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How ProductCart is licensed

ProductCart Licensing Model

ProductCart is licensed on a per-store basis. A store is defined by:

  • A ProductCart License Key that is issued at the time of purchase.
  • The Domain Name (including sub domains)on which the store is run.
  • The Database that contains all information used by the store (products, customers, orders, etc.)

This translates into the following, basic rule: one ProductCart License Key can only be used to run one commercial store. You cannot use the same License Key to run multiple commercial stores. Additional licenses are required if you want to run multiple stores, and discounts are available.

What you can do

The ProductCart Licensing model allows you to do the following.

  • Activate and use ProductCart on your Web store
  • Activate and use ProductCart on a test/staging Web server (or even your local workstation), and then move it to the production Web server.
    When you do this, you don’t need to re-activate the software: you can just edit the store URL in the file “includes/storeconstants.asp”. For more information about moving your store from a testing environment to the production server, see the following page: Moving your ProductCart powered store
  • Change the domain name associated with your store one time. This includes the domain change that would happen when you move your store from a testing server (or your local workstation) to the production Web server. If you need to change the store URL more than once, you will need to contact NetSource Commerce.

What you cannot do

You will not be able to do the following:

  • Activate ProductCart with license information that is not correct: you will not be able to complete the Setup Wizard if the license information that you enter during the Setup process is not valid.
  • Activate ProductCart using the same license information on more than one store, even if the license information is valid. Valid license information can only be used on one commercial storefront. Discounts are available for customers that operate multiple storefronts.
  • Log into the Control Panel on a store that had already been registered, but with an invalid license.
  • Log into the Control Panel on a store that had already been registered, but where the URL of the store has been changed more than once.

Licensing Questions

Can I use the same license on a testing store?

Yes, you are allowed to install ProductCart on a testing store, which typically uses an IP address or local URL (e.g. http://localhost/...), then move the store to the production server. When you move the store to the production server, you will need to change the store URL in the file “includes/storeconstants.asp”. You will be able to do so once. The system prevents you from changing the store URL more than once. For questions and issues, contact NetSource Commerce Impact.

Is there a discount to operate multiple storefronts?

Sure, customers that wish to operate multiple commercial stores with ProductCart can contact us for a discount on the additional licenses that they wish to purchase. The discount amount varies depending on how many licenses they wish to purchase. For questions and issues, contact NetSource Commerce.

Can I use the same license for multiple stores if the database is just one, shared among the stores, but the domain names are different?

The system will not allow you to run multiple stores on different domains, with the same License Key. Sharing the same database across different stores, hosted on different domains is a very rare scenario as there are all sorts of issues that come into place when multiple domains are used. For instance, there can be issues with the payment settings as different URLs attempt to submit payment using the same payment gateway account, which payment gateways may not allow.

Why not allow multiple stores under the same license?

When multiple storefronts are operated with the same license, technical support and updates are provided to a storefront that was not associated with any revenue source for the company, which is clearly not a sustainable business model.

For over 7 years now NetSource Commerce has been developing e-commerce software non-stop, providing technical support to thousands of customers, and issuing numerous free updates to ProductCart users (there have been only 2 paid-for upgrades in the history of the application - the last one over 2 years ago). That's what a ProductCart license pays for.

Can I change the domain of the store at some point?

Sure, you can change it as many times as you wish, as long as there is only 1 commercial store associated with it. To change the domain (store URL) associated with your store, you will need to edit the store URL variable inside the file includes/storeconstants.asp.

Note: the ProductCart licensing system will detect the domain name change and block access to the ProductCart Control Panel if the domain has changed more than twice. Contact our support team, and we will unlock the license for you if there are no other live stores using the same license. The storefront will not be impacted (so customers will continue to shop on your storefront even if you are temporarily unable to access the Control Panel). Contact us before changing the domain name if you are concerned that you might trigger this license “lock”.

Why should I pay for a ProductCart license when there is plenty of open source software available?

Assuming that you find an open source solution that matches your feature requirements in the same way ProductCart does (i.e. comparable applications under a “feature” point of view), remember that there are often hidden costs in choosing to adopt an open source solution. The biggest one is clearly technical support. In many cases, what you end up spending in a yearly technical support plan matches or surpasses the cost of a ProductCart license.

There is also the hidden cost, much harder to calculate, of not being able to identify exactly who to contact when things don't go as expected. That uncertainty does not exist when you buy a ProductCart license. We have been developing our e-commerce software for almost a decade, back it up with outstanding technical support, and will act quickly and professionally to review and address a reported flaw in our e-commerce software. There is no guessing who's behind ProductCart. We are.

Don't confuse an Open Source license with having the ability to access the software's source code, which is also referred to as “open source” at times. ProductCart does indeed allow you the ability to access its source code. You can view it and edit it as you wish (except for a few areas). The ProductCart license however, is copyrighted material and not an Open Source license.


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