Announcement:Materials and articles for ProductCart 5 can be found at our brand new support center.

Create an account to edit articles | See Formatting Syntax for Wiki syntax | We look forward to your contribution!

ProductCart v4 Upgrade Instructions

A "Must Read"

Read this ENTIRE DOCUMENT document before you begin the process of upgrading to v4. This is absolutely crucial to reduce any downtime that your storefront will experience to a minimum. Do not upload any files to your store before you have read this document in its entirety and have created a “To Do” list of tasks that apply to your ProductCart-powered storefront.

Downloading the v4 Upgrade Files using the Check for Updates feature is not enough to successfully update your store. That's because:

  • Your store's interface files (pc/header.asp and pc/footer.asp) need to be updated
  • Your ProductCart-powered store may be running add-on's and special files that require additional steps
  • Some files that you have very likely customized will be overwritten (e.g. includes/languages.asp)
  • There is a series of steps that you need to take immediately after you upgrade the v4 files, which are listed below

This is a long document. We recommend that you print it and review it offline, highlighting sections that are particularly important to your store.


The v4 Upgrade requires that you are running ProductCart v3.51.

If you are running a previous version, you must update your store to version 3.51 before proceeding.

New Features and Improvements

The v4 Upgrade is a major upgrade of the ProductCart system. Virtually every file in the Control Panel was updated (new features, improvements, code “clean-up”, performance improvements) and several substantial features were added to the storefront (e.g. One Page Checkout, product promotions, etc.). See an overview of the main feature changes. Overall, around 1,500 files were updated or added.

Recent Updates

On 12.21.09 we updated the file set that is downloaded when you request the ProductCart v4 upgrade so that it includes all of the latest file changes as of that date. Make sure the file you download includes “_122109” in the file name. All maintenance releases up to this date are included. This means that:

Backing Up Your Store

Backing Up: a necessary step

Make sure that you back-up your store before proceeding. This is a crucial step of the store upgrade process. See: Information about backing up your store.

Once you have a back-up of your existing files, the backed-up version of the files listed below under “Overwritten Files” will help you update the corresponding new files with your changes. This is also true with any other file whose source code you might have customized, as discussed in the next section.

Using a Backup to Update Modified Files

If you have customized the ProductCart source code, including popular files such as pcStorefront.css (the document that styles most of the ProductCart storefront) or languages.asp (the file that contains most of the text strings used in the storefront)…

  • Create a back-up of the current store as mentioned above
  • Copy the files that you have modified from your backup folders to a new location. For example, you could call this folder “v4 of Customized Files”. When you are done, you will have 2 copies of the files that you had modified: one in the main back-up folder, and one in the new “v4 of Customized Files” folder.
  • Download the v4 files from the ProductCart Updated Management System, as described later in this document.
  • Perform a file comparison of the default v4 files that you have downloaded against the corresponding files in your “v4 of Customized Files” folder.
  • Edit the files that need to be synchronized (see how to synchronize files). Make sure to edit the copy that is in your “v4 of Customized Files” folder (so that the v4 files remain intact).
  • When you are done, the “v4 of Customized Files” folder will contain version 4 of your customized source code. Once you have successfully upgraded your store to version 4, you can upload these files to reintroduce your modifications and test everything to make sure it is working as expected, but keep in mind that ProductCart does not provide technical support on areas of the code that have been modified.

We strongly recommend that you do not mix your customized files with the v4 files you downloaded from the ProductCart Web site. It is always recommended that you keep a completely separate file set containing your modified files. That way you know exactly which files were customized, and you can always compare them with the non-modified version.

If substantial modifications were made to your store, we strongly recommend that you contact the developers that performed those modifications for you. In this scenario, a mirror Web store should be setup and upgraded to v4 so that all modified source code, once synchronized with the v4 files, can be properly tested. Once again, please note that ProductCart will not provide technical support on issues that may arise from upgrading to v4 if the issues pertain to areas of ProductCart that have been customized.

Technical note on shopping cart array: the shopping cart array has changed in ProductCart v4 as more variables were added. If any files were customized, the developer(s) that performed the work must review the code to ensure that they did not hardcode the length of the shopping cart array into their code. See this article for details.

SHARED SSL Certificates. Due to the new One Page Checkout if you have a shared SSL certificate and also use offline payment methods you will need to switch to either a dedicated SSL or use a payment gateway.

To Do Items

Please see the list below to locate all the items that you need to download and install. A Legend below includes descriptions for the abbreviations used in the following table.

