Today, we are very proud to present to you the results of the hard work of the whole CS-Cart team—CS-Cart 4 Beta.
Yes, this is correct; the version number is 4, not 3.1.1 as we announced earlier.
The reason is, that during the development, it became obvious that this release was much more significant than a regular minor release. By jumping straight to version 4, we want to show that this is a major upgrade, with features never seen in CS-Cart before.
This version is a huge leap forward for CS-Cart. We are extremely happy to share all these new features with you.
UPD: April 30, 2013, Beta 2 has been released. The download links were updated.
Ultimate and Multi-Vendor Editions
CS-Cart 4 Beta is the first release to conform to the new edition policy.
That is, there are just 2 editions, Ultimate and Multi-Vendor.
CS-Cart 4 Ultimate is available in Free mode to replace the discontinued CS-Cart Community Edition.
CS-Cart 4 Ultimate with a single storefront is an extendible replacement for CS-Cart Professional.
One of the killer features of this version is the builtin theme editor.
Now, you can customize your storefront in real time, and without a single line of HTML or CSS
You can play around with colors, fonts, logos, and backgrounds, all in real time and previewed directly on your storefront.
You can activate the Theme editor mode via the CS-Cart 4 admin panel, under Design → Design mode. Note that in Ultimate edition you should select a store first.
New Admin Panel Look & Feel
In CS-Cart 4, we have greatly improved the administrator area:
- Sleeker and more modern design
- Rearranged menus for easier navigation
- Sidebar with search and additional functionality
- Onepage order creation and editing
- Dozens of minor improvements
Thanks to the user feedback, we were able to make the CS-Cart admin panel better than it ever was.
The new CS-Cart is dramatically faster than the previous version. By optimizing the storefront block management routine, we achieved a great performance boost. Compared to CS-Cart 2.2.5 and 3.0.6, CS-Cart 4 is up to 3x faster and uses less CPU.
We have simplified the installer and added a convenient post-installation Settings Wizard.
The new CS-Cart installation process has just 2 steps, one of which is accepting the license agreement.
Right after the installation, you will be able to set up some general preferences of your store using a quick step-by-step Settings Wizard:
We received a lot of feedback and requests to add the suppliers functionality to the Ultimate and Multi-Vendor editions.
Now, we are happy to introduce the suppliers feature in both the Ultimate and Multi-Vendor editions as a special built-in add-on.
CS-Cart 4 Beta is the first CS-Cart version to provide an API to interact with a store.
We have extended the list of supported API objects since the last announcement, and now the following objects can be viewed and modified via the API:
- Shipping methods
- Payment methods
Despite some core changes in the CS-Cart architecture, the add-ons for CS-Cart 3.x are highly compatible with CS-Cart 4.
Refer to the adaptation guide for the detailed instructions.
Testing and Feedback
You are very welcome to download CS-Cart 4 Beta and test it. Please note that this is not a production-ready release; do not use it as a live store!
Also, note that CS-Cart 4 requires PHP version 5.3 or 5.4.
We are keen to hear any feedback. There is a floating Feedback button at the right edge of every page in the admin area; use it to send a message directly to the CS-Cart development team:
Bug reports are also much appreciated.