Path: /


Were not going to get into a PHP lesson here, just the basics:
2 important things to remember if you've never edited PHP before:
  1. Any line that starts with "define" can be edited, for example:
    define('HEADING_TITLE', 'What\'s New Here?')
    could be changed to:
    define('HEADING_TITLE', 'Welcome to Our Store!')
  2. Don't touch anything else in blue unless you know what you are doing!

Open default.php using WordPad:


define('TEXT_MAIN', 'This is a demonstration online-shop, <b>any products purchased will not be delivered nor billed</b>. Any information seen on these products are to be treated fictional.<br><br>If you wish to download this sample shop, or to contribute to this project, please visit the <a href=""><u>support site</u></a>. This shop is based on <font color="#f0000"><b>' . PROJECT_VERSION . '</b></font>.');
define('TABLE_HEADING_NEW_PRODUCTS', 'New Products For %s');
define('TABLE_HEADING_UPCOMING_PRODUCTS', 'Upcoming Products');
define('TABLE_HEADING_DATE_EXPECTED', 'Date Expected');

if ($category_depth == 'products' || $HTTP_GET_VARS['manufacturers_id']) {
define('HEADING_TITLE', 'Let\'s See What We Have Here');
define('TABLE_HEADING_IMAGE', '');
define('TABLE_HEADING_MODEL', 'Model');
define('TABLE_HEADING_PRODUCTS', 'Product Name');
define('TABLE_HEADING_MANUFACTURER', 'Manufacturer');
define('TABLE_HEADING_QUANTITY', 'Quantity');
define('TABLE_HEADING_PRICE', 'Price');
define('TABLE_HEADING_WEIGHT', 'Weight');
define('TABLE_HEADING_BUY_NOW', 'Buy Now');
define('TEXT_NO_PRODUCTS', 'There are no products to list in this category.');
define('TEXT_NO_PRODUCTS2', 'There is no product available from this manufacturer.');
define('TEXT_NUMBER_OF_PRODUCTS', 'Number of Products: ');
define('TEXT_SHOW', '<b>Show:</b>');
define('TEXT_BUY', 'Buy 1 \'');
define('TEXT_NOW', '\' now');
define('TEXT_ALL', 'All');
} elseif ($category_depth == 'top') {
define('HEADING_TITLE', 'What\'s New Here?');
} elseif ($category_depth == 'nested') {
define('HEADING_TITLE', 'Categories');


What\'s New Here? Which is the page "heading title" can be easily modified. As can anything I've highlighted in RED.


  • Make copies of english.php and default.php in a separate folder before editing the source code. This way, if you inadvertently mess up the syntax you can always start over with the untouched file. Failure to do so could destroy your cart.
  • You can insert some HTML tags like <b> or <font> in between the ' ' where the text resides. For example: define('TEXT_SHOW', '<b>Show:</b>');
  • When you are done editing any php file, upload it back where you got it from and refresh your storefront page to see the changes.


Custom Colors and Graphics:

All colors for your storefront are controlled by one single document:

Path: /

You can easily change the colors, font sizes, font colors, margins, etc. for the entire cart using this document.

All Changeable attributes are marked in RED, but for .css you can edit just about everything.

Excerpt from stylesheet.css:

background: #ffffff;
color: #000000;
margin: 0px;

A {
color: #000000;
text-decoration: none;

A:hover {
color: #11366D;
text-decoration: underline;

display: inline;

TR.header {
background: #ffffff;



The initial thing you may want to do is replace the osCommerce logo with one of your own:

Path: /

The fastest and easiest way to do this is to make a logo using a graphics editor, save the file as oscommerce.gif and upload it, thus replacing the osCommerce logo with your own. Note: Your logo DOES NOT have to be the same size as oscommerce.gif

Other images to note:

Path: /
This is the little left half-circle at the top left side of your categories table:

Path: /
Same thing, but on the right side:

Path: /
The square one in every table:

If you decide to change the table colors in stylesheet.css, you will want to replace these with matching colored graphics of your own. For best results make sure the new replacement graphics you make are the same width and height as the above samples.