You are using… What you need to download and FTP to your server… How to get the files…
Main ProductCart file set
STD v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
BTO v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
STD + APP v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
BTO + APP v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
BTO + CM v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
BTO + APP + CM v4 Upgrade from UMS Check for updates in the CP
Other Add-on's and files
Google Analytics v4 Google Analytics files Get the latest files
SEO Not Needed: the SEO files are built into ProductCart v4
MailUp v4 MailUp Integration Files Get the latest files
eBay Add-on No specific update needed for version 4 (no overlapping files)
QuickBooks Add-on Updated files needed Contact ProductCart


  • STD = ProductCart standard version
  • BTO = ProductCart Build To Order version
  • APP = Apparel Add-on for ProductCart
  • CM = Conflict Management Add-on for ProductCart
  • eBay = eBay Add-on for ProductCart
  • QBK = QuickBooks Add-on for ProductCart
  • UMS = Update Management System
    This is the system that you access via the Check for Updates feature in your Control Panel. The system detects which version you are running and delivers the correct file.
  • SEO = You are using the files that allow for keyword-rich URLs

Downloading the Upgraded File

Depending on the version of ProductCart that you are using (Standard vs. Build To Order) and on the add-on's installed on your store, the Update Management System will prompt you to download the correct file.

Double-checking the Downloaded File Name

You can double-check that you are indeed downloading the correct file by checking the file name against the following information.

You are running v4 Upgrade File Name
ProductCart Standard ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_DATE
ProductCart Standard + Apparel Add-on ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_APP_DATE
ProductCart Build To Order ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_BTO_DATE
ProductCart Build To Order + Apparel Add-on ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_BTO_APP_DATE
ProductCart Build To Order + Conflict Management ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_BTO_CM_DATE
ProductCart Build To Order + Conflict Management + Apparel Add-on ProductCart_v4_Upgrade_BTO_CM_APP_DATE

If you believe that the ProductCart Update Management System is not providing you with the correct file set, please open a support ticket. If you do not see the v4 Upgrade when you “Check for Updates”, even if it has officially been announced, then make sure that your license is eligible for Software Updates.

Unzipping the Downloaded Files

  • Unzip the files to a new directory on your desktop (e.g. “v4 Upgrade Files”).
  • Do not copy the unzipped files onto an existing set of ProductCart files.
  • If you want to have a copy of the entire ProductCart folder on your desktop, including the latest files, download the store to your desktop after you have finished the update process.

We have changed the code that is added to your Web store template so that it properly works with ProductCart. The changes are very simple to implement. Follow the instructions below.


You will be adding a new “include” statement right before the closing </head> tag.



Replace with:

<!--#include file="inc_header.asp" -->


You will replace a section of code with a new “include” statement.


Set conlayout=nothing
Set RSlayout = nothing
Set rsIconObj = nothing

Replace with:

<!--#include file="inc_footer.asp" -->

ProductCart v4 includes code that will detect whether these changes to header.asp and footer.asp have been applied. The system will automatically keep the storefront turned off if those changes are not detected, in order to prevent errors from occurring. The storefront will be kept turned off regardless of whether the store has been turned on under Settings > Store Settings. If you run into this scenario, check your header.asp and footer.asp files again.

Updating Overwritten Files

List of Files

Some of the files contained in the ProductCart v4 Upgrade will overwrite files that you have likely customized. These include:

"pc" folder

  • pc/header.asp and pc/footer.asp
    They will not be overwritten (they are not part of the upgrade files), but you should update them and overwrite the existing ones. Update them as described in the section above.
  • pc/include-metatags.asp
    This contains your default meta tags. The file will be overwritten during the update. You will need to add your default meta tags to the new version of the file. You should do this before transferring the new files to your Web server. That is:
    • Locate the new version of the file in the pc subfolder of the file set you will be using to update your store, which you have located using the information above.
    • Edit the file by updating the default meta tags (you can copy and paste your default meta tags from the old version of the file).
    • Save the edited file. It will be uploaded to your Web server with the rest of the updated files.
  • pc/pcStorefront.css
    ProductCart v4 contains some interface changes that required some modifications to the main Cascading Style Sheet that styles the ProductCart storefront. This file is often updated by ProductCart users, so make sure to synchronize it with your own version.
  • pc/smallRecentProducts.asp
    This file is often included in a store's header.asp or footer.asp file to show a list of recently viewed products. The source code has been partially changed. Among other things, the section title now uses the ”<h3>” tag, so you may need to restyle it.

"includes" folder

  • includes/languages.asp and includes/languages_ship.asp
    These files contain most text strings shown in the storefront, and they are often edited by ProductCart users (especially languages.asp). Synchronize your current version of the file (locate it in your back-up files) with the new version that you have downloaded. See below about synchronizing files.

Synchronizing Overwritten Files

As noted above, this update contains files that you have likely modified (e.g. includes/languages.asp, pc/pcStorefront.css, pc/include-metatags.asp). See File Comparisons and Synchronizations for tips on how to compare and synchronize your edited files.

If you have moved the home page to the root of your Web site, you will need to synchronize the files that exist in the root with the corresponding files that are part of the v4 upgrade. That's because any files that have been moved outside of the “productcart” folder (likely renamed on your store) will not be updated when you upload the v4 Upgrade files to your Web server.

Installing the Update

Parent Paths Enabled vs. Parent Paths Disabled

Please select the correct update files depending on the version of ProductCart that you are running. Specifically, if you are running ProductCart on a server that has Parent Paths Disabled, please use the files contained in the “Parent Paths Disabled” folder. Otherwise, use the files contained in the “Parent Path Enabled” folder, which is the most common scenario.

If you are unsure of which version you are running, look at the version number in the Control Panel start page (“menu.asp”). If it includes the letters “PPD”, then you are using the “Parent Path Disabled” version of ProductCart.

Step 1 - Back up your store

If you haven't already done so, back-up your store.

Step 2 - Turn off your store

  1. Log into your Control Panel and select General Settings > Store Settings
  2. Enter a descriptive message in the field Message displayed when store is off.
  3. Select Turn store off, then click on the Update button. This ensures that customers do not browse the store while you are updating it.

Step 3 - FTP new files to your server

Upload the files to their respective folders, overwriting the existing files.

  • Matching folders
    Most of the folder names should match. For instance, you will update the contents of the pc subfolder on your Web server with the files contained in the pc subfolder that you have downloaded from the ProductCart Update Management System.
  • pcadmin folder
    The pcadmin folder has likely been renamed on your store (if not, you should rename it). Rename the pcadmin folder in the update files locally on your computer so that when you FTP the files there is no chance that a new pcadmin folder is created, which would mean that some of your store files are not being updated.
  • Do not delete
    Do not delete any of the files that are currently on your Web server. The v4 Upgrade does not replace all files. However, that does not mean that it will not use some of the older files that it does not upgrade. Many of them will be used.
  • Confirm successful transfer
    The ProductCart v4 Upgrade contains around 1,500 files and the FTP upload could take some time. Make sure that once the process has finished, your FTP client reported a success message. Most FTP programs have a way to show you whether some files were not uploaded successfully. If that happens, make sure to upload them again until all files have been uploaded successfully. For example, Filezilla separately reports “Failed Transfers” and “Successful Transfers”. The “Failed Transfers” tab should be empty.

Step 4 - Update the Store Database

  1. Log into the Control Panel
  2. You will be automatically redirected to the database update page.
    1. If you are not automatically redirected, replace “menu.asp” with “upddb_v4.asp” in the browser address field and press the ENTER key on your keyboard.
    2. If you get a “Page Not Found” error, it means that the files were not uploaded to the correct folder or the FTP upload was not completed successfully.
  3. Run the database update script.
    1. If you receive any errors or warnings (e.g. a table could not be updated), run the database update again. In some cases these errors disappear on the second execution of the update.
    2. If the errors persist even after re-running the database update script a few times, leave the store OFF and open a Support Ticket.

Step 5 - Review and Update New Settings as Needed

A message will confirm that the store database and version number have been updated. You should now update a series of store settings that have been affected by the v4 Upgrade. Here is a list of them. Not all of them will apply to your particular store.

Keyword Rich URLs ("SEO URLs")

SEO URLs are now built-in. If you were using this feature with your ProductCart v3 storefront, you will simply need to turn on this setting under “Settings > Store Settings > Miscellaneous”. There are two settings that need to be set:

  • Feature ON/OFF
    Turn it on if you were using the SEO URLs in v3.x
  • Path to 404 Error page
    Copy the path & file name that is currently stored in the file “404b.asp” stored in the “pc” folder, enter it in the Path to 404 Error page input field, and save the store settings.

You must turn on this feature BEFORE you turn your store back on after upgrading, or existing page links that have been indexed by search engines will no longer work.

Shipping Settings

The setting Hide shipping address Input form when only products flagged as “No Shipping Required” are in the cart under Shipping > Shipping Settings > Other Settings, has been replace with the following, more flexible options. Review and select the one that best applies to your store.

  1. Show shipping address only if order requires shipping
  2. Disable shipping address (billing address = shipping address)
  3. Always show shipping address (even if the order does not require shipping)

After reviewing the new shipping settings, click on the “Update” button even if no settings were changed. ProductCart will update a file that is used in the storefront to quickly access your shipping settings.

Previously hard-coded variables

A series of variables that affected certain storefront behaviors and used to be “hardcoded” into the source code, have now been turned into features that you can control directly from your ProductCart Control Panel. You should review and reset all of them so that they match your requirements. Here is a list:

  1. Gift Certificates and Shipping Charges
    1. Description: see Gift Certificates and Shipping Charges section
    2. New Location: Settings (or Marketing) > Manage Gift Certificates
    3. Default value: off (i.e. when redeemed, Gift Certificates are not applied against shipping charges)
  2. Disable “Quick Buy”
    1. Description: see the Store Settings section
    2. New Location: Settings > Store Settings > Miscellaneous
    3. Default value: off (i.e. “Quick Buy” is enabled by default)
  3. Use UPS Dynamic Insurance Values
    1. Description: Calculate shipping insurance based on a flat amount ($100 by default) or based on the products being purchased. See FAQ on this topic.
    2. New Location: UPS Settings Page
  4. Use UPS Negotiated Rates
    1. Description: If you UPS account has been granted discounted rates (“negotiated rates”), you can pass those discounts onto your customers. See FAQ on this topic.
    2. New Location: UPS Settings Page.
    3. Default value: off (i.e. standard rates are shown).
  5. Use FedEx Dynamic Insurance Values
    1. Description: Calculate shipping insurance based on a flat amount ($100 by default) or based on the products being purchased. See FAQ on this topic.
    2. New Location: FedEx Settings Page

New storefront features to check out

There are many new features in ProductCart v4 that can help you market your products even more effectively. Among them:

  1. Updated brands management
    You can now organize brands in a two-level tree and configure new settings for them
  2. Updated Content Management system
    What used to be the “Manage Content Pages” feature has been completely redesigned and turn into a more feature-rich content management system. You can find those features under the “Pages” menu. For more information, review the updated documentation on this feature.

Step 6 - Re-open your store

When all To Do items have been completed, you can now turn your store back on and verify that the storefront is working properly. We recommend that you place at least one test order to go through the entire checkout process.



If ProductCart is returning errors, turn off your store and review the information in this document carefully to make sure that you have followed every step as outlined above. Specifically, make sure that:

  1. You started with the correct version number (see “Applicability” above)
  2. You correctly uploaded the files to your store (e.g. were files in the “pcadmin” folder uploaded to the correct, corresponding folder, which you likely renamed in your store?)
  3. You successfully updated the database, as described above
  4. You completed the rest of the “To Do” items mentioned above

If this still doesn't solve your problem, leave the store OFF and open a Support Ticket. Please make sure to indicate which version of ProductCart you are updating from, which add-on's and other file sets you are using (e.g. Google Analytics integration, etc.), and include the error message that you are receiving.

Specific Issues

Cannot turn storefront back on

ProductCart will automatically keep your storefront turned off if it detects that you have not correctly updated header.asp and footer.asp as mentioned above.

Only "Use my Billing Address" shown

If “One Page Checkout” only shows “Use my Billing Address” in the drop-down where a shipping address is selected, then go to the Control Panel and select “Shipping > Shipping Settings”. Review the shipping settings, make sure that “Show shipping address only if order requires shipping” or “Always show shipping address (even if the order does not require shipping)” are selected and click on the “Update” button. This should resolve the issue.


The ProductCart v4 Upgrade has been tested by NetSource Commerce in a variety of environments. However, there might be environments that have not been tested and that may cause problems.

You are responsible for making a backup copy of your existing store database and store files, as described above. A backup copy of your store will allow you to revert back to your previous, working version of ProductCart in case you experience any problems after running the update.

NetSource Commerce shall not be liable for any loss of data and/or loss of income due to any downtime that your online store may experience as a direct or indirect result of installing this update.

Updated End User License Agreement

The ProductCart End User License Agreement has changed with ProductCart v4 as the ProductCart Technical Support & Updates policy was changed. You will need to agree to the new End User License Agreement before logging into your ProductCart Control Panel as part of the ProductCart v4 Upgrade.

QR Code
QR Code ProductCart v4 Upgrade Instructions (generated for current page)